superman.nuMary Immaculate of Lourdes NewtonSuperman Through the Ages!Holliston School Committeefacebook    
  •   forum   •   COUNTDOWN TO MIRACLE MONDAY: "SONG OF THE EARTH!" •   fortress   •  
Superman Through the Ages! Forum
News: Superman Through the Ages! now located at theAges.superman.nu
 
*
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?
April 23, 2024, 03:56:00 PM


Login with username, password and session length


Pages: [1] 2 3   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Superman's strength reduced by a third? I don't think so...  (Read 14516 times)
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Aldous
Superman Squad
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 843


Downunder


« on: August 13, 2005, 06:27:51 PM »

I've been looking around this great website again for the first time in a long time. I re-read the article about The Bronze Age Superman and it still bugs me where it says that by the end of the Sand-Superman Saga, Superman's power had been reduced by a third.

I never mastered Calculus, but I can see this doesn't add up.

On page 7 of "The Ultimate Battle," the Sand-Superman is walloped by the war-demon quarrmer, and he thinks: "It's too powerful! It possesses at least two-thirds of Superman's strength -- while I have only the remaining third!"

On page 14 of the story, the war-demon has broken into the hospital and grabbed Superman. Upon physical contact, there is a power-drain from the war-demon into Superman. By the last panel of this page, Superman is thinking, "We're absolute equals..."

This means that the three characters -- Superman, the sand-creature, and the war-demon -- now each possess one third of Superman's power.

On page 16 Superman and the sand-creature have driven the war-demon to the dimensional gateway, and its spirit returns to Quarrm, leaving the war-demon body behind as an inanimate shell.

Right. Either:

(A) The spirit of the war-demon left our dimension with its third of Superman's power, or the power was released and merely dissipated into the environment, leaving Superman and the sand-creature with a third each; or

(B) The spirit of the war-demon, during departure, allowed its third of Superman's power to be drained back into Superman and the sand-creature, ie. half went to Superman and half went to the sand-creature...

Either way, as the Man of Steel confronts the Sand-Superman after the war-demon's departure, they each possess an equal amount of super-power.

By page 22, the sand-creature is returning to Quarrm with his share of Superman's original power. If (A), Superman is left with one third of his original power, which means he has lost two thirds of his power. If (B), and the war-demon's strength drained into Superman and the sand-creature, the Sand-Superman took with him half of Superman's original power, meaning Superman has lost half of his power.

There is no way Superman's power has been reduced by one third, as stated by the article.
Logged
Osgood Peabody
Superman Family
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 107


« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2005, 10:07:15 PM »

I agree, Aldous, that was a bit ambiguous.   I also was led to believe he was half his former self.

I recall a letter dealing with this question back in the day and ENB clarified it somewhat - I'll have to see if I can find it and post it.
Logged
Great Rao
Administrator
Council of Wisdom
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1897



WWW
« Reply #2 on: August 14, 2005, 03:51:37 AM »

I've done a lot of editing and rewriting on that article in the past.

If you guys get this detail figured out, I'll give it another round.

S!
Logged

"The bottom line involves choices.  Neither gods nor humans have ever stood calmly in a minefield forever.  Good or evil, they are bound to choose.  And when they do, you will see the truth of all that motivates us.  As a thinking being, you have the obligation to choose.  If the fate of all mankind were in your hands, what would your decision be?  As a writer and an artist, I've drawn my answer."   - Jack Kirby
Klar Ken T5477
Council of Wisdom
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1338


Metropolis Prime, NYC, NY USA


WWW
« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2005, 04:38:45 PM »

Problem: define Superman's full powers. How powerful is powerful?
Then cut it by a third or a half or whatever.

Oh he cant bully a sun but can still move the Earth?

Id say the Quarmmers effect was temporary at best (maybe a little longer than Red K?) and any guesstimate to how much was diminished was just that - a guess...and let's leave it like that IMHO>

The one who really cut Superman's powers was not the Quarmmer but the DC editorial board circa 1986. :roll:

Then theres Billy and his Lynx............. :shock:
Logged
Osgood Peabody
Superman Family
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 107


« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2005, 08:27:24 PM »

OK - it took me a while, but here it goes...

The letters in Superman #247 had several different interpretations as to how much his powers were reduced, but although ENB acknowledges this, he cops out of an answer:




However, a reader named Matt Graham refused to let ENB off the hook.  In the letter column in issue 251, he comes back at him with reasoning remarkably similar to the one Aldous just laid out, and ENB finally renders a verdict that 1/2 is the final answer:




So there you go!
Logged
MatterEaterLad
Council of Wisdom
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1389


Silver Age Surfer


WWW
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2005, 08:45:11 PM »

Very cool and thanks as usual for the archive...I guess that's as good as it gets...

Though of course the question remains what does half mean?

I did like the reader complaining about half the powers for twice the price...now THAT'S quantifying stuff! Cool
Logged
Captain Kal
Superman Squad
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 716



« Reply #6 on: August 15, 2005, 02:32:06 PM »

Well, as it says on the Bronze Age write-up on this very site, how much is half of infinity?  SA/BA Superman was pretty much unlimited in his power and this was even mentioned directly in a few stories.  The Jimmy Olsen story with the android Sharla mentions how the limitless energy of Superman overloaded a bio-energy vampire.  The fake twin Kor-El (really the Parasite in disguise) story describes Kal's otherwise limitless might shrinking with every blow to free the imposter from a kryptonite asteroid.

I've always interpreted that to mean that against non-super (i.e. non-transfinite) beings/matter/objects, he was functionally omnipotent.  The difference only showed up when confronting other super-beings.

Anyway, I've always seen Superman as a peak specimen of Kryptonian humanity esp. after the "The Greatest Green Lantern of Them All!" story.  He'd be at least twice to a dozen times as strong as a normal Kryptonian in the first place.  Halving his power would at best make him a peer of a normal Kryptonian.

IMHO
Logged

Captain Kal

"When you lose, don't lose the lesson."
-- The Dalai Lama
Aldous
Superman Squad
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 843


Downunder


« Reply #7 on: August 15, 2005, 06:00:19 PM »

Quote from: "Osgood Peabody"
OK - it took me a while, but here it goes...


As Mr Bridwell says, "Hold it! Hold it!"  Smiley

Osgood, thank you for going to the trouble of posting those letter pages. I have to say it is one of the things I regret, growing up with reprints downunder, that I never had access to the letter columns in the DC Comics of the day.  Sad  It was the forum of its time, but I didn't have the privilege of reading the thoughts and opinions of other DC fans.

It's fascinating to read these letters of a bygone era! I see what you mean about Matt Graham's calculations. What an extraordinarily intelligent fellow!  :wink:  

I see Matt decides on a third, while Mr Bridwell decides on half. I feel a little better now (ie. vindicated), in the sense that other readers also felt the need to question the extent of Superman's loss.

I don't agree with those of you who are dismissive of attempts to discuss Superman's power levels. DC traditionally always treated his powers as independent phenomena in themselves. In "Kneel to Your Conqueror, Superman," Caesar drains Superman's powers one by one, eg. strength, invulnerability, vision, etc. In "The Kids Who Stole Superboy's Powers" his abilities are likewise drained and divided up. In so many stories, Superman's powers are portrayed as finite and potentially separate from the big guy himself. It is quite obvious super-strength is a different energy to flying power, and that each power can be severed from Superman's physical and mental being.

I find the whole question of his ultimate power level, and the inherent "separateness" of his super-powers fascinating.

And no, I don't believe his power is infinite, if even because of his own psychological inhibitions.

Question: What had the most limiting effect on Superman's power at the conclusion of the Sand-Superman Saga? The fact that the sand-creature stole half (or a third) of his power -- or the fact that Superman had been completely humbled and cowed into believing that yes, ultimate power is ultimately corrupting? His most important defeat in the entire saga was a psychological one.
Logged
Pages: [1] 2 3   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

CURRENT FORUM

Archives: OLD FORUM  -  DCMB  -  KAL-L
Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines

Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS! Dilber MC Theme by HarzeM
Entrance ·  Origin ·  K-Metal ·  The Living Legend ·  About the Comics ·  Novels ·  Encyclopaedia ·  The Screen ·  Costumes ·  Read Comics Online ·  Trophy Room ·  Creators ·  ES!M ·  Fans ·  Multimedia ·  Community ·  Supply Depot ·  Gift Shop ·  Guest Book ·  Contact & Credits ·  Links ·  Coming Attractions ·  Free E-mail ·  Forum

Superman created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster
The LIVING LEGENDS of SUPERMAN! Adventures of Superman Volume 1!
Return to SUPERMAN THROUGH THE AGES!
The Complete Supply Depot for all your Superman needs!