superman.nuMary Immaculate of Lourdes NewtonHolliston School Committeefacebook    
  •   forum   •   THIS WEEK'S CHAPTER: "THE PENTHOUSE!" •   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?
June 30, 2022, 10:37:35 PM


Login with username, password and session length


Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Superman, HERCULES UNBOUND and the Kamandi Timeline  (Read 4127 times)
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
JulianPerez
Council of Wisdom
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1168



« on: July 06, 2006, 11:13:41 AM »

An appearance by Superman in DC COMICS PRESENTS and ACTION COMICS #268 (1960) shed some interesting light on the Kamandi/OMAC "variant" timeline, which diverged from the standard Earth-1 timeline that led to the future of the Legion of Super-Heroes and Professor Zoom. This timeline, however, may have diverged even earlier than we expected - perhaps even thousands of years ago!

The key to all this is in the 70s  twelve-issue series, HERCULES UNBOUND (not to be confused with HERCULES UNCHAINED, with Steve Reeves and the lovely Yugoslavian Sylvia Koscina).

By the way, if you haven't checked this series out, DO SO! At best, it had Wally Wood, Garcia-Lopez and Walt Simonson art, and towards the last few issues, Bob Layton and scripts by Cary Bates as well!

HERCULES UNBOUND was about a post-apocalyptic future filled with monsters and talking animals, set somewhere in between ATOMIC KNIGHTS and KAMANDI, where a blind boy and a dog discover an island surrounded by sea monsters in Greece, which had been home to an imprisoned Hercules. Hercules seeks revenge on his enemy, Ares, who imprisoned him, only to discover that his imprisonment was a part of a much vaster conspiracy.

It featured statements like:

"Oceanus the Titan must have felt the vibration of the nuclear bombs...and now he has assumed the form of the Loch Ness Monster!"

The book featured a battle between Hercules and Ares in order to bring a boy's pet dog back to life, Irish female robots, Olympian gods "combining their mental powers" to fight "Anti-Gods," guest appearances by the Atomic Knights and talking animals. The book was the "bridge" between the two futures. Though the Atomic Knights/Hercules future was established as being a dream sequence by Julie Schwartz because it would be impossible for humans to survive a nuclear war, nonetheless the connection to Kamandi by HERCULES UNBOUND shows that perhaps while the "Earth-1" Atomic Knight may have hallucinated his future as a dream sequence, the future itself still "really" happened in the divergent timeline.

It may be possible that the presence of Hercules and his binding may be the point of divergence between Earth-1's future and the Kamandi/Atomic Knights future - or at least, that the divergence took place at a considerably earlier time. In ACTION COMICS #268 (1960) we actually meet the Earth-1 Hercules (who would later return for several other appearances) and he has RED hair! Hercules, from HERCULES UNBOUND, has BLACK hair. Superman himself, in an issue of DC COMICS PRESENTS, even comments himself upon this difference, but limits his speculation to mere speculation and no one has really explored the significance of this very real difference. Earth-1 Hercules, as encountered by Superman, was something of a dick. However, the blackhaired Hercules in HERCULES UNBOUND helped blind kids.  

Incidentally, I was very surprised to learn in a recent literature course that Hercules in Greek folklore was supposed to have red hair. This is not just because of how associated Steve Reeves is with the character in modern times, but also because...well, no offense to any redheads, but being a redheaeded guy in fiction tends to indicate being a goofball, from Jimmy Olsen, Archie, to Carrot Top. The idea that one of fiction's biggest macho men and tough guys being redhaired is strange to the point of cognitive dissonance.

The presence of two very different Herculeses, one who was bound, and the other not, may indicate that the timelines diverged earlier than anticipated. Now we're entering the realm of speculation here, but is it possible that the split between the Greek Gods and the Anti-Gods may have been responsible for the "break" in the timeline?
Logged

"Wait, folks...in a startling new development, Black Goliath has ripped Stilt-Man's leg off, and appears to be beating him with it!"
       - Reporter, Champions #15 (1978)
SteamTeck
Superman Emergency Squad
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 86



« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2006, 10:39:08 PM »

Interesting speculations. I think they are different timelines. I don't have my old Hercules Unbounds easy access rihjt now but as I recall Hercules was bound for a very long time, centuries before the series started. Those were great books and it really annoyed me when  Schwartz told me two of my favorite series were delusional. He shpild have just let them fade away rather than trying to destroy them. Its not the sort of thing he regularly did either, Its more like the ego-driven jerk comics writers of more modern times to rain on an earlier times parade instead of letting it disappear by fading away.
Logged
JulianPerez
Council of Wisdom
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1168



« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2006, 08:17:58 AM »

Quote from: "SteamTeck"
Interesting speculations. I think they are different timelines. I don't have my old Hercules Unbounds easy access rihjt now but as I recall Hercules was bound for a very long time, centuries before the series started. Those were great books and it really annoyed me when  Schwartz told me two of my favorite series were delusional. He shpild have just let them fade away rather than trying to destroy them. Its not the sort of thing he regularly did either, Its more like the ego-driven jerk comics writers of more modern times to rain on an earlier times parade instead of letting it disappear by fading away.


Well, Julie did write out the Atomic Knights future as a hallucination, however, the thing is, according to HERCULES UNBOUND, the Atomic Knights future is related to the still-in-canon Kamandi and OMAC future, so it "really did" happen...whatever that means for a variant timeline, anyway.

Anyway, the point was, the only way to have the Atomic Knights future be "nonexistent" is to ignore HERCULES UNBOUND, too.

Also, perhaps some future writer may address the Earth-1/HERCULES UNBOUND Hercules question - it may show something very significant about the two earths.

Here's another piece of speculation: is it possible that the redhaired Earth-1 Hercules encountered in COMICS #268 (1960) may be the Anti-God version of the Unbound Hercules? They guy was certainly a heel, so it certainly is possible. How he came to reside on Earth-1 instead of "variant Earth-1 that led to the Kamandi future" is a mystery.
Logged

"Wait, folks...in a startling new development, Black Goliath has ripped Stilt-Man's leg off, and appears to be beating him with it!"
       - Reporter, Champions #15 (1978)
dto
Action Ace
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 416



« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2006, 04:24:50 PM »

One problem with the original Atomic Knights is that their history is so closely tied to "The Great Atomic War of 1986".  By the time "DC Comics Presents #57" revealed that the Knights were only an artificial "dream reality", that "distant future war" of the early 1960s "Strange Adventures" series was only three years away.

The Atomic Knights have been revamped once more after Infinite Crisis and are currently in "The Battle for Blüdhaven" miniseries.

http://www.toonopedia.com/atomic_k.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atomic_Knight

http://darkmark6.tripod.com/atomicind.htm
Logged

DTO
JulianPerez
Council of Wisdom
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1168



« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2006, 10:41:56 AM »

Quote from: "dto"
One problem with the original Atomic Knights is that their history is so closely tied to "The Great Atomic War of 1986".  By the time "DC Comics Presents #57" revealed that the Knights were only an artificial "dream reality", that "distant future war" of the early 1960s "Strange Adventures" series was only three years away.

The Atomic Knights have been revamped once more after Infinite Crisis and are currently in "The Battle for Blüdhaven" miniseries.

http://www.toonopedia.com/atomic_k.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atomic_Knight

http://darkmark6.tripod.com/atomicind.htm


Since HERCULES UNBOUND establishes that the Atomic Knights are in the Kamandi/Omac divergent timeline, I wouldn't say the dating is much of a problem. A nuclear war can have happened THERE in 1986, but not "here" (either Earth-Prime or "mainstream" Earth-1).

Good to hear the Atomic Knights are back in circulation! Now if only we can do the same for HERCULES UNBOUND - now there's an idea whose time has come! And considering the level of talent on it, it's surprising it hasn't been back already.

Oh, and also, it should be noted that Hercules from that series obtained an action figure, along with the Warlord and Machiste - their house ads were big and prominent in DC Comcis. Wonder if somebody has one of those Hercules figures around somewhere...

...and are willing to part with for cheap to Yours Truly, natch.  :wink:
Logged

"Wait, folks...in a startling new development, Black Goliath has ripped Stilt-Man's leg off, and appears to be beating him with it!"
       - Reporter, Champions #15 (1978)
llozymandias
Last Son of Krypton
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 301



« Reply #5 on: July 19, 2006, 11:44:15 PM »

Earth-1 is not the only earth in the pre-crisis multiverse to have altenate/divergent timelines, they all do.  In the whos who entry for the earth-1 Atomic Knight it was stated that his "dreams" were images of real events in a parallel universe.  Kamandi's world was created by an event called the "great disaster".  That event was connected to the Source, somehow.  What if that event affected more than just Earth-1?  In Kamandi's timeline it could have been a multiversal event.  It could be that Hercules Unbound, & the Atomic Knights take place in an alternate/divergent timeline of Earth-2.  Or Earth-3.  Or another earth.  There being a Kamandi in their universe does not automatically place them on Earth-1.
Logged

John Martin, citizen of the omniverse.
Great Rao
Administrator
Council of Wisdom
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1897



WWW
« Reply #6 on: July 20, 2006, 05:00:59 AM »

Quote from: "llozymandias"
Kamandi's world was created by an event called the "great disaster".  That event was connected to the Source, somehow.

The Great Disaster was connected to The Source?  Where was this mentioned?

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
Pages: [1]   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!