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Author Topic: Superman Revenge Squad and Secret Identities  (Read 7732 times)
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dmat
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« on: December 06, 2006, 04:07:54 AM »

I can recall a story involving the Superman Revenge Squad, wherein they replace all of Superman's friends with lifelike robots (including Batman).  They then concoct situations where his 'friends' discover his dual identity, with shocking results.  For example, Perry White (I think it was Perry, my memory isn't what it once was) offered to keep his identity secret if Superman did some exclusive favors for him.  Essentially, blackmail.

Now then, the question is, why didn't the Superman Revenge Squad just reveal Superman's identity to his actual friends?  Certainly that on its own would be a major form of revenge?  Unfortunately I can't seem to find any instances where the Revenge Squad tried this, and was hoping someone would help me out.  It would be an issue I'd like to read.

One thing I wonder is if the Squad simply thought revealing his secret identity wouldn't be a big deal.  Their feeling may have been Superman's friends would just accept the fact, and if it were revealed to the world, the bulk of humanity would probably not care.  That is, to the majority, the name Clark Kent wouldn't mean a thing.
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Aldous
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« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2006, 07:31:13 AM »

One thing I wonder is if the Squad simply thought revealing his secret identity wouldn't be a big deal.  Their feeling may have been Superman's friends would just accept the fact, and if it were revealed to the world, the bulk of humanity would probably not care.

I think I have that comic. From memory, Superman becomes quite upset at what he thinks is betrayal, but then he makes a deduction that they are all imposters because each android has given itself away, eg. Batman had not grown any beard despite not shaving that morning. (Is that the one? I think it is...)

Anyway, you hit the nail on the head, dmat. Baddies just cannot believe Clark Kent is all that important to Superman. The writers touched on this occasionally through the Silver Age. Which baddie could imagine Clark is a real person, and one half of the Man of Steel, and of vital importance to their enemy? Most enemies of Superman would naturally assume the Man of Steel could and would establish a new secret identity quite easily, or even, perhaps, that he has many secret identities.

We know different. (Or, at least I do.) The loss of Kent as a secret identity would be devastating for Superman. Or maybe the loss of the Superman secret identity would be devastating for Kent. Whichever.
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dmat
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« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2006, 03:00:40 AM »

That's certainly true, Superman would never be the same without the Clark Kent identity.  Just out of curiosity, what do you think would happen if his ID were made public knowledge?

Personally, I think he'd probably find himself inundated with requests/favors/business opportunities and so on.  Folks would probably travel from around the world to Metropolis to ask for... whatever.  Some would make pilgramages to Smallville and the Kent farm.  And of course, the media would put him under constant scrutiny to see how he's handling the invasion of privacy - ready to pounce the minute something goes wrong, like a few other celebrities who shall remain unnamed.

Then there'd be the stalkers.  Could you imagine someone riffling through the trash looking for Superman's used toothbrush?  Or someone shelling out big money on eBay for it?  Freaky.
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Aldous
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« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2006, 05:07:27 AM »


Then there'd be the stalkers.  Could you imagine someone riffling through the trash looking for Superman's used toothbrush?  Or someone shelling out big money on eBay for it?  Freaky.

As far as I can remember, Clark Kent does not use a toothbrush or any other type of personal hygiene product -- according to Gerry Conway anyway, in "Superman, you're not Clark Kent -- and I can prove it" (1976). And yes, the story is as dumb as it sounds. (I haven't read the comic for years, so I'm not positive about the toothbrush.)

I went off track a little there...

I suppose nothing much would change if people knew Clark was Superman. The writers pushed it as far as it could go anyway, in having Clark a "close friend" of Superman, and able to contact Superman. What's the difference? Wouldn't Clark get all the whackos in town turning up with the "requests/favors/business opportunities" you mention?

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Super Monkey
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« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2006, 06:03:35 AM »

The way that they played it in the comics (Silver Age anyway) was that if Superman secret identity was ever revealed that it would be the end of Clark Kent and he would have to get a new Secret ID.

BTW, the PZ villains never bothered to expose him as well. Most villains didn't seem to care. Lois Lane was one of the few people who was trying really hard to figure it out.

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Aldous
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« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2006, 06:48:05 AM »

The way that they played it in the comics (Silver Age anyway) was that if Superman secret identity was ever revealed that it would be the end of Clark Kent and he would have to get a new Secret ID.

BTW, the PZ villains never bothered to expose him as well. Most villains didn't seem to care. Lois Lane was one of the few people who was trying really hard to figure it out.

Think about what the Phantom Zone villains could expose, if they wanted to. Think about what we all expose to them.  Shocked

The comics were always fairly discreet, but let's face it. These are the worst baddies in the universe. Naturally, they can and do watch anyone in the world going about their normal affairs, no matter how private or in which room of the house. They can watch you during coitus (cheaper than renting a porno film, but then I suppose they could watch any film as long as someone is playing it somewhere)...

I wonder what Superman makes of this... He surely realised that his enemies were in the room, watching (and probably sniggering) as he and Lois got down to the nitty gritty in "Who Took The Super Out Of Superman?"

It doesn't bear thinking about.

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MatterEaterLad
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« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2006, 06:49:49 AM »

As far as I can remember, Clark Kent does not use a toothbrush or any other type of personal hygiene product -- according to Gerry Conway anyway, in "Superman, you're not Clark Kent -- and I can prove it" (1976). And yes, the story is as dumb as it sounds. (I haven't read the comic for years, so I'm not positive about the toothbrush.)
Well, who can think about dental cleanliness when faced with "The Whirlicane"!?
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MatterEaterLad
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« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2006, 06:51:39 AM »

The fact that zoners can only watch and never participate was the best part of the idea...who needs all the extra baggage of it being Heck-like?

LOL, "heck"-like...
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