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Author Topic: 1958...a good year for Superman  (Read 9276 times)
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binarysunrise
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« on: February 27, 2007, 09:04:27 PM »

So 1958 was an amazing year to be reading Superman.  As you know, I am working on indexing all of the old, forgotten Superman newspaper strips.  I am up to 1958.  How is this for a series of 3 back-to-back storylines:

1) Brainiac
In April 1958 a storyline began involving an alien named Romado, who is clearly a prototype for Brainiac, who would first appear in Action Comics #242 (July 1958).  Romado has a computer-enhanced mind, and collects miniature cities in bottles from around the galaxy.  He has the shrunken Kryptonian city of Dur-el-va, which he traps Superman in.

2) Bizarro
Bizarro appears in the strips in September of 1958.  Though Superboy #68 (cover date of October 1958) hit the stands earlier, this story was actually written first.  In this early version, Bizarro has a "B" on his chest.  What is creepy is that Superman convinces Lois to betray Bizarro and trick him into getting exposed to his version of kryptonite, which "kills" him. (Though as Superman says, how can you kill a shadow...)

3) Metallo
December 15, 1958 begins a new story of Professor Vale saving a patient from a horrible accident, and having to put in a mechanical heart, etc. to save him.  He is powered by uranium pellets, with the possibility of some other rare mineral....I haven't read much of the story yet, as the year ends, but it is clearly the first Metallo story.  This is winter 1958.  In the comics, he first appears in Action Comics #252 (May 1959)
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binarysunrise
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« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2007, 10:29:23 PM »

Here are some images from my site:

Romado playing chess with Superman - the pieces they are playing for are cities on Earth....


First Bizarro...


First Metallo...
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Great Rao
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« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2007, 04:31:23 AM »

Absolutely incredible stuff, I hope these are all published in book form some day.

I see a lot of Curt Swan in some of those Wayne Boring strips.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2007, 04:34:55 AM by Great Rao » Logged

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crispy snax
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« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2007, 09:34:16 AM »

this is.... kinda amazing!

i mean three of the classic characters who were invented in 1958 and they all appeared previously in the newspaper strips! makes me wonder if the strips were used as tryouts
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Super Monkey
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« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2007, 11:44:52 AM »

They were, many character ideas 1st appeared in the strips before appearing in the comic books.
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binarysunrise
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« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2007, 01:50:43 PM »

They were, many character ideas 1st appeared in the strips before appearing in the comic books.

Sort of makes you wonder why no one credits these strips for the origins of these characters.  So far off the top of my head the strips have the first bald Lex Luthor, the first comic telephone booth change, Mxyzptlk, Bizarro, Metallo, and a proto-Brainiac.  What major characters (separate from say the first couple years at Superman's inception) are left?  I guess Superboy and Supergirl are the obvious ones, but what about classic villains?
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Permanus
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« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2007, 03:48:38 PM »

I didn't realise this at all; I assumed that the strips were just another quick cash-in on Superman's success. Also, the original newspaper strip versions of Metallo and Bizarro seem scarier than the comic-book versions - or is that just me?
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davidelliott
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« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2007, 04:56:06 PM »

I didn't realise this at all; I assumed that the strips were just another quick cash-in on Superman's success. Also, the original newspaper strip versions of Metallo and Bizarro seem scarier than the comic-book versions - or is that just me?
They seem to me to be as well....

ANOTHER ALTERNATE EARTH!  Why wasn't THIS one shown in COIE? ;-)
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