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Author Topic: Post Crisis comics that are in the spirit of Pre-Crisis?  (Read 11928 times)
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JulianPerez
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« on: July 13, 2007, 05:32:30 AM »

There was Jurgens' SUPERMAN #148, "Duel on a Distant World." First, the book brings back Vartox, and gives him a much more dignified outfit, yet one that still looks distinctly and recognizably "Vartoxian." Unlike other comics that have Superman earthbound, this one is set in outer space with Superman as a champion representing earth - a favorite theme of Cary Bates.

Superman is taken to a planet where he and other planetary champions, including Vartox, are asked to help a group of silicon-based aliens who are to be enslaved because of their telekinetic powers and never reach their full potential. The rock aliens are especially cool: they emerge from the planet itself and are somehow one with it.

The story has Superman be both intelligent and humanitarian. When Vartox, who, as usual favors flying all half-cocked, Superman instead refuses to just apply force to the problem and creates a plan. He reins in the instinct to kill and insists the others show mercy. In other words Superman behaves as he ought to.

The story has aliens, spaceships and neat STAR WARS stuff. Vartox bashes through a tower with Hyperenergy. There was one alien planetary champion that was a toad-looking creature with the ability to teleport and create gates and "windows" through space.

The story had Superman fly into space to help NASA repair a power pack on a Mars lander. This is in marked contrast with Superman being earthbound (especially in the Panic in the Sky Warworld tale).

It has Superman perform a frankly awesome display of power: he lifts and completely destroys an entire alien space-cruiser (once he was sure it had no one inside it, of course).

You know, for years, I thought Dan Jurgens was the Devil. The guy was involved with BOTH the Spider-Clones story and the Death of Superman, to say nothing of creating "Thor Girl." But recently I read a retrospective on the Spider-Clone Saga where Dan Jurgens emerged as the voice of reason who resented not being able to write stories about the character he grew up with.

And I guess I confused his AQUAMAN run with Erik Larsen's, but on rereading Jurgens issues of AQUAMAN, we saw a grandiose Ocean Master conquering Cerdia. One of the few occasions Aquaman was ever cool.

So I guess I could say I misjudged Jurgens. If you're reading this, Dan, my bad.
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« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2007, 11:04:42 AM »

I can't say I've read enough to actually have an opinion.  All_Star Superman certainly foots the bill for me.

I like your characterization: Pre-Crisis means space opera, a thinking Superman, a super-powerful, space-faring Superman, and a Superman with super-powered super-friends (and who he is generally the leader of).

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« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2007, 11:17:32 PM »

What strikes me about many post-Crisis stories, especially in the Superman continuity, is that DC seemed to have regretted the revamp almost immediately, and kept harking back to the Bronze or even Silver Ages. I haven't got a complete run, but it seems to me that Jurgens, for all the silliness he injected into many of his Superman stories, seemed to be making a fist of bringing all the old stuff back, by EXPLAINING it with SCIENCE or otherwise replacing it into a more sober context, in order to make it more acceptable for the 80s-90s reader. Unfortunately, it grew old fast. Superman travelling in space with a breathing mask? Come on.
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« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2007, 12:34:17 AM »

All-Star Superman quickly comes to mind.

Also these issues:

http://superman.nu/tales3/typical/
http://superman.nu/tales4/super-comet/
http://superman.nu/tales5/rivalry/

and this:
http://superman.nu/super-sons/nomore/
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« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2007, 04:19:42 AM »

One of the main difficulties for me in trying to find post-crisis Superman stories that were pre-crisis in spirit is that a good percentage of the post-crisis run was really part of a much larger continuing story arc.  There were very few actual stand-alone issues.  I suppose that in theory there could have been a long story arc that was pre-crisis in spirit, but to me having an extremely long story with chapters by different writers and artists which plays out over the course of a year is a very post-crisis specific concept that would by its nature preclude a story from consideration.

So I would only nominate a story that was for the most part self-contained in one issue, maybe two issues max if it was really good.

Further, I only read about half of the post-crisis Superman comics, because I would continually drop the Superman titles in frustration, then pick them up again, then drop them, then pick them up, then maybe just follow one or two of the four for a while (trying to follow creators I liked and avoid ones I disliked, a difficult thing to attempt in the triangle era), etc; continually repeating that process over the course of fifteen-or-so years.

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The story has Superman be both intelligent and humanitarian. When Vartox, who, as usual favors flying all half-cocked, Superman instead refuses to just apply force to the problem and creates a plan. He reins in the instinct to kill and insists the others show mercy. In other words Superman behaves as he ought to.

True, Julian - but I don't think that a pre-crisis Superman would have to "reign in the instinct to kill."  That's a definite Jurgens touch.

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« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2007, 11:09:15 PM »

I doubt I'll ever turn around on my opinion of Jurgens time on Superman. His version of the Toyman alone drives me crazy.
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« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2007, 04:11:06 AM »

All-Star Superman quickly comes to mind.
The All-Star comics are their own worlds, not part of post-Crisis (except if you count post-Crisis as "anything after 1986").  Morrison's DC: ONE MILLION stuff did have a Pre-Crisis feel to it and was clearly in Post-Crisis.

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« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2007, 10:00:55 PM »

My vote goes for One Million too.
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