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Author Topic: John F. Kennedy lived  (Read 24054 times)
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India Ink
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« on: March 21, 2011, 12:18:51 AM »

Let me preface this by saying I mean no disrespect to President Kennedy, nor to make light of his tragic death.

But in the world of Silver Age Superman let me propose that JFK never died.

Now I know the sad event of Kennedy's death was acknowledged in an editorial note on one posthumous story, but if we ignore that, it's safe to assume that the President of the United States, who was a trusted ally of the Man of Steel, could well have survived the attempt on his life in the world of the comic book.

I don't believe LBJ ever appeared as president (only as vice president) in a Superman story (if I'm wrong on this, please correct me), so we can assume that the president for one or two terms was JFK. This would mean that the Kennedy era continued right up until 1968--when in keeping with the events of the real world Nixon was voted into office. Which would explain a lot--because the world of Superman between 1960 and 1968 retains that positive feeling that distinguished the early part of the decade--with little of the negativity that grew following the assassination.

How did JFK survive? Quite simply Superman prevented the death. With all of his resources at hand, the Man of Tomorrow would not have allowed such a misfortune to occur. If he wasn't in Dallas on that day, then one of his robots surely was.
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« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2011, 12:21:31 PM »

LBJ did appear in Lois Lane #71, with a cover date of Jan. 1967 -- which would have put it on the stands in Sept or Oct 1966 -- and is addressed as "Mr President."




I do agree, however, that the assassination represents a major disconnect between Superman's world and our own.  Having let Kennedy into that tight little circle of the "Superman Family," his death goes beyond merely "jarring" into flat-out irreconcilable.  Things like that don't happen to Superman's friends.

For what it's worth, in this scene Lois is withholding from LBJ -- per Superman's wishes -- the fact that Superman has been turned into a cat (don't ask).  So if nothing else, we've learned that the "if I can't trust the President, who can I trust?" rhetoric applied only to JFK, who in the world of Silver Age DC rises above his already lofty office to emerge as something of an honorary superhero in his own right.

« Last Edit: March 21, 2011, 12:27:14 PM by nightwing » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2011, 12:44:04 PM »

So clearly JFK was a one-term president.  He must have chosen not to seek a second term, even though he was popular enough that his former V.P. won the 1964 election.
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"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
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« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2011, 12:54:40 PM »


I have a vague memory that this was addressed somewhere, that Superman (or maybe Superboy in the early 80s series?) tragically failed to save JFK.

Possibly it was a response to a letter?  I'll have to see if I can jog my memory on this one.

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India Ink
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« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2011, 03:08:57 PM »

So clearly JFK was a one-term president.  He must have chosen not to seek a second term, even though he was popular enough that his former V.P. won the 1964 election.


I would go along with this. Which then leads me to wonder why Kennedy chose to step down. Maybe he was tasked with a much larger service to humanity than the presidency--perhaps he was asked to lead an interplanetary council and his family had to relocate to some far flung solar system.
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« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2011, 03:24:15 PM »

Realizing the enormous importance of the Apollo program, JFK ensures its funding by resigning the presidency to lend his own personal star power to the cause.




In the (fairly) recent "lost" Teen Titans annual, Bob Haney has JFK turn up on another planet, where he is indeed saving
some race or other.  Turns out he was replaced by an alien impostor who caught that bullet in Dallas.  The Titans want to bring JFK back to Earth, but he figures it'd be too much of a shock for folks, so he stays where he is.

Trust me, it sounds a lot better in my synopsis than it read in the book.  Even by Bob Haney standards, that thing was a train wreck.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2011, 03:30:03 PM by nightwing » Logged

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India Ink
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« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2011, 06:02:53 PM »

 Grin
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« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2011, 08:38:21 AM »

One-term president? Maybe he simply got found out. He was highly corrupt, but people see what they want to see. If the American public decide to have a fairy tale view of someone and his family, they will.

Bite through the polished veneer and you gag on something pretty rotten.

It's not that everyone knew what he really was (and what his family was like) and loved him anyway. They had no idea, and were given a carefully controlled image.

But then, having said that, the image was incredibly important for morale, which is really rather sad. There are still plenty of people who will defend the image (not the reality) to the death. Brings to mind more recent incumbents.
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