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Author Topic: Why the Superman of Earth 23 wouldn't work...  (Read 6326 times)
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Ruby Spears Superman
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« on: May 06, 2012, 03:44:47 AM »

Anyone who has read the most recent issue of Action knows that they have introduced the Superman of Earth 23 who is both Superman and POTUS. To me, this idea wouldn't work. At some point, somebody is going to notice that Superman and the president look a lot alike. Keep in mind that in this universe, it is clear that nobody knows the president is Superman. And he doesn't wear glasses or have a real disguise other then a suit. The only way I could see something like this succeeding is if Superman isn't well known there which I suppose is possible but doesn't seem very likely as there are clearly other superheroes as well.

Most Metropolitans most likely don't know what Clark Kent looks like so the odds of anyone noticing a similarity are greatly reduced. Especially with his glasses. But the POTUS is on TV everyday. And, I imagine, so is Superman. At some point, some at least halfway smart person would put two and two together. The issue even makes it clear he is violating the law by being president as their world still has the requirement of being born in America to be illegible for that office.

I like this concept but I think he needs a better disguise and I don't like the idea of him violating the law to be president. I assume this will be addressed at a later date. 
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Adekis
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« Reply #1 on: May 09, 2012, 05:22:35 AM »

Okay, good, so it isn't just me who noticed that.
This is my thought: this issue was supposed to introduce an evil version of Superman called "Super-Doom", but that name is never used for the Tulpa Superman that Clark's group and the Teetotaler's company create, nor can it be said to be truly Kryptonian (not that that's a prerequisite to be an AU Superman I guess, look at Captain Marvel Shazam).

The obvious theme in the back-up story is that President Superman has an incredible misuse of his power just lying around, first by just being the President, and secondly by delegating most political duties to Brainiac without anyone else's knowledge, not to mention that he spends that whole story committing illegal acts of war in secret, and using "the Greater Good" as an explanation for it all. (Don't get me wrong, I definitely think Superman should be out destroying Quraqi nuclear bases, I just don't think he should be President while doing it. Makes it vigilantism from what should be a trusted authority figure, or at least a law-abiding one.)

My thought is that President Superman will reappear later in Morrison's run, having let his power corrupt him. He will become Super-Doom, the evil Superman from another dimension, and the noble Clark Kent will have to do battle with the corrupted Calvin Ellis.

Well, maybe not, but it's possible, and there's no doubt that Ellis is going down a path to to hell paved with good intentions. How much further is he from being Magneto or something?

As a final note: yeah, Superman and President Ellis look exactly alike. I thought maybe Superman acted strictly undercover and that was why nobody connected them, but I'm less than 100% certain of that.
« Last Edit: May 09, 2012, 05:36:14 AM by Adekis » Logged
Ruby Spears Superman
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« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2012, 08:32:43 PM »

I have a feeling the whole delegating responsibility to Brainiac is going to come back to bite him at a later date. Possibly by revealing that the president and Superman are one and the same. Then his actions as Superman in terms of international affairs will be brought into question.
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countryboylife
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« Reply #3 on: May 11, 2012, 07:16:57 PM »

I really enjoyed it.

I don't see why Earth 23 Superman shouldn't work. Why is the idea any less credible than Classic Earth 2 where Clark was Editor of the Daily Star. Or bronze age as a tv presenter at WGBS? Or Earth 22 for that matter.

For me it was self explanatory that having a closet full of Cal Ellis doubles he could be in two places at once.

So they look alike - it doesn't amount to much when you can be seen together - an old Superman trope.

I really liked this. I'd be happy to read an Earth 23 comic. Happier than the new Earth 2 for sure. I think the questions about power are interesting, but I also think Morrison can show Superman remaining a noble and force for good while holding political office - or perhaps reaching a place where he relinquishes it.
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Adekis
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« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2012, 08:42:26 PM »

I really enjoyed it.

I don't see why Earth-23 Superman shouldn't work. Why is the idea any less credible than Classic Earth 2 where Clark was Editor of the Daily Star. Or bronze age as a tv presenter at WGBS? Or Earth 22 for that matter.

For me it was self explanatory that having a closet full of Cal Ellis doubles he could be in two places at once.

So they look alike - it doesn't amount to much when you can be seen together - an old Superman trope.
Do you understand why Wonder Woman considered him wrong to be President, and why we consider it morally unsound at best?

To be President of the United States, you have to be born in the United States. I don't nessecarily think that's a fair law, but it is the law. Superman being a journalist or editor who who's willing to break some laws to get the story isn't half as morally unsound as a guy who cannot legally be President conning his way into office by giving an alien robot most of the Presidential duties.

It isn't an issue of being in two places at once. It also doesn't help that unlike Kent and his Superman, Ellis and his Superman literally look exactly the same, but that's ore of a logic issue.

Of course I'm willing to accept the character, and I'm even willing to accept the law-breaking, but it's not a good habit for President Superman of all people, and I suspect that he's is going to go off the deep end the next time we see him.
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dto
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« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2012, 05:03:09 AM »

Then again, do we really know if the United States Constitution on Earth-23 is exactly like ours?  For instance, a world with aliens, mutants, androids and other "created" sentient beings might have expanded descriptions of "persons" in the law books.  Otherwise, if Lex Luthor kills Superman (or vice versa  Shocked ), you couldn't charge the perpetrator with "homicide", since the classic definition is the killing of a human being by another human being.

So on this Earth, Article II Section 1 might not have the native-born US citizen requirement.  But not revealing his alien background (meaning that the President is possibly committing identity fraud) certainly casts an ethical cloud over his political career.


David
« Last Edit: May 16, 2012, 05:06:29 AM by dto » Logged

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countryboylife
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« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2012, 04:09:53 PM »

I really enjoyed it.

I don't see why Earth-23 Superman shouldn't work. Why is the idea any less credible than Classic Earth 2 where Clark was Editor of the Daily Star. Or bronze age as a tv presenter at WGBS? Or Earth 22 for that matter.

For me it was self explanatory that having a closet full of Cal Ellis doubles he could be in two places at once.

So they look alike - it doesn't amount to much when you can be seen together - an old Superman trope.
Do you understand why Wonder Woman considered him wrong to be President, and why we consider it morally unsound at best?

To be President of the United States, you have to be born in the United States. I don't nessecarily think that's a fair law, but it is the law. Superman being a journalist or editor who who's willing to break some laws to get the story isn't half as morally unsound as a guy who cannot legally be President conning his way into office by giving an alien robot most of the Presidential duties.

It isn't an issue of being in two places at once. It also doesn't help that unlike Kent and his Superman, Ellis and his Superman literally look exactly the same, but that's ore of a logic issue.

Of course I'm willing to accept the character, and I'm even willing to accept the law-breaking, but it's not a good habit for President Superman of all people, and I suspect that he's is going to go off the deep end the next time we see him.

I do see that - it's however only a magnification of the conundrum Clark Kent presents. Kent is a lie, always has been, when he walks he pretends he can't fly - and so on.

I'm from the UK. So I have a different perspective probably. TBH before his troubles, and had Arnold been a successful Governator it was reported here that it was conceivable that the birth law might be changed to enable him to run. As already said the laws in E23 may already be different. Even so...

We don't know the moral imperative that lead to Ellis to run for office - Morrison has to deliver that. From Ellis's perspective - that of naturalised American, who experienced prejudice due to race, I can believe he'd believe the law is unfair and unjust, delivering a moral imperative to ignore it, especially if it - eg - stopped Luthor/Morgan Edge/Other evil been elected President.

For me I didn't have my suspension of disbelief threatened by the fact Superman / POTUS look alike for the reason I gave. It maybe Morrison will give this more attention and add something to mix.

There is room to explore why Head of State Superman isn't a good idea, it's been done before IIRC more than once. It's one the guiding principals of Jeffersonian Democracy - separation of powers.
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