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CSBG Archive

I Love Ya But You’re Strange – That Time Country Folk Thought Jimmy Olsen Was Superman

Every day this August I’ll be spotlighting strange but ultimately endearing comic stories, one a day (basically, we’re talking lots and lots of Silver Age comic books). Here is the archive of past installments of this feature.

Today we look at a strange issue of Superman’s Pal, Jimmy Olsen from 1956 (#14, to be precise), where some backwoods folks believe that Jimmy Olsen is Superman!

The story (written by Otto Binder and drawn by Curt Swan and Ray Burnley – wow, Ray Burnley inking Curt Swan!!) opens with Clark Kent flying in the Daily Planet’s “flying newsroom.” Clark notices that his sleeve was damaged, showing his Superman costume underneath. He takes his Superman costume off at super speed and hides it in the helicopter. However, before he has the chance to go back and get it, Jimmy has taken the chopper out on assignment (I love the idea that Jimmy Olsen is allowed to just fly an expensive helicopter wherever). It crashes and Jimmy’s signal watch is broken. He goes to look for supplies and discovers…

I love that lightning just randomly hits Jimmy. It isn’t even during a storm.

You have to love the boulder hitting at just the right time and in such a way that NO ONE SEES A GIANT BOULDER ROLLING DOWN THE HILL! Hilarious.

I like that even Jimmy is commenting on the weird coincidences.

Jimmy is then promised the hand of a local girl in marriage, but he is challenged by a rival…

I especially dig how Superman is all, “Jimmy, ask me no questions about why my costume was in the helicopter!” And Jimmy has no problem with accepting that. I mean, I know Superman just saved his life and all, but dude is still a reporter and that is one weird situation.


what a crazy story….

Great hogfat!

I know how Jimmy feels. I totally wouldn’t have noticed that bear. They’re the silent killers of the hills…

I think there is an implicit threat in Supes telling Jimmy not to ask any questions.

When the man of steel tells you to mind your own damn business whilst cradling you high above the frozen tundra, you better listen.

Also, did any Hill People find this offensive? Seems an accurate portrayal of country life, with its errant boulders and rogue bears.


“Also, did any Hill People find this offensive?”

Only if someone read it to them first.

randypan the goatboy

August 24, 2011 at 4:21 pm

Its like history being written by lightning. its so much like the south all they need is uncle remus singin zipidy doodah

I was sure that the crazy conicidences, like the rolling boulder and the bear, were part of some elaborate prank that Superman was playing on Jimmy, as he so often did.

As for the costume in the helicopter, I figure that Jimmy assumed that Superman just enjoys nude helicopter flights. We’ve all been there, right?

Why would Superman’s costume need to be impervious to the cold?

OH WAIT, right, this is “baby blanket costume also super-powered” era Superman.

always knew the jimmy olson stories were nuts. but never thought any one just because he was wearing the super suit would think jimmy is supes.

Gerson King Combo

August 25, 2011 at 6:06 pm

Superman has supermechanic powers to fix the helicopter?

And I thought surreal subcultures coexisting alongside humans only showed up in Jimmy Olsen after Jack Kirby signed on. I can totally see this place coming back alongside The Habitat and Project Cadmus.

Moose Morton for mayor of Hogfoot Holler! “I kin heft kricktonyte boulders above mah haid, and I doesn’t afeered of anything! Also, sometimes I suddenly forget to talk like a hick for brief intervals!”

I swear I was thinking what’s next “tarnatations”? Sure enough, next panel.

Anyone else reading the hill people’s voices with a slight Jiggle Billy twang from ATHF?

I love how Supes flied searching for Jimmy in his Clark look. He could at least have changed his clothes, removed his glasses and switched to his Superman hair in case someone saw him.

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