"Justice League": Exploring How Superman Returns (Again)
Film, Comic Books
In celebration of Superman’s 75th anniversary on April 18th (Action Comics #1 came out on April 18, 1938), you’ll be voting for the Top 75 Superman Stories of All-Time. With such a big list, we can’t expect everyone to know all the best Superman stories over the years offhand, so we’ll be providing you a list of 100 nominees that you’ll be choosing from at the end of April 15th (basically, you’ll get 100 choices and then you’ll be putting them into order from #75-1). This is not the final list, these are just the stories that you’ll be voting on later on.
Here is the next batch of ten nominees (they are not in any particular order)!
61. All-Star Superman #1-12
Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely produced this epic maxi-series that opens with Superman realizing that he has just one year left to live. The series follows that year as Superman does as much good as he can before he dies. This series features call backs to pretty much every era of Superman comics, including acclaim spotlights on Lois Lane, Jimmy Olsen, Bizarro and Lex Luthor (who is behind the plot to kill Superman).
62. “War in Europe” Action Comics #22-23
In this two-parter by Jerry Siegel and Paul Cassidy, Superman first runs afoul of a man who would soon become a familiar foe, Lex Luthor (not yet dubbed “Lex”)!
63. “Emperor Joker” Superman Volume 2 #160-161, Adventures of Superman #582-583, Superman: The Man of Steel #104-105, Action Comic #769-770 and Superman: Emperor Joker #1
In this crossover, the Joker usurps the power of Mr. Mxyzptlk and uses it to do…well, some really bad things. Superman is able to fight off Joker’s warped view of the universe and then he and his allies must find a way to stop the now-ominipotent Joker. The story was by Jeph Loeb, Joe Kelly, J.M. DeMatteis and Mark Schultz with artwork by Ed McGuinness, Kano, Doug Mahnke and many more artists.
64. “The Battle with Bizarro!” Action Comics #254
Otto Binder and Al Plastino transfer the Bizarro concept to the Superman titles (after first debuting in the pages of Superboy) as Lex Luthor uses the duplication machine to create Bizarro. Bizarro quickly falls in love with Lois Lane. Bizarro quickly became a very popular part of the Superman mythos, even gaining his own WORLD!
65. Superman: The Wedding Album #1
All the then-regular writers on the Superman titles (Dan Jurgens, Louise Simonson, David Michelinie, Karl Kesel and Roger Stern) combine with an all-star lineup of Superman artists from the past and present (Gil Kane, John Byrne, Stuart Immonen and much, much more!) to finally tell the wedding of Clark Kent and Lois Lane!
66. “The Last Days of Lana and Lois!” Superman #362-363
Cary Bates, Curt Swan and Frank Chiaramonte deliver this gripping two-parter where Lois Lane and Lana Lang both contract the same disease that killed Superman’s parents. Will Superman once again watch helplessly as two people close to him die? What lengths will he go to to help them avoid their fate? Powerful two-parter.
67. “Exile” Superman Volume 2 #28-30, 32-33, Adventures of Superman #451-456, Action Comics Annual #2 and Action Comics #643
Superman suffers a nervous breakdown, still reeling from his decision to kill the Phantom Zone criminals during the Supergirl Pocket Universe arc. He decides to exile himself from Earth. He comes into conflict with both Mognul and Warworld as well as the Eradicator, a fail safe from the planet Krypton. Eventually, he comes to grips with his guilt and returns to Earth. Dan Jurgens, Jerry Ordway, George Pérez and Roger Stern wrote it while Kerry Gammill, Dan Jurgens, Mike Mignola, Jerry Ordway, George Perez, Curt Swan, Brett Breeding, John Statema and Dennis Janke drew it.
68. “Invasion of the Mystery Super-Men!” Superman #158
Edmond Hamilton, Curt Swan and George Klein show how Superman and Jimmy Olsen are forced to become the Kandorian equivalent of Batman and Robin when they become Nightwing and Flamebird, to take on some villains within Kandor (Superman loses his powers, which is why he has to take on this new identity).
69. “The Cosmos-Quaking Origins of The New Luthor And Brainiac!” Action Comics #544
Both creative teams of the Superman titles at the time, Cary Bates, Curt Swan and Murphy Anderson and Marv Wolfman and Gil Kane celebrate the 40th anniversary of Superman by revamping Superman’s two deadliest foes, Lex Luthor and Brainiac. The former gets a new battle suit while the latter is completely changed into a robotic visage.
70. “In Search of a Dream!” The Forever People #1
Superman’s views of the universe are challenged when he meets the New Gods for the first time. For years, Superman has been more or less one of a kind. Now he learns that there is a whole PLANET of beings like him! Would he fit in better on this other world? While he debates this all, Darkseid strikes! Jack Kirby and Vince Colletta tell this classic tale.
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