Superman

Superman: Red Son

by Alan Rapp on July 9, 2020

in Home Video

  • Title: Superman: Red Son
  • IMDb: link

Superman: Red Son Blu-ray reviewBased on the comic mini-series of the same name, Superman: Red Son re-imagines a world where Superman‘s (Jason Isaacs) rocket crashed in the Soviet Union rather than Kansas. As with Mark Millar‘s comic, the film’s greatest strength is the set-up and the juxtaposition of seeing Superman grow up under a Communist regime rather than learning to fight for truth, justice, and the American way.

The script by J.M. DeMatteis makes changes from the original comic which are most evident in in the character of our protagonist who is far darker than as presented in the comic. DeMatteis certainly take’s the nurture over nature view as this Superman has far less respect for life than any we know (with the exception of Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel). A common conceit is that Lex Luthor (Diedrich Bader) would have been a great hero if not for Superman. While still a flawed human being, the version of Lex is certainly less gray than even the Red Son mini-series portrayed.

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Superman – The Mechanical Monsters

by Alan Rapp on July 7, 2020

in Short Films

  • Title: Supeman – The Mechanical Monsters
  • wiki: link

Superman - The Mechanical Monsters review

Throwback Tuesday takes a look back to one of the earliest appearance of the Man of Tomorrow on film in another of the Fleischer Studios’ Superman cartoons. “The Mechanical Monsters” offers us a nameless mad scientist using a army of robots to steal from Metropolis. The cartoon relies on one of the oldest Superman tropes of Lois Lane getting in over her head while investigating a story and needing Superman to swoop in for the rescue (although Lois does get the story). As with “The Mad Scientist,” the cartoon is most notable for its style while relying on mostly-silent storytelling (which includes the head-scratcher of Superman somehow finding the captured Lois after loosing the robot at one point). The cartoon also features the first animated sequence of Clark Kent slipping into a phone booth and emerging as Superman.

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  • Title: Adventures of Superman – Superman on Earth
  • IMDb: link

Adventures of Superman - Superman on Earth television review

Throwback Thursday takes us back to Metropolis and the adventures of a mild-mannered reporter for a great metrolopolitan newspaper who was faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, and able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. The first episode of the 1950s Adventures of Superman offers an origin story for Superman (George Reeves), with much of the episode dealing with Krypton’s final days where Jor-El (Robert Rockwell) is ridiculed for his predictions about the oncoming disaster (plot pulled directly from the comics) and sends his son to Earth where he is found and raised by the Kents (Tom Fadden and Frances Morris). Though goofy, the sequences are still relevant today. If you pinned “Make America Great Again” on the Kryptonians you might think you were watching Trump supporters ignore science at the cost of their own lives.

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Action Comics #1022

by Alan Rapp on June 15, 2020

in Comics

Action Comics #1022 comic reviewClark Kent, meet Conner Kent. Action Comics #1022 centers around Superman getting his head around the idea that there is another Superboy from an alternate timeline of Earth. Calling in as many experts as possible to confirm Conner is who he thinks, it’s a more familial connection that cements Conner is indeed finally back home on the right Earth.

There’s some great stuff here including both Conner and Clark’s awkward reactions to the odd situation. Then there’s Jon‘s return from the future shocked at Conner’s existence but not angry or resentful but helpful (and in awe of that awesome jacket). I was curious about how much of the current Young Justice series would get brought into DC’s main storyline, and Action Comics #1022 offers a great example of how well DC’s larger continuity can still intersect in great ways.

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Superman (The Mad Scientist)

by Alan Rapp on June 9, 2020

in Short Films

  • Title: Supeman – Superman (AKA The Mad Scientist)
  • wiki: link

Superman (The Mad Scientist) review

Throwback Tuesday takes a look back to the earliest appearance of the Man of Tomorrow on film. Created by Fleischer Studios and released to theaters to be shown before feature films, the Superman cartoons were highly-stylized shorts. The first, entitled simply “Superman” (although it has been come to be known by the villain’s name) features Lois Lane chasing down a lead about a Mad Scientist threatening to use his Electrothanasia-Ray on the city. When Lois is captured, Clark Kent slips into the stock room and emerges as the Man of Steel to fight off the destruction caused by the ray and then trace it back to its source in order to save Lois.

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