15 Huge Mistakes In The 90s That Still Haunt DC Today

The 1990s was a fascinating decade for DC Comics. Like the rest of the comic book industry, DC saw a huge sales boom in the first half of the decade. This was highlighted by their crossover event, “The Death of Superman,” which was one of the highest-selling comic book events of all-time. However, the success of that event led to a series of lesser events designed to evoke the same basic feel of “The Death of Superman” and, really, there are only a fixed amount of times that you can do something to the same scale as killing off Superman. Thus, there was very much a case of diminishing returns for some of these events.

RELATED: 15 Disastrous Mistakes DC Wants You To Forget

At the same time, however, DC was releasing some of the most acclaimed comic books of the decade, particularly through its Vertigo line of comic books, which were highlighted by Neil Gaiman’s Sandman, a comic book series that actually began in the 1980s, but most of the issues were released in the 1990s. Vertigo later launched Preacher and Transmetropolitan to follow Gaiman’s Sandman epic. So DC did a lot right in the 1990s, but it also made its fair share of mistakes. Some of these mistakes still haunt the publisher to this day. We’ll detail 15 of DC’s biggest mistakes from the 1990s that still affect comic books decades later.


Of all the DC Comics events designed to follow in the footsteps of “The Death of Superman,” none was quite as dramatic as “Emerald Twilight,” a story so daring that another storyline under the same name had already been solicited, but DC scrapped it because it wasn’t extreme enough. Rather than have Hal Jordan go rogue and force the Green Lantern Corps to pick a new Green Lantern of Earth.

This new version had Hal Jordan snap and kill a bunch of Green Lanterns on the way to absorbing the energy of the Green Lantern Corps to help fix things that had gone wrong. Eventually, this was excused as a matter of Hal being possessed by the fear entity known as Parallax, but the damage to his character has still been dramatic, as the guy was plainly a major villain in the DC Universe for years after this event.


When Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis began their Justice League run in 1987, they wanted to have as many “big guns” as DC would allow. DC, though, reduced the amount of major characters available, so Giffen and DeMatteis instead decided to take a different approach with the lesser-named characters that they were given and did a sitcom approach to the Justice League. It was a major hit and was one of DC”s best-sellers.

When Giffen and DeMatteis left the series after five years, DC could have chosen to continue the humorous League, perhaps in a new spinoff series, or they could have chosen to keep the characters but have them no longer be funny and appeal to no one (not the fans who wanted the big names and not the fans who wanted the funny League). DC chose the latter and ruined one of their most popular series for good.


We certainly do not mean to suggest that the trend of female supporting characters being injured or killed in service of motivating the main male character was something that began in the 1990s. It had been around for many years before that. However, it was forever encapsulated in 1994, when new Green Lantern Kyle Rayner saw his girlfriend, Alexandra DeWitt, literally stuffed into a refrigerator as part of a message for Kyle from the sadistic Major Force.

This led to the term “women in refrigerators” being coined by Gail Simone to describe how poorly women have been treated in superhero comic books and it is an issue that affects comics today almost as much as it did in 1994 and the term has as much relevance today as it ever has in its history.


In this instance, the “mistake” actually occurred in the late 1980s, when first Paul Levitz finished out his long run on Legion of Super-Heroes by aging the characters and having them encounter more mature threats. Then, Levitz’s long-time collaborator, Keith Giffen, who had recently returned to the series, took over the book from Levitz and promptly skipped five years into the future, where the Legion were now all adults and trying to put the Legion back together after it fell apart over the years (through a series of wars).

While good, the series changed the set-up so much that for Zero Hour, DC just rebooted it. This led to a number of strong new stories, but it also led to future reboots every time someone felt like changing things. It made the Legion almost unrecognizable 20 years later.


Mark Waid once wrote about how so much of Hawkman’s continuity problems could have been avoided had his 1989 “Year One” style miniseries, Hawkworld, simply included three little words at the beginning of it. Those three words? “Ten years ago.” The series could have served as Hawkman’s new origin Post-Crisis on Infinite Earths, but by setting it during the present, it became a major conflict in DC continuity and led to many years of confusing Hawkman stories.

However, while the 1989 miniseries showed Hawkman’s origin, it was not actually until his 1990 Hawkworld ongoing series that it was confirmed these stories were taking place in the present and not the past, so the 1990 series was really where the trouble started for Hawkman and his ever-confusing continuity.


It is amazing how much a character can be defined by a trait that did not exist for the first 50 years or so of a character’s existence. That is precisely what happened to Green Arrow when he was kissed by Marianne, a young woman who had been living on the streets when Green Arrow got her a job at Dinah Lance’s flower shop. She became a bit obsessed with Oliver and during a New Year’s Eve masquerade party, she kissed him. Oliver Queen’s girlfriend, Dinah, though, saw them kiss and she broke up with Oliver.

This was the start of “Green Arrow is a hound dog who always cheats on his girlfriends” approach, which soon became just part of his character despite it never being there until the very early 1990s. Even there, she kissed him! He later slept with her, but that was after Dinah dumped him.


This is another case where you could argue that the real problem occurred earlier, when DC decided to eliminate their Multiverse in Crisis on Infinite Earths in the mid-1980s. However, whatever you felt about that decision, once they made it, they really should have either committed to the approach or just reversed the approach. Instead, with 1994’s Zero Hour, we saw a set-up that would become quite familiar to DC fans over the next 20 years – a half-reversal/half-recommitment that didn’t make anyone happy.

Dan Jurgens obviously would have done things differently had he had full control over the project, but instead, Zero Hour ended up being a hodge-podge that many DC events would emulate in the years since (like, say, “the whole DCU is rebooted… except Batman and Green Lantern”).


In 1993, DC released a crossover even throughout its annuals called “Bloodlines.” The concept (which was eerily similar to what Marvel did the same year) was to introduce brand-new superheroes and supervillains (mostly heroes), who would be introduced in the annuals for each of DC Comics’ regular titles that year. It was a fair enough concept, but the problem was that DC would be owning these characters entirely.

Thus, you got a bunch of mostly weak characters, as no one wanted to give DC their best ideas. When some of them, like Hitman, hit it big, it just highlighted the absurdity of surrendering the rights to your creations to a comic book company like DC Comics. This is why many top creators make sure to avoid creating characters for DC or Marvel any more.


In 1991, DC had another crossover event between its annuals called Armageddon 2001. This time, the framing sequence was that a time-traveler from the future came back from the year 2001. In that year, a former superhero became the villainous Monarch and took control of the world. Now, this time-traveler came back to 1991 to figure out which superhero would one day become Monarch. So each annual would see a possible future for the main character to see if they become Monarch (so just lots of interesting possible future one-shots).

However, someone found out that it was going to be Captain Atom and leaked it on to the nascent internet, so DC changed the reveal at the last minute to preserve the surprise factor and made it Hawk (of Hawk and Dove) instead. This would be the first of many instances of DC Comics fighting off the internet spoiling plotlines ahead of time.


At the end of the 1990s, DC decided to revamp its Superman line of comic books. The publisher had maintained a relatively stable roster of creators for the entirety of the decade and now wanted to mix things up. The line had four titles at the time (Superman, Action Comics, Adventures of Superman and Superman: The Man of Steel). One of the pitches editors received was from Grant Morrrison, Mark Waid, Mark Millar and Tom Peyer. DC ended up turning it down.

So DC could have not only had some of the top creators of the next decade working on their Superman line, but also prevented Morrison and Millar going to Marvel in the next couple of years and helping to revolutionize Marvel’s X-Men and Ultimate Comics line. When you see the impact the Ultimate line had on the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this was a huge game-changer.


For a number of years after Crisis on Infinite Earths established that the Justice Society of America, rather than living on their own alternate Earth, were actually heroes in the past on the main DC Comics Earth, DC mostly kept away from using the older heroes until the early 1990s, when they brought them back from a magical limbo that they had been in for years (to explain their relatively youthful appearances). Then, after getting a critically acclaimed series, DC decided that it just didn’t want them around, so editors canceled the series.

Then, during Zero Hour, despite Dan Jurgens’ wishes to just let them get their own Earth to live on, DC instead decided to wipe them out. The JSA had a bit of a resurgence in the late 1990s with the few surviving members, but this really hurt the concept of the Justice Society for decades.


After initial complaints that Jason Todd was just a Dick Grayson knockoff, DC overcorrected in the 1980s and made Jason Todd into such a punk that fans literally voted to have him killed in the late 1980s. DC then had Marv Wolfman introduce a new Robin, Tim Drake, who was accepted by fans as being different from Dick, but not in a jerky way. However, DC quickly decided to give up one of the things that made Tim Drake stand out.

Tim was a normal kid with loving parents, making his decision to become a superhero stand out from other typical superheroes (who all lose their parents). So, of course, within a year or so of his debut, DC killed off his mother. His father was killed a decade later, forever taking Tim out of “normal family life” status.


By the time that Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis finished their Justice League run, not only was the League popular as a whole, but the characters within the League were also popular, especially the pairings of Blue Beetle and Booster Gold and Fire and Ice, the latter being so popular that DC renamed Green Flame and Ice Maiden as Fire and Ice because they were such a popular duo together.

Then, when the League was continued in a more serious version, Ice remained a key member of the team (she was there when Superman died!) but when Mark Waid was put in charge of a Justice League crossover that would shake up the various League title, he thought whose death would have the biggest impact and he landed on Ice. He killed her off, later noting that it was one of the biggest mistakes of his comic book writing career.


During his famed run on Swamp Thing, Alan Moore would often come up with new approaches for other unused characters in the DC Universe. Sometimes, these new ideas would become beloved changes (like The Demon suddenly becoming a rhyming hellspawn) and sometimes, they would be more forgettable. One example of the latter was the revelation that the planet Rann only kept Adam Strange around because they were a sterilized species and needed Strange as a source of breeding.

The 1990 miniseries, Adam Strange, continued that plot point. It’s a well-done series (with great art by a young Andy Kubert) but, A.) it was such a bad idea, and B.) it was the first notable example of a comic going “grim and gritty” based off of an Alan Moore plot point, something that would be common in the years to come.


We won’t mislead you, Donna Troy never made sense, because she was a mistake to begin with, as “Wonder Girl” was actually just Wonder Woman when she was younger and the writer of the Teen Titans added her to the team not knowing that she wasn’t Wonder Woman’s sidekick. So in the 1970s, Marv Wolfman had to invent a backstory for Wonder Girl where she was saved by Wonder Woman as a little girl.

Then Crisis hit and Wonder Woman suddenly showed up on the scene now, meaning that Wonder Girl needed to have a new origin. After a few attempts at giving her one, during the 1990s she lost her powers, became a Darkstar, divorced her husband, saw her husband and two sons both murdered, had her life erased and then re-written based on Wally West’s memories… the 1990s were an extra-big mess for Donna Troy.

What do you think was the biggest mistake that DC Comics made in the 1990s? Let us know in the comments section!

From: https://www.cbr.com/huge-mistakes-dc-made-in-the-90s/

‘Justice League’ Tracking for $110M-Plus for US Launch

With three weeks left to go before its big-screen debut, DC Comics and Warner Bros.’ Justice League is tracking to open in the $110 million-$120 million range domestically, according to early surveys.

That would put it behind such DC titles as Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice ($166 million) and Suicide Squad ($133.7 million). Box-office observers note that Warners has yet to make its final marketing push. Also, rival superhero title Thor: Ragnarok, which debuts domestically on Nov. 3, could be obscuring tracking. Thor could debut as high as $125 million for Marvel Studios and Disney.

The all-star superhero tentpole — directed by Zack Snyder with additional input from filmmaker Joss Whedon — is a key moment for the DC Extended Universe, which hopes to emulate the success rival Marvel Studios has enjoyed with its Avengers franchise.

Justice League takes place months after the events in Snyder’s Batman v. Superman. In the story, Batman (Ben Affleck) unites with Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), Superman (Henry Cavill), Aquaman (Jason Momoa), The Flash (Ezra Miller) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher) to battle Steppenwolf (Ciaran Hinds). Amy Adams, J.K. Simmons, Diane Lane, Jeremy Irons and Connie Nielsen also star.

In May, Snyder handed the filmmaking baton to Whedon following the death of Snyder’s daughter, Autumn, in March. Whedon was tasked with postproduction duties, as well as shooting additional scenes, some of which he wrote.

Whedon was an obvious choice to take on the project, having directed The Avengers, which debuted to a record-breaking $207.4 million in summer of 2012. Whedon also helmed Avengers: Age of Ultron for Marvel and Disney.

DCEU’s biggest win to date is Wonder Woman, which was both a critical darling and a box-office hit. Directed by Patty Jenkins and starring Gadot, the superhero film shattered numerous records following its $103.2 million domestic debut in June. To date, Wonder Woman has earned $821.6 million globally, making it the top-grossing film of all time from a female helmer with solo directing duties.

It’s shaping up to be a busy November for superhero fare, with Justice League opening only two weeks after Thor: Ragnarok.

Box Office Updates
Justice League

From: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/justice-league-tracking-110m-us-launch-1051990

MR. OZ’s Real Motivation Revealed In ACTION COMICS #990 – SPOILERS

Action Comics #990

Credit: DC Comics

Spoilers ahead for this week’s Action Comics #990.

In this week’s Action Comics #990, Superman learns the truth about Mr. Oz, and readers discover the character’s motivation for some of his actions.

But throughout the issue, one thing is made clear – the threat of Dr. Manhattan (or whomever Oz has been calling “him”) is huge, and it coming soon.

In the last few Action Comics issues, Superman was confronted by Mr. Oz and told that his actual identity was Jor-El. The character was supposedly imprisoned and forced to watch the worst moments in history, and as a result, he believes Superman and his family are too good for this violent and destructive Earth and must leave humanity to their deserved demise.

In this week’s Action Comics #990 writer/artist Dan Jurgens and penciller Viktor Bogdanovic, readers learn even more about Oz’s motivations and what he calls a “massive threat” that’s about to hit Earth.

Credit: DC Comics
Credit: DC Comics

Convincing Jonathan

Superman is off saving people and trying to make peace – and the entire Justice League seems to be helping out in various places on Earth – while Jor-El is trying to convince his son Jonathan to leave for the perfect planet.

It’s a place he calls Bliss, where everyone is equal and nobody has to hide behind a secret identity. In fact, Jor-El calls Superman’s secret ID “that silly Kent identity.”

Jor-El says it’s wonderful that “Clark Kent” has saved lives, but “over all his time here, have humans ever improved?” he asks Jon, then adds: “Even if they did, it wouldn’t matter. It’s too late.”


Well, here’s where we get to the interesting part. Jor-El (also known as “Mr. Oz”) says the threat that’s “out there” is very “deadly and unbeatable.”

“Earth has never seen a threat like this,” Jor-El says, presumedly describing Dr. Manhattan, who’s going to come up against Superman and other heroes in Doomsday Clock. Jor-El describes this threat as one that the world cannot survive – not even Superman and the Justice League.

“This entire plane of existence has no future,” Jor-El says.

That doesn’t sound so good…

Credit: DC Comics


Janet and the Oz-lings

Readers are also shown some of Oz’s soldiers again – the dudes in the black costumes who helped Oz find Doomsday in Action Comics #962.

Janet (who’s the Oz-follower from Oz’s earliest appearances in 2015) calls the soldiers “Mr. Oz’s anointed ones! Blessed to have been in his presence!”

Credit: DC Comics

So yeah – there’s some worshipping going on here.

The soldiers say that “Oz believes in openness and honestly, that the true nature of man must be revealed. He demands nothing – only gives us the means to act as we desire.” They call the residents of Metropolis “monsters” and talk about “Phase Two” being initiated.

The soldiers begin a process – as Janet watches – that will release toxic gas and “purge” Metropolis of life. The soldiers and Janet seem to believe that they’ll be saved from the gas by Oz.

Superman returns to Metropolis (responding to a call from Jimmy’s watch – actually by Lois, who’s worried about her missing son).

Just as Superman starts to wonder if Jor-El’s appearance is connected to all the turmoil in the world, he discovers Janet and the soldiers’ plot to kill the people of the city he loves.

As he forcefully stops their plans to release the gas, he notices that Oz’s soldiers are “dressed like the men who tried to capture Doomsday.”

“So there it is,” a thought box reveals Superman thinking. “No matter if Oz really is my father or not, he is involved in all this madness.”

Credit: DC Comics


Credit: DC Comics

Three-Generation Battle

As Superman rushes to Lois at The Daily Planet building, Jor-El shows up with Jonathan and continues talking about how awful humans really are. He claims that he didn’t force any of the tragedies to happen – he merely “allowed” the people to prove how “ghastly they really are.”

When Superman yells at Dad for taking Jon, the boy says he went willingly. And he starts to defend old granddad, pointing out that Jor-El/Oz helped him “back when we were fighting Zod in the Fortress” (in Action Comics #984).

Credit: DC Comics

So with Jon defending him, Oz starts to also defend himself – and we get an explanation for some of those prisoners that Oz brought to his fortress.

Why did he take possession of Doomsday, and lock Mxyzptlk up, and “end the threat” of Metallo? Because his son’s survival is “everything” to him.

Jor-El then tells Superman about the “massive threat” that’s coming to the world. “You have no chance of surviving,” Jor-El says.

“I saved you once and will do so again,” he says, referring to how he sent his son away from planet Krypton. “You and your family, you must leave now or you will die.”

Superman says he doesn’t know if Oz is really Jor-El, but even if he is, he’s not the hero his son thought he was.

Superman’s about to start a big ol’ Kryptonian-versus-Kryptonian fight with the old man when Jon grabs his fist. “No! You gotta listen to Grandad!” Jon says. “If we don’t go, we’re all gonna die!”

Credit: DC Comics

The story is scheduled to continue in November 8’s Action Comics #991.

From: https://www.newsarama.com/37101-mr-oz-s-real-motivation-revealed-in-action-comics-960-spoilers.html

DC Comics Rebirth & Legacy Spoilers: Batman #800 Joins …

DC Comics Rebirth and Legacy Spoilers follow.

We revealed earlier that Tony Daniel was drawing “Legacy” variant covers for DC Comics Comics Rebirth ongoing series hitting milestones.

As such, Superman #34 is Superman #800 (on sale November 1, 2017) and…

…Wonder Woman #34 which is Wonder Woman #700 (on sale November 8, 2017).

DC Comics has also now released the black and white version of Batman #34 which is Batman #800 (on sale November 1, 2017).

The cover for Flash #39’s Flash #700 (on sale January 24, 2018) covers has not yet to be released.

Action Comics #1000 (late March 2018) also hits stands soon too. Unlike the rest of the line it and Detective Comics have reverted to the legacy numbering for their runs with the advent of Rebirth. No word on whether Tony Daniel is working on any variant covers for those books as their milestones come up.

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From: http://insidepulse.com/2017/10/24/dc-comics-rebirth-legacy-spoilers-batman-800-joins-superman-800-wonder-woman-700-covered-flash-700-action-comics-1000-pending/

Superman looms large

The Warner Bros. PR machine has been on a marketing overdrive in an attempt to convince fans that their favourite Man of Steel plays no part in its big ticket release Justice League.

It released a new poster that not only addresses the elephant in the room, but also hints at how it might happen. It incorporates emblems of all of DC Comics’ big guns, but the one that stands out is that of Superman.

Reddit threads went into collective meltdown following his apparent death at the hands of Doomsday in last year’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice with many putting on tinfoil hats to debate the story arcs that DC-Warner could use to bring the last son of Krypton back from the dead. While the latest trailer did give a glimpse of Clark Kent, albeit in a flashback/dream sequence, the poster more or less confirms his return, despite he studio pretending otherwise.

An e-commerce site specialising in comic merchandise recently put on sale a black cap with Superman’s insignia as part of an exclusive line. The cap harks back to the Superman: Doomsday story arc, which sees Superman use a black suit during his time in the “regeneration matrix� following a brutal assault by Doomsday.

Henry Cavill, who plays Superman, has himself teased a monochromatic suit on his Instagram account, sending fans into a tizzy.

He might be conspicuous by his absence in the posters, but there is no Justice League without Superman and Warner Bros. knows that. And with the amount of money on the line, they surely will not risk going down that road.

There is also a shift in the tone with the studio literally lightening up the characters. The new poster is brighter and more vibrant than previous ones that have bordered on the monochromatic. Aquaman’s traditional gold and green costume and the bluest Batman in years highlight a marked directional change after the box office dud that Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice was.

Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice had alienated many fans with their sombre theme, forcing Warner Bros. to rope in screenwriter Joss Whedon, the man who gave the Marvel Cinematic Universe its outlandish success, to steady the film.

Whedon’s screenplays have set the cash registers ringing at Marvel and he was given a clear run at re-shoots and post-production to weave the same kind of magic — as being seen in the poster. The studio will be hoping Whedon’s magic touch, coupled with the almost obvious return of Superman and the debuts of a host of DC Comics’ big
guns will finally get its extended superhero universe off the ground.

Justice League, directed by Zack Snyder, releases in the US on November 17.

From: https://www.telegraphindia.com/entertainment/superman-looms-large-180655

Why Superman Is Definitely a Democrat

For the most part, superheroes tend to exempt themselves from partisan politics. Except in rare cases — like 2008’s super-weird DC Universe: Decisions special that literally broke down the political positions of several DC heroes — we’re left to imagine whether Bruce Wayne “felt the Bern” or if Hal Jordan voted to Make America Great Again. However, it’s fun to examine the philosophies of particular heroes and imagine where they’d fall on the political spectrum. Or, in the case of the two-party system in U.S. politics, whether they’re a Democrat or a Republican.

RELATED: Of Course Superman Saved Immigrant Workers – It’s What He Does

For the purposes of this article — and to get a good discussion rolling — let’s look at Superman, and go over the many reasons why he would likely vote for a Democratic candidate in a U.S. presidential election. For many of us, it’s obvious that Superman is a Democrat, but for those who might be interpreting Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster’s message in a different way, let’s run down why he leans left.

Economic Justice

The first-ever glimpse of Superman, on the cover of 1938’s Action Comics #1, was an image of him flipping a car and scaring the hell out of a capitalist “suit,” evoking a powerful anti-economic inequality message. As discussed at length in Grant Morrison’s Supergods manifesto, the image signifies a rejection of greed, and defiance against the wealthy.

Superman would have no problem paying taxes — something Republicans take issue with, to say the least. The principle behind taxes, at least in their modern form, is to offer one’s fair share for the betterment of a community. While Clark Kent undoubtedly pays taxes as a reporter for The Daily Planet, Superman’s contributions come in the form of civil service. As evident time and time again, the Man of Steel wholeheartedly believes in something usually associated with Spider-Man: With great power comes great responsibility.

Superman feels an inherent responsibility to offer his “wealth” (in his case, superpowers) rather than viewing his good fortune as something deserved and kept for himself. Superman’s prerogative to use his fortunate position to help others would, no doubt, make him side with a single-payer healthcare option. Rather than believing healthcare — or the right to maintaining a healthy life — is something completely under the responsibility of an individual, Superman would view paying taxes for the sake of healthcare for all as a no-brainer. In short, Superman would be willing to forfeit choice, or liberty, in favor of life.

Nationalism vs. Globalism

While nationalism isn’t something inherently Republican, it’s often championed by the party as part of an economic message, especially in recent years. Like how Democrats are generally left to advocate for social justice, Republicans are there to preserve national identity. While Superman is often associated with “Truth, Justice and the American Way,” he’s proved time and again that he is not for American exceptionalism, as discussed at length in editor Mark D. White’s Superman and Philosophy: What Would the Man of Steel Do?

Superman wasn’t always championing “the American Way.” That addition to the character’s motto was popularized for the 1950s serials starring the late, great George Reeves, but was first added in the 1940s as a means to stir patriotism as the United States entered World War II. “The American Way” was represented as the “good” in a fight of “good vs. evil,” not necessarily as an American exceptionalist message.

Furthermore, in DC Comics’ controversial 2010-2011 storyline “Grounded,” Superman renounces his American citizenship. Sending a message that he disagrees with the (then-) current political climate, Superman set out to reconnect with the grassroots of America and champion a more globalist, internationally inclusive message. This shows how Superman is prepared to ditch “the American Way” part in favor of Truth and Justice.

While Superman is more than willing to be a “Boy Scout” for President Reagan in Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns, it’s indicated in the story that Superman (at least with that wink upon the big reveal at the story’s end) is more for what’s right in general, rather than for what’s right for the American cause.

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From: http://www.cbr.com/superman-democrat-us-election/

How Did Superman Survive ‘The Death of Superman’? – CBR

In Death is not the End, we spotlight the outlandish explanations for comic book characters (mostly super-villains) surviving seeming certain death.

Today, we look at how Superman survived the “Death of Superman”!

As you all likely know by now, in the famous event in 1992, “The Death of Superman,” the story ends with Superman and the monster, Doomsday, beating each other to death…

After the funeral of Superman, there was a break for the Superman titles, with the last issue before the break ending with Jonathan Kent, Superman’s adoptive father, suffering a heart attack.

In Adventures of Superman #500, Jonathan’s spirit sees Superman’s spirit and he decides to brave it all to bring his son back…

Jonathan spends the rest of the issue fighting his way through the spirit world to get his son to fight this and come back to the living with him…

When Jonathan comes to and recovers from his heart attack, he tells everyone that Clark came back with him. When Lois goes to see Superman’s tomb, he’s no longer in the coffin!

Okay, so a bunch of Supermen show up and in Action Comics #687, we see that one of them actually came to Superman’s tomb!

Then, a few issues later, in Superman: Man of Steel #25, a Kryptonian armored thing shows up and when Steel and Superboy break it open, who comes out but Superman!

Okay, so the Eradicator (from Action Comics #687) then sacrifices his life to restore Superman’s powers.

Then, in Action Comics #692, we get a handy-dandy guide PRECISELY how Superman came back from the dead, courtesy of Doctor Occult. We have too many images so far on this page, so let’s go to a new page to see what happens…

From: http://www.cbr.com/superman-survive-death-of-superman/

15 Characters More Powerful Than Superman That DC Is Holding Back

Superman, the Man of Steel and the Last Son of Krypton, is generally considered not only of the greatest superheroes in comic books, but also one of the most powerful. In fact, it’d be fair to say that he’s known for his ridiculous power-sets and his ability to do practically what is required of the story. He’s moved planets; travelled at hundreds of times the speed of light, time-travelled for grins and giggles, and even famously sneezed away an entire galaxy. Few heroes and villains present a genuine challenge to the Man of Steel, which has made some readers consider Kal-El boring; he can do anything and beat anyone. Except for those characters he can’t.

RELATED: The 15 Most Dangerous Villains That DC Refuses To Use

You may not realize it, but there’s a plethora of characters in the DC Universe capable of destroying Superman. Yet for one reason or another, the powers that be at DC Comics have decided to keep these characters hidden. These individuals are simply missing from current comics. Presumably, there isn’t enough room for multiple Supermen and/or beings capable of thrashing Superman with the flick of a finger. Today at CBR we’re looking at 15 characters DC Comics has kept hidden that can totally take down Superman.


Golden Age Quiz Spectre

A charter member of the Justice Society of America, the Spectre gets his power from God himself. A being of magic, capable of doing practically anything, the Spectre is a god in his own right. With limitless strength and the ability to control all matter, along with time and space, the Spectre is really only hindered by his human host and their ability to judge someone fairly. Aside from the Presence and perhaps one or two other godly beings, the Spectre is second to none.

Heroes and villains alike do everything they can to stay out of his way and treat him with only immense respect. However, if the Spectre tries to judge/kill someone the Presence and/or God doesn’t want him to, then the Spectre’s powers are ineffectual against the individual. Also, he doesn’t harm innocent people. Where the Spectre is now is anybody’s guess.


For the longest while, DC Comics fans have wondered just where the heck the Martian Manhunter is. Appearing for brief stint during the New 52 series Stormwatch and even briefer still in his own mini-series afterwards, there’s been no recent sign of everyone’s favorite Martian, J’onn J’onzz. The last surviving Green Martian, his power is so great that for all intents and purposes he can beat Superman.

Already sporting all of Superman’s powers, i.e. strength, flight, heat vision, and invulnerability, Martian Manhunter also comes equipped with telepathy, shapeshifting, and he can become intangible. Superman once admitted fearing J’onn’s power and it’s easy to understand why. And so, DC has quietly swept Martian Manhunter under the rug, letting him drift off quietly, allowing readers to believe Superman is the world’s strongest hero.


One of DC’s premiere magic users, there are few more adept at the arcane arts than the Phantom Stranger. He uses his abilities primarily to assist other heroes, but the Stranger will get personally involved if a situation is dire enough. When he does, few opponents can match him, including Superman. Effectively immortal, the exact nature and limits of his power are unknown to even the Phantom Stranger.

He can teleport, travel between dimensions (including Heaven and Hell), time travel, fire energy blasts, dispel magic, can survive without air, manipulate reality, visit people in their dreams, is omniscient and cannot be hurt through physical means. His only weakness is magic and it has to be someone on the tier of the Spectre, God’s vengeance, or even God, for him to be troubled. The mini-series Trinity of Sin was when last we saw him.


While there have been several iterations of Firestorm, they all have one commonality: they’re all wicked powerful. Potentially one of, if not the, mightiest people on the planet, according to Batman, Firestorm has enough power to bring Superman to his knees and then some. Though Firestorm’s range of powers might be pretty broad, his simpler abilities consist of firing nuclear fusion blasts, absorbing radiation, phasing through objects, and he’s even superhumanly strong.

Yet none of that compares to his trump card: his ability to rearrange the atomic and subatomic structure of inorganic matter. Frankly, he can turn anything into anything, and that includes kryptonite. Additionally, Firestorm can use his molecular rearranging power on himself to shapeshift, regenerate and give himself the ability to survive without food or water. He’s a walking powerhouse Superman could not stop and he hasn’t interacted with the DCU in a big way for a while.



If you’re unfamiliar with the villainous Composite Superman, don’t feel bad, as that only means DC has done a stellar job of keeping the Batman/Superman hybrid away from readers’ eyes. The story of Composite Superman is a weird one, and that’s saying something since this is comics. After Joseph Meach tries to commit suicide Superman saves him and gives him a job at the Superman Museum. While there, a bolt of lightning strikes him and a display of statues of the Legion of Super-Heroes and he gets all their powers; Superman’s included.

Meach then turned his skin green and gave himself a ridiculous Superman/Batman costume. Despite his general kookiness, the Composite Superman proved stronger than Superman and is capable of not only taking on the Man of Steel and Batman simultaneously, but the entire Legion of Super-Heroes too. Goodness knows when/if we’ll see the bizarre villain again.



Out of all the characters to keep excluded from the DC Universe, you’d think God would not be one of them Well you’d be wrong. It’s been years since we saw God, or as he’s known in this case, the Presence. DC Comics’ version of God, the Presence rarely appears, if only because it can do anything. The Presence has taken many forms over the years including the disembodied Voice of God, and the source of the Spectre’s power, and the Hand.

The Presence is infinite and eternal and second only to the Primal Monitor, which is essentially the writer and/or the canvas and paper of whatever comic book he’s featured in. With such a vast array of power, and the strongest being on this list, it’s easy to see why DC would keep the Presence hidden, but it would be nice to see God now and again.



An android built by the mad Professor Ivo, the scientist was completely obsessed with power and wanted to create something that couldn’t die and could defeat any adversary it came across. To that end, he created Amazo, who had the combined powers of the original Justice League, including, the Flash, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Aquaman and Superman. Capable of using the powers to their fullest extent and in any combination, Amazo is simply stronger than Superman in every way.

Add to the fact that the android can absorb and replicate additional powers, and it makes him more of an unstoppable beast. Only through clever thinking and plenty of training and teamwork is the Justice League ever able to stop him. Even so, an iteration of Amazo appeared in The New 52, but DC has kept him under wraps since then.



Without question Superboy-Prime is one of the strongest non-magic based mortals in the entire DC Universe. Leagues above most singular heroes or villains, Superboy-Prime stems from a universe much like our own, where he was the only person with superpowers. Originally a good guy during Crisis On Infinite Earths, he went insane in Infinite Crisis.

He fought virtually every superhero on the planet and nearly took them all down. With power dwarfing Superman’s by leaps and bounds, there’d be nothing the Man of Steel could do if the crazed Kryptonian returned. His impact on the DC Universe was profound. He started the Rann-Thanagarian War, killed Superman from Earth-2, murdered multiple Green Lanterns, punched a hole in reality, and would have killed Ion if the heroes of Earth didn’t stop him. Currently, DC is keeping him tucked away; who knows if we’ll ever see Superboy-Prime again.

7. GOG


There have been multiple Gogs in DC Comics and they’ve all proven crazy powerful. The most common iteration is William Matthews; when he became Gog he also turned into a literal god. Gog possesses all the fancy powers you can think of, including bending time and reality, super strength, energy blasts, flight and even granting people wishes!

If there’s any question about whether Gog could kill Superman, Mark Waid’s The Kingdom ended the debate. Gog, imbued with unearthly power, goes back in time and kills Superman with minimal effort. Then he takes it one step further and travels back a day into the past, killing him again. He repeats the process over and over again. Despite his power, or maybe because in spite of it, there’s been no sign of Gog for years and nobody seems to have asked why.


Nathanial Adam, or Captain Atom, is not only ridiculously powerful, but also the general inspiration for Alan Moore’s Watchmen character Doctor Manhattan. Captain Atom’s origin involved getting disintegrated and then reformed as a nigh all-powerful being with a wide array of powers. Aside from the basic abilities like flight, super strength, and invulnerability, Captain Atom’s true strength lies in his ability to manipulate and project incredible energy, transmute properties and objects, and can even control his size.

Already made primarily of living energy, Captain Atom’s only legitimate weakness is overusing his powers, which leaves him unable to maintain a physical form. Even if Captain Atom can’t move planets like Superman, his other abilities make up for it. With a thought he can manipulate reality, summon nuclear energy, or even let loose a volley of red sun or kryptonite-based radiation at Superman. After his latest mini-series, Captain Atom is M.I.A.



Mister Majestic was Wildstorm’s answer to Superman. His similarities to Superman are staggering; he’s really just another version of the Man of Steel, but under a different name. Mister Majestic has all of Superman’s powers, but to an even more heightened degree. While their physical strength is similar, Majestic simply has more powers than Superman.

He’s leagues faster and has more endurance; Mister Majestic is noted at having travelled for months at a time at speeds greater than light. Aside from the strength to move planets and move faster than light speed, Mister Majestic’s powers also include invisibility, telekinesis, telepathy, and even heat vision after a fashion. However, Majestic’s heat vision is hundreds of times more powerful as it’s changed the composition of Jupiter, altering it on a pre-atomic level. Mister Majestic was last seen in the comic Team Seven, but there hasn’t been a peep since.

4. ION


Ion is the benevolent symbiote and the physical embodiment of the first act of willpower in the universe. As such, it is the source behind the Green Lantern Corps and the power they get from their will-based energy rings. In this particular context, we’ll be looking at Ion as seen when the host was Green Lantern Kyle Rayner. During the time he possessed the Ion power, Kyle had all the usual Green Lantern powers like force fields, energy manipulation, and the ability to create constructs with the only limit being his imagination.

From there, the dial turned up to eleven; Kyle became omnipotent and omniscient, capable of existing everywhere at once simultaneously. Furthermore, Kyle, or Ion, could control time and space without any difficulty and manipulate reality to his whim. He essentially became God. Where is Ion now? Good question.



An interdimensional demon and one of the most powerful beings in the DC Universe, the monster known as Trigon has enslaved countless worlds. The father to the Teen Titan Raven, but also a bunch of super nasty demons, Trigon claims to have existed since the beginning of the universe. A magical creature, his power not only dwarfs Superman, but nearly everyone else’s.

Immortal, Trigon is also telepathic, invulnerable, telekinetic, can discharge energy projectiles and can totally manipulate reality and transmute matter. Only beings like the 5th Dimensional Mister Mxyzptlk have any chance of taking him on. His powers don’t end there as Trigon can open wormholes, grow in size, and even once reshaped the entire Earth to his whim, becoming omniscient in the process. Yet to this day, and despite all his feats, Trigon’s full power has never been seen. Since the New 52, Trigon’s whereabouts have remained a mystery.


Impossibly old, the crazy alien known as Larfleeze is also the sole bearer of the Orange Lantern Ring. What does that mean exactly? Well, having the only Orange Lantern ring also means he possesses the entire might of a whole Lantern corps, or the Orange Corps in this case. He doesn’t have to share power with other members, but can harness and exercise the Orange Light of Avarice to its fullest on his own.

With far more power than any other power ring, Larfleeze can easily dominate any, and probably all, Green Lanterns, who themselves certainly have the power to take down Superman. In fact, his ring is 100,000 times more powerful than a standard Green Lantern ring. Along with generating hard-light constructs, anyone Larfleeze kills becomes added power for him as he can use Orange construct versions of them for his personal army.


Doctor Fate in Doctor Fate #14

While Superman may not have many weaknesses, magic is by far one of his sneakier ones. With no proper defense against it, Superman easily falls prey to an adept magic user, much less someone on the level of Doctor Fate. Already one of the most powerful heroes out there, Doctor Fate is also one of the strongest sorcerers in the universe. Barring godly entities like the Spectre or the Presence, few can challenge the good Doctor.

All knows Fate’s prowess in magic, but he can do more than conjure earth-shattering spells. Fate also boasts super strength, telepathy, invulnerability, telekinesis, and can manipulate lightning…because why not? While he’s popped up here and there in such titles like Blue Beetle and Dark Nights Metal, he’s never allowed to explore the full extent of his powers. If he were, every problem would be over in an instant.

Which character do you hope to see more of from DC in the future? Let us know in the comments!

From: http://www.cbr.com/characters-more-powerful-than-superman/

The Cool Batman V Superman Detail That Was Just Introduced In The Comics

Batman #33 is a pretty big issue, as it’s the start of a new story arc that sees Bruce Wayne and Selena Kyle, aka Catwoman, embarking on their greatest adventure: being an engaged couple. And part of that metaphorical journey is the very physical feat of crossing a desert on horseback. Sure enough, the costume that Batman is wearing during this sequence is a reversal of typical comic / movie protocol, as something that’s originated in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice has found itself being adapted into comic lore. You can take a look at the end result for yourself, in a portion of the issue’s cover, shared below.

From: https://www.cinemablend.com/news/1715410/the-cool-batman-v-superman-detail-that-was-just-introduced-in-the-comics

Batman v Superman’s Knightmare Costume is DC Comics Canon

SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains minor spoilers for Batman #33 by Tom King and Joëlle Jones, on sale now.

After the conclusion of the flashback-set “The War of Jokes and Riddles” storyline, this week’s Batman #33 (by Tom King and Joëlle Jones) once again moves the story in the wake of Bruce Wayne’s epic proposal to Selina Kyle. But instead of giving us a more conventional story that explores the fallout of such a life-altering development, the issue starts in a manner you’d not expect with Batman and Catwoman on a horseback journey through the middle of a desert.

RELATED: Wonder Woman’s Movie Allies Make a Splash in the DCU

We quickly learn that Batman and Catwoman have taken a trip to the Middle East; specifically, they’re heading towards a place called Khadym. In thew issue’s opening sequence, we see that both Bruce and Selina know how to dress for the occasion, with the two characters wearing costumes that make the perfectly recognizable as their alter-egos while being practical for survival in a long journey through the hot, dry environment. However, DC Extended Universe movie fans will quickly realize that Batman’s outfit is actually something they have seen before, in Zack Snyder’s 2016 film Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice.

Batman comic book desert costume

In the middle of the film, there is an extended dream sequence dubbed the “Knightmare” vision. In it, Bruce dreams of a dark future where he is part of a rebellion that fights against Superman’s reign of terror over a planet that appears to be under the control of Darkseid and his minions. In a bleak, desert wasteland, Batman and his allies brutally fight to survive — and Batman does so in a costume that became noteworthy thanks to its stylistic and striking look: trench-coat, scarf, goggles, bat cowl and armor.

Numerous toys, figures and collectibles were made to represent the new version of the outfit, dubbed the “Kightmare costume,” and as of today, the design officially makes the jump from the silver screen to the comic book page, effectively becoming an official part of DC Comics canon. As Batman rides on his horse, readers can easily tell that this is the exact same costume, down to using the same colors as in the film.

While we’ve seen the costume in numerous previews ahead of the issue’s arrival, seeing it now that it’s been “officially” released adds a little layer of, “Hey – that’s cool!” to it. The use of the Knightmare costume in the comics is a nice touch, and a fun nod to what many fans felt was one of the high points of the BvS film.

From: http://www.cbr.com/batman-v-superman-knightmare-dc-comics-canon/


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