Friday, November 30, 2007

The 10 Worst Moments in Superman History, a series

In the late 90s, after all the spiked sales from gimmick events like the Death of Superman, the electric powers, the marriage, the death of Clark Kent, the marriage of electric Lois to Clark Kent's corpse and so on, it was decided the Superman titles need a creative shot in the arm. New teams across the board.

Now the guys that handled the revamp weren't terrible. They just didn't do the best job ever. Others wanted the job though.

Eddie Berganza, the man who said "You can do whatever you want," to get Chuck Austen on board, didn't think the fellows who wanted the job were what the titles needed. The men in question?

Grant Morrison, Mark Waid, Mark Millar and Tom Peyer.

Yeah. They got together, made a proposal to revitalize Superman and make him a best seller again. And Berganza said no.

One of them is working on Superman today. And it's one of the best selling titles in comics.

Saying no back then? That was just stupid.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

(The return of) The Great DC Contest!

I've mailed out quite a few comics requested by folks here and I realized something. I like givin' stuff away. It's fun. So I thought I'd make a game of it. A contest! With honest to goodness prizes!

You need to read this story. Well, you don't need to. It won't feed your kids or keep you warm at night or anything, but it'll make the contest easier. So read this real quick like. It's only 5 pages. Or be lazy and skip down to the contest stuff. Slacker.










Read it? Good. Now if the dialog seemed a little screwy there to you, you're right. Way back when DC had a contest. The contest was simple, they printed that story, asked you to read it, then explained why the story was so usual. It seems in the entire story, the letters D and C were only used once each. They went so far as to not show the Daily Planet globe in its entirety so there would be no D there. Readers had to to spot the D and C, and mail it in to DC for cool prizes. It was a really fun thing. Here's their explanation rules and prizes:

Now I don't have twenty five Curt Swan covers lying around to give you guys. If I did I would share them, because if I had 25 Curt Swan covers I'd obviously be a billionaire and wouldn't mind parting with a few pieces from the hundreds upon pieces of Swan art decorating the mansion I shared with my pin-up model wife. I do have other things though. AMAZING things.

My prizes and rules:


First Prize:
An original piece of art by the late and much missed Mike Wieringo. This one has a story. A few years ago I was at a con Mike was at and it was SLOW. Hardly any one there. So Mike was talking to fans and didn't mind doing multiple sketches for them. I asked him for a series of Superman sketches, and he generously did three for me. These things mean the world to me. They are irreplaceable and and they make me smile. But having three of them, I feel a little greedy knowing others out there no longer have the chance to get one for themselves. My three sketches? Two of them are personalized, but the third he didn't add my name to. A clear sign that it was meant to be shared. Mike was a nice guy. And a generous guy. I thought it'd be nice to share what I have and this seems like a fun and fair why to do it. So first prize is this sketch (complete with awesome and funny thought balloon) of Superman's Girlfriend, Lois Lane.

Second Prize:
Showcase Presents Superman Family. Your choice of a brand new copy shipped directly to you from Amazon or my personal slightly beat up copy, used as reference here many times and just dripping with the novelty of being the official origin of my "Jimmy Olsen is Cooler Than You" campaign. It's like the Say It Backwards family bible.

Third Prize:
Superman The Movie official soundtrack album. ON EIGHT-TRACK CASSETTE! Because I think it's hilarious.

THE RULES
Simply send an email with the subject line "The Great DC Contest" to sayitbackwards@gmail.com with the locations of the D and C in those pages appearing after the "story begins here" arrow before the end of December 5, 2007. I'll take the names of all correct entries and plug them into a random list generator and get the top three names for the winners. Every one is welcome to play, even if you've received something from SIB before. There is one condition: If you win the Ringo sketch, don't sell it. If you decide at some point you don't want it, send it back to me so I can pass it on or pass it on to another fan for free. Obviously I can't stop you once it's in your hands, but I have faith enough in the Honor System.

If there are more than 25 entries I'll pick some random names and send you an SIB sticker or pin or something if you'd like.

Also, the contest has nothing to do with WB or DC. It is an entirely unofficial fan thing.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Watchin' the tumbleweeds blow past

Blog's not dead. I swear. I just have A LOT of going on right now. I'm trying to find a job, a new home, there's stuff with my family, I'm sick as hell, it's all a big pain in the neck. But I promise I'll have something up soon about how great stories with Bizarro and his funny talk are.

In the mean time, enjoy the Mxyzptlk episode of Superman the Animated Series:

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I told my friend Matt to draw Superman

And then he did. Apparently I am the boss of him.

I think it's really cool.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

The Solomon Grundy that wasn't.

So the only posts here I enjoy are the ones I have the least to do with. Guest posts, creator word association games, stuff like that. Those are the ones worth showing up for, folks. Today we have something really cool not by me. The Solomon Grundy that wasn't.

Evan Dorkin and Sarah Dyer worked on Superman: The Animated Series and Superman Adventures. If you've been paying attention you already knew that because I've mentioned their work here many times because I'm a big fan. They gave Liverwire her personality, re-created Supergirl and Zod, and wrote an episode with Titano. All of it great. But not everything they worked on made it out there. I have two things to share with you today.

First we have a brief but very cool idea for Solomon Grundy and Mercy Graves that went unused.

We didn't get to do a bunch of proposed stories, including a revamp on Solomon Grundy, who (in our version), was Luthor's former bodyguard/chauffeur, Mercy Graves lover, who she killed to take his place. He was dumped in a Lexcorp toxic dump site, which Mercy uses to get rid of her victims, and is revived after a fire and explosion animates him in the chemical pool.

That would have been a great episode.

I can't remember if I picked that out of an interview or if it was mentioned by Evan himself when he wasting his time answering my silly fan mail. It may be exclusive to this blog, in which case, I impress you with my connections.*

The second thing I have for you is a link. When they were working on the cartoon, Evan and Sarah were asked to bring back two Kirby characters from his work on Jimmy Olsen and New Gods. Funky Flashman and Goody Rickles. Yeah.

If you're unfamiliar with them, Funky Flashman was a con-man and shyster an angry Kirby based on Stan Lee and Goody Rickles was Don Rickles, only insane.

And I'll be damned if their proposals aren't really funny and could have worked. I'm especially fond of the first one. Even thought they didn't make it to the screen, it would have been nice to see those in the Adventures comic.

There we have it. A look at what could have been. I want to thank Evan for letting me share this stuff.

(While we're talking about them, go buy Evan and Sarah's new comic BIF-BAM-POW! It's about a girl named One Punch Goldberg boxing in space and is exactly as cool as that sounds. Which is very. The autograph gag is one my favorite they've ever done.)





*And by connections I mean publicly available email addresses and websites of creators nice enough to share their time.

More short random stuff

Today I read a golden age comic, and the beginning features Mxy tricking two bums into thinking he'd given them a mansion. It's not really funny enough to warrant a full review, but the idea of some all powerful thing screwing with the homeless for fun is pretty messed up and you're a terrible person if you find it funny. I am a terrible person, by the way.


The post-script kills me.

I added a random image thing from flickr the corner box. I think it's neat.

I've got a bunch of stuff I'm working on, so there will probably be near-daily posts for a while.

I just read All Star Superman #9. I liked it a lot.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Superman taught me how to lie.

Guest posts were gonna be a regular feature, but all the folks working on something are, it seems, as lazy as I. (Folks meant to be working on something, you can't see it, but I'm eyeing you in a guilt inducing and accusatory manner.) We do have a guest post ready to go, though, and I don't feel like waiting for Monday because it made me laugh and I wanna share. Today's is by Thom Zahler, creator of Love and Capes (which you can read more about below).



Jon Ross is dying of one of those literary diseases that can be cured if He Has Something to Live For. All he's ever wanted to know was Superman's secret identity. Pete Ross, Jon's widowed father, knows Superman's identity, of course, but would never tell. So, in an elaborate game of telephone between two people, he asks Clark to ask Superman to reveal his identity to his son.

Obviously thinking this kid is a goner anyway, Clark's not worried about revealing his identity to an eight year old. Never mind that he's terrified of telling any of his friends lest his enemies use it against him. I guess Pete wasn't that good a friend.

Upon telling him, Jon rejects the notion that Superman is Clark Kent, foreshadowing the same eight-year old logic that prevents Luthor from putting things together in John Byrne's Superman #2. Either Jon is a criminal mastermind or Lex has the mentality of an eight year old. So, most of the issue is Superman trying to convince Jon that he really is Clark Kent. Apparently, Jon actually believed all those "Oh, Superman was just pretending to be me" stories that Clark concocted over the previous forty years of comics.

Finally, the Man of Steel gives up. He tells Jon to use the bathroom before they go and he'll fly Jon back to Kansas. Jon comes back and says "Okay, I believe you now."

Superman is surprised. "What changed your mind?" And proudly Jon showed that he's a proud bathroom snooper, opening up Clark's medicine cabinet. Inside of which is only a comb and a toothbrush.

"Superman doesn't need to shave, since your hair doesn't grow under a yellow sun. Superman doesn't get headaches. Superman doesn't floss." Okay, I was surprised by that one. Of course, Kryptonian teeth would be invulnerable to plaque, but then why the toothbrush, unless Kryptonians are still vulnerable to halitosis? There's all sorts of Kryptonian saliva issues here, but I will move on to my original point.

And that's when I learned: If you're going to lie, cover your bases. If you lie and say you're seeing Fred Claus at the cinemaplex, check to make sure that it's actually playing and what time the show's at. Someone might check up on you. Get a bulletin from the back of the Church even if you're going to skip. It's the details that sell the story, and you have to make sure of them before, during, and after the fact. Heck, Superman's history of keeping his identity secret is a virtual primer in lying. Usually in the "how not to" category. Have you ever seen me and Peter Krause together? No. Do you think we're both the same person? No. Why? Because I never say he's my best friend who's never around and I have no pictures with.

For the record, I am not Peter Krause, but I am a big fan of both SportsNight and Dirty Sexy Money. And I don't lie often, really. It's just when I do, I do it well.



If guest posts continue to be better than my stuff I will develop a complex. Thom's a really great guy and you should read his excellent comic, Love and Capes. You can read it online and get your very own hold it in your hands paper copies through his site, number six is out soon (don't worry, he's got back issues). It really is a great comic, fun with superheroes without having fun at their expense. And the art's just brilliant. It's like Bruce Timm, Ty Templeton's Adventures style and Tex Avery's respective works had a beautiful love child.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Swag

I was asked about this a while ago, and here were are, SIB stuff. I set up a cafepress shop. I know spreadshirt is better, but cafepress is cheaper, and I'm a skinflint. It's all stuff with the SIB derby and "Hey McGurk" logos so as to not infringe on DC's intellectual property. I think they look neat. They don't have any text, just logos, so you don't have to walk around feeling like you're advertising something. (I tend to find shirts with site URLs on them kinda ugly.)


"Jimmy Olsen is cooler than you" t-shirts are also available, but I think those are legally iffy, so I'm not sure if those are staying up. If you want to make your own later, the font I use for "JO is cooler than you" stuff can be found here, it's called "keelhauled."

There are also buttons, magnets and stickers because I love stuff like buttons, magnets and stickers. So buy some stuff. I hear tell that ladies love guys in obscure comic blog t-shirts. And ladies, well, guys love you any way. All you get is a t-shirt.

Random short things

Mike Netzer's informed me that more people have followed the link here to his site than i was even aware read this thing. Suddenly I have stage fright.



I waste Kurt Busiek's time at MillarWorld:

Thomas: Who would win in a fight: Superman who has developed an immunity to magic versus Thor who has trained Godzilla to be his personal guard dog.

Kurt: Bees.

Kurt's awesome.


Probably later this week there will be a burst of posts, I've got a lot of stuff I'm working on, but I just got the DS Zelda and I'm pretty useless until I've finished the new Zelda game.



I reread the Third Kryptonian arc the other day. That was good stuff. You guys should go get it and read it. It's the last few issues of Superman, 668-670.



I'm working on a history of Bizarro for the site and stumbled across this. I feel terrible for finding it hilarious

But come on, the look of sheer joy on Bizarro-Krypto's face is gold, friends.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Folks who know the score: Stephen Destefano

Stephen Destefano is an artist whose amazing work has been all over the place. He's worked on Ren & Stimpy; the best show on Adult Swim, The Venture Bros, the best show that Adult Swim didn't pick up, Eltingville; Instant Piano; and tons of other comics and cartoons. He's not very strongly associated with Superman, but he was part of one of my favorite comics ever, the brilliant Bizarro Comics anthology.

He did the Mxyzptlk/Zrfff framing sequence for it from whence the corner box here was taken. (And mutilated. sorry, Stephen).

I draw your attention specifically to two Superman related posts on his blog that I LOVED. First, the source of the brilliant Mxy at left, and second, THE SUPER-SONS! I think every one who loves the Super-Sons thinks they're the only ones until they meet someone else who does.

Browse his blog and enjoy much humor and many great examples of cartooning (his own and his thoughts on others).

Quite possibly the greatest thing ever

(click for the big making)

Friday, November 9, 2007

That 'woosh' sound you just heard

was my head being blown back by the awesome.


I found this on a message board I frequent. It's from Wizard so I feel dirty posting it, but it's too cool not to.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Word Association Game (and more): Michael Netzer

Michael Netzer is one of the most interesting fellows in comics. I don't think I really know how to tell you about the man himself. I point you to his biography on his website and encourage you to explore his site further. The man himself and his ideas are genuinely fascinating. He's also very nice and pleasant to talk to, I'll add.

I can tell you a little about his comics work, though. Well the DC stuff, at least. (I suggest you look at the gallery on his website, though, which has work spanning his entire career from mainstream to indy to work outside comics.) His time spent regularly working in mainstream comics is relatively brief, doing work for DC and Marvel in the mid 70s (back then he was Mike Nasser).

At left is an unpublished drawing of Superman done in 1979 (the year i was born!).

He did work in many anthology titles, telling stories with Batman (a character he has a knack for I'd put on par with Aparo or Adams), Martian Manhunter, Green Arrow & Black Canary, the Legion Of Super Heroes and others. You'll note not a lot of work with the Superman family. (His brief time with the LOSH was during the years Superboy was a prominent member, though.) In the 90s he did more work on the Batman family of titles working with a style very different from his past work. If he's identified with a character at DC, it'd be Batman. How cool is this?



When I look for creators and ask them to play my silly little word association game, I look for people I feel have a strong association to the Superman family for many in one way or another, or have done something I personally connected with. Netzer did the second. He did this.

If you grew up around comics or Superman merchandise of almost any kind in the 80s, you probably know that image. That image is one of the things that defines Superman for me. That thing was every where in the 80s; in ads & promos and on merchandising packaging. I used to cut it out of various things and glue it to my school notebooks.

Michael went above and beyond the word association game, but we'll start with that.

SIB: Hero
Michael: Circumstance

SIB: Supergirl
Michael: Daughter

SIB: Flying
Michael: Dying

SIB: Inspiration
Michael: Life

SIB: Lex Luthor
Michael: Purpose

As something special for SIB, Michael shared a very cool thing. The image above was originally inked by Neal Adams done over Mike Nasser's pencils over 20 years ago. Here we have Michael Netzer inking that image today.

I'll be adding more about Michael's work soon, as I've been wanting to do more with the Folks Who Know the Score series* and Michael really fits the bill with his take on Superman's look.




*In my ongoing efforts to bring this blog back around to being a positive and fun thing.

Creeeeeeepy

A while back I posted a preview image of Gary Frank's run drawing Superman. I said I thought he looked creepy. Every one said "No, no, that's just a bad image. His other stuff is quite good."

Today I read his first issue of Action, which includes this image


I'm sorry. Those faces say only one thing to me.

Monday, November 5, 2007

You heard the lady, get lost


Not even the most beautiful woman in history is immune to his charms.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Metropolis Mailbag

I get emails. The following are all questions I've been asked at least twice, so it's a sort-of kind-of but not really FAQ.



Why don't you do regular reviews of new comics?
Two reasons:
1. You can find those all over the net.
2. If I were to do them, I'd feel as though I had to make my reviews entertaining to make them worth your time and I don't think i could do that every week.

On the whole, I'll say since Infinite Crisis the four Superman titles (Action, Superman, All Star and Confidential) have ranged from good to outstanding. Superman/Batman's not been so great.

Why do you post like you have no life outside this blog for a while then so sporadically?
A combination of having it in me to write something and the real world intruding. Some times I have lots of free time and plenty of creative ways to say Dan Jurgens is t3h suXx0Rz and some times I've got a lot going on. I always have ideas for the site, i just don't always know how to put them together. So any time there's a lull in posting, it'll likely be followed by a flurry.

Do you read any comics besides Superman?
Tons of stuff. My second favorite super-hero is Aquaman (seriously!). I'm also a big Spider-man fan. I'm mainly a DC guy, JLA, Teen Titans, Batman, Doom Patrol and the Flash being favorite franchises/titles, but over at Marvel I'm also a big fan of the Hulk and the Fantastic Four. I LOVE the DC Adventures titles based on the Dini/Timm animated continuity.*

Non-tights and capes things I've loved are the standards; Bone, Preacher, Lucifer (it's better than Sandman. That's right, I said it.), Stray Bullets, the Maxx, and various other things I'm having trouble listing off the top of my head. I also like GI Joe and Star Wars comics. Oh, and because I recommend it at every opportunity, check out a manga called Uzumaki. Only horror comic that's ever genuinely creeped me out.

Some random creators I love include Morrison, Bachalo, Dorkin, Busiek, Lapham, Moore, Allred, Dini/Timm, Eisner, Yu, Swan, McGuinness, 'Ringo, Waid, Kirby and lots of other folks.

Why don't you ever mention other comics?
Because I get called the low rent ISB often enough already? No, it's because the focus on humor in Superman is the only thing that makes this blog marginally original and not just another comics review blog.

Hey, have you seen that new sitcom about the nerds? They did a whole bit about Superman.
This?

Yes, I've seen it. And if you just watched it, I'm sorry, because it is so painfully unfunny viewing it gives you cancer.

Why are you so obsessed with Superman?
This is the big one. Because you asked nicely, THE SECRET ORIGIN OF SAY IT BACKWARDS!

The reason I'm so obsessed with Superman now is because he was such a huge part of my childhood. When I was a kid, my mom used to go a used bookstore to buy trashy romance novels, and they had this huge (well, huge to an 8 year old) bin of old comics (mostly from the 70s) for only two bits each. My mom used to dig through it and get me an Archie and a Superman each time she went because those were the two she'd heard of.

I was a latch key kid, and my parents generally didn't take much notice of me when they were home, so for a long while I spent more time with Superman than I did with my parents. As corny as this sounds, I learned a lot about right and wrong from Superman. It was always something that made me feel better and gave me hope because Superman always helped and he never gave up.

They had Terra Man and Mxyzptlk and scary as hell Luthor and weird aliens and his cute super-cousin and he always got revenge on that jerkass Steve Lombard and he had a flying dog and a ton of other things that just made them as fun and entertaining as anything could be to 8 year old Thomas.

Superman was the best part of my childhood, and now he's something fun and familiar that helps keep my head screwed on when it feels like it's going to pop.



Saturday, November 3, 2007

The Sagebrush Satan

When I asked what folks wanted to see here at SIB, some one mentioned they wanted to learn more about Terra-Man. I'm pretty sure they were kidding. But I don't care, you're getting a complete history any way. Why? Because I freakin' love Terra-Man, that's why. This, like most of the character profiles, is pretty long.

In a nutshell, he's a cowboy from outer space who rides a flying horse named Nova. That's right, he's a space cowboy; cue the Steve Miller.

Why is a space man dressed up like a cowboy and shooting lasers at Superman? Well, he wasn't always a space man. Tobias Manning started life as the son of an outlaw in the old west. His father's plan was for his boy to grow up just like him, becoming the greatest outlaw the west would ever see. During a heist the pair were pulling together, something bizarre happens. An alien who collects currencies from worlds the universe over shows up to steal their loot, accidentally killing Toby's father in the process. He's a thief, but not a killer, this alien, so he sets about making amends.

Toby grows up in outer space, and through bad comic science only ages twenty years while here on Earth one hundred have passed. He's been enhanced by the alien; given all manner of super advanced weaponry, and dubbed Terra-Man after his home planet. He's stronger, faster and can survive in the vacuum of space, he can teleport, change into smoke, and he's become a master thief, having learned all the alien's skills and secrets. All of them:

That's a man who can hold a grudge, right there.

And that's how a hi-tech cowboy came to menace Superman on Earth. I don't care what any one says, that is a great origin. He'd fight Superman quite a few times in the next ten years being a fairly major foe of Superman's in the 70s and 80s.

The first time he came to Metropolis, Superman was in the throes of an illness that affects Kryptonians every 9 years on their birthday. Their encounter is pretty much 5 or 6 pages of Terra-Man smacking a sick Superman around with his hi-tech gear while Superman's powers act all screwy. Superman manages to keep his composure and win, but it's a tough fight. Terra-Man is especially cool over the course of this fight because for a very long time he doesn't say a word, he just stands there looking like Clint Eastwood knocking Supes around. Both his origin and this story appeared in Superman volume 1 # 249.

I'm not going to go over every single appearance of TM in detail, but I do want to pay special attention to his second appearance, Superman #250. Why? Because I had this comic when I was a kid and I must have read it a million times. Look at the cover. I love that cover. When I was 8 years old you've no idea how much that emaciated old Superman creeped me out. I had this horrible image of Superman's skeletal hand clinging to that boot following that image and that made Terra-Man scary as hell to me.

The story begins with Terra-Man in prison, disgusted by the appalling conditions and primitive ways of 20th century Earth. He summons Nova, his flying horse, and escapes prison. He goes on a rampage drawing Superman out to capture him, and that's when Superman gets TM's brand. With the brand in place,
every time he uses one of his super-abilities, he ages. He can't be defeated by conventional weapons, so TM thought of something even Superman would have to contend with eventually- dying of old age.

Manning's having trouble of his own, though. The device that enables him to survive in a vacuum has been malfunctioning. The problem is the result of exposure to a man's experiments to make his own lungs impervious to smog. This fellow now exhales a gas that is causing Terra-Man's device to malfunction, and whenever the two are in close proximity to one another Terra-Man collapses, Terra-Man being defeated by the technology that helps commit his crimes. (If your curious, escaped the trap of the age inducing branding by stopping all of his bodily functions and the process reversed. I know that doesn't seem very exciting, but when I was 8 it blew my mind.)

Terra-Man's next few encounters with Superman had him robbing Superman of his ability to use his super-strength, tricking a cult into blowing up the moon and using the force from that explosion to destroy Superman (which is awesome Super-villainy), and forcing Superman into a duel for the life of his friends, which he didn't do very well at.


Terra-Man's biggest story was a three part tale in Action 468-470 where he manages to trick the world into believing he's killed Superman. He actually did something much more involved, tricking the man of steel into taking on a foe of his with technology and powers equal to his own.

Terra-Man shows up again to fight Superman, and on live television seemingly murders and buries him.

Days later, a hand claws its way from that grave, Terra-Man's hand. He's not killed Superman, he's stunned him and transformed him into an exact duplicate of himself. Why? Good question.

Remember when TM murdered the alien that raised him? Well, he had a brother, that alien, and he was out for revenge. Terra-Man got wind of this, so he thought he'd kill two birds with one stone. He makes Superman look like him, so the alien looking for revenge goes after Superman while TM lays low.

If Superman wins, the alien's in prison and TM can stop looking over his shoulder. If the alien wins, well, at least Superman's out of the way, right? This is actually a great example of a fun, action-filled 70s Superman story, and it even guest stars the Flash and Green Lantern.

These are the kind of Superman stories I grew up on.

He had a handful of other appearances before Crisis came. A team up with the Penguin against the World's Finest, a fight with Luthor, a story where he encounters the Terra-Man of another dimension who has magic based powers instead of tech based ones, and even a flashback tale that features a time traveling Superboy encountering the young Toby just before his fateful meeting with a space man.

His final appearance before the Superman universe redefining Crisis story is one of my favorites. Terra-Man shows up and points out that he's routed a giant projectile right towards Metropolis. Superman goes out into space to discover what it is while TM fights the Blue Devil on Earth. Superman realizes the projectile is moving much too fast to be a meteor. What is it? Awesome is what it is.

That's right, he's hijacked a space train and he's going to crack it open by smacking it right into the center of Superman's favorite city. That's a pretty great plan, I feel.

After the big reboot, Jerry Ordway came in and sucked all the fun out of him. There was a Terra-Man in this new continuity, but he wasn't a hi-tech cowboy. He was an environmental terrorist. He still had a slight cowboy theme to him, which consisted mostly of him saying "Pardner" and "Varmint" occasionally. He showed a up a couple of times fighting polluting businesses, eventually surrendering to Superman when one of his plans resulted in the death of a worker at the site of his attacks. This is what he looked like:

This version appeared in one last story a few years ago. Manchester Black, telepathic super-hero gone rogue, brainwashed and enhanced a small army of villains to go up against Superman. Dialog implies Manning had reformed and been released since his last appearance, but with Black's influence and new plant controlling powers he went after Superman one last time.

A new Terra-Man appeared in DC's weekly series Fifty-Two. He was sort of a cross between the two. He didn't really look like either, but he kinda acted like the old one. Kinda. He was only around for one issue. He robbed an airplane and seemed to have fun doing so. There was no environmental angle to him. Later in that issue, this happens:

A Captain Marvel villain rips him in half while the gore slaps Lois Lane in the face. Really, what the hell? Why was that necessary? "Hey, let's take a silly fun character created in a universe with worms who wear glasses and talking tigers in suits and have him mutilate a character who used to rob space trains! And then we can have his entrails land on Superman's girlfriend!"

Terra-Man made it out of the funnybooks a couple of times. In the too cool for words Justice League cartoon, there was a two parter that featured the time-traveling villain Chronos. At one point, the League chases him to the old west where they team up with DC's classic western characters like Jonah Hex and El Diablo. Who do they team up against? An outlaw by the name of Tobias Manning who has stolen Chronos' time traveling device. He now had access to super-advanced weaponry and robotics which he used to take over a small town and run it as his own.


He's never called Terra-Man, as there's no reason for that name in this context, and his advanced tech come from the future instead of space, but it's him. Nova even makes an appearance at the end. It's a really fun episode, and I can't recommend the Justice League Unlimited series enough.

This version was awesome and if you're gonna modify Terra-Man's origin this is the way to go, I think. Dwayne McDuffie knows the score.

The Legion of Super Heroes cartoon introduced a new version of Terra-Man in the semi-recent episode Unnatural Alliances. This is probably going to seem way more complicated than it actually is, but here we go any way:

The Legion of Super Heroes is about a team of teenage super heroes that formed a thousand years in our future inspired by Superman. In the cartoon, a new character was introduced called Superman X. Superman X is a clone of Superman from even farther in the future who chases a villain from his apocalyptic time back to the Legion's time. Also from that future? A new version of Terra-Man.

No detailed origin is given for him. He's a self-repairing android; but still a cowboy, still flying around in space, still with blasting away with highly advanced weapons. He leads a pack of nameless other cowboy inspired robot thugs. He's pretty cool. His role in the story is pretty much that of a Terminator; sent back to the Legion's time to alter the future by eliminating some one instrumental to it.

So there we have it. He's a C-lister on his best day these days, but man, in the late 70s and early 80s, cowboys with lasers were something to be feared, pal.

God bless the internet

This is a 100% real exchange found in the comments section of a video on youtube:

superman9993: hell ppl who read comics knows cartoons dont even come close to supermans true power. the dudes powers are insane. and the ppl who say goku can beat superman proves they dont know jack. everyday i see dbz fans go do resounce on superman and come back and say they was wrong.

masteradnin: I've seen Superman's powers in the comics and Goku can still beat him. Everyone seems to forget that when Goku fights even Saiyan's cannot see, his power is so strong that he has to control his Ki so that the planet on which he is fighting is not destroyed, he can destroy even large portions of galaxies, and let's not forget that his power stems not from his strength, which is already rivaling Superman's, but his skill, technique, and from his Ki.

superman9993: its clear you have'nt seen superman powers because he also hold back his powers so that he cant destory the planet. in which superman has said many times. plus supers have also fought krytonians and also killed them with ease. dude supers destory a hold solar system with a fuckin sneeze by mistake for god sakes you dont know jack about supers. he was liftin well over 500 pounds as a baby get ur facts right next time

masteradnin: So then tell me, can Superman destroy galaxies like Siayan's? Superman's race focused on technology and science unlike the Siayan's who were focused on brute strength. Broly, the legendary Super Siayan, could destroy a planet by making a Ki ball the size of a golf ball. Oh, by the way, I have read and heard about Superman's powers, and while his strength alone may rival Goku's, he's endurance, stamina, speed, and fighting skill are way below Goku's.

I swear to god I'm not superman9993. I swear. Though I kind of wish I were.