In the wake of a shocking election, much of the world is stunned that a man as hateful as Donald Trump could be elected President of the United States. In this This Magazine Kills Fascists, we’ll look at times comic books and superheroes have dealt with tyrannical, corrupt and outright fascist world leaders — not because we think we can find a solution, but because art can provide inspiration in the face of oppression.
This week we’re going to the far future to see what happens when hatred, fear and xenophobia can corrupt the ideals of a utopia in Geoff Johns and Gary Frank’s “Superman and The Legion of Super-Heroes,” which ran in the pages of Action Comics #858-863. The storyline not only showed the effects of gaslighting an entire population, but just how quickly a new regime can become the new normal.
It's finally October, friends and neighbors, and that means that it's the spookiest time of year: Halloween Season! That frightfully fun time of year when we turn our attention to stories about Draculas, Frankensteins, and the various other haints that perplex our favorite heroes --- and believe it or not, that's actually a little more difficult than it sounds. The same years that produced the comics I often focus on for Bizarro Back Issues --- the height of the Silver Age --- were also the years when the Comics Code Authority put a stranglehold on supernatural content, giving us two solid decades without a single wolfman to speak of.
And yet, they somehow let this story where Supergirl uses demonic skeleton magic to turn into a full-on Satan slide right through in the pages of Action Comics.
While DC Comics has been killing it in a number of areas since the launch of its Rebirth initiative, one area that perhaps hasn't been getting enough attention is the amazing variant covers the publisher is putting out. From Tim Sale providing monthly covers on Batman to Jenny Frisson's upcoming work on Wonder Woman, DC has been going all out with some beautiful variants.
The publisher has provided ComicsAlliance with an exclusive first look at the Action Comics cover for late-October and variants for Action Comics, Detective Comics, The Vigilante: Southland and Batman Beyond.
Born on this day in 1959 in Ortonville, Minnesota, Dan Jurgens is one of the most influential comic creators of the past three decades. As both a writer and a penciller, Jurgens has contributed a tremendous amount to the comics industry and was a shining light of creativity and fun in a decade that is often regarded as dour and serious.
Q: What in God's name were Triangle Numbers? -- @RavenWorks
A: Oh, well this one'e easy. They were numbers inside little triangles. Hence the name.
Okay, so maybe there's a little bit more to it than that, but not much. From 1991 to 2002, the Superman books had two separate numbers on the cover: The issue number, which would tell you which monthly issue of Superman or Action Comics you were reading, and the Triangle Number, which would tell you which part of the ongoing saga that was running through all the Superman titles for a given year. And believe it or not, putting two completely different numbers on the cover of your comic book --- three, if you count the date - was actually meant to make things less complicated.
The stakes are high in August's Action Comics #692, as Superman faces a fateful decision to put a stop Doomsday (and we all know how that's worked out for him in the past). The second of the month's Action Comics issues from Dan Jurgens, Stephen Segovia, and Art Thibert brings the "Path to Doom" storyline to its conclusion that could spell the end of the world for someone.
Of course, stakes don't always have to be Doomsday-sized to feel like the end of the world, and a schism in Gotham Academy's Detective Club probably feels just as apocalyptic to Maps in August's Gotham Academy Annual #1, from writers Becky Cloonan and Brenden Fletcher, and artists Adam Archer, Michael Dialynas, and Christian Wildgoose
Superman made his big debut on this day way back in 1939 in the pages of Action Comics #1 by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. The archetype, the standard bearer for all superheroes who came after him, Superman has endured the changing face of the world throughout the decades, and the ideals he stood for are just as vital and relevant today as they were then.
DC Comics hosted a special livestream event at WonderCon in Los Angeles on Saturday afternoon to unveil the creative teams behind its DC Rebirth event, which relaunches the entire DC Universe line with new issue #1s and multiple double-shipping titles. The relaunch will set the future course of DC Comics at a time when fans are wondering whether the company will embrace a new and diversifying audience or double down on serving a shrinking core audience.
The event was introduced by DC All Access host Tiffany Smith, with DC co-publishers Jim Lee and Dan DiDio and chief creative officer and Rebirth chief architect Geoff Johns introducing and interviewing the creative teams as they joined them on stage at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
I've mentioned it before on the site and elsewhere, but I'm of the mind that the core Superman titles --- Action Comics by Greg Pak and Aaron Kuder, and Superman by Gene Luen Yang, John Romita Jr. and Howard Porter --- are better now than they have been in a very long time. They're engaging, they're fun and innovative, and they have a sense of cohesion that Superman as a character often lacks. But every time I say that, I'm always a little surprised that there are so many people who disagree.
Don't get me wrong --- no story is going to appeal to everyone, but for me, these are some of the most fun stories out there. Then again, that might just be because there's a story where Superman joined a pro wrestling federation for forgotten gods, and that's kind of everything I want out of comic books happening at once.
If you'd asked me back when it was coming out to put a bet on which character from Seven Soldiers would actually go on to become the most prominent of the DC Universe, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have put any money on Frankenstein. Just for the record, I would've backed the Manhattan Guardian all the way to the bank, and yet, here we are, in a DC Universe where Frankenstein is showing up everywhere.
It was just last week that he showed up leading the Creature Commandos in a cross-time caper in Justice League United, and this week, he's doing what all great heroes in the DC Universe must do in order to get to that next level of fame: Getting in a fistfight with Superman. And it's awesome.
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