Jon Morris’s Cartoony Superman Foes are Adorably Villainous [Art]
Between the awesome art he does for his website, his creation of the Cornered art blog and the DC Fifty-Too project, it's safe to say that Calamity Jon Morris is one of our favorite artists. And over the last month, he's shown us exactly why with a collection of art depicting Superman's greatest enemies.
From the dawn of the Silver Age to the most '90s bad guy of 'em all, Morris's Superman Villains are awesome and adorable. Check out the full set after the cut!For his first entry, Morris chose Brainiac, the sinister mastermind with a Twelfth-Level Intellect from the planet Colu. His greatest crime, as represented in Morris's art, was responsible for abducting an entire city from Krypton and storing it in a bottle like Grandma's raspberry preserve, but he's also notable for being one of the few men bold enough to attempt pulling off the pink polo/black booty shorts look:
Next up is Mr. Mxyzptlk, an imp from the 5th Dimension who would show up every 90 days and use his phenomenal powers to play pranks on Superman. He was also one of the few villains who seriously terrified me when I was a kid, thanks to a story where he turned a guy in a suit of Lexcorp armor into a Transformer, crushing his body within the armor when he turned him into a jet. And now you know why I do not care for Megatron:
Superman's greatest foe, Lex Luthor comes in at #3, complete with his classic Bronze Age bad guy outfit, a chunk of Kryptonite, and the shiny bald head he got when an experiment to make Superboy immune to Kryptonite poisoning blew up in his face. If only the Hair Club for Men had been around in the '50s, one of the world's greatest villains may have turned his brilliance to good, instead of evil:
Speaking of Kryptonite, it comes in as Morris's 4th entry, and while the radioactive chunks of Superman's home planet aren't technically a villain, they're certainly one of his greatest menaces. Morris has gone with the classic array of Silver Age Kryptonite colors: Green (poisonous and potentially deadly to Superman), White (deadly to plant life), Red (created crazy unpredictable changes that led to stories where Superman had animal heads and split personalities, otherwise known as Awesome Kryptonite), Gold (permanently removed a Kryptonian's powers), and Blue (deadlly to Bizarros). It's also worth noting that with the way he's arranged them, Morris has essentially created a radioactive Magic: The Gathering card:
Next up is Bizarro, an imperfect duplicate of Superman with a "crazy, mixed-up" reverse way of thinking. While he's usually played as silly, I've always thought that Bizarro was one of the more terrifying Superman villains: All of Superman's powers, but with absolutely no concept of morality or logic, aways throwing Lois Lane out of helicopters and tearing open volcanoes:
For his sixth entry, Morris brings us an awesome take no The Composite Superman, one of the greatest and most insane villains ever created: A former janitor turned Half Superman, Half Batman and All Green, but with the powers of the entire Legion of Super-Heroes that he got from a bunch of action figures from the future. Seriously, I love this guy:
For another classic villain, we have Metallo: The Man with the Kryptonite Heart, which is one of those names that tells you pretty much everything you need to know about him:
With Silver Banshee, Morris goes a little further into the modern age than the classics he'd been working with before. She's a little more obscure than the others, too -- and according to Wikipedia, she can use her sonic powers to teleport, which... yeah, sure, why not -- but Morris does a pretty great job of representing her ability to kill you just by screaming:
If you're going to do modern age Superman villains, then it's a must to include Doomsday, the product of a somewhat dubious "evolutionary" process that once punched Superman to death with Bone Claws. Morris's version looks happier than I've ever seen him before, probably because he's finally traded in those super-tight bike shorts he used to wear for a pair of actual pants:
And for his final entries, Morris went with General Zod, Non, and Ursa, the Phantom Zone criminals from the most beloved segment of the Superman film franchise, Superman II. The only thing I don't love about this is that it didn't lead to an equally adorable picure of Richard Pryor from Superman III:
Morris himself said it best: "One of Superman's greatest foes is General Zod and even worse than him is Specific Zod."