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Post By
Teletran

In Reply To
rc

Subj: Re: Question for RC
Posted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 at 05:06:44 am EST
Reply Subj: Re: Question for RC
Posted: Sat Jan 27, 2007 at 11:46:51 am EST

Previous Post

> Hello RC,
>
> Since you're quite the Superman fan, I have questions for you:
>
> How "powerful" do you think Superman should really be?

While I have my preferences, ultimately it has to be the level of power at which a writer can generate a good story.

I prefer a powerful Superman -- big power, big challenges -- and am of the opinion that if you can't write at least a Loeb/Austen-level Superman, then you shouldn't write Superman at all. But that's just an ideal. I'd rather have a great story with a low-powered Man of Steel than a shite story with an uber-Superman, any day of the week.

> Would it be similar to the "pre-crisis" Superman that can spin a planet on his fingertip type of strong?

At times. At times stronger.

> For all of Superman's superfeats, here's my personal perspective:
> 1. A Superman who can never ever lose to Hulk in a pure strength contest no matter how mad Hulk can get to the point of Hulk having a heart attack from rage already.

Sounds good to me. I don't think Marvel heroes are typically very strong. High feats are exceedingly rare for them relative to Superman, so it only makes sense to me that someone like Hulk couldn't match up to Superman.

> 2. A Superman who only has these three weaknesses: Kryptonite, No Yellow Sun (or Red Sun type of radiation), and Magic.

I don't like the red sunlight weakness. His heat vision is red sunlight; sunset is red sunlight -- those things don't weaken him. I like what Berganza laid down: Red sunlight simply doesn't feed him, as it is the power of a dying star.

Kryptonite: It's run its course as an auto-win. Either keep his tolerance ridiculously high (relative to what it was) a la Infinite Crisis and the Loeb years or just get rid of it. No easy wins over Superman.

Magic: Superman should be no more or less vulnerable to magic than any other person with his level of strength, invulnerability and will power. On average, I think this is how DC portrays him: He'll take spells, blasts and shots of magic that floor the entire League (Seven Caskets, Primeval, etc.), but leave him standing. He's Superman, for Christ's sake. Again, refer to what we typically saw during the Loeb/Casey/Schultz years. That worked.

Want to challenge Superman? Then create a character that can beat the shit out of him: Enough force, magic, tech, whatever can give you a win. Make the villain work for it, though. Make the attack extremely powerful; or make it complex. Challenge the villain. He's Superman for Christ's sake.

When Superman fought Overmind, Overmind defeated Superman very creatively and credibly: First, he isolated Superman miles under ground, cutting Kal-El off from the Sun. Then, he threw an Earth-powered villain at Superman to soften him up (deep in the Earth, the villain's powers went way up). Then, he doused the weakened Superman with solar-inhibiting/sucking nanites, and supercharged Kryptonite -- all this stuff enhanced by B-13 tech and Natasha Irons' mental stregths. And THEN Overmind, himself empowered with B-13 tech, beat the hell out of Superman, over the course of two issues, iirc. And it was still a tough fight, if memory serves.

I loved that fight. Superman's powers raised the bar for the villain, and the villain brought out his a-game to take down the Man of Steel ... not just some green rock or stinky rabbit's foot.

> 3. As a Thorfan, I never see Thor winning against an out for blood super blitzing Superman amidst my perspective of Superman having weakness to magic.
>
> Original Superman thoughts:
>
> Kryptonite is simple... just too many stories of any tom, dick, and harry lugging one around to make Supes go all faint in the corny issues.
>
> Red Sun - well, take away his powers and well, that's it.
>
> Magic -> Ah... this is where there's a big difference. My version is that Mjolnir should extremely hurt Superman if Thor hurls it at him at full strength with Superman down for the count or dead. My view is that a magic sword can cut Superman just as a normal sword can cut through a normal human. Superman getting bitten by dracula also falls in this category of weakness to magic/supernatural.

Too many examples of Superman resisting high level magic to justify him being so easily felled, imo. Run through the archives and you'll see (specifically, look for Ed J's old feat list). Osiris, Primeval, Blaze, Skyhook, IDCAP, Cythonna, Elder God (Seven Caskets), etc., etc. -- have you seen some of the uber-level magic he's taken in stride? Those examples far outweigh the low-end/extreme vulnerability stuff, imo.
>
> Pure power -> ah.. now this.. where the Hulk is a prime example of extreme strength -> I still honestly believe that Superman should outmuscle Hulk and Thor at the same time. Superman is just that strong.
>
> Byrne Superman thoughts:
>
> This is where the pure power is questionable -> Seems Supes is kinda like in the "class 100" level as Thor belongs to. I think this was made to make Superman "interesting" since he was just so unbeatable before sans the three weaknesses which is quite corny like yellow was to Green Lantern.
>
> Current Superman:
>
> Now this is where my question is. Which Superman is this now?

I have no idea. I haven't been able to gauge the post-IC Superman's power level.

> From Byrne going back to the original unbeatable Superman but can resist Kryptonite (up up and away), has a battery charge before running out when subjected to Red Sun radiation (infinite crisis), and resists/laughs off magic (like SBP did against Black Adam)?
>
> Is this really Superman now? If so, JLA/Avengers shouldn't have lasted more than a single panel because Superman should have outpunched/outsped/outlasted anything out there. Mjolnir truly would have been cut in half with his fart.

Superman only *really is* whatever a writer says he is at any given time. If, say, Casey wrote JLA/Avengers ... ?

> Don't get me wrong. I like Superman too though I just like Marvel's universe better than DC's in general. Only DC I like are mostly from the Superfriends related ones (Supes, Bats, WW, GL, Flash). I'm just sad that Thor is still "dead" back in Marvel. I hope he returns really fresh from being King Thor who has the power to destroy a planet accidentally by touching it with his finger then go to more interesting levels in the next issues.

Okay.

_rc


Hi RC!

> While I have my preferences, ultimately it has to be the level of power at which a writer can generate a good story.

I think that sums it up. The thing is, Superman is Superman and... well... he should be the perfect nice guy all around hero.

I guess what made me not like Superman is more of the surrounding cast and villains that make up his world. Sans JLA, I really can't appreciate much of his "world". (I played the VS card game some time ago and looking through the Superman expansion, it was only Superman that I liked.. no one else.)
>
> I prefer a powerful Superman -- big power, big challenges -- and am of the opinion that if you can't write at least a Loeb/Austen-level Superman, then you shouldn't write Superman at all. But that's just an ideal. I'd rather have a great story with a low-powered Man of Steel than a shite story with an uber-Superman, any day of the week.

I just don't like it when suddenly, Superman would get choked by a normal snake ala what happened to the Hulk or get knocked out by a flying brick ala Silver Surfer.

After just playing Justice League Heroes recently, I just couldn't believe it that I was playing Superman but had to run around like a headless chicken to regenerate power and health because of some dumb robots. I mean... hey!!! I'm Superman!!! What gives?!?

> Sounds good to me. I don't think Marvel heroes are typically very strong. High feats are exceedingly rare for them relative to Superman, so it only makes sense to me that someone like Hulk couldn't match up to Superman.

Agreed. Though I felt bad about JLA/Avengers because Thor lost to Supes, it was only because of my perception of Superman being treated normal due to magic. Sans that, Thor shouldn't have a chance.

> I don't like the red sunlight weakness. His heat vision is red sunlight; sunset is red sunlight -- those things don't weaken him. I like what Berganza laid down: Red sunlight simply doesn't feed him, as it is the power of a dying star.

Hmm.. maybe Red Sunlight seeps into Superman and drives out the yellow sun that he's kept. (kinda like first in first out concept)
>
> Kryptonite: It's run its course as an auto-win. Either keep his tolerance ridiculously high (relative to what it was) a la Infinite Crisis and the Loeb years or just get rid of it. No easy wins over Superman.

Unfortunately for Lex.
>
> Magic: Superman should be no more or less vulnerable to magic than any other person with his level of strength, invulnerability and will power. On average, I think this is how DC portrays him: He'll take spells, blasts and shots of magic that floor the entire League (Seven Caskets, Primeval, etc.), but leave him standing. He's Superman, for Christ's sake. Again, refer to what we typically saw during the Loeb/Casey/Schultz years. That worked.

But is Superman still very vulnerable to Dracula? Or will the next bite result to Dracula having to make an appointment with his dentist.

> When Superman fought Overmind, Overmind defeated Superman very creatively and credibly: First, he isolated Superman miles under ground, cutting Kal-El off from the Sun. Then, he threw an Earth-powered villain at Superman to soften him up (deep in the Earth, the villain's powers went way up). Then, he doused the weakened Superman with solar-inhibiting/sucking nanites, and supercharged Kryptonite -- all this stuff enhanced by B-13 tech and Natasha Irons' mental stregths. And THEN Overmind, himself empowered with B-13 tech, beat the hell out of Superman, over the course of two issues, iirc. And it was still a tough fight, if memory serves.

Wow! Didn't know that. Which issues were those?
>
> I loved that fight. Superman's powers raised the bar for the villain, and the villain brought out his a-game to take down the Man of Steel ... not just some green rock or stinky rabbit's foot.

Or.. uh... be named "Batman". Guess that's the fourth weakness of Superman.
>
> Too many examples of Superman resisting high level magic to justify him being so easily felled, imo. Run through the archives and you'll see (specifically, look for Ed J's old feat list). Osiris, Primeval, Blaze, Skyhook, IDCAP, Cythonna, Elder God (Seven Caskets), etc., etc. -- have you seen some of the uber-level magic he's taken in stride? Those examples far outweigh the low-end/extreme vulnerability stuff, imo.

Having Superman win over magic now certainly makes him tougher to write.
> >
>
> Superman only *really is* whatever a writer says he is at any given time. If, say, Casey wrote JLA/Avengers ... ?

Well... Superman in Justice League and JLU animated pretty much jobbed most of the time. Guess it's really normal in teams that someone really so powerful gets dragged into the power levels of the weaker ones.

Thor chumming with the Avengers is certainly another example of that.
>
Cheers!

>


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