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Marvel Man

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Subj: Re: Should He be the ONLY one of His race to have survived?
Posted: Fri Apr 04, 2014 at 10:25:11 am EDT (Viewed 99 times)
Reply Subj: Re: Should He be the ONLY one of His race to have survived?
Posted: Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 01:05:48 am EDT (Viewed 103 times)


    Streaky and Comet weren't Kryptonian.

    Similar enough in powers? So are Lar Gand, Jo Nah, Billy Batson and even J'onn J'onzz. Want to erase all of them too?

Argh. I had written a long answer and I've deleted it by mistake...

I should have included Fuzzy, so you could could have ignore my post totally \:p

Now, seriously, I got confused about Streaky and Comet but that does not change my argument. If there are too many kryptonians alive, the idea of Superman as the last son of krypton becomes meaningless. And as I was talking about KRYPTONIANS and not about Superpowered people, I have no problem with Lar Gand, Jo Nah, Billy Batson and J'onn J'onzz.

Also, I wasn't talking about erasing any of them. In fact I have said that "there are a lot of good stories written with these characters" and " there are a lot of posibilities to play with these ideas". 

Now, thanks for mentioning Lar Gand, Jo Nah and J'onn J'onzz, as they help me to better argument my position. Is true that they are similar to Superman but their existence does not dilute any aspect of Superman. Lar Gand and Jo Nah are from the future and they are not from Krypton, while J'onn J'onzz is from Mars and has a totally different appearance and different set of powers. 

And about Billy... well, he is a totally different character. So different that I don't know where to begin: he is child who becomes a mighty adult when he says a secret word, the source of his powers is magical, he's not from another planet... In fact he had a Marvel Family before Superman. You could even say that the Silver Age Superman has more in common with Captain Marvel than with the Golden Age Man of Steel.

On the other hand, there's another problem (besides having too many kryptonians) that I think help to make Superman less meaninful: The "S" Shield. Why? Because there have been a lot of characters wearing it: Supergirl, Krypto, Streaky, Comet, Beepo, Bizarro, Superwoman, Steel, Superboy, the Cyborg Superman, the Eradicator, Superboy-Prime... More recently, H'el, Jon Kent, Earth-2 Superman or Injustice Superman.

Sometimes it makes sense and reinforces the inspirational meaning of Superman's "S", and it makes even more sense if you consider the symbol as the shield of the House of El and, by extension, the symbol of the Superman family. That's the case of Supergirl, Superboy or Steel, for example, even if I would prefer them to use variations of Superman's logo (as they have done sometimes).

Then you have characters like Bizarro or H'el. They are villains but their "S" symbols differs from the original, with also helps to reinforce the meaning of Superman as a character.

The actual problem, in my opinion, is with characters like the Cyborg Superman, Superboy-Prime or alternate versions as the New-52 Earth-2 Superman or the Injustice Superman, because they use the same symbol but they are the opposite of what Superman is supposed to be. 

Then again, I'm NOT saying that these characters should be erased because they could be very interesting. The only thing I'm trying to say is that DC Comics should be very careful when they use too many characters with the "S" symbol because somehow they could be making Superman less meaningful as a character. And the same thing happens, in my opinion, when you have too many kryptonians alive.

Of course you can always play with the differences between these characters and Superman and make great stories. Superman doesn't really know his culture, while Supergirl grew on Krypton and then she lost everything she knew. Kryptonian criminals represent everything Superman could do and choose not to do because he loves our planet. Kandor is the last hope of Superman of recover his home planet if he got to free the city from its imprisonment...

Finally, I would like to make something clear: I love John Byrne's Superman for all I've said above, but I also love the Pre-Crisis Superman. Keep in mind that some of my favourites Superman stories are All Star Superman, Superman Red / Superman Blue or Alan Moore's Supreme and all of them played with these concepts. And then you have Earth One Clark Kent, who is the last and only kryptonian alive, but he isn't what Superman should be (yet).

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