Welcome to the four hundred and fifteenth in a series of examinations of comic book legends and whether they are true or false. Click here for an archive of the previous four hundred and fourteen. This week, in honor of Superman’s 75th Anniversary, it is an All-Superman edition of Comic Book Legends Revealed! First, learn of the comic book DC created for a rich man for his son’s Bar Mitzvah! Discover whether Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons were the first people to have Superman use his heat vision offensively! Finally, discover the odd plot hole in a classic Superman comic that DC actually FIXED in a reprint!
NOTE: The column is on three pages, a page for each legend. There’s a little “next” button on the top of the page and the bottom of the page to take you to the next page (and you can navigate between each page by just clicking on the little 1, 2 and 3 on the top and the bottom, as well).
COMIC LEGEND: A rich man paid DC to make a special Superman comic book for his son’s Bar Mitzvah.
In 1988, British real estate developer Godfrey Bradman (here is a somewhat recent shot of Bradman….
approached DC Comics about doing a comic book for his son’s Bar Mitzvah. New DC staffer David Levin wrote it and Curt Swan drew it (with Angelo Torres inking it and doing the likenesses for the people involved).
Here is the cover…
Here Superman is captured along with the Bradmans…
The bad guys are tormenting them…
Superman finds a way out but there is a catch…
Don’t worry, the kids are there to help!!!
After that eight page story, the rest of the comic is a reprint of John Byrne’s Superman #2.
Check out David Levin’s blog for more pages and for his take on how he wrote the story. Very cool stuff.
Check out some Entertainment Urban Legends Revealed!
Are the Trees From Joshua Tree and “One Tree Hill” Really BOTH Dead?
On the next page, was Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons the first people to have Superman use his heat vision offensively?
COMIC LEGEND: Was “For the Man Who Has Everything?” the first time Superman used his heat vision offensively?
There is a famous sequence in Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ “For the Man Who Has Everything?” in Superman Annual #11 (which you folks just picked as your #2 favorite Superman story of all-time) where Superman takes out his anger on Mongul…
Superman blasts him a few more times…
A reader asked….
There’s an internet legend that says that “For the Man Who has Everything?” is the first time that Superman EVER used his heat vision offensively (i.e. the first time he shot somebody with it, as opposed to just melting stuff or damaging/destroying inanimate objects).
Can anyone confirm if this is true or not?
I HAVE heard this before.
Anyhow, no, it is not true.
I asked Mark Waid if he could save me some time and point out an example that predated this story, and he suggested 1978’s Superman #322 by Martin Pasko and Curt Swan where Superman does, indeed, use his heat vision on the Parasite…
EDITED TO ADD: Reader CaptainKal has an even earlier example, also against the Parasite, in Action Comics #340…
Check out some classic Comic Book Legends Revealed related to Superman!
Was Superman Declared 4-F Because He Read the Eye Chart in the Room Next to Him Accidentally With his X-Ray Vision?
COMIC LEGEND: The classic Superman story “Under the Red Sun” has a major plot hole that DC actually FIXED when they reprinted it in a 1979 comic!
1963’s Action Comics #300 has the classic tale “Under the Red Sun” by Edmond Hamilton and Al Plastino…
where Superman is transported into the future as a means of defeating him, since the Earth now has a red sun so Superman has no powers.
Superman decides to journey to his Fortress of Solitude to find a way home. He journeys with a Perry White android…
He eventually finds his way to his Fortress…
And finds a way home…
As you might have noticed, they goofed BIG time. He said he will use Red Kryptonite but then uses a shrinking ray but then grows bigger because of the red kryptonite!
Years later, in 1979, when DC reprinted this story, they fixed the plot hole…
Pretty darn funny.
Check out the latest edition of my weekly Movie/TV Legends Revealed Column at Spinoff Online: Did the BBC Buy the Trademark to the Blue Police Boxes Used for the TARDIS in Doctor Who?
Okay, that’s it for this week!
Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future installments! My e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. And my Twitter feed is http://twitter.com/brian_cronin, so you can ask me legends there, as well!
Here’s my new book, Why Does Batman Carry Shark Repellent? The cover is by Kevin Hopgood (the fellow who designed War Machine’s armor).
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Here’s my book of Comic Book Legends (130 legends – half of them are re-worked classic legends I’ve featured on the blog and half of them are legends never published on the blog!).
The cover is by artist Mickey Duzyj. He did a great job on it…(click to enlarge)…
If you’d like to order it, you can use the following code if you’d like to send me a bit of a referral fee…
See you all next week!