This year marks the 80th anniversary of the release of Action Comics #1, which featured the first appearance of Superman, but it also featured the first appearance of Lois Lane.
Therefore, rather than devote this celebration to just the Man of Steel, I figured that this time around, we'd celebrate BOTH Superman AND Lois Lane by splitting up the 80 Greatest Stories into the 40 Greatest Superman Stories and the 40 Greatest Lois Lane Stories.
Both Superman and Lois Lane have starred in a bunch of a great stories, from one-shot issues to multi-issue stories to, well, sagas. So here you will be casting your vote for who you feel are the greatest Superman and Lois Lane stories!
You folks will all vote by e-mailing me your votes at firstname.lastname@example.org from now up until 11:59 Pacific time, May 25th. That's over a month. I'll tabulate all the votes and I'll begin a countdown of the top 80 (40/40) starting on May 30th, the day that Brian Michael Bendis' The Man of Steel #1 comes out.
Okay, here are the guidelines!
1. E-Mail your votes to email@example.com
2. Vote for your TEN favorite Superman stories AND your ten favorite Lois Lane stories (from comic books only). They can be single issue stories. They can be longer storylines. It's all up to you.
3. Rank your ten stories from #1 (what you think is the greatest story) to #10 (what you think is the 10th greatest). I'd prefer it if you actually numbered your entry, #1-10. It's easier for me to count. Really, just use this template:
TEN GREATEST SUPERMAN STORIES
TEN GREATEST LOIS LANE STORIES
4. Your top choice will be given 10 points, your second choice 9, etc.
5. You are not required to cast a ballot for both Superman and Lois Lane. I'd prefer that you do both, but if you want to do just one or the other, then that's okay. Don't cast a ballot unless you can come up with 10 stories. Come on, you have to know at least 10 stories that you liked featuring the two characters, right?
6. Only stories where Superman or Lois are the lead or the co-lead character count. In other words, don't vote for Justice League of America stories where Superman is just a member of the team, like the "Hyperclan" story or "Rock of Ages," but you CAN vote for Justice League stories which are basically Superman stories just in the pages of Justice League. Just use your own common sense. I think I can trust that you can tell a story meant as a "Superman" story apart from a story where Superman is just a member of the Justice League. Brave and the Bold and DC Comics Presents stories featuring Superman count. Supermman stories in anthologies count. Stories where Lois Lane guest-stars in someone else's book count. I think you can tell when a Superman story is featuring Lois as a co-lead and not just a secondary character.
7. Runs are not stories. To wit, you can't pick, say, Peter Tomasi's run on Superman and call it a story. It is not. It contains a number of different stories. I'll allow All-Star Superman, though, as a single story for Superman (but for Lois Lane, just her two spotlight issues within All-Star Superman). It's fine if there is overlap between the two lists.
8. Miniseries count as one story. In the case of anthologies, each story inside the anthology is considered an independent story. For the sake of Man of Steel, I'll allow you to count Lois' two spotlight issues (#2 and #4) as separate stories for the sake of this list.
9. If you have questions and or requests for clarification, feel free to e-mail me. I'll make various decisions as necessary.
10. I'll list various distinctions that I think are worth mentioning here, based on questions people have sent me:
Have fun! And, of course, you know, go VOTE!!