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  1. #1

    Default Discarded Superman Continuity You Still Accept as Canon

    More than any other major DC hero, perhaps save for Wonder Woman, Superman's had the roughest go at maintaining a consistent history during his 75+ years. While Batman's entire printed history can still, with enough fudging and squinting of the eyes, have plausibly happened to the same character, Superman's never had such luxury. The Crisis and subsequent reboot made much of the Golden and Silver Age history virtually irreconcilable with the new timeline. Around the turn of the millennium, a noxious tug of war between writers and editors unhappy with the Man of Steel reboot led to the character getting two new origins in the span of three years. Then, the New 52 completely upended the totality of the Post-Crisis bibliography, even erasing such landmark stories as the Death and Return. For comparison's sake, New 52 Green Lantern chugged along with some version of Emerald Twilight still in the canon, while Batman's history was intact enough that he still had his 12 year old son and three proteges before that.

    But now that's all changed. For the first time ever, most of Superman's history is back on the table. The blended Reborn timeline allows for a Morrison-esque "it all happened, somehow" philosophy, and I couldn't be happier. The greatest joy I have with this structure is how the broad strokes were laid out for us right from the start, and moving forward that's all we really need. Lots of stories, be they Golden, Silver, Bronze, Post-Crisis, Pre-Flashpoint, or New 52, can now be comfortably reinserted into the canon even if DC never acknowledges them again. Just like Batman, with enough mental gymnastics you could make the case that ANY Superman story is now in play. So which stories or events do you slot into this new history, DC be damned?

    For me, it's that a pudgy Lex Luthor succumbed to cancer, put his brain in a younger clone, pretended to be his own Australian son, was ravaged by a clone disease, had his health restored by Neron, and then got cleared from all charges by convincing the public that Lex Luthor II was a mad clone that merely replaced him. It's a bonkers melodrama that DC may never reference again for simplicity's sake, but it's such a daffy comic book idea that I can't help but love it. Whenever I see Lex, I adore the idea that he's only in this fit, muscular body because it's actually cloned around his old brain and then was made healthy again after he sold his soul to a demon.

    So what are some of yours?

  2. #2
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    Lex and the Countessa still had a relationship and a daughter, heavens knows where she is now though. Maybe it would have been better to leave her all Brainiacified and a teenager in the future somehow.

  3. #3
    Invincible Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    I don't really do the head-canon game, unless the material allows it specifically. I roll with what the continuity is, even if I don't always like every detail where detail is given. For instance, the new Superman continuity leaves a lot of deliberate holes in the narrative, lending one to be able to plug in a lot of stories there or ignore them outright if they want. On the other hand, if stuff is deliberalely and concretely removed, I don't try to fit it back in just because I liked it. SM/WW for instance. Do I wish it was still canon? Sure. But, it was concretely removed, so I don't bother pretending. On the other hand, there was that pitch perfect New 52 Superman story that Pak wrote on Bizzarro World. That story oozes awesomeness and nothing contradicts it, so you better believe I consider that it still happened.

    FWIW, with the Lex/Lex II thing, I always liked it and right now nothing contradicts it. However, in this case I have a funny feeling they might have something up their sleeve to do a homage to that story now in the present. If my sneaking suspicion is anywhere in the ballpark, I'm fine letting the original tale go.
    Last edited by Sacred Knight; 09-05-2017 at 12:01 PM.
    They can be a great people Kal-El, they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way. For this reason above all, their capacity for good, I have sent them you. My only son. - Jor-El.

  4. #4
    Sun of the Mourning Montressor's Avatar
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    I don't know where things stand now, what with all this Rebirthing, but I'd like to think his uniform still comes from Krypton (and I'd LOVE it if it were still rocketed to Earth with him as a child). I don't mind if its updated a bit--nanotech-like self-repairing alien material, nothing else like it on Earth (aside from Kara's look). I also don't mind the cape having unusual qualities, as in way the way it used to stretch when he needed it to back in the pre-Crisis days.
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  5. #5
    Invincible Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    The New 52 suit is likely still straight from Krypton. As is the cape. His first suit was probably the SO origin: crafted by Martha but designed based on the mental images of Krypton that the ship beamed into her head. This new one I like to imagine was made by Kelex or something.
    They can be a great people Kal-El, they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way. For this reason above all, their capacity for good, I have sent them you. My only son. - Jor-El.

  6. #6
    Incredible Member Ra-El's Avatar
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    Basically the whole Greg Pak run on Action Comics, everything, even the Truth part somehow. Just make a few changes and I think almost everything fit. I just don't want to waste so many good stories like the one where Baka is introduced, when he comes back after Doomed, the Zero Year issue and a lot of other stuff.

    Thinking about it, I think the New 52 Superman could still be around if DC have let Greg Pak run the show, but he was most of the time just reacting and working around with the ton of crossovers that other writers or editorial come up with. But Rebirth is really good, so all is fine, I think.

  7. #7
    Astonishing Member FishyZombie's Avatar
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    Truth still 'happened' I think. We saw a flashback of Superman and Grayson in that story somewhere (correct me if I'm wrong). I think it happened and it got resolved by imposter Mxy clearing Clark's name. It just likely won't be referenced again, because doing that would probably kinda screw with the Clark Kent disguise.
    I think the same about his solar flare. I heard new Super-man referenced it. But idk if he'll ever use it again.

  8. #8
    Notorious M.O.S. Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sacred Knight View Post
    I don't really do the head-canon game, unless the material allows it specifically. I roll with what the continuity is, even if I don't always like every detail where detail is given. For instance, the new Superman continuity leaves a lot of deliberate holes in the narrative, lending one to be able to plug in a lot of stories there or ignore them outright if they want. On the other hand, if stuff is deliberalely and concretely removed, I don't try to fit it back in just because I liked it. SM/WW for instance. Do I wish it was still canon? Sure. But, it was concretely removed, so I don't bother pretending. On the other hand, there was that pitch perfect New 52 Superman story that Pak wrote on Bizzarro World. That story oozes awesomeness and nothing contradicts it, so you better believe I consider that it still happened.

    FWIW, with the Lex/Lex II thing, I always liked it and right now nothing contradicts it. However, in this case I have a funny feeling they might have something up their sleeve to do a homage to that story now in the present. If my sneaking suspicion is anywhere in the ballpark, I'm fine letting the original tale go.
    It's officially invalid, since the secret origin is back in play. High school Luthor cannot be Lex the father or Lex II. Savior of the city, bald Luthor cannot be Lex II unless we have a reason to explain why they then forgot each other completely.

    But the other point, I agree. I don't consider continuity to be a luxury. I have an intense love for most of Superman 1971-1999, and being out of continuity does nothing to make those things comics inferior.

    I think Grant Morrison did his best work ever on that Batman run, but none of the Batman stories I like are affected by it. I don't care about Matt Wagner stories more because he's the same guy who fought a purple suited Catwoman.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by FishyZombie View Post
    Truth still 'happened' I think. We saw a flashback of Superman and Grayson in that story somewhere (correct me if I'm wrong). I think it happened and it got resolved by imposter Mxy clearing Clark's name. It just likely won't be referenced again, because doing that would probably kinda screw with the Clark Kent disguise..
    And the Clark/Lois relationship

  10. #10
    Invincible Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    Remember, Lex II is not a different guy. He's not really Lex's son, he's plain old Lex Luthor who masqueraded as his own son in his new cloned body so he would inherit his own fortune back after faking his death. It was his way of not only curing himself, but starting off with a clean slate in the eyes of Metropolis and flying under Superman's radar. Unless I'm misunderstanding something, but I'm not seeing how SO contradicts any of that directly.
    Last edited by Sacred Knight; 09-05-2017 at 01:20 PM.
    They can be a great people Kal-El, they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way. For this reason above all, their capacity for good, I have sent them you. My only son. - Jor-El.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sacred Knight View Post
    The New 52 suit is likely still straight from Krypton. As is the cape. His first suit was probably the SO origin: crafted by Martha but designed based on the mental images of Krypton that the ship beamed into her head. This new one I like to imagine was made by Kelex or something.
    Yeah, and judging from the flashbacks we've had, the New 52 suit was either used post-Reign of the Supermen or post-Electric Superman. Either way, its place in the new canon was probably to help restore him. Since the black regenerative suit is somewhat iconic at this point, I choose to believe it was used after the Electric Superman storyline to help revive his Kryptonian DNA and bring back his classic power set.

    Ooh, I have another: Krypto. I choose to believe that the current Krypto is not the first. The original Krypto was still rocketed to Earth by Jor-El and arrived when young Clark was first discovering his powers, accompanying him on his covert adventures as the midwestern "Superboy". The modern Krypto is based on the original but actually comes from the simulated Silver Age Krypton seen in Loeb's "Return to Krypton". This would allow there to be no Krypto during the original Post-Crisis era, also leaving room for Bibbo's Earth dog of the same name. However, since the current Krypto is a virtual clone of Clark's childhood dog, he understandably views them as one and the same.

  12. #12
    Invincible Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    I actually hated the whole simulated Krypton thing. I'm very happy considering that stuff completely out of continuity. I grew to like that Krypto but it was always in spite of his origin. Like so many things in the post-Crisis era I considered it a poor man's way to bring back a classic concept that post-Crisis restrictions forbade. Infinite Crisis fixing that and simply making him from the real Krypton was a welcome fix for me.

    Though I'm still annoyed at Tomasi/Gleason being lazy and never bothering to explain how, before Reborn, Krypto changed from a direwolf to a retriever. Its implied that Eradicator changed him but never confirmed or even brought up as a point of interest by Superman. But Reborn makes that irrelevant now, I guess.
    Last edited by Sacred Knight; 09-05-2017 at 01:39 PM.
    They can be a great people Kal-El, they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way. For this reason above all, their capacity for good, I have sent them you. My only son. - Jor-El.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sacred Knight View Post
    Remember, Lex II is not a different guy. He's not really Lex's son, he's plain old Lex Luthor who masqueraded as his own son in his new cloned body so he would inherit his own fortune back after faking his death. It was his way of not only curing himself, but starting off with a clean slate in the eyes of Metropolis and flying under Superman's radar. Unless I'm misunderstanding something, but I'm not seeing how SO contradicts any of that directly.
    Lex was significantly older in the immediate Post-Crisis comics, which gave room to have him pose as a previously-undisclosed adult son. However, Secret Origin Smallville Lex is still supposed to be several years older than Clark, Lana, and Pete Ross. With enough wiggle room, he could have still plausibly made the argument he fathered a child as a teenager.

  14. #14
    Notorious M.O.S. Kuwagaton's Avatar
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    Yes, but he was also a love interest for Alice White. You'd have to actually retcon that he wasn't a peer of Perry because they were clearly the same age. The president lex special shows Perry and Lex playing as kids.

  15. #15
    Invincible Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    Okay, now I get what you guys are saying; the math doesn't add up to accommodate the deception anymore. I getcha. I was forgetting how much older Lex was. To keep it, it would probably have to be retconned as a long-lost brother or something he was pretending to be.
    They can be a great people Kal-El, they wish to be. They only lack the light to show the way. For this reason above all, their capacity for good, I have sent them you. My only son. - Jor-El.

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