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  1. #61
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    I must say I preferred it to volume 1. Superman's origin story has been told about a million times...but his early career as a superhero - not so much (though that has lately been remedied by Morrison over in 'Action').

    This book was a great exploration of Superman's impact on the world, and the world's impact on Superman/Clark. The origin story (in whatever form) is about Earth coming face to face with this God-like alien being who claims to be their savior...this is the story of a time when the world has had some time to let the fact of that being's existence sink in and think - 'What now?'

    Parasite wasn't the most fleshed out character in the world but he was a more than formidable opponent for Superman...forcing him to confront, for the first time in his life, vulnerability, both physical and psychological. Clark's comment in the end about how he marvels at the bravery of human beings who brave the dangers and uncertainties of the world without being invulnerable was a great insight into the character's thought processes...one which I believe has never been seen before.

    Its interesting, in a way, how the evolution of Superman's role as a hero is depicted in this story, in that it's kinda the reverse of the learning curve Morrison gave us for the new 52 continuity. THAT Superman started out as a crusader fighting against the corrupt and powerful, a street-level hero dealing with the masses at a more personal level...and eventually evolved into the alien savior of the entire planet, who got involved in cosmic-scale battles. But here, we start with a Superman who's a bit of a detached alien to begin with, concerned with the 'big picture' and keeping himself away from human affairs...but by the end, he HAS decided to step in and set things right, to at least some extent, and has become the crusader and 'champion of the oppressed' he was back in 1938.

  2. #62
    Inf‚me et fier de l'Ítre Auguste Dupin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Desaad View Post
    When it comes down to it, what makes me saddest is that this issue didn't not work for me because it changed anything about Superman. When JMS took on Supreme Power he wrote a very twisted take on Superman (and Hyperion). But I loved that series, regardless. I think I'm open to different interpretations of the character, even interpretations that drastically redefine certain key elements of the character, when you're dealing with different continuities.

    My main issue with this book was that it was just bad. It was amateur hour. So much of it was telegraphed, and inarticulate, awkward. You know exactly what was going to happen to the junkie. You knew exactly what was going on with the girl. The girl's actions were unrealistic, at least by my experience, even for women prone to that kind of self destructive behavior. The resolution to the dictator situation was childish wish fulfillment, which is fine, if he hadn't made this point earlier that that sort of resolution was never going to fly in this more 'realistic' setting. No teacher from 7 years ago would go into such meticulous detail about a former student over the phone to a personnel office; again, it just wouldn't happen. Even little things like the TV news commentators breaking out laughing at the 'just doing what he thinks is right' is just such a cheap, easy and unnatural tactic to get the point across. Much less big things like JMS actually going so far as to use the 'Man of Steel, Women of Tissue Paper' line, and have Pa Kent say it.

    I think part of the problem is that Earth One is trying to capture this feeling of youth, but JMS is as far away from youthful as any writer in mainstream comics, I think. I don't mean that as the crass insult that it may come off as, but I think he's writing outside his proclivity with this version of Superman, trying to be hip and provocative. In fact, one of the reoccuring themes of his work is the disappointment and corruption of the modern world, the failure to fulfill the promise of older, better, purer generations. It was plastered all over his Brave and Bold, it was all over the Marvel book he was doing with Weston.

    When he was writing very classic superhero stories in "Brave and the Bold" I think, at least executionally, he was absolutely killing it time and time again. There is a poetry to his work, when he's trying, that really works, and his emotional manipulation tends to be more welcome when he's dusting off old characters and letting them shine.

    The more I think about it, the more I decide that this just wasn't good, full stop. It's not an issue of me being wedded to anything that came before, its that this was not good.

    And Shane Davis? Also not good.
    Yeah, that also kind of how it felt in the first volume. It tries to make his character young and relatable, hip and cool, but it's obvious it's written by and old guy and that his view of youth is defined by that. It's old and cliche, and this friendless Clark Kent walking around in Metropolis' streets with his hood on ends up sounding like some parody of self aware teenagers who spend their time moping about how every one misunderstand them. Except here (well, there), it's played completely straight, and it makes Clark a bit unsuferrable.
    Another thing I disliked in the first volume was how he spends so much time making us feel that 'It's not easy being him" that he completely eludes the fun part of it. I mean, we're talking about a lonely kid that realizes one day he can fly. Don't tell me he felt bad about this too. And yeah, the "woman of kleenex" thing is really old now.
    I have conflicted feelings about buying this one. On the one hand, what I hear isn't encouraging. On the other, I must admit I am a bit curious.
    Ho, well, I will check when I stumble upon it.
    "I'm going to paraphrase Nietzsche, when you judge a work, the work judges you."

  3. #63
    evil maybe, genius no stk's Avatar
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    On the positive side, the coloring is once again truly phenomenal.

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by adkal View Post
    If there were two volumes a year, this would work well for me. One every two years...meh
    I agree. The Earth One series is one of the best ideas DC has had, but it has been around for three years and there have only been three books.

    They need to pick up the pace a bit, and start letting new comic talent in on them. Why Johns wrote Batman Earth One when he is already writing so much at DC is baffling, these books are a perfect place for new talent in my opinion - the answer to Marvel's Ultimate line, only better because they are in GN form.

  5. #65
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    Johns sells. His Batman: Earth One was a big hit and did a lot better than DC expected. It makes sense to keep him on it.
    The two most powerful warriors are patience and time - Leo Tolstoy

  6. #66
    Senior Member clownprince01's Avatar
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    A definite improvement over the volume 1, but still filled with flaws and clunky moments, not least of which was the flashback to Clark's birds and the bees discussion with Jonathan. The whole thing with the cat was cheesy as hell too, although it just barely worked. Barely. I also think IGN's review hit the nail on the head when they referred to Parasite as merely a "freak of the week". Very forgettable like Tyrell in volume 1. And I'm not big on the design either; Alex Ross still draws the best Parasite.

    I actually didn't mind the storyline with Lisa. It wasn't the best thing I've ever read, but strangely enough, Clark's relationship with her felt more real than any of his other ones. I also liked all that stuff regarding the reactions from world governments. Clark also has a nice rapport with his ship. It was an unexpected delight.

    My biggest issue was the subplot with the dictator. I really liked how the storyline started, but the resolution was far too simplistic, not to mention a tad disturbing. It's very naive to believe that Clark didn't end up indirectly killing hundred if not thousands in the resulting coup. Sure, it's not the worst thing in the world, but it's not Superman. As with volume 1, even though this was quite different, I was reminded of the far superior Africa storyline from Birthright.

    On a side note, did anyone catch the Batman Easter egg in the newspaper page at the end? I thought the whole point of Earth One was self contained canons for different characters with no crossovers.
    Your name is Kal-El. You are the only survivor of the planet Krypton. Even though you've been raised as a human being, you are not one of them
    JOR-EL

  7. #67
    Senior Member Ironman2978's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by clownprince01 View Post
    A definite improvement over the volume 1, but still filled with flaws and clunky moments, not least of which was the flashback to Clark's birds and the bees discussion with Jonathan. The whole thing with the cat was cheesy as hell too, although it just barely worked. Barely. I also think IGN's review hit the nail on the head when they referred to Parasite as merely a "freak of the week". Very forgettable like Tyrell in volume 1. And I'm not big on the design either; Alex Ross still draws the best Parasite.

    I actually didn't mind the storyline with Lisa. It wasn't the best thing I've ever read, but strangely enough, Clark's relationship with her felt more real than any of his other ones. I also liked all that stuff regarding the reactions from world governments. Clark also has a nice rapport with his ship. It was an unexpected delight.

    My biggest issue was the subplot with the dictator. I really liked how the storyline started, but the resolution was far too simplistic, not to mention a tad disturbing. It's very naive to believe that Clark didn't end up indirectly killing hundred if not thousands in the resulting coup. Sure, it's not the worst thing in the world, but it's not Superman. As with volume 1, even though this was quite different, I was reminded of the far superior Africa storyline from Birthright.

    On a side note, did anyone catch the Batman Easter egg in the newspaper page at the end? I thought the whole point of Earth One was self contained canons for different characters with no crossovers.
    I think that was more the All Star titles than Earth One. Earth One seem more of an introduction to DC characters to different readers. It has been said a few times there might be a team up but let's see.
    A Comic book fan till I die.

  8. #68
    Senior Member adkal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cactusmaac View Post
    Johns sells. His Batman: Earth One was a big hit and did a lot better than DC expected. It makes sense to keep him on it.
    'Johns sells' applies to the mainstream books - here, they're trying to reach out to the non-traditional reader...so they should probably bring someone (or several) different into the bullpen to net those readers.

  9. #69

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    Quote Originally Posted by adkal View Post
    'Johns sells' applies to the mainstream books - here, they're trying to reach out to the non-traditional reader...so they should probably bring someone (or several) different into the bullpen to net those readers.
    Marvel don't put big talent on their Season One books and they don't come close to how well the Earth One books sell.

  10. #70
    Senior Member adkal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LoneNecromancer View Post
    Marvel don't put big talent on their Season One books and they don't come close to how well the Earth One books sell.
    Marvel has 'Season One' books? Looks like they slipped right by me...

    Maybe their marketing for it isn't right? Wasn't the first volume of Superman: Earth One in the mainstream news?

  11. #71
    Dark Knight Detective DarkKnghtJared's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Auguste Dupin View Post
    Another thing I disliked in the first volume was how he spends so much time making us feel that 'It's not easy being him" that he completely eludes the fun part of it. I mean, we're talking about a lonely kid that realizes one day he can fly. Don't tell me he felt bad about this too.
    It's interesting you say that, because I thought the first half of the first volume was basically about the fact that, due to his power, Clark can not only literally do anything he wants, but he can be the BEST at anything he wants.

  12. #72
    evil maybe, genius no stk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarkKnghtJared View Post
    It's interesting you say that, because I thought the first half of the first volume was basically about the fact that, due to his power, Clark can not only literally do anything he wants, but he can be the BEST at anything he wants.
    He's not talking about what the character is capable of. He means "not easy being him" in the sense that no matter what amazing things he is capable of, his life still feels miserable and lonely. That kind of "not easy being him". The emo angst kind.

  13. #73
    Senior Member adkal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarkKnghtJared View Post
    It's interesting you say that, because I thought the first half of the first volume was basically about the fact that, due to his power, Clark can not only literally do anything he wants, but he can be the BEST at anything he wants.
    And then that's flipped in this volume when we're shown that he did his best to be 'average'. To escape notice.

    To me, that made the scenes in volume 1 a little more amusing, especially the sports-based ones.

  14. #74
    Inf‚me et fier de l'Ítre Auguste Dupin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stk View Post
    He's not talking about what the character is capable of. He means "not easy being him" in the sense that no matter what amazing things he is capable of, his life still feels miserable and lonely. That kind of "not easy being him". The emo angst kind.
    Yeah, that. He never takes any joy of anything he can do. I mean, imagine you discover you can fly. After the initial freak out moment, wouldn't you be completely exctatic, flying around, doing loopings and all? If you were superstrong, wouldn't you show of, maybe troll a bit the guys who bully you? If you could see through things, wouldn't you use your powers to see what's inside the package of your Christmas gifts, or what's inside the oven?
    I'm okay with him feeling somewhat estranged from people because of what he is. But seriously, when you read the book it just fells like being Superman is just one huge cruxifixion without any pleasure in life at all.
    I find that depressing, simplistic and , worst of all, boring.
    "I'm going to paraphrase Nietzsche, when you judge a work, the work judges you."

  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by adkal View Post
    And then that's flipped in this volume when we're shown that he did his best to be 'average'. To escape notice.

    To me, that made the scenes in volume 1 a little more amusing, especially the sports-based ones.
    Heh. I actually find these scenes to make somewhat even harder to believe Superman's identity could work.
    I mean, think about it. You're the coach from the football scene. There's this scrawny kid who somehow manages to be stronger than the rest of your team. You have his name, you managed to have a good view of his face. He impresses you so much you give him a special contract. After that, you don't hear of him aymore. Suddenly, you read the Daily Planet (like everybody at the end) and you see a picture of Superman's face.
    Wouldn't you notice it's the exact same wonder kid you met before (especially since, be it as Superman or as Clark the football player, he never tries to hide his features)? Wouldn't you notice the "interview by Clark Kent", and realize it's the name the kid gave? Wouldn't you try to capitalize on it by.....ho I don't know, sell his secret identity to the media?
    "I'm going to paraphrase Nietzsche, when you judge a work, the work judges you."

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