Posts tagged ‘Supergirl’

Action 555 – Superman vs the Parasite, but where is Supergirl?

act_555

Action 555 (May 1984) sure looks like a story between Superman and Supergirl, with the Parasite being involved to a lesser degree.  That’s what the cover implies.

act_555_001

But it is not in any way what Kupperberg, Swan and Hunt deliver.  The Parasite does return, and can still track Superman as Clark Kent.  The Parasite drains his energy and they fight and fight.  Parasite traps Superman to use him as a battery, but Superman breaks free and gets the best of the monster.  And all the while one keeps waiting for Supergirl to show up.

act_555_002

She finally does, at the very end.  She does have a brief cameo earlier in the story, I will admit that.  And the Parasite story, and the Superman/Supergirl team-up does continue into the following issue of Supergirl.

This is a perfect example of the kind of covers I hate, that completely misrepresent a story, and really ought to be the cover for the next chapter of the tale.

Action 502 – Superman, Supergirl and the Star-Child

act_502

Bates, Swan and Chiaramonte bring back the Galactic Golem in Action 502 (Dec. 79).

act_502_001

The story has Superman and Supergirl discover an alien infant, the Star-Child.  It will grow to maturity in a day, and they have been asked to oversee that.  Superman brings the rapidly aging child to the Fortress of Solitude.  They need to teach it what it is to be human, as it will be an extremely powerful being when fully mature.

act_502_002

The Galactic Golem, last seen in the early 70s in the pages of Superman, is drawn back to Earth, and Superman heads out to battle it.  Supergirl stays with the Star-Child.

act_502_003

They see the Golem defeat Superman, and the Parasite emerge from its body.  Supergirl theorizes that the Parasite drew the Golem here, and merged with it to drain Superman.

Good guess, but totally wrong.  It was all a ruse by Superman, to evoke emotions from the child.  The only way he could figure out how to teach him emotions was to traumatize him.  Fortunately, the Star-Child is fully grown by the end, and leaves for a less stressful life.

 

Action 500 – the life story of Superman

act_500

Action 500 (Oct. 79) is an oversize special, which does a good job of providing a fairly comprehensive story of Superman.

act_500_001

Bates, Swan and Chiaramonte choose a big public tour of a new Superman pavilion as the framing device for the tale.  The various rooms give focus to different parts of the story.

act_500_002

There is also a machine at the exposition which draws out Superman’s memories, so that people can enjoy his grief as he recalls Jor-El and Lara, and his early life on Krypton. But a mystery villain is making use of the device, channeling the memories into a Superman duplicate he is creating.

act_500_003

The creation of the Phantom Zone is referenced, as well as Krypto on a test rocket.

act_500_004

The Kents are shown, finding the boy and raising him, both through his Superbaby phase, and later Superboy.

act_500_005

The story often uses exact swipes of scenes and images from earlier stories.  The death of Pa Kent duplicates the first telling of the event.

act_500_006

As does the farewell message from the people of Smallville.

act_500_007

Clark Kent’s life in Metropolis is shown, getting the job from Perry White at the Daily Planet, and working with Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen.  Morgan Edge’s takeover is related, with Steve Lombard making an appearance.

Supergirl gets her own room in the pavilion, and a montage of her career.  Other aspects are really downplayed.  The Legion of Super-Heroes appear, in their current line-up, in the Superboy room, but are not talked about.

act_500_008

Still, Lori Lemaris does make it into the triptych of his loves, along with Lois and Lana.

act_500_009

The villain room is the most notable – for its absences.  Aside from Luthor and Brainiac, only the Toyman and Parasite are shown.  Brainiac has his story told in depth, as it relates to Kandor.

act_500_010

The mystery villain turns out to be Lex Luthor, which is not that much of a surprise.

act_500_011

And the duplicate gives himself away when he relates Luthor’s origin from Luthor’s own, very slanted, view.

As a story, this leaves something to be desired.  But as a Superman compendium, it works.

Action 496 – a plague from Kandor

act_496

Bates, Swan and Chiaramonte fulfill exactly what the cover of Action 496 (June 1979) proclaims. Superman brings a plague from Kandor to Earth, endangering everyone on the planet.

act_496_001

For the first time we see that he does take precautions, sterilizing his body when he emerges from Kandor.  But it just wasn’t enough this time.

act_496_002

Superman tries to seek out help to find a cure, or a solution. But when he approaches the JLA satellite is vanishes, and the same thing happens to Supergirl when he seeks her out.

act_496_003

The Kandorians are actually behind these illusions.  When they informed Superman about the infection, they also shot an antidote into him.  He emits it, without being aware, and the more stress he is under, the more he gives off, curing himself, and everyone else. Kind of manipulative of them.

Action 489 – Krypton’s destruction comes to Earth, and the Atom ends

act_489

Bates, Swan and Chiaramonte begin a three-part story in Action 489 (Nov.78), as the force from Krypton’s explosion arrives at Earth so many years later.

act_489_001

It’s big news, everyone is aware of it.  Morgan Edge is preparing a WGBS special, and broadcasting the view live, with Lana Lang, Lois Lane and Steve Lombard all part of the show.  Clark Kent is meant to be there, but he is busy with the Justice League.  They have noticed that he has been running himself ragged over the past couple of days, but Superman refuses to tell Batman, Green Lantern, Hawkman and Wonder Woman what is going on, simply advising them that he can take care of things.

act_489_002

The Kandorians are having a special memorial because of the event, and are upset that Superman is not with him.  But to them, Supergirl explains the reason – Brainiac is back.  He has demanded a one-on-one battle with Superman.  In case he does not survive, Superman has been trying to get as much done as possible, and Brainaic has also blackmailed him, though the use of bombs, into keeping the Justice League out of it.

act_489_003

Brainiac traps Superman on the roof of his ship, and forces him to watch the explosion of Krypton.

act_489_004

The Atom’s series, by Rozakis, Saviuk and Colletta, comes to an abrupt end with the DC Implosion.

act_489_005

The story is an entertaining one, with Jean Loring being the executor of a will, and the heirs unhappy with the distribution.  Some seemingly low value bequests get stolen, and the Atom gets onto the case.

act_489_006 It’s a good little mystery, with an interesting conclusion, as mementos prove more important than money to one man. The Atom’s series, like Air Wave’s, returns in a little over a year.

Action 473 – Superman vs Faora

act_473

Bates, Swan and Blaisdel conclude the Faora story in Action 473 (July 1977).

act_473_001

Supergirl gets concerned when there is no word from Superman, despite Faora running wild in Metropolis.  She finds a note in the Fortress, explaining that he has gone into the Phantom Zone, and other information that the reader is not privy to.

act_473_002

Faora gets into an argument with Steve Lombard, and is about to kill him when her greater scheme kicks in, reversing the Phantom Zone, releasing all its captives, while sending everyone on Earth into the Zone.  Steve actually thinks he has died, until Jimmy Olsen explains the Zone to him.  Batman and Green Lantern are also shown to now be phantoms, while Jax-Ur, General Zod, Kru-El and Professor Vakox enjoy their new freedom and solidity.

act_473_003

Faora takes dominance over the other Phantom Zone villains through her use of psychic bolts, but one Zone escapee is immune.  It’s Superman, who figured out her bigger plan, and took precautions, including entering the Zone himself.

act_473_004

Superman is now stuck fighting against a number of similarly powered Kryptonians, and finds himself overpowered.  Faora is about to kill him when the switch happens again.  Bad timing!  Superman rigged the projector to reverse Faora’s actions, sending the prisoners back into the Zone, and releasing the humans.

act_473_005

With one exception.  The old man who still, after all this, believes Faora is his dead wife Katie.  He gets to join her in the Zone.

From now on, Faora would be a regularly appearing Phantom Zone villain, almost always included when three or more are shown.  But not the old man.  We never find out what happened to him.

Action 411 – the Fortress of Solitude discovered

act_411

Superman’s Fortress of Solitude is the centre of attention again, in Action 411 (April 1972).

act_411_001

Superman discovers that the oil explorers have found the door to his Fortress, although they have no idea what it is.  They are working to open it.

act_411_002

The head of the company insists that his lease on the area gives him the rights to whatever is found, and he seals off access to the Fortress, while trying a variety of methods to penetrate it.

act_411_003

Both Superman and Supergirl, who has her own wing there, are worried about their secrets being exposed, and so they sabotage the oil exploration rigs and boats, until staying becomes such a financial loss that the company just leaves.

act_411_004

Superman does offer to open the door for them before they go, and reveals a plaque on an ice wall.  Enough to satisfy the people, but nor enough to maintain interest.  Superman constructed this fake door and wall directly in front of the real one during the night.

act_411_005

From now on, the door and key are both concealed behind a hologram of ice.

A really acceptable update, with the increased activity in the far north by the time this story was written.

Tag Cloud