Thursday, April 18, 2013

Happy Birthday Superman!!

Superman vs. Muhammad Ali - 1978  -- @ 8 years old, this was my first foray into comics.  I was sick and my mom picked this up for me to cheer me up.   I doubt she would of done this if she knew how this started my comic geeky life.   But, as this was given out of love, this was read out of love.  This issue was not bagged, but read and perused more times than I can count.    Today marks the 75th Anniversary of Action comics #1 (1938) and the arrival of the Man O' Steel.   Thanks to for reminding of me of this date.  Though Sups is just a fictional character, for 75 years he's been promoting the idea of justice, truth and the North American way (eh!).   In times where justice and truth seem relative by societies ever-changing standards, its good to see that something's haven't changed.   
This is not JUST a comic, it was a 'Giant Sized' comic just over 13" in height and 10" in width, 72 pages of pure beauty.   The story is simple, and no doubt a marketing scheme by DC comics at the time, but basically it was an intergalactic boxing match that takes place over a red sun.    The leader of the alien race the 'Scrubb' threatens Earth unless Earth's greatest boxer fights their best fighter 'Hunya'.   Think Rocky 4.   Superman steps in, to take this as his role, Ali trains him and so the match happens.   Though this sounds ridiculous, its pulled out of comic obscurity by 2 important elements.. Writer Denny O'Neil and what really captured my attention .. Artist Neal Adams.    As an eight-year old I didn't understand all that was happening, it was a lot of reading ... especially as a kid new to comics.   But the artwork to this day still fills me with awe on the power his pencils provoked on the Superman character.    I remember picking up a regular Superman comic at the time and .. it wasn't him....because it was missing the Adam's touch.    From then I went to Marvel comics and picked up Fantastic 4, Iron Man, Captain America until the Superman/Byrne years.   But, this was the comic that started it all for me.   Happy Anniversary Supes!


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