Monday, February 7, 2011

A very special Action Comics story

The Day Superboy Became Superman!
  • Story: Geoff Brown
  • Pencils: Ross Andru
  • Inks: Mike Esposito
Here's the story from the second half of Action Comics #393, so if you missed the riveting here. You're here now though, so strap yourself in for one of the most over-the-top, overly dramatic Superman yarns around.

This tale definitely doesn't lose any time getting to the good stuff, as Superboy turns his back on the downtrodden in the slums of Metropolis as he has better stuff to do.

Wow, one semester at Metropolis University and he has already misplaced those mild-mannered, mid-western values that Ma and Pa Kent instilled upon him.

"Bleeding heart"?!

That's right, and it doesn't take Superboy long to show just how hardcore his new found beliefs really are.

Do you have neighborhood punks sneaking into your exclusive pool?

No problem...Superboy will just freeze them out.

Do you have neighborhood punks sneaking into your swank university cafeteria and eating all of your sandwiches and donuts?

No problem...Superboy will just take the food back from the hooligans starving younger siblings.

Do you have neighborhood punks stealing books from your library?

No problem...Superboy will take the books back, leaving the kids from the slums who are hungry for any sort of knowledge with nothing but discarded cigarette packs and empty liquor bottles to read.

Lucky for us, there's one person willing to stand up to the social injustice and Superboy himself.

Marla was a fellow student with Clark at the university, but she left after she witnessed how the fortunate treated the downtrodden. So worked up was she, that she started an impromptu academy in the slums to teach the kids what society refused to do.

Unfortunately for her, after Superboy returned all of the purloined books to their proper location, her borrowed storefront turned makeshift academy was slated for demolition. Nothing stands in the way of progress as the bulldozers are soon hard at work tearing down her school. In fact, they were in such a hurry that they neglected to make sure the building was empty first.

Uh oh...and I'm sure you can probably guess who was inside the collapsing building.

To help drive the point home just how unjust the world is toward the less fortunate, her injuries are fatal and no superpowers in the world can help her now. If only there was someone who could rise up and help these kids learn their true potential.

Yea Superman! He's going to rebuild the school and the area around the slum!

...or he's going to show them just how quickly he could rebuild it, if he wanted to. "Luckily" for them, Superboy would rather teach them a lesson in civic duty so that they can vote and petition their politicians for the changes they need.

Who's the deluded one now Superboy?

I guess it was me, as the new found political voice of the huddled masses was successful in getting the changes they needed, and in mere months the school is finished and the slums rebuilt.


It's a sad state of affairs when I can read a comic book and believe a man can fly, but when it comes to politicians listening to (let alone acting in the best interest of) their poor constituents...that's just too much.

All characters and artwork reproduced are (c) DC Comics

Related links for your surfing pleasure...
  • If you enjoyed this look at Superman's past, be sure to check out Superman 101 for more of the same

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