Mild Mannered Reviews - Regular Superman Comics

Superman #145

Superman #145

Scheduled to arrive in stores: April 21, 1999

Cover Date: June 1999

1999 triangle no. 23

Writer: Dan Jurgens
Penciller: Steve Epting
Inker: Joe Rubinstein

"Public Hearing"

Reviewed by: Josh Gehling (

Superman, his reputation tarnished, hated and feared by nearly everyone, patrols the streets of Metropolis and finds that sometimes, powers are more trouble than they're worth...

With his Super-hearing, he can hear the people talking of him, he could tune it all out, but he needs to hear it. He thinks on the past days, about how he did more damage than any of the other Super-villains he fought against. Suddenly, he's put back on task as he sees a wrecked gasoline tanker spilling gas all over the street, and a confused blind man dropping a cigarette that could ignite the gasoline, and blow them to Kingdom Come (no pun intended :) ). Rocketing down, Superman grabs the cigarette, but it looks like this was the least of his worries as the angry crowd picks on the Man of Tomorrow. One man, however tells Superman that he still trusts him. Another comments that they can trust him like pets trust their masters. Superman, still seeing the danger, rushes off, grabs a huge pipe and sucks up the gasoline as if the pipe's a straw and then puts the gasoline back into the tank.

After getting the cold shoulder from the police, a man standing in the crowd asks Superman for a moment of his time. The man is the post-master general of Metropolis and he asks Superman if he could read the mail he's been receiving. In the Post Office, Superman reads bag after bag of hate mail, none sticking out until he finds a letter from one man. A streak of red, blue and... white (?... something's wrong with this colorist...?) shoots from the post office into a hospital. Now, disguised as mild mannered reporter Clark Kent, Superman walks down the hallway to room 353: the room of Col. William T. Brooks. Brooks tells Clark that he would not be in a wheelchair, paralyzed from the waist down, if not for Superman.

Clark asks him if he would tell him his story. Brooks agrees and starts the story in the South Pacific where he was on an aircraft carrier assigned to hide from Superman for fear that he would steal their nuclear arms (see past issues). Superman found them and even with their refusal and resistance, takes the nuclear arms off the ship. Brooks, a fighter-jet pilot goes after him to make sure that Superman does not take the nuclear arms. Brooks fires off two torpedoes to try and destroy the nuclear weapons but Superman uses his heat vision to explode them, which in turns blows up the ship. Brooks ejects but the flying shrapnel from the plane cuts his parachute. Hitting the water with no chute, he was knocked unconscious and his spine was broken. He would've died then if not for a Superman robot who came back and pulled him out of the water to safety. Brooks tells Clark that he understands that Superman wasn't really in control of his actions. He also tells Clark that even though no one thinks of Superman as a hero anymore, he still regards him as one, because Brooks was also hated when he returned from Vietnam. Brooks tells Clark that he wouldn't be talking if not for Superman and for that, he owes him gratitude. After this, Brooks challenges Clark to a game of chess and over the game Clark hopes the rest of the world will someday forgive him for his actions as Brooks has.

3Story - 3: A pretty good after-math to the whole Dominus story and I hope the World will keep this cold shoulder stuff up! It really adds a new element to the Superman books when people are ungrateful to see Superman. I can only pray that this new creative team will not be like the old, who would have a story like this and then when another new person or special was introduced/released this would just fade away. The World shouldn't trust Superman (I know I certainly wouldn't) after what he's done. I'm not trying to sound like I want everyone to hate Superman, it's just that the writers have certainly gotten themselves into a corner that they can't just get out of, they have to get out SLOWLY.

When Superman reads his mail, usually a good story is involved... but in this issue we only got a taste of what he was reading. When I was reading this issue I was reminded of the Christmas Mailbag issues we have every year and this led me to thinking about Christmas in the Superman comics.

Here it is... another continuity complaint (don't I have one for every issue :-) ?). Supposedly, what is a year in the real world is only, MAYBE, a month or two in the Superman comics. According to this (which has been displayed on time lines, time and time again AND explained by the editors), the Superman comics would just be entering the nineties, so how do these comics have all the current styles and references?! This would also make these Christmas issues that we have every year (it doesn't have to be with mail, just with snow and things to make you know it's Christmas) only come around once every (about) six years. Maybe I'm digging too deep and should just stop right now, but... how can you go this wrong?!

Anyways, this issue turned out to be an average comic and a nice break from the multi-part stories (did anyone else hear that with Superman #50, the Superman comics aren't going to be in continuity... they're going to be separate books?).

3Art - 3: Well, I don't know about this art now, last issue looked promising, and the parts with Superman in it certainly deserve a "4" and the backgrounds look pretty nice, but the part with Clark Kent looks to be below average. Sure, Clark's supposed to be muscular, but the guy's 6'_friggin_2"! Everyone around Clark is about the same height as he is. Are you telling me that everywhere Clark goes people are 6' tall?! In some scenes Clark looks to be a foot or so above a midget! Other then this complaint, the issue looked pretty darn good (!especially Superman!).

4Cover - 4: Here's where the issue gets it's real strength, this is just the kind of cover that's 1) Simplistic 2) pretty nicely drawn 3) and incredibly appealing! This cover jumps off the shelf. This is the kind of thing that sells comics (if you don't have time to read it...)!

Mild Mannered Reviews


Note: Month dates are from the issue covers, not the actual date when the comic was on sale.

June 1999

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