Hi guys! I wrote this article for my company’s blog last week. Make sure that you equip yourself with these 10 Super-facts before heading for Man of Steel! Btw, check out Collectibly blog if you are craving for more posts about the Last Son of Krypton: http://blog.collectib.ly/.
Superman, one of the world’s most iconic superheroes, will celebrate his 75th birthday this year ever since his comic book debut back in 1938. Since his first appearance in the highly-coveted Action Comics #1, Superman has always been a comic legend that represents “Truth, Justice and The American Way”.
14th June is going to be a big day for all Superman fans out there as “Man of Steel” marks the return of Superman to the silver screen after 7 long years. 3 official trailers and 12 (spoiler-ish) TV spots later, everybody (that includes you. Why else would you be reading this?) is eagerly anticipating their turn at catching the son of Krypton in action again.
But just how much of a super-fan are you? Let’s find out.
Here are 10 super-facts that you might not know:
1. SUPERMAN AND CLARK KENT HAVE DIFFERENT BIRTHDAYS AND HAVE BEEN SEEN TOGETHER
Most of the superheroes’ birthdays are not revealed in their comics, but Superman is one of the exceptions. However, it is unclear when Superman’s real birthday is. Some stories state that Kal-El’s birthday falls on February 29th – same date his rocket landed on Earth. In another comic, writer Geoff Johns claimed this date was actually December 1st.
As seen in Action Comics #241 released in 1958, The Man of Tomorrow celebrated two birthdays: June 10th – the day Superman crash-landed on planet Earth and June 18th – the day Clark was adopted by the Kent family. In the TV series “SmallVille”, he celebrates his birthday in the month of May.
Moreover, Superman and Clark Kent have been seen together at the same place and time – several times. On one occasion, thanks to his DC Super Friends and their shape-shifting ability, Superman and his alter-ego were seen and photographed together at the same time. This was done so in order to protect his identity. Another popular method is making use of Superman (or Clark Kent) robots (in Silver Age stories). So in the eyes of the public, they are nothing more than just good friends who bear great resemblance to each other.
2. HE DIDN’T ALWAYS DATE LOIS LANE
Many comic book readers will remember that Superman tied the knot with the famous reporter Lois Lane in the mid 90s in the original story. However, she was not the only woman who captured Superman’s attention and heart. In high school, as portrayed in the hit TV series “Smallville”, Lana Lang was his primary interest for the majority of the show. And in college, Clark also dated a girl named Lori Lemaris who turned out to be a mermaid from the Atlantis. While travelling trough time to Krypton’s past, he was attached toLyla Lerrol, a famous Kryptonian actress. And recently in the relaunch of the DC Universe, “New 52”, Superman shared a kiss with Wonder woman!
Lois Lane #97 – Appearance of Lori Lemaris, Luma Lynai and Lyla Lerrol as “The Three Super-Sirens”
Action Comics #289, first appearance of Luma Lynai
“New 52” Justice League #12, Superman kisses Wonder Woman
3. SUPERMAN IS A TIME TRAVELLER
As a kid in high school, Clark was visited by the Legion of Super-Heroes, a team of super-powered teenagers from the 30th century who had been inspired by legends of his life. Seeing he was desperate for a chance to hang out with kids who were more like him, the Legion regularly brought Clark into the far future to join them in adventures. These trips with the LSH helped Superman learn to become a hero. He knew Earth was worth protecting and fighting for because he’d seen what it would achieve 1,000 years down the line.
4.The creation of Superman strongly ties to canada
According to globalnews.ca, the Superman character was co-created by Canadian artist Joseph Shuster. Born in Toronto, he is a cousin of Wayne Shuster, one-half of the beloved Canadian comedy duo Wayne and Shuster. Joseph, who passed away in 1992 at the age of 78, said Metropolis was modelled on Toronto and the Daily Planet was inspired by the Toronto Star, which he delivered as a kid.
The long-running series Smallville, which focused on the early life of Clark Kent, was filmed in British Columbia. The Metropolis in that movie is actually Calgary. One of the principal writers and artists on the Superman book over theyears, who did a major overhaul on the character in the 1980s is John Byrne, also from High River, and attended the Alberta College of Art. And you know, the list goes on.
5. THE S ISN’T JUST FOR SUPERMAN
Originally the famous letter “S” shield simply stood for Superman. However, another interpretation was that it represents the El family crest and the Kryptonian symbol for “Hope”. If you flip the symbol upside down, it means “Resurrection”. This was why Clark chose it as his seal when he became a public hero. Since it bears great resemblance to a letter S, along with his formidable capabilities, reporter Lois Lane was inspired to call him “Superman”.
6. KRYPTONITE ISN’T HIS ONLY WEAKNESS
Many people know that Superman is afraid of kryptonite, a green rock that is extremely toxic to anyone with Kryptonian physiology, but mostly harmless to the human kind. It depletes Superman’s powers and causes him extraordinary pain and death after prolonged exposure.
However, it is not Superman’s sole weakness.
Despite having invincible strength, Superman is a mortal and therefore, is still susceptible to all kinds of black magic. On top of that, Superman cannot see through lead, and he is weakened when exposed to red solar energy similar to that of his home planet’s sun, Rao. In his Pre-52 appearances, Superman occasionally had to physically exert himself for a long period of time, which leads to the insufficiency of solar energy to fuel his power. Superman once had to face death because of this in the famous battle with Doomsday.
7. SUPERMAN’S BIRTH NAME “KAL-EL” MEANS “ANGEL” AND SUPERMAN’S EARTH PARENTS HAD NUMEROUS NAME CHANGES
Sometimes people think of Superman as a god or an angel, in some cases this is not far from the truth. Superman’s birth name “Kal-El” resembles words in Hebrew meaning “Vessel of God”. The suffix “el” meaning “God” is found in the names of a few angels such as Gabriel and Ariel.
Superman’s earth parents, known today as Jonathan and Martha Kent, had numerous name changes. They were:
- “passing motorists” in Action Comics #1 (1938),
- “Mary Kent” in Superman #1 (1939)
- “Eben and Sarah Kent” in The Adventures of Superman(a 1942 novel by George Lowther) and in the Adventures of Superman TV series
- “John and Mary Kent” in Superman #53 (1948)
- Mr. Kent is given the first name of Jonathan in Adventure Comics #149
- Mrs. Kent is given the first name of Martha in Superboy #12 (1951)
8. HE STARTED OUT AS A BALD VILLAIN
Who would have known that the all time favorite superhero began his life as a bald telepathic villain who wanted world domination? Superman made his first public appearance in Action Comics #1 but most of us don’t know that Jerry and Joe first created Superman inJanuary 1933 in a story called “The Reign of the Super-Man” as a big bald guy. Obviously that idea didn’t work out, so they re-conceptualized Superman as a legendary hero that fights for justice as we all know today.
9. IT WASN’T ALWAYS THE AMERICAN WAY
Originally, Superman was referred to as “the champion of the oppressed, the physical marvel who has sworn to devote his existence to helping those in need”. The phrase and the American Way were not popular until around the time when the U.S. started entering World War II. “Truth, justice and the American way” began in radio broadcasts of the era.
However, in 2011, Superman suddenly shunned the “American way”and ignited lots of flak from fans around this controversial statement. It was made in a short story that appears in the back of Action Comics No. 900, a special anniversary edition. To Superman, “Truth, Justice and the American Way” is “not enough anymore” and he is “tired of having his actions construed as instruments of U.S Policy”.
10. MORE AND MORE SUPER-FACTS:
- Superman used to be the poster boy for the cereal industry.
- Superman hates going to the dentist
- Superman has done porn! (in Action Comics #593)
So how many out of the above 10 facts do you know? Drop us a comment below because we’d love to hear from you!
Sources: Newsarama.com, Comicvine.com, Kalel.com, comicbookmovie.com, collectingsuperman.com, famousfanboy.blogpost.sg
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