Monday, June 26, 2006

Sweet Fifteen

Oh, my; Showcase Present: Superman is out, and a denser dose of Silver Age lunacy has never been compiled. Don't read it before going to see Superman Returns, or you'll spend the whole movie distracted by thoughts like, "I bet Lois's child is actually Mxyzptlk in disguise, helping her to make Superman jealous!"

One of my favorite selections so far is the "Mighty Maid" story, in which Lois cries a lot because a superwoman has appeared who's wooing the Man of Steel away from her. Reality check, Lois; has Superman ever done anything to make you think you had a chance with him, superwoman or no?

Here's Superman and Mighty Maid sucking face:

Ah, another couple succumbs the overwhelming romantic allure of Milwaukee.

Oh, here they are later playing tonsil-hockey and planning their honeymoon in front of Gal Reporter Who Cries In Silence:

Naturally, since this is the Silver Age, it's all just an elaborate hoax to fend off an alien invasion; don't ask.

But who is playing the part of Mighty Maid? Is it...

(A) A female Superman robot?
(B) Wonder Woman, doing Supes a favor?
(C) Lana Lang, using her Insect Queen abilities to simulate superpowers?
(D) A Kandorienne, temporarily enlarged to normal size through a rare space element?

Oh, come now. Surely, you've already figured this one out...

It is, of course...

(E) Supergirl, Superman's fifteen year old cousin.

"Fine dramatic ability"... shudder.
Nowadays, people like Superman are required to register their address with local authorities,
so neighborhood parents can be warned.

As I've said before, Superman is creepy with a capital CREE.

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I think I liked it better when Superman was just threatening to banish Supergirl from Earth.

Freaking creepy Kyptonians.

Also, let's not underestimate the devious ways of Silver Age Lois Lane. check out her crafty glance and response at the end: "She was 15? Excellent. Maybe I can use that info to blackmail Superman into finally marrying me!"
That's okay! Supergirl is just his cousin! That's perfectly normal cousin behavior on Krypton!

I'm surprised it wasn't Krypto in a woman-suit. That might have been worse, though...
does Superman have "super-perversion" along with all of his other powers?
Oh Jesus H. Christ.

This...this is just so gross.

You beat me to posting about this story. I had to put the book down and go fume at Pete about how sick and wrong Kryptonians are after I read that story.

What...what was wrong with Superman's editors?
That's okay! Supergirl is just his cousin! That's perfectly normal cousin behavior on Krypton!

NO! No it's not! Did you check the link? It's unlawful!

And that's still not getting into the age issue.

Goodness gracious, great balls of fire! I see nothing wrong with this.
He's Super-Freaky!
I am forced to concur with Mister Lewis.
You know what I found disturbing? Not the casting of his cousin as his supposed love-interest. No need from that to conclude that they were taking it seriously.

(And, in DC continuity terms, he was right about one thing; she did have a future in acting.)

No, it was calling her "Linda."

As if somehow she *wasn't* Kara Zor-El, his cousin, but this unrelated Earth-girl....

(And disturbing even given a presumption of a set of readers in the eight-to-twelve range, who didn't draw the obvious conclusions from their behavior in story. It would seem to be a really bad habit for Superman to get into. Especially if he had any intentions of announcing that there is a Supergirl. Hard to maintain a secret identity that way.... Oh yes, he kept postponing that decision.)
Dude, if my underage cousin looked like Supergirl...

Kidding. I kid. Don't look at me like that.

Word Verification: uhate
"Her planet goes around the sun faster than ours. And it's normal behavior there."

"She was 14, Superman."

"SHE WAS 28!"

I can just see how this whole thing started:

"Kara, my 15-year old cousin,would you like to pose for m...I mean, would you pose AS Mighty save the world from an alien invasion, I mean? Uh, yeah, to, um, save the world? And don't tell Ma and Pa, huh?"
I beg to desagree, there is nothing wrong with Superman.
I'll say this; it was mighty weird for Superman to point out to the kids of the forties-fifties that if a) they lived in the right state and b) they were so inclined, they could in fact marry their cousins.

But only if said cousin, tried to hook them up with someone else first.
You got some mighty literary commentators, Scip.
I reviewed this for the Silver-Age group a few years ago -- super-creepy is right! Of course Luma Lynai was an literally an exact duplicate of Kara...

And what about the line "it all began the day I heard voices in my head"...
Remember, this is the guy who learned about the art of love from the Super-Robot-Pimp-Teacher of Krypton and his Space Roofies.

He's not going to be correct in the head.
Wow. Using your own underage cousin as your beard. That's pretty low, Kal. But, hey, thanks for giving us something to talk about!
Meanwhile, from Larry Niven's overrated "Man of Steel, Woman of Kleenex": "[Supergirl] can't mate with Superman because she's his first cousin. And only a cad would suggest differently."

You gotta read more Silver Age comics, Larry!
At least he wasn't in a lip-lock with his mom this time.
Superman's creep factor is a HUGE part of Superman Returns, as he proves he's more "The Man of Stalk" instead "of Steel."

(I saw the critic screening last night, and I have to say that the movie is a tapestry of missed opportunities. I was prepared to hate it, but the first half had such amazing moments that I ended up enjoying myself...until the second half, where it veered into the abyss and kicked my soul in then groin.)
Here is his attempt at satisfying his cousin yearnin'. As they say in certain parts of the country "Cousins is for lovin."

Yeah, it is heard to believe that back in the 1950s this was permissible. I can't imagine anyone thinking a 30-something Superman kissing his 15-year-old cousin passionately would ever be appropriate. On the one hand, there's the pedophilia thing; and on the other there's the incest thing.

Then again, I read some scientist think first cousin marriage isn't that dangerous because first cousins have on 1/16 of the same DNA, which greatly reduces chances of deformities caused by flawed sets of genes passed to a child. However, there was another report that discussed how there is a high degree of genetic disorders amongst the Amish and Bedouin tribes where first cousin marriage is common.
Are we sure Superman is from Krypton? Looks to me that he's more likely from West Virginia.
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Pretty helpful data, thank you for the article.
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