Fizzgig76's Reviews > Superman: Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?

Superman by Alan Moore
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's review
Apr 10, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: graphic-novels-and-trade-paperbacks
Read in April, 2011

Reprints Action Comics (1) #583, Superman (1) #423, Superman (1) Annual #11, and DC Comics Presents #85 (January 1985-September 1986). Superman finds himself in final battle as his enemy amass to destroy him. With Luthor merged with Brainiac and an assault on the Fortress of Solitude, Superman and his allies have joined forces for what the Legion of Super-Heroes have called Superman’s final days. Plus, Superman is facing an enemy he cannot see in a microscopic alien plant from Krypton and only Swamp Thing can help him. Also, Superman is trapped by Mongul and Wonder Woman, Batman, and Robin might be his only hope.

Written by Alan Moore, Superman: Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow? collects the final traditional Superman story before the massive DC relaunch following Crisis on Infinite Earths. The story has been released as a two part standalone and a deluxe edition which collects Alan Moore’s other Superman stories in Superman (1) Annual #11 (January 1985) and DC Comics Presents #85 (September 1985).

Crisis on Infinite Earths was a big deal. The series really did change everything about the DC Universe and represented the end of something that had been established for decades. The series itself didn’t really feature any sends offs, but many series did feature “endings” for the long running comics.

Alan Moore is 90% a masterful writer. Even if his so-so stuff has interesting concepts. These comics are a little bit mundane, but Moore still treats them with enough style and panache that they are still more original than most comics on the market. “Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?” is full of great moments. From the deaths of Krypto, Jimmy, and Lana to the revelation that Mxyzptlk (of all people) is the villain, the story does feel bigger and more desperate than other Superman tales.

The two back-up stories also are fun and I think I might like the Swamp Thing story a bit more than the main tale. I am always a fan of weird comic book crossover and Superman and Swamp Thing are a strange combo. Moore was writing Swamp Thing at the time (another monumental run) and it made sense to have them meet. It is also a fun little twist that Superman never really knows that Swamp Thing is the one who saved his life.

Superman: Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow? is a short but fun read and if you are into the Pre-Crisis DC Universe, it is a must. For fans of Alan Moore, the story doesn’t push as hard as some of his edgier work, but it still is a fun ride. I prefer Moore’s take on Batman and the Joker in Batman: The Killing Joke just a bit more but with both titles Moore puts his slant on the DC icons.

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