The Death and Return of Superman by Max Landis

Some NSFW language in the video.

As a child of the 80s/90s, The Death of Superman (along with Bane breaking Batman, and X-Men #1) was one of my first real comic book memories. At the time I loved it. I owned the entire arc of weekly books (but sold all of them except Superman #75, non-bagged regular version and Adventures of Superman #500 in both the regular and variant covers). I also own all 3 trade paperbacks spanning the story arc from the arrival of Doomsday through the defeat of Hank Henshaw, and Superman/Doomsday Hunter/Prey where Doomsday's backstory was first given. So trust me when I say this comes from a place of love.

Max Landis was right. This story arc is pretty much responsible for the crap we have to put up with as comics fans. Every time a creator kills of a character in an epic display of self sacrifice. Every time a beloved character comes back from such a heroic sacrifice. Every stupid "game changing event" after which "nothing will be the same." Every time Sara writes an article that ends with (paraphrasing) "but it's comics so we all know that this death won't stick."

I dunno if it's awesome or funny or sad that aside from ONE factual error (Booster Gold didn't get punched into space, just punched past the horizon, but still in the atmosphere) and a couple bits of hyperbole (e.g. Superman threw Doomsday in a lake with the hope it would slow him down, so he could go help the Justice League, and the civilians whose homes got destroyed by the fight) everything in the video is accurate. Superman's death was a lamer cop out than (let's say) Nightcrawler's because they were setting up his return IMMEDIATELY. It's the same reason I hated the "death" of Batman, there wasn't really any suspense. Granted there were a few issues there where you thought Eradicator or Hank Henshaw could've been Superman, but that became pretty obvious pretty early on.

Oh, plus this video also shows how LAME the current New52 Action Comics superman costume (shirt, jeans cape) looks.

11 Comments
11 Comments
Posted by InnerVenom123

I was just about to post this video as a thread, damn. It was hilarious.

Posted by Joygirl

This is absolutely epic. Having read some of the Death-of-Superman era comics I can really relate to the absurdity of it all, particularly the four Supermen.

And yeah, video has Elijah Wood, Mandy Moore, Simon Pegg, and Ron Howard.

If only the narrator's chin didn't make me want to choke him to death while listening to particularly dark and violent ballroom swing.

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Posted by Renee

LOL!

Omg Frodo and Mandy. ♥

Posted by Deranged Midget

@Renee: Gotta love some Simon Pegg and Elijah Wood!

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Posted by Fantasgasmic

@Joygirl said:

This is absolutely epic. Having read some of the Death-of-Superman era comics I can really relate to the absurdity of it all, particularly the four Supermen.

If you're a young-un/ were introduced to comics later (i.e. if you didn't read comics in the 90s), I'd definitely recommend reading the whole arc. It might not hold up story-wise but it should help color your view on death in comics. The character designs are totally dated but the art is really good (Except for the Superman: The Man of Steel titles) especially for the days before CG coloring. Plus the number of titles meant there was a book coming out every week for this story, for something like a year from start to finish.

I was trying to think back (and lookup on the internet) characters who died in comics. As far as I recall the big ones were Uncle Ben, Bucky Barnes, Captain Mar-Vell, Jean Grey, Thomas and Martha Wayne, Jason Todd, Kara Zor-El, Barry Allen, Abin Sur, Lex Luthor, Elektra, Norman Osborn, and Mariko (Wolverine's girlfriend)… oh and all the characters from Earth 2 and every other character that died in the first Crisis.

By the time Death of Superman rolled around, 2 of those characters had come back from the dead. Elektra after 9 months of being dead, and Jean Grey after 6 years. Superman came back after 9 months as well, but he was (as far as I could find) the FIRST DC character to do it. The media reaction, especially given the 90s comics bubble, meant the industry realized they could get mainstream media attention for killing off beloved characters to push up sales figures temporarily. A trend that continues to this day. *cough* New 52 *cough*.

Posted by DMC

Well that was entertaining.......

Though he's crapping on superman, at least he's got people talking about the character....I guess.

Yeah, not to sure what to think about this

Posted by WildValentine

The greatest video I've seen on Youtube all year. I LOVE it. So bloody hilarious and the actors all make it so worthwhile. 
 
Not to mention it feeds my Superman-hatred. Baha!

Edited by termiteone4ever

@WildValentine said:

The greatest video I've seen on Youtube all year. I LOVE it. So bloody hilarious and the actors all make it so worthwhile. Not to mention it feeds my Superman-hatred. Baha!LOL

LOL

bwaaahhh

Posted by superbatprime

@DMC said:

Though he's crapping on superman,

No man.... he's really not.

This took a lot of work, it's quite obviously a labour of love from real fans.

If these guys are crapping on anybody it's those DC execs you see rubbing money all over themselves after they kill the man of steel.

Posted by davelecave

Best. Video. Ever.

Posted by crestfallen

@superbatprime said:

@DMC said:

Though he's crapping on superman,

No man.... he's really not.

This took a lot of work, it's quite obviously a labour of love from real fans.

If these guys are crapping on anybody it's those DC execs you see rubbing money all over themselves after they kill the man of steel.

Agree! This does not contradict the character. He mocks the creative direction he had in all these years.

This was the funniest video I saw in a while. I loved the performance of Elijah Wood. I was not expecting that at all, lol.