Tuesday, September 13, 2011

November 1939: Superman Daily Strip #163-258

This story ran in the newspapers from July 24th to November 11th.  In it Superman must protect the visiting royalty of Rangoria from assassination by terrorists from their own country.  It's a basic set-up, but where this succeeds is in the myriad subplots it introduces.  Not only must Superman stop the assassination of Princess Nadia, but he ends up saving her publicly as Clark Kent as well.  This leads to him being forced by the assassins to help them, and of course the usual misunderstandings with Lois Lane result.

Speaking of Lois, she's acting almost like a normal human being in this story.  She even goes so far as to invite Clark on a date, which is a startling turnaround from her usual attitude, but things go quickly back to normal when he has to duck out in secret as Superman.  There are added complications from Princess Nadia, who is also madly in love with Superman.  The romantic entanglements are enough to fill a decent-sized story, but thankfully there's also time for Superman to punch terrorists and throw tree trunks at cars.

If I have one criticism, it's the same one I levelled at Siegel's 'Red, White and Blue' story in All-American Comics earlier today: his women can be completely irrational.  When Superman tells the princess that he has no time for romance in his quest for justice, she flips out and tries to stab him with a knife.  And then, well...  I'm going to have to post this one.

Superman's forgotten power: super-spanking.  And of course she's still in love with him afterwards.  Yes, the past is an alien landscape, folks.

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