Superman (1978 film)
Superman is a 1978 superhero film directed by Richard Donner starring Christopher Reeve as Superman based on the DC Comics character of the same name. An international co-production between the United Kingdom, Switzerland and the United States, the film stars an ensemble cast featuring Marlon Brando, Gene Hackman, Christopher Reeve, Jeff East, Margot Kidder, Glenn Ford, Phyllis Thaxter, Jackie Cooper, Trevor Howard, Marc McClure, Terence Stamp, Valerie Perrine, Ned Beatty, Jack O'Halloran, Maria Schell, Sarah Douglas, it depicts Superman's origin, including his infancy as Kal-El of Krypton and his youthful years in the rural town of Smallville. Disguised as reporter Clark Kent, he adopts a mild-mannered disposition in Metropolis and develops a romance with Lois Lane, while battling the villainous Lex Luthor. Several directors, most notably Guy Hamilton, screenwriters, were associated with the project before Richard Donner was hired to direct. Tom Mankiewicz was given a "creative consultant" credit.
It was decided to film both Superman and its sequel Superman II with principal photography beginning in March 1977 and ending in October 1978. Tensions arose between Donner and the producers, a decision was made to stop filming the sequel, of which 75 percent had been completed, finish the first film; the most expensive film made up to that point with a budget of $55 million, Superman was released in December 1978 to critical and financial success. It received praise for Reeve's performance, was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Film Editing, Best Music, Best Sound, received a Special Achievement Academy Award for Visual Effects. Groundbreaking in its use of special effects and science fiction/fantasy storytelling, the film's legacy presaged the mainstream popularity of Hollywood's superhero film franchises. In 2017, Superman was inducted into the Library of Congress' National Film Registry. On the planet Krypton, Jor-El of the Kryptonian high council discovers the planet will soon be destroyed when its red supergiant sun goes supernova.
Despite his insistence, he fails to convince the other council members. To save his infant son, Kal-El, Jor-El launches him in a spaceship to Earth, a planet with a suitable atmosphere where his dense molecular structure will give him superhuman strength and other powers. Shortly after the launch, Krypton's sun explodes; the ship crash-lands on Earth near Kansas. Kal-El, now three years old, is found by Jonathan and Martha Kent, who are astonished when he lifts their truck, they take him back to their farm and raise him as their own, naming him Clark after Martha's maiden name. At 18, soon after Jonathan's death from a heart attack, Clark hears a psychic "call" and discovers a glowing green crystal in the remains of his spacecraft, it compels him to travel to the Arctic where it builds the Fortress of Solitude, resembling the architecture of Krypton. Inside, a hologram of Jor-El explains Clark's true origins, after 12 further years of educating him on his powers and his reason for being sent to Earth, he leaves the Fortress wearing a blue and red suit with a red cape and the House of El family crest emblazoned on his chest and becomes a reporter at the Daily Planet in Metropolis.
He develops a romantic attraction to coworker Lois Lane. Lois becomes involved in a helicopter accident. Clark uses his powers in public for the first time to save her, to the astonishment of the crowd gathered below, he goes on to thwart a jewel thief attempting to scale the Solow Building, captures robbers fleeing police through the Fulton Market by depositing their cabin cruiser on Wall Street, rescuing a girl's cat from a tree in Brooklyn Heights. He saves Air Force One after a lightning strike destroys the port outboard engine, making the "caped wonder" an instant celebrity. Clark visits Lois at her penthouse apartment the next night and takes her for a flight over the city, allowing her to interview him for an article in which she names him "Superman." Meanwhile, criminal genius Lex Luthor learns of a joint U. S. Army and U. S. Navy nuclear missile test, he buys hundreds of acres of worthless desert land out west and has the test's two 500 megaton missiles reprogrammed, one to detonate inside of the San Andreas Fault, the other, rather unintentionally, to detonate in an undisclosed location.
Knowing Superman could stop his plan, Lex deduces that a meteorite found in Addis Ababa is part of Krypton and is radioactive to Superman. After he and his accomplices Otis and Eve Teschmacher retrieve a piece of it, Luthor lures Superman to his underground lair and reveals his plan to cause everything west of the San Andreas Fault to sink into the Pacific Ocean, leaving Luthor's desert as the new West Coast. Luthor exposes him to a mineral from the meteor piece, that weakens Superman greatly. Luthor further taunts Superman by revealing the other missile is headed in the eastbound direction toward Hackensack, New Jersey. Teschmacher is horrified because her mother lives in Hackensack, but Luthor does not care and leaves Superman to die a slow death. Knowing his reputation for keeping his word, Teschmacher rescues Superman on the condition that he will stop the eastbound missile first. After Teschmacher frees him, Superman diverts the eastbound missile into outer space preventing him from reaching the westbound missile before
Lois Lane is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Created by writer Jerry Siegel and artist Joe Shuster, she first appeared in Action Comics #1. Lois is an award-winning journalist for the Metropolis newspaper the Daily Planet and the primary love interest of the superhero Superman and his alter-ego Clark Kent. In DC continuity, she is his wife and the mother of their son, Jonathan Samuel Kent, the current Superboy in the DC Universe. Lois' physical appearance was based on Joanne Carter, a model hired by Joe Shuster. For her character, Jerry Siegel was inspired by actress Glenda Farrell's portrayal of the fictional reporter Torchy Blane in a series of films. Siegel took her name from actress Lola Lane, she was influenced by the real-life journalist Nellie Bly. Depictions of the character have varied spanning the comics and other media adaptations; the original Golden Age version of Lois Lane, as well as versions of her from the 1970s onwards, portrays Lois as a tough-as-nails journalist and intellectually equal to Superman.
During the Silver Age of Comics, she was the star of Superman's Girl Friend, Lois Lane, a comic book series that had a light and humorous tone. Beginning in 2015, she is the protagonist in the young adult novel series, Lois Lane, by writer Gwenda Bond. Lois is among the best-known female comic book characters, she has appeared in various media adaptations. Actress Noel Neill first portrayed Lois Lane in the 1940s Superman film series and reprised her role in the 1950s television series Adventures of Superman, replacing Phyllis Coates from season two. Margot Kidder played the character in four Superman films in the 1970s and 1980s, Kate Bosworth in the 2006 film Superman Returns, Amy Adams in the DC Extended Universe. In the 1990s television series, she was portrayed by Teri Hatcher in Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and Erica Durance in the 2000s series, Smallville. Most Elizabeth Tulloch appeared as Lois in the Arrowverse television series. Actresses who have voiced Lois in animated adaptations include Joan Alexander in the Fleischer Superman cartoons and Dana Delany in Superman: The Animated Series, among others.
Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster first conceived Lois Lane in 1934, when they were still developing Superman. One of the major influence on Lois' characterization was actress Glenda Farrell and her portrayal of the fictional reporter Torchy Blane in a series of Warner Bros. films. The Torchy Blane movies were popular second features during the 1930s. On the conception of Lois Lane, Jerry Siegel stated in the 1988 Time magazine: My wife Joanne was Joe's original art model for Superman's girlfriend Lois Lane back in the 1930s. Our heroine was, of course. What inspired me in the creation was Glenda Farrell, the movie star who portrayed Torchy Blane, a gutsy, beautiful headline-hunting reporter, in a series of exciting motion pictures; because the name of the actress Lola Lane appealed to me, I called my character Lois Lane. Strangely, the characterization of Lois is amazingly like the real-life personality of my lovely wife. Joe Shuster based Lois' physical appearance on a model name Joanne Carter. Carter had placed an ad in the Cleveland Plain Dealer newspaper in the Situation Wanted column, advertising herself as a model.
Shuster hired her as the model for Lois Lane. Shuster's depiction of Lois was modeled on facial features. "To me she was Lois Lane. She was a great inspiration for me, though, she encouraged me, she was enthusiastic about the strip. Shuster said about Joanne Carter. Joanne Carter married co-creator Jerry Siegel in 1948. On working with Joe Shuster for Lois Lane, Carter said in the 1983 Nemo magazine interview: "Joe was redrawing the strip, it was going to be more realistic, rather than cartoony. I used to model for him every Saturday, he made so many stock drawings. We became such good friends by that time we decided we would always stay friends." Lois Lane made her debut in Action Comics #1 the first published Superman story, was one of the first female comic book characters introduced in the superhero comics. Lois is the daughter of Ella and Sam Lane, in earlier comics, her parents were farmers in a town called Pittsdale; the modern comics depicts Lois as a former Army brat, born at Ramstein Air Base with Lois having been trained by her father, a US Army General, in areas such as hand-to-hand combat and the use of firearms.
She has her sister Lucy Lane. Lois is a journalist for the Daily Planet, one of the best investigative reporters and the best at the newspaper she works at. In some stories, she has been shown obtaining superpowers and becoming a superhero, some of her superhero identities are Superwoman and Red Tornado of Earth 2. Aspects of Lois' personality have varied over the years, depending on the comic book writers handling of the character and American social attitudes toward women at the time. In most incarnations, she is shown to be an independent person, smart and strong-willed, her physical appearance has varied over the years, depending either on contemporary fashion or media adaptations. In the 1990s, when the television series Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman began airing Lois received a haircut that made her look more like actress Teri Hatcher, her eyes were violet to match her character on Superman: The Animated Series. From the late 1980s through the 1990s she was depicted with auburn hair in the comic books.
In the 1940s, Lois had a newspaper comic strip, Lois Lane, Girl Reporter, a direct spin-off o
The Psycho-Pirate is the name of two DC Comics supervillains, dating back to the Golden Age of Comics. Bob Frazer portrayed the character for his live-action debut during The CW's 2018 Arrowverse crossover Elseworlds; the Charles Halstead version of Psycho-Pirate first appears in All-Star Comics #23 and was created by Gardner Fox and Joe Gallagher. The Roger Hayden version of Psycho-Pirate first appears in Showcase #56 and was created by Fox and Murphy Anderson. Charles Halstead is a minor character who first appears in All-Star Comics #23, created by Gardner Fox and Joe Gallagher, he was a linotyper for the Daily Courier who became jealous of his boss's success. He plans crimes based on emotions, hoping to ruin his boss. Nothing is known of the life of Charles Halstead. A long-time employee, Halstead was a favorite of publisher Rex Morgan. Secretly, Halstead was frustrated with his lack of advancement at the paper and, at some point, snapped, he resolved to take what he had never been able to earn and his first target was the paper itself.
He began cluing the Courier with leads to his crimes. As time passed, Halstead, as the Psycho-Pirate, became bolder, he penned a letter to the Courier, challenging the Justice Society to stop a new wave of crimes based on a variety of emotions. For example, he engendered fear into the inhabitants of a city where he threatened to unleash a deadly plague until his plan was halted by Dr. Mid-Nite; each JSAer was given a task to solve. With the JSA dispersed and only the Atom to guard Halstead, the Psycho-Pirate began a campaign to demoralize the publisher with constant news of despair: business failure, foreclosure—a series of lies designed to crush the spirit of his employer. To remove the Atom, he convinced the hero that the JSA had been captured and sent the Mighty Mite to rescue them; the Atom defeated the criminal's henchmen disguised as JSAers. In doing so, the Atom discovered the true identity of the Psycho-Pirate, who shot him to preserve his secrecy. Wounded, the Atom made it to the Courier just as the JSA returned and exposed Halstead as the Psycho-Pirate.
Halstead was subsequently sentenced to a lengthy prison term after the Justice Society of America captured and put him in jail. He escaped by playing on the emotions of a guard, but the JSA heard of his plans from his cellmate and were able to recapture him, he continued to research the mysticism of emotions until his death sometime in the 1960s. Roger Hayden first appeared as the second Psycho-Pirate in Showcase #56, created by Gardner Fox and Murphy Anderson. Roger Hayden is a jailed gangster, a cellmate to Halstead on Earth-Two. Halstead's dying wish to have a legacy prompts him to tell Hayden of a secret which he has divined in his jail years, the existence of the Medusa Masks; these golden masks bestow upon the wearer the power to project emotions onto others. Hayden finds these masks, merges them into a single faceplate and uses its powers to become a supervillain, it becomes apparent that he is addicted to absorbing others' emotions, though it causes him pain brought on by the combination of all masks into one.
He is imprisoned after a battle with Doctor Fate and Hourman. Hayden returns to prominence when he insidiously begins influencing prominent Gotham City citizens Bruce Wayne and Alan Scott, the former a wealthy businessman and now commissioner of Gotham's police force, the latter the president of the television station WXYZ. Scott is the most affected as he, in his Green Lantern persona, begins exercising his frustrations upon humanity for the failures of his private life, such as the impending bankruptcy of his station. After creating a disturbance at Gotham International Airport, he is subdued by his Justice Society comrades, who assist both Scott and teammate Flash, under Hayden's control; the Society has to next battle a civil war within their membership instigated by Wayne, still under Hayden's control and determined to rid Gotham of all superheroes. Hayden joins the Secret Society of Super Villains, having been recruited by the Ultra-Humanite to defeat Hayden's old foe Hourman. While he is successful thanks to a device the Ultra-Humanite devises that amplifies and projects Hayden's face and hence his control both the Justice Society and the Justice League defeat Hayden and his teammates after their betrayal of fellow Secret Society members.
The villains are deposited into an interdimensional rift known as Limbo. From there, the Ultra-Humanite gains mental contact with his younger self from the 1940s, the two Ultra-Humanites are able to pull the Secret Society, including Hayden, back to that era, where they confront and are defeated by the All-Star Squadron and the time-lost Infinity Inc. In the Crisis on Infinite Earths limited series, the Monitor recruits Hayden—who goes on to help Firestorm recruit Killer Frost to the Monitor's team by making her fall in love with her enemy—but he is abducted by the Anti-Monitor. In exchange for an entire world to play with, Psycho-Pirate becomes an accomplice to the Anti-Monitor, manipulating a captive Barry Allen, his powers being enhanced so that he can control the remaining three alternate Earths—Earth-4, Earth-S, Earth-X—so that their heroes are provoked into attacking the teams sent to rescue them, although use of his powers on this scale causes him to "burn out" so that he cannot use his powers again afterward.
Brainiac is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics as an adversary of Superman, his second deadliest archenemy after Lex Luthor, a frequent enemy of the Justice League. Brainiac is depicted as an extraterrestrial cyborg or android, he is one of Superman's primary enemies, is responsible for shrinking and stealing Kandor, the capital city of Superman's home planet Krypton. In some continuities, he is responsible for Krypton's destruction. Due to multiple revisions of DC's continuity, several variations of Brainiac have appeared. Most incarnations of Brainiac depict him as a green-skinned being in humanoid form, he is bald, with a set of linked electrode-like objects protruding from his skull. His name is a portmanteau of the words maniac. In 2009, Brainiac was ranked as IGN's 17th Greatest Comic Book Villain of All Time. Brainiac first appeared in Action Comics #242, was created by Otto Binder and Al Plastino. First appearing in Action Comics #242, Brainiac is a bald, green-skinned humanoid who arrived on Earth and shrank various cities, including Metropolis, storing them in bottles with the intent of using them to restore the then-unnamed planet he ruled.
He is notable only for his having shrunk the bottle city of Kandor, for having a shrinking ray, for using a force field. In subsequent appearances in this early period, Brainiac is used as a plot device rather than as a featured villain of the month. Brainiac's next appearance is behind the scenes, when he tries to kill Lois Lane and Lana Lang, prompting Superman to give Lois and Lana superpowers, but the villain remains unseen except as a plot twist at the end of the story. Brainiac's next appearance in "Superman's Return to Krypton" in Superman #141 displays how the villain stole the bottle city of Kandor, tragically the only city on Krypton that believes Jor-El's warning of doom for the planet, had built a space ark within the city to save the population. Brainiac's next present-day appearance is in Action Comics #275, which shows the villain planning to defeat Superman by exposing him to both red and green kryptonite, giving Superman a third eye on the back of his head, forcing him to wear various hats to hide it.
Superman soon sends him off into the distant past. This is the first in-story appearance of Brainiac's iconic red diode/electrode-like objects atop his head, which had appeared on the cover of his first appearance in Action Comics #242, but were not shown in the actual story. In "Superboy" #106, Superman as a baby meets Brainiac and it is explained that Brainiac looks the same as he has a 200-year life span, it is revealed that he came from a planet called Bryak and after a voyage in space, he returns to find everybody dead from a plague. He intends to get people from other planets to repopulate Bryak. Brainiac's legacy was revealed in a Legion of Super-Heroes back-up story; this story introduced a green-skinned, blond-haired teenager named Querl Dox, or Brainiac 5, who claimed to be Brainiac's 30th century descendant. Unlike his ancestor, Brainiac 5 used his "twelfth-level intellect" for the forces of good and joined the Legion alongside Supergirl, with whom he fell in love, his home planet was given variously as Yod or Colu.
In Superman #167, it was retconned that Brainiac was a machine created by the Computer Tyrants of Colu as a spy for them to invade other worlds, for which he was given a non-computer appearance. Brainiac's distinctive gridwork of red diodes across his head are explained, he was created with visible "electric terminals of his sensory'nerves'" that he cannot function without. Luthor discovers that the Computers could have given him a twelfth-level intellect, but gave him a tenth-level, the same as them, so he would not try to dominate them. Luthor increases his intelligence. However, Brainiac tricks Luthor by making a device that hypnotizes Luthor, who removes the timer and forgets Brainiac is a computer. Explaining the 1961 introduction of Brainiac's descendant Brainiac 5, his biological disguise included an adopted "son", a young Coluan boy, given the name "Brainiac 2". In the same issue, the letter column contained a "special announcement" explaining that the change in the characterization of Brainiac was being made "in deference" to the "Brainiac Computer Kit", a toy computer created by Edmund Berkeley and based on the Geniac that predated the creation of the comic book character.
The boy, whose name was Vril Dox, went on to lead a revolt against the Computer Tyrants destroying them. Brainiac sees a monument to this. At some indeterminate point in time, Brainiac fled into the 30th century. Developing the ability to absorb and manipulate massive amounts of stellar energy, he remade himself as "Pulsar Stargrave", he became a powerful enemy of the Legion of Super-Heroes, once masqueraded as Brainiac 5's biological father. In current continuity, Brainiac's connection to Pulsar Stargrave remains an open question, one Brainiac 5 has yet to resolve. In the 1980s, DC Comics attempted to re-define several aspects of its Superman series in order to boost sagging sales. At the same time as Lex Luthor acquired his green-and-purple Lexorian battlesuit, Brainiac was re-envisioned (under the ausp
Clark Joseph Kent is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, he debuted in Action Comics #1 and serves as the civilian and secret identity of the superhero Superman. Over the decades there has been considerable debate as to which personality the character identifies with most. From his first introduction in 1938 to the mid-1980s, "Clark Kent" was seen as a disguise for Superman, enabling him to mix with ordinary people; this was other media such as movie serials and TV and radio. In 1986, during John Byrne's revamping of the character, Clark Kent became more emphasized. Different takes persist in the present, with the character depicted as being clumsy and mild-mannered; as Superman's alter ego, the personality and name of Clark Kent have become ingrained in popular culture as well, becoming synonymous with secret identities and innocuous fronts for ulterior motives and activities. In 1992, Superman co-creator Joe Shuster told the Toronto Star that the name derived from 1930s cinematic leading men Clark Gable and Kent Taylor, but the persona from bespectacled silent film comic Harold Lloyd and himself.
Another more possibility, is that Jerry Siegel pulled from his own love of pulp heroes Doc Clark Savage and The Shadow alias Kent Allard. This idea was notably stated in the book Men of Tomorrow: Geeks and the Rise of the American Comic Book. Clark's middle name is given variously as either Joseph, Jerome, or Jonathan, all being allusions to creators Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. In the earliest Superman comics, Clark Kent's primary purpose was to fulfill the perceived dramatic requirement that a costumed superhero cannot remain on full duty all the time. Clark thus acted as little more than a front for Superman's activities. Although his name and history were taken from his early life with his adoptive Earth parents, everything about Clark was staged for the benefit of his alternate identity: as a reporter for the Daily Planet, he receives late-breaking news before the general public, has a plausible reason to be present at crime scenes, need not account for his whereabouts as long as he makes his story deadlines.
He sees his job as a journalist as an extension of his Superman responsibilities—bringing truth to the forefront and fighting for the little guy. He believes that everybody has the right to know what is going on in the world, regardless of, involved. To deflect suspicion that he is Superman, Clark Kent adopted a passive and introverted personality with conservative mannerisms, a higher-pitched voice, a slight slouch; this personality is described as "mild-mannered" most famously by the opening narration of Max Fleischer's Superman animated theatrical shorts. These traits extended into Clark's wardrobe, which consists of a bland-colored business suit, a red necktie, black-rimmed glasses, combed-back hair, a fedora. Fellow reporter Lois Lane became the object of Clark's/Superman's romantic affection. Lois' affection for Superman and her rejection of Clark's clumsy advances have been a recurring theme in Superman comics, as well as in movies and on television. Clark wears his Superman costume underneath his street clothes, allowing easy changes between the two personae and the dramatic gesture of ripping open his shirt to reveal the familiar "S" emblem when called into action.
Superman stores his Clark Kent clothing compressed in a secret pouch within his cape, though some stories have shown him leaving his clothes in some covert location for retrieval. In the Pre-Crisis Superman comic book, Clark appears in occasional back-up stories called "The Private Life of Clark Kent", wherein he solves problems subtly as Clark without changing into Superman; the feature was shown in the Superman Family title. Adopted by Jonathan and Martha Kent from the Kansas town of Smallville, Clark was raised with the values of a typical rural American town, including attending the local Methodist Church. Most continuities state that the Kents never had biological children of their own and were depicted as middle-aged or elderly when they found Clark. In the Golden and Silver Age versions of his origin, after the Kents retrieved Clark from his rocket, they brought him to the Smallville Orphanage and returned a few days to formally adopt the orphan, giving him as a first name Martha's maiden name, "Clark".
In John Byrne's 1986 origin version The Man of Steel, instead of adopting him through an orphanage, the Kents passed Clark off as their own child after their farm was isolated for months by a series of snowstorms that took place shortly after they found his rocket, using their past medical history of various miscarriages to account for their reasons for keeping Martha's pregnancy secret. In the Silver Age comics continuity, Clark's superpowers manifested upon his landing on Earth and he learned to master them, adopting the superhero identity of Superboy at the age of eight, he subsequently developed Clark's timid demeanor as a means of ensuring that no one would suspect any connection between the two alter-egos. In the wake of John Byrne's reboot of Superman continuity in The Man of Steel, many traditional aspects of Clark Kent were dropped in favor of giving him a more aggressive and extroverted personality, including such aspects as making Clark a top football player in high school along with being a successful author and Pulitzer Prize-winning writer, w
A comic book or comicbook called comic magazine or comic, is a publication that consists of comic art in the form of sequential juxtaposed panels that represent individual scenes. Panels are accompanied by brief descriptive prose and written narrative dialog contained in word balloons emblematic of the comics art form. Although comics has some origins in 18th century Japan, comic books were first popularized in the United States and the United Kingdom during the 1930s; the first modern comic book, Famous Funnies, was released in the U. S. in 1933 and was a reprinting of earlier newspaper humor comic strips, which had established many of the story-telling devices used in comics. The term comic book derives from American comic books once being a compilation of comic strips of a humorous tone; the largest comic book market is Japan. By 1995, the manga market in Japan was valued at ¥586.4 billion, with annual sales of 1.9 billion manga books/magazines in Japan. The comic book market in the United States and Canada was valued at $1.09 billion in 2016.
As of 2017, the largest comic book publisher in the United States is manga distributor Viz Media, followed by DC Comics and Marvel Comics. Another major comic book market is France, where Franco-Belgian comics and Japanese manga each represent 40% of the market, followed by American comics at 10% market share. Comic books are reliant on their appearance. Authors focus on the frame of the page, size and panel positions; these characteristic aspects of comic books are necessary in conveying the content and messages of the author. The key elements of comic books include panels, balloons and characters. Balloons are convex spatial containers of information that are related to a character using a tail element; the tail has an origin, path and pointed direction. Key tasks in the creation of comic books are writing and coloring. Comics as a print medium have existed in America since the printing of The Adventures of Mr. Obadiah Oldbuck in 1842 in hardcover, making it the first known American prototype comic book.
Proto-comics periodicals began appearing early in the 20th century, with historians citing Dell Publishing's 36-page Famous Funnies: A Carnival of Comics as the first true American comic book. The introduction of Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster's Superman in 1938 turned comic books into a major industry and ushered the Golden Age of Comics; the Golden Age originated the archetype of the superhero. According to historian Michael A. Amundson, appealing comic-book characters helped ease young readers' fear of nuclear war and neutralize anxiety about the questions posed by atomic power. Historians divide the timeline of the American comic book into eras; the Golden Age of Comic Books began in the 1930s. The Silver Age of comic books is considered to date from the first successful revival of the then-dormant superhero form, with the debut of the Flash in Showcase #4; the Silver Age lasted through the late 1960s or early 1970s, during which time Marvel Comics revolutionized the medium with such naturalistic superheroes as Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's Fantastic Four and Lee and Steve Ditko's Spider-Man.
The demarcation between the Silver Age and the following era, the Bronze Age of Comic Books, is less well-defined, with the Bronze Age running from the early 1970s through the mid-1980s. The Modern Age of Comic Books runs from the mid-1980s to the present day. A notable event in the history of the American comic book came with psychiatrist Fredric Wertham's criticisms of the medium in his book Seduction of the Innocent, which prompted the American Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency to investigate comic books. In response to attention from the government and from the media, the U. S. comic book industry set up the Comics Magazine Association of America. The CMAA instilled the Comics Code Authority in 1954 and drafted the self-censorship Comics Code that year, which required all comic books to go through a process of approval, it was not until the 1970s that comic books could be published without passing through the inspection of the CMAA. The Code was made formally defunct in November 2011.
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, a surge of creativity emerged in what became known as underground comix. Published and distributed independently of the established comics industry, most of such comics reflected the youth counterculture and drug culture of the time. Many had an uninhibited irreverent style. Underground comics were never sold at newsstands, but rather in such youth-oriented outlets as head shops and record stores, as well as by mail order. Frank Stack's The Adventures of Jesus, published under the name Foolbert Sturgeon, has been credited as the first underground comic; the rise of comic book specialty stores in the late 1970s created/paralleled a dedicated market for "independent" or "alternative comics" in the U. S; the first such comics included the anthology series Star Reach, published by comic book writer Mike Friedrich from 1974 to 1979, Harvey Pekar's American Splendor, which continued sporadic publication into the 21st century and which Shari Springer Berman an
Crisis on Infinite Earths
Crisis on Infinite Earths is an American comic book published by DC Comics. The story, written by Marv Wolfman and pencilled by George Pérez, was first serialized as a twelve-issue maxiseries from April 1985 to March 1986; as the main piece of a crossover event, some plot elements were featured in tie-in issues of other DC publications. Since its initial publication, the series has been reprinted in various editions; the idea for the series stemmed from Wolfman's desire to abandon the DC Multiverse seen in the company's comics—which he thought was unfriendly to readers—and create a single, unified DC Universe. The foundation of Crisis on Infinite Earths developed through a character introduced in Wolfman's The New Teen Titans in July 1982 before the series itself started. Pérez was not the intended artist for the series, but was excited when he learned of it and called illustrating it some of the most fun he had. At the start of Crisis on Infinite Earths, the Anti-Monitor is unleashed on the DC Multiverse and begins to destroy the various Earths that it comprises.
The Monitor tries to recruit heroes from around the Multiverse but is murdered, while Brainiac collaborates with the villains to conquer the remaining Earths. However, both the heroes and villains are united by the Spectre. Crisis on Infinite Earths is infamous for its high death count; the series was a bestseller for DC and has been reviewed positively by comic book critics, who praised its ambition and dramatic events. The story is credited with popularizing the idea of a large-scale crossover in comics, its events caused the entire DCU to be rebooted. Crisis on Infinite Earths is the first installment in; the story will serve as inspiration for the 2019 Arrowverse crossover. DC Comics is an American comic book publisher best known for its superhero stories featuring characters including Batman and Wonder Woman; the company debuted in February 1935 with New Fun: The Big Comic Magazine. Most of DC's comic books take place within a shared universe called the DC Universe, allowing plot elements and settings to crossover with each other.
The concept of the DCU has provided DC's writers some challenges in maintaining continuity, due to conflicting events within different comics that need to reflect the shared nature of the universe. "The Flash of Two Worlds" from The Flash #123, which featured Barry Allen teaming up with Jay Garrick, was the first DC comic to suggest that the DCU was a part of a multiverse. The DC Multiverse concept was expanded in years with the DCU having infinite Earths. For example, the Golden Age versions of DC heroes resided on Earth-Two, while DC's Silver Age heroes were from Earth-One. Since "Crisis on Earth-One!", DC has used the word "Crisis" to describe important crossovers within the DC Multiverse. Over the years, various writers took liberties creating additional parallel Earths as plot devices and to house characters DC had acquired from other companies, making the DC Multiverse a "convoluted mess". DC's comic book sales were far below those of their competitor Marvel Comics. According to ComicsAlliance journalist Chris Sims, "the multiverse... felt old-fashioned, conjuring up images of'imaginary stories' and characters that DC acquired when they bought out Golden Age competitors and shuttled off to their own universes.
Marvel, on the other hand, felt contemporary... and when you stack them up against each other, there's one difference that sticks out above anything else: Marvel feels unified". During the Bronze Age of Comic Books, writer Marv Wolfman became popular among DC's readers for his work on Weird War Tales and The New Teen Titans. George Pérez, who illustrated The New Teen Titans began to rise to prominence in this era. In 1984, Pérez entered into an exclusive contract with DC, extended one year. Although The New Teen Titans was a major success for DC, the company's comic book sales were still below Marvel's. Wolfman began to attribute this to the DC Multiverse, feeling "The Flash of Two Worlds" had created a "nightmare": it was not reader-friendly for new readers to be able to keep track of and writers struggled with the continuity errors it caused. In The New Teen Titans #21, Wolfman introduced a new character: the shadowy villainous Monitor. In 1981, Wolfman was editing Green Lantern, he got a letter from a fan asking why a character did not recognize Green Lantern in a recent issue despite the two having had worked together in an issue three years earlier.
Soon afterward, Wolfman pitched Crisis on Infinite Earths as The History of the DC Universe, seeing it as a way to simplify the DCU and attract new readers. The History of the DC Universe's title was changed to Crisis of Infinite Earths because its premise, involving the destruction of entire worlds, sounded more like a crisis. Wolfman said when he pitched the series to DC, he realized it was going to be a new beginning for the DCU. "I knew up front, they did too, how big this was going to be," he said. "But, no-one knew whether it would sell at all. It was a risk DC was willing to take, because my thoughts were th