Comic Books · Dc Comics · Golden Age

1953 Nov

Superman 85

Clark was off dealing with a cut cable in the ocean, (I think the phone lines go through those?) and a building began to fall in Metropolis. Since Superman is away you would think that a bunch of people would die right? But they are saved by the most unlikely of heroes, not someone from the JSA or any other DC hero, but the notorious Lex Luthor. He steps out of his rocket and announces that he has had a brain surgery to remove his criminal tenancies and now wants to make up for all the evil he has done. And it seemed to be true. Luthor was saving people left and right, and even capturing wrongdoers himself.

Superman doesn’t believe it for a second. He wonders just how the genius is able to get to all the disasters he does, and decides to follow him. Lex erects some dykes around a dam and tells the people it is bound to collapse, he would take their valuables with him, so they could focus on saving themselves. Clark tells Lex there is nothing wrong with the dam, but as he speaks, the dam breaks. His first thought is that he must apologize. But then he sees traces of TNT on the dam as he repairs it. Clark catches up to him when he is creating an earthquake with a giant drill. He stops the disaster and then goes after Luthor, who had used the promise of a quake to ‘protect’ a collection of jewels. Superman brings them in, tells the evidence and the world is back to normal.

2

The Publisher of the planet has stepped away for a time, leaving his sister in his place. She has some very different ideas about what a newspaper should be however. She thinks it should be more dignified, stately. She even orders a change of dress and speech in the members of the staff. Lois is really funny about it, hard headed and brash as she can be.

Clark catches her use an odd term of Speech and looks into her past. He finds out the new publisher had once run away to join the circus, though her family had hushed it up. He figures she is extra prim to make up for her past escapade.

A swindler turns up and, using flattery, gets the publisher to run a feature promoting donations to raise a ship. Superman knows the man plans to just take the money himself so he raises the ship himself, and takes away the need for donations. But the swindler isn’t one to give up easily. He comes up with another ‘worthy cause’ for the public to fund. Superman does that too, and informs the man he will do any worthy cause he can think up.

He pulls aside his friend to talk up a new plan, but the way Superman has arranged the room they were in made it so their words were brought straight to the ears of his new boss. Pissed off the woman takes to the decorations around them and trounces the men with a cry of “Hey Rube”. Finding out from the next days papers that she as being hailed as a hero and not looked down upon she swiftly changes the Planet back to normal.

3

We open upon a man who has achieved his dream of getting a professorship at a prodigious school. Feeling successful, he asks his girlfriend to marry him. She tells him that while she likes him he is too meek, especially compared to Superman. After that every mention of the Kryptonian brings the poor professor anger. So he decides to become as strong as Superman. He announces his powers to his students, and when he is not believed he pulls up a tree and then flys home. It isn’t long before the Planet gets a hold of this news and Clark goes out to investigate.

He finds that the man truly is powerful, stronger in fake than he. But he suspects a gadget as his clothes were lined with lead to keep Superman from looking under them. His lab too is lead lined, but by diving underneath he is able to see through the floor and get the answers he needs. The powers he had gained were due to the fact it was a robot doing the feats. Of course a normal robot would not be as strong as Clark, but there is kryptonite in the thing’s alloy. (Where did he manage to get that?) Clark might even let the farce go on, if it wasn’t for the fact the prof didn’t have the control he needed for such power.

And so Clark undertook the task of making it seem like the real prof had the powers of a kryptonian. Believing it almost at once he destroys he robot, not wanting any evidence he once used it. He went to take his girl out, and slightly scares her by using powers he didn’t mean to (because it was Clark). She tells him it is too frightening to be out with him and she wished he were his normal self once more. Since he believed he had gained his powers by thinking he had them, he was able to “imagine” them away. The story ends with a wedding.