Art by Alex Ross
Action Comics #1|
(cover date June 1938 / published April 18, 1938)
Jerry Siegel (writer)|
Joe Shuster (artist)
Kal-El (birth name)|
Clark Kent (adopted name)
|Place of origin||Krypton|
Legion of Super-Heroes
Superman is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. The character was created by writer Jerry Siegel and artist Joe Shuster, high school students living in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1933. They sold Superman to Detective Comics, Inc. (now known as DC Comics)[a] in 1938. Superman debuted in Action Comics #1 (cover-dated June 1938) and subsequently appeared in various radio serials, newspaper strips, television programs, films, and video games. With this success, Superman helped to create the superhero archetype and establish its primacy within the American comic book. The character is also referred to by such epithets as the Big Blue Boy Scout, the Man of Steel, the Man of Tomorrow, and the Last Son of Krypton.
The origin story of Superman relates that he was born Kal-El on the planet Krypton, before being rocketed to Earth as an infant by his scientist father Jor-El, moments before Krypton's destruction. Discovered and adopted by a farm couple from Kansas, the child is raised as Clark Kent and imbued with a strong moral compass. Early in his childhood, he displays various superhuman abilities, which, upon reaching maturity, he resolves to use for the benefit of humanity through a "Superman" identity.
Superman resides and operates in the fictional American city of Metropolis. As Clark Kent, he is a journalist for the Daily Planet, a Metropolis newspaper. Superman's love interest is Lois Lane, and his archenemy is the supervillain Lex Luthor. A close ally of Batman and Wonder Woman, he is typically depicted as a member of the Justice League. Like other characters in the DC Universe, several alternative versions of Superman have been characterized over the years.
Superman's appearance is distinctive and iconic; he usually wears a blue costume with a red-and-yellow emblem on the chest, consisting of the letter S in a shield shape, and a red cape. This shield is used in many media to symbolize the character. Superman is widely considered an American cultural icon. He has fascinated scholars, with cultural theorists, commentators, and critics alike exploring the character's role and impact in the United States and worldwide.
The character's ownership has often been the subject of dispute, with Siegel and Shuster twice suing for the return of rights. He has been portrayed in many adaptations of the comics as well, including films, television series, and video games. Several actors have played Superman in motion pictures and TV series including Bud Collyer, Kirk Alyn, George Reeves, Christopher Reeve, Dean Cain, Tim Daly, Tom Welling, Brandon Routh, Henry Cavill, and Tyler Hoechlin.
Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster met each other in 1932 in high school in Cleveland and bonded over their mutual love of movies, pulp fiction magazines, comic strips, and science fiction. Siegel aspired to become a writer and Shuster aspired to become an illustrator. Siegel wrote for his school newspaper and self-published a fanzine called Science Fiction: The Advance Guard of Future Civilization. His friend Shuster often provided illustrations for his work.
In January 1933, Siegel published a short story in his fanzine titled "The Reign of the Superman". Shuster provided illustrations. The titular character is a vagrant named Bill Dunn who is tricked by an evil scientist into consuming an experimental drug. The drug gives Dunn the powers of mind-reading, mind-control, and clairvoyance. He uses these powers maliciously for profit and amusement, but then the drug wears off, leaving him a powerless vagrant again.
Siegel and Shuster shifted to making comic strips, with the ambition of becoming professional comic authors. Siegel observed that comic strips featuring villainous protagonists such as Fu Manchu tended to struggle, whereas strips with heroic characters such as Tarzan were more popular, so he and Shuster reinvented Superman as a crime-fighting hero. Like Bill Dunn, this second prototype of Superman is given powers against his will by an unscrupulous scientist, but instead of psychic abilities, he acquires superhuman strength and bullet-proof skin.[b] In later years, Siegel once recalled that this Superman wore a "bat-like" cape in some panels, but typically he and Shuster agreed there was no costume yet, and there is none apparent in the surviving artwork.
Siegel and Shuster showed this second concept of Superman to Consolidated Book Publishers, based in Chicago.[c] In May 1933, Consolidated had published a comic book titled Detective Dan: Secret Operative 48. It contained all-original stories as opposed to reprints of newspaper strips, which was a novelty at the time. Siegel and Shuster put together a comic book in similar format called The Superman. A delegation from Consolidated visited Cleveland that summer on a business trip, and Siegel and Shuster took the opportunity to present their work in person. Although Consolidated expressed interest, they later pulled out of the comics business without ever offering a book deal because the sales of Detective Dan were disappointing.
Siegel believed publishers kept rejecting them because he and Shuster were young and unknown, so he looked for an established artist to replace Shuster. When Siegel told Shuster what he was doing, Shuster reacted by burning their rejected Superman comic, sparing only the cover. They continued collaborating on other projects, but for the time being Shuster was through with Superman.
Siegel wrote to numerous artists. The first response came in July 1933 from Leo O'Mealia, who drew the Fu Manchu strip for the Bell Syndicate. In the script that Siegel sent O'Mealia, Superman's origin story changes: He is a "scientist-adventurer" from the far future, when humanity has naturally evolved "super powers". Earth is about to blow up (for some unspecified reason), and he escapes in a time-machine to the modern era, whereupon he immediately begins using his super powers to fight crime. O'Mealia produced a few strips and showed them to his newspaper syndicate, but they were rejected. Nothing of Siegel and O'Mealia's collaboration survives, except in Siegel's memoir.
In June 1934, Siegel found another partner: an artist in Chicago named Russell Keaton. Keaton drew the Buck Rogers and Skyroads comic strips. In the script that Siegel sent Keaton in June, Superman's origin story further evolved: In the distant future, when Earth is on the verge of exploding due to "giant cataclysms", the last surviving man sends his three-year-old son back in time to the year 1935. The time-machine appears on a road where it is discovered by motorists Sam and Molly Kent. They leave the boy in an orphanage, but the staff struggle to control him because he has superhuman strength and impenetrable skin. The Kents adopt the boy and name him Clark, and teach him that he must use his fantastic natural gifts for the benefit of humanity. In November, Siegel sent Keaton an extension of his script: an adventure where Superman foils a conspiracy to kidnap a star football player. The extended script mentions that Clark wears a special "uniform" when assuming the identity of Superman, but it is not described. Keaton produced two weeks' worth of strips based on Siegel's script. In November, Keaton showed his strips to a newspaper syndicate, but they were rejected, and he abandoned the project.
Siegel and Shuster reconciled and resumed developing Superman together. The character became an alien from the planet Krypton. Shuster designed the now-familiar costume: tights with an "S" on the chest, over-shorts, and a cape. They made Clark Kent a journalist who pretends to be timid, and conceived his colleague Lois Lane, who is attracted to the bold and mighty Superman but does not realize that he and Kent are the same person.
In June 1935 Siegel and Shuster found work with National Allied Publications, a comic magazine publishing company in New York owned by Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson (and the corporate precursor of DC Comics[a]). Over the next few years, they produced various detective and adventure stories for him, the first of which were published in New Fun Comics #6 (Oct 1935). Wheeler-Nicholson offered to publish Superman, but Siegel and Shuster refused to entrust their prize creation to him because he did not manage his business well. Wheeler-Nicholson often failed to pay his employees and release books on schedule. His business finally collapsed in late 1937, and in early January 1938, his business was taken over by his partners Harry Donenfeld and Jack Liebowitz as part of a bankruptcy settlement.
On December 4, 1937, Siegel visited Liebowitz in New York, and he asked Siegel to produce some comics for an upcoming anthology magazine called Action Comics. Siegel proposed some new stories, but not Superman. Siegel and Shuster were still soliciting Superman to newspaper syndicates, the latest one being the McClure Newspaper Syndicate. In early January, Siegel had a three-way telephone conversation with Liebowitz and an employee of McClure named Max Gaines. Gaines informed Siegel that McClure had rejected Superman, and asked if he could forward the Superman strips to Liebowitz. Siegel agreed. Liebowitz and his colleagues were impressed by the strips, and they asked Siegel and Shuster to develop the strips into 13 pages for Action Comics. Having grown tired of rejections, Siegel and Shuster accepted the offer. Siegel and Shuster submitted their work in late February and were paid $130 (AFI $2,260) for it. In March, at the request of Liebowitz, they signed a contract in which they released the copyright for Superman. Superman was finally published on April 18, 1938, in the first issue of Action Comics.
Siegel and Shuster read pulp science-fiction and adventure magazines, and many stories featured characters with extraordinary abilities such as telepathy, clairvoyance, and superhuman strength. An influence was Edgar Rice Burroughs' John Carter of Mars: a human who is transported to Mars, where the lower gravity makes him stronger than the natives and allows him to leap great distances. Another influence was Philip Wylie's 1930 novel Gladiator, featuring a protagonist named Hugo Danner who had similar powers. The mythological characters Samson and Hercules were also an influence.
Superman's stance and devil-may-care attitude was influenced by the characters of Douglas Fairbanks, who starred in adventure films such as The Mark of Zorro and Robin Hood. The name of Superman's home city, Metropolis, was taken from the 1927 film of the same name. Popeye cartoons were also an influence.
Clark Kent's harmless facade and dual identity was inspired by the protagonists of such movies as Don Diego de la Vega in The Mark of Zorro and Sir Percy Blakeney in The Scarlet Pimpernel. Siegel thought this would make for interesting dramatic contrast and good humor. Another inspiration was slapstick comedian Harold Lloyd. The archetypal Lloyd character was a gentle man who finds himself abused by bullies but later in the story snaps and fights back furiously.
Kent is a journalist because Siegel often imagined himself becoming one after leaving school. The love triangle between Lois Lane, Clark, and Superman was inspired by Siegel's own awkwardness with girls.
The pair collected comic strips in their youth, with a favorite being Winsor McCay's fantastical Little Nemo. Shuster remarked on the artists which played an important part in the development of his own style: "Alex Raymond and Burne Hogarth were my idols – also Milt Caniff, Hal Foster, and Roy Crane." Shuster taught himself to draw by tracing over the art in the strips and magazines they collected.
As a boy, Shuster was interested in fitness culture and a fan of strongmen such as Siegmund Breitbart and Joseph Greenstein. He collected fitness magazines and manuals and used their photographs as visual references for his art.
The visual design of Superman came from multiple influences. The tight-fitting suit and shorts were inspired by the costumes of wrestlers, boxers, and strongmen. In early concept art, Shuster gave Superman laced sandals like those of strongmen and classical heroes, but these were eventually changed to red boots. The costumes of Douglas Fairbanks were also an influence. The emblem on his chest may have been inspired by the uniforms of athletic teams. Many pulp action heroes such as swashbucklers wore capes. Superman's physical appearance was based on Johnny Weissmuller with touches derived from the comic-strip character Dick Tracy and from the work of cartoonist Roy Crane.
The word "superman" was commonly used in the 1920s and 1930s to describe men of great ability, most often athletes and politicians. It occasionally appeared in pulp fiction stories as well, such as "The Superman of Dr. Jukes" and Doc Savage. It is unclear whether Siegel and Shuster were influenced by Friedrich Nietzsche's concept of the Übermensch; they never acknowledged as much.
Superman debuted as the cover feature of the anthology magazine Action Comics #1 (cover-dated June 1938 but published on April 18, 1938). The magazine was an immediate success, and reader feedback showed it was because of Superman. In June 1939, DC Comics[a] began a sister magazine, Superman, dedicated exclusively to the character. Action Comics eventually became dedicated to Superman stories too, and both it and Superman have been published without interruption since 1938 (ignoring changes to the titles and numbering). A number of other magazines have been published as well. Superman has also appeared as a regular or semi-regular character in a number of magazines featuring superhero teams, such as Justice League of America and World's Finest Comics, and in spin-off magazines such as Supergirl.
Superman has sold more comic books over his entire publication history (since 1938) in total than any other American superhero character. Sales of Action Comics and Superman declined steadily from the 1950s, but rose again starting in 1987. Superman #75 (Nov 1992) sold over 6 million copies, making it the best-selling issue of a comic magazine of all time, thanks to a media sensation over the supposedly permanent death of the character in that issue. Sales declined from that point on. In March 2018, Action Comics sold just 52,503 copies. The magazines are today considered a niche aspect of the Superman franchise due to low readership.
Beginning in January 1939, a Superman daily comic strip appeared in newspapers, syndicated through the McClure Syndicate. A color Sunday version was added that November. Jerry Siegel wrote most of the strips until he was conscripted in 1943. The Sunday strips had a narrative continuity separate from the daily strips, possibly because Siegel had to delegate the Sunday strips to ghostwriters. By 1941, the newspaper strips had an estimated readership of 20 million. Joe Shuster drew the early strips, then passed the job to Wayne Boring. From 1949 to 1956, the newspaper strips were drawn by Win Mortimer. The strip ended in May 1966, but was revived from 1977 to 1983 to coincide with a series of movies released by Warner Bros.
Most Superman comic books are magazines, and DC Comics regularly reprints the magazine stories in "collected editions", sometimes called "graphic novels" when the book contains a single complete story. DC Comics has occasionally published some graphic novels with original stories (sometimes called "one-shots"), such as Superman: Peace on Earth (1998). A handful of text novels have been published too, beginning with The Adventures of Superman by George Lowther in 1942.
Initially, Siegel was allowed to write Superman more or less as he saw fit because nobody had anticipated the success and rapid expansion of the franchise. But soon Siegel and Shuster's work was put under careful oversight for fear of trouble with censors. Siegel was forced to tone down the violence and social crusading that characterized his early stories. Editor Whitney Ellsworth, hired in 1940, dictated that Superman not kill. Sexuality was banned, and colorfully outlandish villains such as Ultra-Humanite and Toyman were thought to be less nightmarish for young readers.
Mort Weisinger was the editor on Superman comics from 1941 to 1970, his tenure briefly interrupted by military service. Siegel and his fellow writers had developed the character with little thought of building a coherent mythology, but as the number of Superman titles and the pool of writers grew, Weisinger demanded a more disciplined approach. Weisinger assigned story ideas, and the logic of Superman's powers, his origin, the locales, and his relationships with his growing cast of supporting characters were carefully planned. Elements such as Bizarro, Supergirl, the Phantom Zone, the Fortress of Solitude, alternate varieties of kryptonite, robot doppelgangers, and Krypto were introduced during this era. The complicated universe built under Weisinger was beguiling to devoted readers but alienating to casuals. Weisinger favored lighthearted stories over serious drama, and avoided sensitive subjects such as the Vietnam War and the civil rights movement because he feared his right-wing views would alienate his writing staff and readers. Weisinger also introduced letters columns in 1958 to encourage feedback and build intimacy with readers. Superman was the best-selling comic book character of the 1960s.
Weisinger retired in 1970 and Julius Schwartz took over. By his own admission, Weisinger had grown out of touch with newer readers. Schwartz updated Superman by removing overused plot elements such as kryptonite and robot doppelgangers and making Clark Kent a television anchor. Schwartz also scaled Superman's powers down to a level closer to Siegel's original. These changes would eventually be reversed by later writers. Schwartz allowed stories with serious drama such as "For the Man Who Has Everything" (Superman Annual #11), in which the villain Mongul torments Superman with an illusion of happy family life on a living Krypton.
Schwartz retired from DC Comics in 1986 and was succeeded by Mike Carlin as editor on Superman comics. His retirement coincided with DC Comics' decision to streamline the shared continuity called the DC Universe with the companywide-crossover storyline "Crisis on Infinite Earths". Writer John Byrne rewrote the Superman mythos, again reducing Superman's powers, which writers had slowly re-strengthened, and revised many supporting characters, such as making Lex Luthor a billionaire industrialist rather than a mad scientist, and making Supergirl an artificial shapeshifting organism because DC wanted Superman to be the sole surviving Kryptonian.
Carlin was promoted to Executive Editor for the DC Universe books in 1996, a position he held until 2002. K.C. Carlson took his place as editor of the Superman comics.
In the earlier decades of Superman comics, artists were expected to conform to a certain "house style". Joe Shuster defined the aesthetic style of Superman in the 1940s, including the Fleischer and Famous animated serial of the 1940s, for which he provided character model sheets. After Shuster left National, Wayne Boring succeeded him as the principal artist on Superman comic books. He redrew Superman taller and more detailed. Around 1955, Curt Swan in turn succeeded Boring. The 1980s saw a boom in the diversity of comic book art and now there is no single "house style" in Superman comics.
The first adaptation of Superman beyond comic books was a radio show, The Adventures of Superman, which ran from 1940 to 1951 for 2,088 episodes. It featured the voice of Bud Collyer as Superman. It was produced by Robert Maxwell and Allen Ducovny, who were employees of Superman, Inc. and Detective Comics, Inc. respectively. It became the highest-rated entertainment show on radio.
Paramount Pictures released a series of animated shorts titled Superman between 1941 and 1943. Seventeen episodes in total were made; the first nine were produced by Fleischer Studios and the next eight were produced by Famous Studios. Bud Collyer provided the voice of Superman. The first episode had a budget of $50,000 with the remaining episodes at $30,000 each (AFI $831,900), which was exceptional for the time.
The first live-action theatrical serial was a 15-part serial released in 1948. Kirk Alyn became the first actor to portray the hero onscreen. A sequel serial, Atom Man vs. Superman, was released in 1950.
Superman returned to movie theaters in 1978 in a movie simply titled Superman, starring Christopher Reeve. It is the most successful Superman feature film to date and spawned three sequels. The first three of these movies were produced by Alexander and Ilya Salkind. Warner Bros. had control over the budget and the casting, but left everything else to the producers' discretion. In 2006, Warner Brothers released Superman Returns, starring Brandon Routh, which is a loose sequel to the Salkind films.
In 2013, director Zack Snyder rebooted the film franchise with Man of Steel, starring Henry Cavill. Snyder also directed its 2016 sequel, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which featured Superman alongside Batman and Wonder Woman for the first time in a live-action movie. Cavill reprised his role as Superman in the 2017 film Justice League and revealed he is under contract to play Superman for one more film.
The first television series was Adventures of Superman, which aired from 1952 to 1958 and starred George Reeves as Superman. Robert Maxwell, who produced the radio serial, was the producer for the first season. DC Comics felt that the first season was too violent for what they expected to be a children's show, so they removed Maxwell and replaced him with Whitney Ellsworth, a veteran writer and editor at DC Comics.
Three additional live-action television series featuring Clark Kent (as Superman, Superboy, or neither) have since aired on television. Superboy aired from 1988 to 1992. It was produced by Alexander and Ilya Salkind. DC Comics had approval rights over all creative aspects of the show, from scripts to casting to shooting revisions.
Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman aired from 1993 to 1997.
Smallville aired from 2001 to 2011 and covers Clark Kent's story from his high school years to his debut (in the last episode) as Superman. In this series, Clark never calls himself Superboy.
The first animated television series was The New Adventures of Superman, which aired from 1966 to 1970. Two additional Superman-centered animated series have since aired on television: Superman, which aired in 1988; and Superman: The Animated Series, which aired from 1996 to 2000.
Superman has appeared as part of a team, a supporting character, or a guest star in other television shows, such as the animated Super Friends and Justice League Action, and the live-action Supergirl.
The first electronic game was simply titled Superman, and released in 1979 for the Atari 2600. The last game centered on Superman was Superman Returns (adapted from the movie) in 2006. Superman has, however, appeared in more recent games starring the Justice League, such as Injustice 2 (2017).
In a contract dated 1 March 1938, Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster released the copyright to Superman to their employer, DC Comics (then known as Detective Comics, Inc.[a]). They much regretted this decision after Superman became an astonishing success, because now they would not get the lion's share of the profits. DC Comics retained Siegel and Shuster, and they were paid well because they were popular with the readers. Between 1938 and 1947, DC Comics paid them together over $400,000 (AFI $5,880,000).
Siegel wrote most of the magazine and daily newspaper stories until he was conscripted in 1943, whereupon the task was passed to ghostwriters. While Siegel was serving in Hawaii, DC Comics published a story featuring a child version of Superman called "Superboy", which was based on a script Siegel had submitted several years before. Siegel was furious because DC Comics did this without having bought the character.
After Siegel's discharge from the Army, he and Shuster sued DC Comics in 1947 for the rights to Superman and Superboy. The judge ruled that Superman belonged to DC Comics, but that Superboy was a separate entity that belonged to Siegel. Siegel and Shuster settled out-of-court with DC Comics, which paid the pair $94,013.16 (AFI $957,580) in exchange for the full rights to both Superman and Superboy. DC Comics then fired Siegel and Shuster.
DC Comics rehired Jerry Siegel as a writer in 1957.
In 1965, Siegel and Shuster attempted to regain rights to Superman using the renewal option in the Copyright Act of 1909, but the court ruled Siegel and Shuster had transferred the renewal rights to DC Comics in 1938. Siegel and Shuster appealed, but the appeals court upheld this decision. DC Comics fired Siegel when he filed this second lawsuit.
In 1975, Siegel and a number of other comic book writers and artists launched a public campaign for better compensation and treatment of comic creators. Warner Brothers agreed to give Siegel and Shuster a yearly stipend, full medical benefits, and credit their names in all future Superman productions in exchange for never contesting ownership of Superman. Siegel and Shuster upheld this bargain.
Shuster died in 1992. DC Comics offered Shuster's heirs a stipend in exchange for never challenging ownership of Superman, which they accepted for some years.
Siegel died in 1996. His heirs attempted to take the rights to Superman using the termination provision of the Copyright Act of 1976. DC Comics negotiated an agreement wherein it would pay the Siegel heirs several million dollars and a yearly stipend of $500,000 in exchange for permanently granting DC the rights to Superman. DC Comics also agreed to insert the line "By Special Arrangement with the Jerry Siegel Family" in all future Superman productions. The Siegels accepted DC's offer in an October 2001 letter.
Copyright lawyer and movie producer Marc Toberoff then struck a deal with the heirs of both Siegel and Shuster to help them get the rights to Superman in exchange for signing the rights over to his production company, Pacific Pictures. Both groups accepted. The Siegel heirs called off their deal with DC Comics and in 2004 sued DC for the rights to Superman and Superboy. In 2008, the judge ruled in favor of the Siegels. DC Comics appealed the decision, and the appeals court ruled in favored of DC, arguing that the October 2001 letter was binding. In 2003, the Shuster heirs served a termination notice for Shuster's grant of his half of the copyright to Superman. DC Comics sued the Shuster heirs in 2010, and the court ruled in DC's favor on the grounds that the 1992 agreement with the Shuster heirs barred them from terminating the grant.
Superman is due to enter the public domain in 2033. However, this would only apply to the character as he is depicted in Action Comics #1 (1938). Versions of him with later developments, such as his power of "heat vision" (introduced in 1949), may persist under copyright until the works they were introduced in enter the public domain themselves.
Superman's success immediately spawned a wave of imitations. The most successful of these was Captain Marvel, first published by Fawcett Comics in December 1939. Captain Marvel had many similarities to Superman: Herculean strength, invulnerability, the ability to fly, a cape, and a job as a journalist.
DC Comics filed a lawsuit against Fawcett Comics for copyright infringement. The trial began in March 1948 after seven years of discovery. The judge ruled that Fawcett had indeed infringed on Superman. However, the judge also found that the copyright notices that appeared with the Superman newspaper strips did not meet the technical standards required by the Copyright Act of 1909 and were therefore invalid. Since Superman had appeared in more newspaper strips than magazines, and since the strips carried stories adapted from the magazines, the judge ruled that DC Comics had effectively abandoned the copyright to Superman as a whole.
DC Comics appealed this decision. The appeals court ruled that the faulty copyright notices of the newspaper strips did not invalidate the copyright to previous Superman works; therefore, Superman had not been abandoned to the public domain. The appeals court, however, refused to issue an injunction against Fawcett because it could not determine exactly which Superman strips Fawcett had infringed. The appeals court remanded the case back to the lower court to settle that last matter.
At this point, Fawcett Comics decided to settle out of court with DC Comics. Fawcett paid DC Comics $400,000 (AFI $3,658,706) and agreed to stop publishing Captain Marvel. The last Captain Marvel story from Fawcett Comics was published in September 1953.
In Action Comics #1 (1938), Superman is born on an alien world to a technologically advanced species that resembles humans. When his world is on the verge of destruction, his father, a scientist, places his infant son alone in a spaceship that takes him to Earth. The earliest newspaper strips name the planet "Krypton", the baby "Kal-L", and his biological parents "Jor-L" and "Lora"; their names were changed to "Jor-el", and "Lara" in a 1942 spinoff novel by George Lowther. The ship lands in the American countryside, where the baby is adopted by the Kents. In the original stories, they adopt him from an orphanage. The Kents name the boy Clark and raise him in a farming community. A 1947 episode of the radio serial places the unnamed community in Iowa. It is named Smallville in Superboy #2 (June 1949). New Adventures of Superboy #22 (Oct. 1981) places it in Maryland. The 1978 Superman movie and most stories since place it in Kansas.
In Action Comics #1 and most stories before 1986, Superman's powers begin developing in infancy. From 1944 to 1986, DC Comics regularly published stories of Superman's childhood and adolescent adventures, when he called himself "Superboy". In Man of Steel #1, Superman's powers emerged more slowly and he began his superhero career as an adult.
The Kents teach Clark he must conceal his otherworldly origins and use his fantastic powers to do good. Clark creates the costumed identity of Superman so as to protect his personal privacy and the safety of his loved ones. As Clark Kent, he wears eyeglasses to disguise his face and wears his Superman costume underneath his clothes so that he can change at a moment's notice. To complete this disguise, Clark avoids violent confrontation, preferring to slip away and change into Superman when danger arises, and he suffers occasional ridicule for his apparent cowardice.
In Superboy #78 (1960), Superboy makes his costume out of the indestructible blankets found in the ship he came to Earth in. In Man of Steel #1 (1986), Martha Kent makes the costume from human-manufactured cloth, and it is rendered indestructible by an "aura" that Superman projects. The "S" on Superman's chest at first was simply an initial for "Superman". When writing the script for the 1978 movie, Tom Mankiewicz made it Superman's Kryptonian family crest. This was carried over into some comic book stories and later movies, such as Man of Steel. In the comic story Superman: Birthright, the crest is described as an old Kryptonian symbol for hope.
Siegel understood that Superman's invulnerability diminished his appeal as an action hero, and so wrote a story introducing "K-metal", whose radiation harms Superman. This draft was never published since in the story Superman reveals his secret identity to Lois, but the writers of the radio serial took inspiration and introduced the green mineral kryptonite in a 1943 episode. It first appeared in comics in Superman #61 (Dec. 1949).
Clark works as a newspaper journalist. In the earliest stories, he is employed by George Taylor of The Daily Star, but the second episode of the radio serial changed this to Perry White of The Daily Planet. In comics from the early 1970s, Clark worked as a television journalist (an attempt to modernize the character). However, for the 1978 movie, the producers chose to make Clark a newspaper journalist again because that was how most of the public thought of him.
Action Comics #1 introduced Clark's colleague Lois Lane. Clark is romantically attracted to her, but she rejects the mild-mannered Clark and is infatuated with the bold and mighty Superman. This love triangle was conceived in 1934 and is present in most Superman stories. Jerry Siegel objected to any proposal that Lois discover that Clark is Superman because he felt that, as implausible as Clark's disguise is, the love triangle was too important to the book's appeal. In many stories in early decades, Lois suspects Clark is Superman and tries to prove it, but Superman always outwits her; the first such story was in Superman #17 (1942).
In Action Comics #662 (Feb. 1991) in a story by writer Roger Stern and artist Bob McLeod, Lois definitively learns of Clark's dual identity, a status quo that would exist for two decades and was reflected in a 1995 episode of the TV series Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. Both in that series and in the 1996 comic book special Superman: The Wedding Album, Clark and Lois marry. The couple's biological child, Jonathan Samuel Kent, was born in Convergence: Superman #2 (July 2015). Jonathan eventually becomes the newest Superboy.
The first story in which Superman dies was published in Superman #149 (1961), in which he is murdered by Lex Luthor by means of kryptonite. This story was "imaginary" and thus was ignored in subsequent books. In Superman #188 (April 1966), Superman is killed by kryptonite radiation, but is revived in the same issue by one of his android doppelgangers. In the 1990s The Death and Return of Superman story arc, after a deadly battle with Doomsday, Superman died in Superman #75 (Jan. 1993). He was later revived by the Eradicator. In Superman #52 (May 2016) Superman is killed by kryptonite poisoning, and this time he is not resurrected, but replaced by the Superman of an alternate timeline.
In the original Siegel and Shuster stories, Superman's personality is rough and aggressive. The character often attacks and terrorizes wife beaters, profiteers, lynch mobs, and gangsters in a rough manner and with a looser moral code than audiences today might be used to. Superman in the comics of the 1930s is unconcerned about the harm his strength may cause. He tosses villainous characters in such a manner that fatalities would presumably occur, although these are seldom shown explicitly on the page. This came to an end in late 1940 when new editor Whitney Ellsworth instituted a code of conduct for his characters to follow, banning Superman from ever killing. The character was softened and given a sense of humanitarianism. Ellsworth's code, however, is not to be confused with "the Comics Code", which was created in 1954 by the Comics Code Authority and ultimately abandoned by every major comic book publisher by the early 21st century.
In his first appearances, Superman was considered a vigilante by the authorities, being fired upon by the National Guard as he razed a slum so that the government would create better housing conditions for the poor. By 1942, however, Superman was working side-by-side with the police. Today, Superman is commonly seen as a brave and kind-hearted hero with a strong sense of justice, morality, and righteousness. He adheres to an unwavering moral code instilled in him by his adoptive parents. His commitment to operating within the law has been an example to many citizens and other heroes, but has stirred resentment and criticism among others, who refer to him as the "big blue boy scout". Superman can be rather rigid in this trait, causing tensions in the superhero community. This was most notable with Wonder Woman, one of his closest friends, after she killed Maxwell Lord. Booster Gold had an initial icy relationship with the Man of Steel, but grew to respect him.
Having lost his home world of Krypton, Superman is very protective of Earth, and especially of Clark Kent's family and friends. This same loss, combined with the pressure of using his powers responsibly, has caused Superman to feel lonely on Earth, despite having his friends and parents. Previous encounters with people he thought to be fellow Kryptonians, Power Girl (who is, in fact from the Krypton of the Earth-Two universe) and Mon-El, have led to disappointment. The arrival of Supergirl, who has been confirmed to be not only from Krypton, but also his cousin, has relieved this loneliness somewhat. Superman's Fortress of Solitude acts as a place of solace for him in times of loneliness and despair.
In Superman/Batman #3 (Dec. 2003), Batman, under writer Jeph Loeb, observes, "It is a remarkable dichotomy. In many ways, Clark is the most human of us all. Then ... he shoots fire from the skies, and it is difficult not to think of him as a god. And how fortunate we all are that it does not occur to 'him'." In writer Geoff Johns' Infinite Crisis #1 (Dec. 2005), part of the 2005–2006 "Infinite Crisis" crossover storyline, Batman admonishes him for identifying with humanity too much and failing to provide the strong leadership that superhumans need.
The catalog of Superman's abilities and their scale has varied considerably over the vast body of Superman fiction released since 1938. Certain abilities are not displayed in all stories, and the scale of these powers also varies.
Since Action Comics #1 (1938), Superman has superhuman strength. The cover of Action Comics #1 shows him effortlessly lifting a car over his head. Another classic Superman feat of strength is breaking steel chains. In some stories, he is strong enough to shift the orbits of planets.
Since Action Comics #1 (1938), Superman has a highly durable body, invulnerable for most practical purposes. At the very least, bullets bounce of him without so much as bruising him. In some stories, such as Kingdom Come, he is tough enough to survive a nuclear bomb.
In some stories, Superman is said to project an aura that renders invulnerable any tight-fitting clothes he wears, and hence his costume is as durable as he is despite being made of common human-factured cloth. This concept was first introduced in Man of Steel #1 (1986). In other stories, Superman's costume is made out of exotic materials that are as tough as he is.
In Action Comics #1, Superman couldn't fly. He travelled by running and leaping, which he could do to a prodiguous degree thanks to his strength. Superman gained the ability to fly in the second episode of the radio serial in 1940. Superman can fly at great speeds. He can break the sound barrier, and in some stories he can even fly faster than light to travel to distant galaxies.
Superman can project and perceive X-rays via his eyes, which allows him to see through objects. He first uses this power in Action Comics #11 (1939). Certain materials such as lead can block his X-ray vision.
Superman can project beams of heat from his eyes which are hot enough to melt steel. He first used this power in Superman #59 (1949) by applying his X-ray vision at its highest intensity. In later stories, this ability is simply called "heat vision".
Superman can hear sounds that are too faint for a human to hear, and at frequencies outside the human hearing range. This ability is introduced in Action Comics #11 (1939).
Action Comics #1 (1938) explained that Superman's strength was common to all Kryptonians because they were a species "millions of years advanced of our own". Later stories explained they evolved superhuman strength simply because of Krypton's higher gravity. Superman #146 (1961) explains that his abilities other than strength (flight, durability, etc.) are activated by the light of Earth's yellow sun. In Action Comics #300 (1963), all of his powers including strength are activated by yellow sunlight and can be deactivated by red sunlight similar to that of Krypton's sun.
Superman is most vulnerable to green Kryptonite, mineral debris from Krypton transformed into radioactive material by the forces that destroyed the planet. Exposure to green Kryptonite radiation nullifies Superman's powers and immobilizes him with pain and nausea; prolonged exposure will eventually kill him. The only substance on Earth that can protect him from Kryptonite is lead, which blocks the radiation. Lead is also the only known substance that Superman cannot see through with his x-ray vision. Kryptonite was introduced in 1943 as a plot device to allow the radio-serial voice actor, Bud Collyer, to take some time off. Although green Kryptonite is the most commonly seen form, writers have introduced other forms over the years: such as red, gold, blue, white, and black, each with its own effect.
Superman is also vulnerable to magic. Enchanted weapons and magical spells affect Superman as easily as they would a normal human.
The details Superman's character and story vary across his large body of fiction released since 1938, but most versions conform to the basic template described above. A few stories feature radically altered versions of Superman. An example is the graphic novel Superman: Red Son, which depicts a communist Superman who rules the Soviet Union. DC Comics has on some occasions published crossover stories where different versions of Superman interact with each other using the plot device of parallel universes. For instance, in the 1960s, the Superman of "Earth-One" would occasionally feature in stories alongside the Superman of "Earth-Two", the latter of whom resembled Superman as he was portrayed in the 1940s. DC Comics has not developed a consistent and universal system to classify all versions of Superman.
Superman's large cast of supporting characters includes Lois Lane, the character most commonly associated with Superman, being portrayed at different times as his colleague, competitor, love interest and wife. Other main supporting characters include Daily Planet coworkers such as photographer Jimmy Olsen and editor Perry White, Clark Kent's adoptive parents Jonathan and Martha Kent, childhood sweetheart Lana Lang and best friend Pete Ross, associates like Professor Hamilton and John Henry Irons who often provide scientific advice and tech support, and former college love interest Lori Lemaris (a mermaid). Stories depicting Superman siring or adopting children have been featured both in and out of mainstream continuity.
Incarnations of Superboy have included Superman as a boy, a teenager partly cloned from Superman, and Superman's own son. Incarnations of Supergirl and Krypto the Superdog have also been major characters in the mythos, as have the Justice League of America (of which Superman is usually a member and often its leader) and the Legion of Super-Heroes (which Superboy traveled through time to join). A feature shared by several supporting characters is alliterative names, especially with the initials "LL", including Lex Luthor, Lois Lane, Linda Lee, Lana Lang, Lori Lemaris, and Lucy Lane, alliteration being common in early comics.
Team-ups with fellow comics icon Batman are common, inspiring many stories over the years. When paired, they are often referred to as the "World's Finest" in a nod to the name of the comic book series that features many team-up stories. In 2003, DC began to publish a new series featuring the two characters titled Superman/Batman or Batman/Superman. Following DC Comic's The New 52 line-wide relaunch, Superman established a romantic relationship with Wonder Woman. A comic book series titled Superman/Wonder Woman debuted in 2013, which explores their relationship and shared adventures.
The villains Superman faced in the earliest stories were ordinary humans, such as gangsters, corrupt politicians, and violent husbands, but they soon grew more outlandish and collectively become Superman's rogues gallery. The mad scientist Ultra-Humanite, introduced in Action Comics #13 (June 1939), was Superman's first recurring villain. The hero's best-known nemesis, Lex Luthor, was introduced in Action Comics #23 (April 1940) and has been envisioned over the years as both a recluse with advanced weaponry to a power-mad billionaire. In 1944, the magical imp Mister Mxyzptlk, Superman's first recurring super-powered adversary, was introduced. Superman's first alien villain, Brainiac, debuted in Action Comics #242 (July 1958). The monstrous Doomsday, introduced in Superman: The Man of Steel #17–18 (Nov.-Dec. 1992), was the first villain to evidently kill Superman in physical combat. Other adversaries include the odd Superman-doppelgänger Bizarro, the Kryptonian criminal General Zod, and alien tyrants Darkseid and Mongul.
Superman has become an American cultural icon recognised around the world. Superman is often thought of as the first superhero. This point is debated by historians: Doctor Occult, an earlier creation of Siegel and Shuster, appeared in comic books two years earlier, and the Phantom and Mandrake the Magician had previously appeared in newspaper strips. However, there is no debate that Superman started the 20th century's craze for costumed adventurers.
His adventures and popularity have established the character as an inspiring force within the public eye, with the character serving as inspiration for musicians, comedians and writers alike. Kryptonite, Brainiac and Bizarro have become synonymous in popular vernacular with Achilles' heel, extreme intelligence and reversed logic respectively. Similarly, the phrase "I'm not Superman" or "you're not Superman" is an idiom used to suggest a lack of omnipotence.
Superman became popular very quickly, with an additional title, Superman Quarterly, rapidly added. In 1940 the character was represented in the annual Macy's parade for the first time. In fact Superman had become popular to the extent that in 1942, with sales of the character's three titles standing at a combined total of over 1.5 million, Time was reporting that "the Navy Department (had) ruled that Superman comic books should be included among essential supplies destined for the Marine garrison at Midway Islands." The character was soon licensed by companies keen to cash in on this success through merchandising. The earliest paraphernalia appeared in 1939, a button proclaiming membership in the Supermen of America club. By 1940 the amount of merchandise available increased dramatically, with jigsaw puzzles, paper dolls, bubble gum and trading cards available, as well as wooden or metal figures. The popularity of such merchandise increased when Superman was licensed to appear in other media, and Les Daniels has written that this represents "the start of the process that media moguls of later decades would describe as 'synergy.'" By the release of Superman Returns, Warner Bros. had arranged a cross promotion with Burger King, and licensed many other products for sale.
Superman's appeal to licensees rests upon the character's continuing popularity, cross market appeal and the status of the "S" shield, the stylized magenta and gold "S" emblem Superman wears on his chest, as a fashion symbol. The "S" shield by itself is often used in media to symbolize the Superman character.
Superman has also featured as an inspiration for musicians, with songs by numerous artists from several generations celebrating the character. Donovan's Billboard Hot 100 topping single "Sunshine Superman" utilized the character in both the title and the lyric, declaring "Superman and Green Lantern ain't got nothing on me." Folk singer-songwriter Jim Croce sung about the character in a list of warnings in the chorus of his song "You Don't Mess Around with Jim", introducing the phrase "you don't tug on Superman's cape" into popular lexicon. Other tracks to reference the character include Genesis' "Land of Confusion", the video to which featured a Spitting Image puppet of Ronald Reagan dressed as Superman, "(Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman" by The Kinks on their 1979 album Low Budget and "Superman" by The Clique, a track later covered by R.E.M. on its 1986 album Lifes Rich Pageant. This cover is referenced by Grant Morrison in Animal Man, in which Superman meets the character, and the track comes on Animal Man's Walkman immediately after. Crash Test Dummies' "Superman's Song", from the 1991 album The Ghosts That Haunt Me explores the isolation and commitment inherent in Superman's life. Five for Fighting released "Superman (It's Not Easy)" in 2000, which is from Superman's point of view, although Superman is never mentioned by name. From 1988 to 1993, American composer Michael Daugherty composed "Metropolis Symphony", a five-movement orchestral work inspired by Superman comics.
Parodies of Superman did not take long to appear, with Mighty Mouse introduced in "The Mouse of Tomorrow" animated short in 1942. While the character swiftly took on a life of its own, moving beyond parody, other animated characters soon took their turn to parody the character. In 1943, Bugs Bunny was featured in a short, Super-Rabbit, which sees the character gaining powers through eating fortified carrots. This short ends with Bugs stepping into a phone booth to change into a real "Superman" and emerging as a U.S. Marine. In 1956 Daffy Duck assumes the mantle of "Cluck Trent" in the short "Stupor Duck", a role later reprised in various issues of the Looney Tunes comic book. In the United Kingdom Monty Python created the character Bicycle Repairman, who fixes bicycles on a world full of Supermen, for a sketch in series of their BBC show. Also on the BBC was the sitcom My Hero, which presented Thermoman as a slightly dense Superman pastiche, attempting to save the world and pursue romantic aspirations. In the United States, Saturday Night Live has often parodied the figure, with Margot Kidder reprising her role as Lois Lane in a 1979 episode. The manga and anime series Dr. Slump featured the character Suppaman; a short, fat, pompous man who changes into a thinly veiled Superman-like alter-ego by eating a sour-tasting umeboshi. Jerry Seinfeld, a noted Superman fan, filled his series Seinfeld with references to the character and in 1997 asked for Superman to co-star with him in a commercial for American Express. The commercial aired during the 1998 NFL Playoffs and Super Bowl, Superman animated in the style of artist Curt Swan, again at the request of Seinfeld. Superman has also been used as reference point for writers, with Steven T. Seagle's graphic novel Superman: It's a Bird exploring Seagle's feelings on his own mortality as he struggles to develop a story for a Superman tale. Brad Fraser used the character as a reference point for his play Poor Super Man, with The Independent noting the central character, a gay man who has lost many friends to AIDS as someone who "identifies all the more keenly with Superman's alien-amid-deceptive-lookalikes status." Superman's image was also used in an AIDS awareness campaign by French organization AIDES. Superman was depicted as emaciated and breathing from an oxygen tank, demonstrating that no-one is beyond the reach of the disease, and it can destroy the lives of everyone.
Superman is also mentioned in several films, including Joel Schumacher's Batman & Robin, in which Batman states, "That's why Superman works alone ..." in reference to the many troubles caused by his partner Robin, and also in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man, in which Aunt May gives her nephew Peter Parker a word of advice not to strain himself too much, because, "You're not Superman, you know", among many others.
The character Superman and his various comic series have received various awards over the years.
Superman has been interpreted and discussed in many forms in the years since his debut. The character's status as the first costumed superhero has allowed him to be used in many studies discussing the genre, Umberto Eco noting that "he can be seen as the representative of all his similars". Writing in Time in 1971, Gerald Clarke stated: "Superman's enormous popularity might be looked upon as signalling the beginning of the end for the Horatio Alger myth of the self-made man." Clarke viewed the comics characters as having to continuously update in order to maintain relevance, and thus representing the mood of the nation. He regarded Superman's character in the early seventies as a comment on the modern world, which he saw as a place in which "only the man with superpowers can survive and prosper." Andrew Arnold, writing in the early 21st century, has noted Superman's partial role in exploring assimilation, the character's alien status allowing the reader to explore attempts to fit in on a somewhat superficial level.
A.C. Grayling, writing in The Spectator, traces Superman's stances through the decades, from his 1930s campaign against crime being relevant to a nation under the influence of Al Capone, through the 1940s and World War II, a period in which Superman helped sell war bonds, and into the 1950s, where Superman explored the new technological threats. Grayling notes the period after the Cold War as being one where "matters become merely personal: the task of pitting his brawn against the brains of Lex Luthor and Brainiac appeared to be independent of bigger questions", and discusses events post 9/11, stating that as a nation "caught between the terrifying George W. Bush and the terrorist Osama bin Laden, America is in earnest need of a Saviour for everything from the minor inconveniences to the major horrors of world catastrophe. And here he is, the down-home clean-cut boy in the blue tights and red cape".
An influence on early Superman stories is the context of the Great Depression. Superman took on the role of social activist, fighting crooked businessmen and politicians and demolishing run-down tenements. Comics scholar Roger Sabin sees this as a reflection of "the liberal idealism of Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal", with Shuster and Siegel initially portraying Superman as champion to a variety of social causes. In later Superman radio programs the character continued to take on such issues, tackling a version of the Ku Klux Klan in a 1946 broadcast, as well as combating anti-semitism and veteran discrimination.
Scott Bukatman has discussed Superman, and the superhero in general, noting the ways in which they humanize large urban areas through their use of the space, especially in Superman's ability to soar over the large skyscrapers of Metropolis. He writes that the character "represented, in 1938, a kind of Corbusierian ideal. Superman has X-ray vision: walls become permeable, transparent. Through his benign, controlled authority, Superman renders the city open, modernist and democratic; he furthers a sense that Le Corbusier described in 1925, namely, that 'Everything is known to us'."
Jules Feiffer has argued that Superman's real innovation lay in the creation of the Clark Kent persona, noting that what "made Superman extraordinary was his point of origin: Clark Kent." Feiffer develops the theme to establish Superman's popularity in simple wish fulfillment, a point Siegel and Shuster themselves supported, Siegel commenting that "If you're interested in what made Superman what it is, here's one of the keys to what made it universally acceptable. Joe and I had certain inhibitions ... which led to wish-fulfillment which we expressed through our interest in science fiction and our comic strip. That's where the dual-identity concept came from" and Shuster supporting that as being "why so many people could relate to it".
Ian Gordon suggests that the many incarnations of Superman across media use nostalgia to link the character to an ideology of the American Way. He defines this ideology as a means of associating individualism, consumerism, and democracy and as something that took shape around WWII and underpinned the war effort. Superman he notes was very much part of that effort.
Superman's immigrant status is a key aspect of his appeal. Aldo Regalado saw the character as pushing the boundaries of acceptance in America. The extraterrestrial origin was seen by Regalado as challenging the notion that Anglo-Saxon ancestry was the source of all might. Gary Engle saw the "myth of Superman [asserting] with total confidence and a childlike innocence the value of the immigrant in American culture." He argues that Superman allowed the superhero genre to take over from the Western as the expression of immigrant sensibilities. Through the use of a dual identity, Superman allowed immigrants to identify with both their cultures. Clark Kent represents the assimilated individual, allowing Superman to express the immigrants' cultural heritage for the greater good. David Jenemann has offered a contrasting view. He argues that Superman's early stories portray a threat: "the possibility that the exile would overwhelm the country." David Rooney, a theater critic for The New York Times, in his evaluation of the play, Year Zero, considers Superman to be the "quintessential immigrant story ... (b)orn on an alien planet, he grows stronger on Earth, but maintains a secret identity tied to a homeland that continues to exert a powerful hold on him even as his every contact with those origins does him harm."
Some see Judaic themes in Superman. Simcha Weinstein notes that Superman's story has some parallels to that of Moses. For example, Moses as a baby was sent away by his parents in a reed basket to escape death and adopted by a foreign culture. Weinstein also posits that Superman's Kryptonian name, "Kal-El", resembles the Hebrew words קל-אל, which can be taken to mean "voice of God". Larry Tye suggests that this "Voice of God" is an allusion to Moses' role as a prophet. The suffix "el", meaning "(of) God", is also found in the name of angels (e.g. Gabriel, Ariel), who are airborne humanoid agents of good with superhuman powers. The Nazis also thought Superman was a Jew and in 1940 Joseph Goebbels publicly denounced Superman and his creator Siegel. However, Martin Lund argues that the evidence for Jewish influence is circumstantial, and notes that Siegel was not a practicing Jew and that he never acknowledged the influence of Judaism.
Superman stories have occasionally exhibited Christian themes as well. Screenwriter Tom Mankiewicz consciously made Superman an allegory for Christ in the 1978 movie starring Christopher Reeve: baby Kal-El's ship resembles the Star of Bethlehem, and Jor-El gives his son a messianic mission to lead humanity into a brighter future.
<ref>tag; name "dccomicshistory" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
...Jerry Siegel had his hands — and typewriter — full, turning out stories for the comic books and the daily newspaper strips (which had completely separate continuities from the Sundays).
Decades of comic book mythology and a hit TV series have made Superman's hometown of Smallville, Kan., one of the most famous places in America.
a metaphor and cultural icon for the 21st century
American cultural icons (e.g., the American Flag, Superman, the Statue of Liberty)
Warner Bros. has "Superman Returns" licensing deals with Mattel, Pepsi, Burger King, Duracell, Samsung, EA Games and Quaker State Motor Oil, to name a few.
With a super hero that transcends all demographics" ... and ... "S-Shield, which continues to be a fashion symbol and hot trend
R.E.M. starts singing "Superman." My arm aches and I've got déjà vu. Funny how everything comes together.
the semi-autobiographical tale of Steven being given the chance to write a Superman comic, but stumbling when he can't figure out how to relate to the character. Through the course of the story, Seagle finds his way into Superman by looking at it through the lens of his own mortality.
CBG Fan Award winners 1982–present
Like Moses. Much as the baby prophet was floated in a reed basket by a mother desperate to spare him from an Egyptian Pharaoh's death warrant, so Kal-El's doomed…
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