A Brief History of Superheroes by Brian J. Robb

By Brian J. Robb

A desirable written exploration of the superhero phenomenon, from its beginnings within the depths of significant melancholy to the blockbuster videos of today.

For over ninety years, superheroes were interrogated, deconstructed, and reinvented. during this wide-ranging research, Robb seems on the assorted characters, their creators, and the ways that their creations were reinvented for successive generations. necessarily, the focal point is at the usa, however the context is overseas, together with an exam of characters constructed in India and Japan in response to the conventional American hero.

Sections learn: the start of the superhero, together with Superman, in 1938; the DC relatives (Superman, Batman, ask yourself Woman and The Justice Society/League of America), from the Nineteen Forties to the Sixties; the superheroes enlistment within the battle attempt within the Forties and 50s; their neutering by means of the Comics Code; the problem to DC from the wonder relations (The incredible 4, Spider-Man, and The X-Men), from the Nineteen Sixties to the Nineteen Eighties; the superhero as advanced anti-hero; superheroes deconstructed within the Eighties (The Watchmen and Frank Miller's Batman), and their politicization; self sustaining comedian ebook creators and new publishers within the Nineteen Eighties and 90s; superheroes in retreat, and their rebirth on the videos in blockbusters from Batman to Spider-Man and The Avengers.

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Extra resources for A Brief History of Superheroes

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Clark Kent would be like them: shy, shortsighted, bumbling, working class, and socially inept. Like his creators, he’d work on a newspaper. His look and character was modelled after another movie hero – bespectacled silent comedian Harold Lloyd – while his name came from Clark Gable, a big star in the mid-Thirties. The real name of pulp hero Doc Savage was Clark Savage Jr, only one of many similarities with Superman. The name ‘Kent’ also featured as one of the identities of the Shadow, 53 Kent Allard (note the surname of his sidekick, Margo Lane).

He wasn’t a very good businessman,’ recalled Sullivan. ’ Looking for a strong cover feature for Action Comics, Sullivan and Mayer dipped into the company ‘slush pile’ (unsolicited manuscripts and strips sent in, hopeful of publication) where they found the long-neglected Superman pitch. For a while Siegel and Shuster had tried to sell their idea as a newspaper strip with some interest from the United Features Syndicate in 1937. Now Vin Sullivan was offering them the thirteen-page lead strip in Action Comics, so they rapidly reformatted the intended daily Superman strips into a form suitable for the by-now standardized comic book page.

Shuster had been born in Toronto, Canada, to Jewish immigrants, moving to Cleveland, Ohio, in 1924. He attended Glenville High School, becoming friends with Siegel in 1931. Siegel had grown up in Cleveland, and was also the son of Jewish immigrants. The pair struck up a fast friendship, sharing a love of science fiction in movie serials, pulp magazines, and newspaper comic strips. They were avid readers of Amazing Stories and Weird Tales, pulps that offered them regular doses of strangeness and imagination.

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