Friday, September 21, 2012

Battle of the Super-Origin: Lois Lane

And now it's time to look at one of the most recognized characters in Superman’s universe: Lois Lane. She’s also known as “The Woman Who Can’t Put Two and Two Together.”

MoS – We first see Lois when Clark saves the space shuttle. You could say it was love at first sight for the two. The second issue of the book pretty much deals with Lois trying to get an interview with the Man of Steel. Whenever she tries to get him, she just misses him. Lois then decides to put herself in danger to get the interview and it works…until she is shafted by “Clark Kent: Mild-Mannered Reporter.” There are also her adventures on Lex's yacht and her time with Bizarro. You can read more about that  HERE.

Birthright –We and Clark first meet Lois at the Daily Planet as she defends Jimmy from the a-holistic publisher. She’s kind of being treated as the crazy lady who’s trying to report on the mysterious super-powered guy. When her helicopter starts to malfunction during the robocopter attack, Superman saves her. Throughout the book, she’s seen interacting with Clark and Superman. At one point, she almost puts it together, but she dismisses it. She even defends Clark to her co-workers at some get-together. She is pretty much the only person who believes in Superman when Lex begins his smear campaign. She also gets to help Superman in the final battle by removing the Kryptonite field from Metropolis.

Secret Origin – The audience is first introduced to Lois at the Daily Planet where she is in a heated argument with Perry over an article. Lois then uses Clark to try to get into Lex’s tower. It’s also where she notices that Clark is obviously hiding something. Of course, her “Solid-Snaking” gets her into trouble and she has to be saved by Superman. She is the first one to get the big scoop on the Man of Steel, which ticks off Lex to no end. We find out that she has two buttheads in her life: General Sam Lane and John Corben. She even almost puts two and two together with Clark, but she dismisses it easily. She and Superman hit it off pretty well here and she is one of the only people who truly believes in him.

Nu52 – We first see Lois with Jimmy on the train that’s rigged to crash. We then see her at the military complex where she is trying to use her connections with her father and Corben to see Superman. She pretty much treats Clark as competition but she does try to get him to come over to the Daily Planet. She is also one of the only people who trusts Superman.  During the invasion, she tries to talk the “assimilated” Corben from attacking everyone. She also hangs around with Jimmy and Luthor during the invasion. Afterwards, she is seen at the end where Superman gets a key to the city.

When it comes to portrayals and character, Lois Lane is pretty similar in all of them. She’s a reporter with no limits, she’s brash, she’s kinda hot (for a drawn fictional character anyway), and she is a damsel in distress. So in saying that, there really isn’t that much difference between their personalities. I think Perry from Birthright can simplify this a bit more:

 I have no words for this. 

The Lois I probably like the least is the one from the Nu52 origin. She’s kind of “just there”  a lot like how Jimmy is in this origin. She also has the least contact with Clark/Superman here. The reasons of course are that Clark is at the Daily Star and Superman is doing that “loner” thing and doesn’t do interviews. I do admit the scene in the elevator is funny.

Here‘s another thing that makes this origin different from all the others. There is no “love” thing going on between Clark and Lois. It’s quite a departure. In Secret Origin and MoS, the love triangle is pretty much laid out for all to see. For Birthright, it’s there as well but Waid doesn’t take it to 11 like Johns does.

Subtle, Johns, subtle.

Lois in MoS does get a lot more to do. A majority of the second issue is devoted to her as she tries to get an interview with Superman. She takes care of her blind sister Lucy in issue five, and there’s the whole yacht debacle in issue four. The only problem I really see with this version of Lois is that she kind of comes off as unlikable at times. For example, there’s the whole “Clark Kent Stole the Story of the Century” thing. She does have a right to be a little miffed at Clark, but holding on to that for 18 months is a bit much. Also, we really don’t get a reason on why Clark is in love with Lois. I guess it’s her fashion or something.

I said before and I will say it again...Lois is one nice dresser. 

For the other two versions, Lois is probably at her best. She’s brash, but likable. She stands up for the truth even when faced with opposition. We even see why Clark would be interested in her.  In Birthright, Superman’s image gets tarnished, but she still believes in him. She also treats Clark pretty decent. She knows about all of the stories that Clark wrote and that impresses her. She even stands up for him to the other co-workers and scoffs at Clark when he quits the Daily Planet. The conversations between her, Clark, Superman, and Lex were good.

Now Clark, I don't have to give you the same talk I gave to Jimmy, right?

With Secret Origin, we get some of the same and a little more as well. I think Lois is best at her reporting in this book. She constantly wants to dig out the truth on Luthor. Also, she almost figures out Clark’s secret. She knows that he is obviously hiding something behind the bad suit, awkward behavior, and big glasses. Of course she doesn’t figure out, but this does start something. The interactions between her, Clark/Superman and Lex is pretty good too. Another thing that we get to see in Secret Origin is most of her backstory and her relationships with her father and Corben.

So which Lois gets the point? It has to be the Secret Origin Lois. There is just so much about this version I like. We get a backstory on her life and we get people from her past. We also get a pretty good story on how she came to meet Clark/Superman. Her reporting eye was also good here. So the point goes to Secret Origin.

Score tally:
Man of Steel (MoS): 2
Superman Birthright : 1
Superman Secret Origin : 2
Superman and the Men of Steel (...Nu52): 2

Next time, it's going to be the rest of the supporting characters. After that, I'm finally going to look at the main character, but there’s something else there I have to go over.


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