Thursday, February 21, 2008

It’s Superman! (Final Thoughts)

Continued from yesterday:

The freedom DC allowed De Haven is astonishing, especially since Superman is one of their most lucrative, kid-friendly characters. Not that this is a dark revisionist take in the vein of Frank Miller or Alan Moore. It’s simply an honest tale. De Haven doesn’t shy away from what violence can do to the human body, a lynching in the middle act shows Clark that not every person is worth saving, and his characters -- even Clark -- drink, smoke, and shag.

Supposedly, there’s a “director’s cut” of the novel, running right around 1,000 pages, which the author trimmed in half for publication. While I agree that this novel should be a fast read, his truncation isn’t perfect. The middle section feels alternately too long or too short, depending on which character De Haven is following. Lex Luthor’s henchmen get too much attention, and Clark’s girlfriend in Hollywood, who is far more endearing than Lois Lane, gets a quick, unsatisfactory write-off.

Anyway, out of words. Find It’s Superman!, read it, and enjoy the hell out of it.

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