A Classic Superman Character Just Saved the Man of Steel’s Edgy New Team
As Superman and the Authority charges into its climactic, final battle, one longtime Superman ally steps up to help the Man of Steel save the day.
WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Superman and the Authority #4, on sale now from DC Comics.
For much of the comic book miniseries Superman and the Authority, an older Man of Steel has decided to become more proactive and operate more how he sees fit to enforce justice rather than play a more laissez-faire role with the DC Universe’s other heroes and heads of state. However, with his newly formed version of the Authority away dealing with a crisis on the other side of the world, an increasingly vulnerable Superman finds himself at one his oldest villain’s mercy until he receives the timely assistance of one of his most trusted confidantes and allies in his entire life: Lois Lane.
Lois had been conspicuously absent throughout Superman and the Authority, leaving the Man of Tomorrow largely by himself and his new superhero team. The evil Ultra-Humanite had made passing references to Kal-El’s son Jon Kent inheriting the Superman mantle from his father and a threat to be dealt with later but Lois herself was unseen from the proceedings. And with the Authority battling enemies disrupting a conference in Dubai, Superman was left alone at the team’s Alaskan headquarters Fort Superman to oversee their activities only to be ambushed by the Ultra-Humanite, with the Golden Age villain using Solomon Grundy’s body. And in Superman and the Authority #4 by Grant Morrison, Mikel Janin, Jordie Bellaire and Tom Napolitano, Lois finally steps in to save the day.
The Ultra-Humanite took the subdued Superman to the bottled city of Kandor to use the Kryptonian technology available there to perform a procedure that would permanently transfer his consciousness into the vulnerable Man of Steel. Though the supervillain genius believes he has outsmarted his arch-nemesis, he is shocked to discover that it is Superman that has lured him into a trap, affecting Kandor’s settings so he could retain his powers and fight back. And as the battle is joined, Lois appears right on time, blasting Ultra-Humanite with a White Kryptonite-powered laser rifle modified to neutralize strange, plant-based targets. With Grundy’s body largely composed of the mystical foliage within Slaughter Swamp, this makes him completely incapacitated by the modified laser.
Lois reveals to Superman that she has been preoccupied researching Kryptonian technology and culture, with her understanding now exceeding Superman’s himself as she delves into the material with her keen, investigative work ethic. With Ultra-Humanite and his true benefactor Brainiac effectively defeated and outmaneuvered by a dismissive Superman, Kal-El reminds his wife that his mission will next lead him to the other side of the cosmos and that he needs her to remain behind and look after their son in the face of the all the superhero challenges Jon will confront as he fully inhabits the iconic mantle.
Possessing is a vested interest in her husband and son’s lives, it makes perfect sense that Lois would become a de facto expert on Kryptonian culture and technology while lending vital support whenever and wherever she can. And by ensuring Kandor’s environment would retain Superman’s powers and coming in, guns literally blazing, against Ultra-Humanite, Lois has demonstrated once again that she is much more than a sideline observer of Superman’s fantastic adventures. Jon has big shoes to fill following his father’s departure from Earth and while he has certainly filled them admirably since, it’s Lois that will provide the strong foundation he needs to exceed his father’s example as the new Superman.
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