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A retcon for the ages: Lex Luthor, cake-taker!

From Superman #709 (art by Eddy Burrows)

It’s days like this that I regret not being a regular reader of Superman.

Via Dean Trippe, Rob Bricken and undoubtedly countless others comes this glorious panel from Superman #709, out now. If you don’t get the reference, then you’ve probably not experienced the wonder that is The Super Dictionary, a bizarre 1978 children’s book that used DC Comics superheroes to define some 4,000 words. (Also, you’ve probably not spent much time on Tumblr.)

Assembled by Warner Educational Services, the surreal 416-page book utilizes an image of Supergirl, I don’t know, winking at a rat to teach kids the word “ever,” and a shot of Joker ready to hurl a woman to her death to illustrate “scream.” And for “forty,” the lil’ ones get a purple jumpsuit-clad Lex Luthor making off with 40 cakes. And that’s terrible.

But with this week’s issue, Superman writer Chris Roberson does the previously inconceivable: He introduces that dark chapter from Luthor’s past into DC canon! And that’s fantastic.

What’s more, if Luthor’s cake-stealing actually happened in the post-Crisis DC Universe, so did Wonder Woman’s tug of war with a shoe-stealing whale, and Hawkman’s possible devouring of the Atom! To heck with Flashpoint — Roberson has created the launching point for the next big DC event.

From The Super Dictionary

Food or Comics? | This week’s comics on a budget

Action Comics Annual #13

Welcome to another installment of “Food or Comics?” Every week we set certain hypothetical spending limits on ourselves and go through the agony of trying to determine what comics come home and which ones stay on the shelves. So join us as we run down what comics we’d buy if they only had $15 and $30 to spend, as well as what we’d get if we had some “mad money” to splurge with.

Check out Diamond’s release list for this week if you’d like to play along in our comments section.

Graeme McMillan

If I had $15, I’d spend the first $2.99 on the last King City, which definitely appears on this week’s list. Yay! Then I’d split the remaining $13 between two DC Comics: Paul Cornell’s Action Comics Annual #13 ($4.99), in which a young Lex Luthor meets Darkseid (Editor Wil Moss promised me on Twitter the other week that this will fulfill my sick, sick desire for more comics like Jack Kirby’s Super Powers toy tie-ins from the 1980s, so I’m entirely sold) and Vertigo Resurrected: Winter’s Edge #1 ($7.99), a collection of long out-of-print seasonal tales starring Vertigo favorites and forgotten ghost characters from Christmas Past. Be warned: I’m a sucker for Holiday comics, so expect to see me picking those a lot in the next few weeks. It’s the Most Wonderful Time Of The Year, after all.

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Can YOU unravel the secret of All Star Superman?

What’s that you say? You didn’t know there was a secret? Well, various internet wonks have been kicking around a very intriguing theory about Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely’s All Star Superman — the Absolute Edition of which hits stores tomorrow — involving its villain, Lex Luthor. In his latest column at Techland, Douglas Wolk sums up the All Star Superman secret theory and runs down all the available evidence for it. If you’re the sort of person who enjoys picking apart literary mysteries for which there aren’t obvious answers present in the text — from Mulholland Drive to the end of The Sopranos — this is very much the article for you. And even if you aren’t, it’ll give you a whole new way to look at one of the past decade’s greatest superhero comics, which is always a good thing.

Grumpy Old Fan | Notice I am not making a Spinal Tap reference: DC Comics Solicitations for (January) ‘11

Weird Worlds #1

Weird Worlds vol. 2 #1

Good grief, it’s not even Halloween and I have to think about the first DC comics of 2011? Even trying to pronounce that number makes my tongue stumble — I keep wanting to say “twenty-eleven” and it sounds like something made-up. Worse, I keep wanting to say twenty-leven, like a common hillbilly.

Nevertheless, I do like DC’s cover gimmick for January Two Thousand Eleven. The white backgrounds and big logos remind me of Superman #701’s minimalist cover, and that isn’t a bad thing. The cumulative effect of the style’s uniformity is also more effective than the last time DC emphasized the logos, back in (cover-date) February 2002. The light, open design is also a lot more cheery than January 2009’s black-background “Faces Of Evil.”

Still, we’re more interested in what’s between the covers, are we not?


Right off I am pretty impressed with the selection of one-shots at the top of the solicits. The Starman/Congorilla special sounds very fun, especially with Rex the Wonder Dog involved. I’m curious to see what the Shazam! special does with Billy and Mary Batson, and I’m always glad for new John Henry Irons stories. The Wonder Girl special doesn’t interest me that much, but it doesn’t seem entirely about her anyway. Although most of these specials appear to tie into regular books (Justice League, Titans, and Teen Titans), they sound good enough on their own merits.

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Business cards for LexCorp, Stark Industries and more

If you’ve ever dreamed of working at LexCorp, Stark Industries or even Acme Labs, here’s the first step to making that dream come true — business cards. Fro Design Co. has created a print featuring business cards for Wayne Enterprises, Duff Breweries, Sterling Cooper, the Dharma Initiative and several other fictional companies.


Calvin and Hobbes, meet Joker and Lex

Joker and Lex

Wow. I knew Lee Bermejo could draw some steely-lookin’ bad guys, but I didn’t know he could also channel Bill Watterson so well I’d have a hard time telling the two apart. Behold “Joker and Lex,” Bermejo and writer Brian Azzarello’s Calvin and Hobbes-esque contribution to the Superman/Batman all-star 75th-issue spectacular. I don’t even wanna think about what the rules of Jokerball would be in the alternate universe where this strip is a universally beloved classic — let alone what kind of “Joker peeing” stickers it might have spawned.

(via Topless Robot)

Paul Cornell goes exclusive with DC Comics

Orange Lantern Lex Luthor

Orange Lantern Lex Luthor

DC’s The Source blog announced today that writer Paul Cornell has signed an exclusive contract with the publisher. I guess this means I can finally take down my “Bring back Captain Britain and MI13” petition page, heavy sigh.

Cornell was named the writer of Action Comics back in April, and in yesterday’s interview with CBR, Dan Didio said “…even though he’s not new to comics but new to DC, Paul Cornell is a guy who we see an expanded role for in the DCU as well.” So it’s probably no surprise that he’s signed on with them for two years.

“…I’m a couple of issues into one title you haven’t heard about yet,” Cornell said on his blog. “I couldn’t be happier, or feel more welcomed, in my new playground.”

Cornell’s run on Action Comics starts at the end of this month with issue #890. Cornell shared his plans for the book with the Source:

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