430 – Kryptonite!

In September 1949, Superman #61 hit the stands – the most important book so far in the evolution of the Superman myth. In it, Superman encounters a fake “swami” who happens to have a piece of kryptonite in his turban. Lois Lane helps him out of this first encounter. The swami, believing he has hex […]

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417 – Smallville!

In Superboy #2 (March 1949), it is finally established, for the first time, that the young Clark Kent lives in a town named Smallville. As recently discussed, amidst many other superhero books getting cancelled and characters disappearing into the Golden Age, Superboy is the only superhero to get his own book. I think this is […]

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245 – Holy Continuity, Batman!

In Batman #21 (December 1943), we find the first instance of a comic referencing a minor event in its continuity from a previous month in a footnote. In fairness, the thinning of Alfred the Butler was an atypical event in comic history at this point, since the goal was to generally keep the same formula […]

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239 – Batman, Dick-less

Bruce Wayne loses ward-ship over Dick Grayson for the first time in Batman #20 (October 1943), a recurring story idea that comes up in later years. Dick’s shifty Uncle George and Aunt Clara come to claim him, take Bruce to court claiming his playboy ways are a bad influence, and then use the opportunity to […]

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195 – Bat-Nesting

Not to be out-done by Superman’s nesting, Batman #12 (June 1942) continues to deepen the Batman mythos by offering two glimpses into how Bruce Wayne celebrates his mission against crime (which is really an excuse to adventure in tights, at this point): A Hall of Trophies and a detailed glimpse at the secret lair, which […]

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194 – Super-Nesting

By Superman #17 (May 1942), Superman has built a “mountain sanctuary”, not-yet-called a Fortress of Solitude, but looking a hell of a lot like it. Here Superman puts the finishing touches on its construction.

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163 – First Jimmy Olsen?

Continuing my streak of hard-hitting investigative comic book journalism, is the elevator boy in Action Comics #38 (May 1941) the first true appearance of Jimmy Olsen? We have red hair, bowtie and green coat! At this point in history, Jimmy Olsen existed as a character in the Superman radio show for about a year and […]

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162 – Superman Flies, Finally!

In Superman #11 (May 1941), it seems that Superman finally has the ability to defy gravity and truly fly. Brian Cronin debunks the myth that the Fleischer Superman cartoons were the first place Superman deliberately flew and he believes that Superman actually first flew in the comics in Superman #10 (March 1941). However, while inspecting […]

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