80 years ago today, Superman was introduced to the world. We look back on Action Comics #1 and give our review of the issue.

Background

Known for introducing superheroes with Superman
Written by Jerry Siegel, art by Joe Shuster
1933’s The Reign of the Superman in Science Fiction magazine - bald villain who briefly gains telepathic powers
Pitched modern Superman take for 4 years
Cover date of June 1938
Published on Monday April 18, 1938 by National Allied Publications
Cover Price - 10 cents
Known for first appearance of Clark Kent/Superman and Lois Lane
Also first appearance of Giovanni Zatara (Zatanna’s father) and Tex Thompson/Mr. America
First 13 pages focus on Superman

Collectibility

First print was 200,000 copies; quickly sold out (estimated 50-100 still around)
First individual comic to be sold for more than $1 million
In 2014, a 9.0 graded Action Comics #1 sold for $3.2 million on eBay
The Hollywood Reporter - In 2012, Lionsgate put Action No. 1 into development; was to be a fictional comedy heist film about how Nicolas Cage’s copy of Action Comics #1 was stolen in 2000 (recovered in 2011, sold for $2.1 million)

Review

Cover
Classic things - sent from a destroyed planet, newspaper, Lois is tough, can leap (not fly)
“Superman! Champion of the oppressed, the physical marvel who had sworn to devote his existence to helping those in need!”
Superman’s strength is from his species being millions of years more advanced (compared to insects)
Superman is on a mission to prove someone on death row is innocent.
We see Clark Kent at The Daily Star where he works as a reporter
He goes and takes down a wife-beater
Clark gets a date with Lois, Butch tries to cut in on a dance, she leaves
“Fight you weak-livered pole-cat”
Lois is kidnapped
We see the iconic scene of Superman picking up the car
Clark Kent is given an assignment to cover war in South America, goes to Washington D.C. instead
Spies on a corrupt senator
Kidnaps him, runs along a power wire
Story ends abruptly/ “To Be Continued”

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