So why is Superman returning?

Did he go somewhere? And if so, where?

Spoilers, though they haven’t really kept this much of a secret:

He heard reports that Krypton maybe hadn’t blown up after all. He went to check. Nothing to it. He came back. It took five years, give or take.

Whereupon he sued the National Enquirer for publishing such a story.

He forgot his keys.


Because he left money on the table.


He came back because he wasn’t sure whether or not he’d turned off the gas burner on the stove. Yup, he had. So he’ll go away again soon.

Because some studio execs need money to redo their Malibu beach houses?

He wanted to get back before we get that wall to keep aliens out built.

Actually he probably only got about halfway there before realizing, “Hey, wait a minute… If those reports are wrong, and Krypton did explode… then when I finally get there, then I’ll be in a solar system with a red sun *and * a whole planet’s worth of Kryptonite… Hmmm. Maybe I’m not that curious after all.”

Where would these erroneous “reports” even have come from, anyway? Some random visit from an extraterrestrial species of pathological liars? “Oh yes, we just been to Krypton; it’s vurrai nize… (Psst! I tol’ heem we just been to Krypton! snerk)”

Maybe Superman made the mistake of talking to those Phantom Zone criminals. “I must say, I’m genuinely amazed that you managed to foil our bid to conquer this adopted Earth of yours, son of Jor-El. You’re clearly a much more astute man than your father, who was so completely wrong about Krypton exploding and all… What? You hadn’t heard? Oh yes, total false alarm; the planet’s completely fine, no huge asteroid belt of rubble glowing with death radiation at all, I assure you. In fact, your mother was asking why you never visit…”

My guess is that he spent all five years on Paradise Island.

Bah. He didn’t need to return for that. Telescopic vision, dontcha know.

Lex had stories planted that a nasa probe took some pictures of Kryptons solar system and it looked as if Krypton was still there.

Better than that- I’ll be floating in the vacuum of space when exposed to kryptonite and red sun raditation.

with snakes!

Well remember when he spun the Earth around and went back in time to undo Lois’ death?

He has to spin several galaxies around to wipe away Superman 3 and 4. It takes some time.

Naw, HE spun around the earth, he didn’t spin the planet.

And please look at the scene carefully, because he was going counterclockwise, which we all know results in a reversal of the time flow. Uh, except that if you looked at the scene from the bottom of planet earth, he was then going in a clockwise direction. I guess it’s all about Point of View, somehow… :confused:

I completely agree that it would take faster than light counterclockwise travel around many galaxies to erase Supes 3 and 4, though, and that is probably why he was gone 5 years. That kind of damage takes a lot to undo, and there’s probably a recuperation period needed as well.


After the failure of 1987’s Superman IV: The Quest for Peace, Superman became a recluse, locking himself in his Fortress of Solitude. (In his last published interview with the Daily Planet in 1991, he was heard to have said, “Detroying the world’s nukes? I knew I shouldn’t have let Chris Reeve write the damn thing. God, first Pryor and now this.”*) Superman famously faked his own death in 1992, claiming to have been killed in a battle with a mysterious enemy called Doomsday. Afterwards, Superman only appeared sporadically whenever he needed extra cash, doing a series of online commercials for American Express with pitchman and long-time fan Jerry Seinfeld. After September 11 and the success of the television series Smallville, which Superman said “really struck a chord with me for some reason,” Superman decided to return. The five-year absense is not due to the length of time it took him to reverse the rotation of the earth (didn’t take that long, really), but actually due to the fact that he had to inform the electric company, his lawyers, etc. that he was still alive. You try disappearing off the face of the earth for 19 years after faking your own death. Not pretty.

*The interview was written by a Planet reported named Clark Kent, who had also mysteriously disappeared at the same time. The connection between Kent and Superman is unknown. When asked about the subject, Planet editor Perry White appeared ignorant on the subject, stating “Great Caesar’s ghost, you mean he’s missing? I just thought his deadlines were!”

yeah…but he doesnt fly to Krypton… He goes in a big ship. Its a big crystal thing. I dont think Superman can fly that far into space, doesnt he draw power from the yellow sun? So, it’s possible that the crystal ship is anti-kryptonite. Besides, I thought Kryptonite was parts of krypton that had passed through intersteller radiation, not just chunks of the planet. If that was the case, how would Kryptonians survive day-to-day life? The only question all this leaves is, Where did he get his big Crystal ship? I’m gonna say he grew it a la Fortress of Solitude.

Most of the mass of Krypton was released as kryptonite in the cataclysm that destroyed the planet. Some chunks of the debris passed through various radioactive clouds as it disbursed throughout the galaxy, making the different colors of kryptonite which affect super-powered Kryptonians in different ways.

The basic form of kryptonite is the green kryptonite. It is immediately weakening to a super-powered Kryptonian, and soon fatal, but it seems to have little or no effect on Earth-normal humans. Because it has been shown that non-superpowered Kryptonians are identical to Earth-normal humans to 17 points of classification (even to the extent of having fertile offspring) it stands to reason that any K-radiation in the environment prior to the destruction of Krypton would have been harmless to the population, or at least as minor an environmental problem as the radioactivity released by granite on Earth.

Although he does derive his power from the Sun, traditionally Superman has been able to fly to other solar systems under his own power. He only runs into trouble if the solar system he enters has a differently colored sun, which screws with his powers in various ways.

Turns out he bought it on QVC.

mobo85, that was brilliant. (Or as the Brits would say, “brilliant!!”.)

But there was one more difficulty involved… “Clark Kent”'s finding an affordable apartment in NYC after a lengthy unexplained absence from Manhattan (and the rest of the world) and the dissolution of his legal and financial identity and assets. Kent/Superman had lost the modest, 435-square-foot but rent-controlled fifth-floor walkup studio (not that climbing stairs was ever a problem) he’d been illegally subletting (hey, it’s the American Way!) in NoLita for $475/month in 1980 dollars, and just try finding one of those again these days. On a newspaper freelancer’s salary, no less.

He ended up crashing at Jimmy Olsen’s place for over a year, sleeping on his futon. It took Clark that long to work up enough cash to be taken seriously by the banks, commercial lenders, and apartment brokers…