Superman 75th Anniversary Panel; Creators Defend ‘Man of Steel’

Published 2 years ago by , Updated October 16th, 2013 at 11:32 am,

Superman is loved the world over, and the character continues to evolve today. Man of Steel and DC’s “New 52″ reboot gave us new versions of the Last Son of Krypton for the modern age, while comic book creators like Grant Morrison, Mark Waid and Geoff Johns have been going back over Superman’s origins and getting deeper into the character and icon since the early 2000s.

To celebrate an already celebrated character, DC Comics and WB put on a big panel at the 2013 New York Comic Con, to talk about all things related to the character – and his future. Hosted by DC Entertainment PR head Gary Mireaneau, the Superman 75th Anniversary panel included comic book writer and editor Mike Carlin, actress Molly Quinn (Superman Unbound), DC co-publisher Dan Dido and DC Animation Guru Bruce Timm. It was time to give Superman his due.

  • The panel begin with a retrospective (presumably featured on the upcoming Man of Steel Blu-ray) with director Zack Snyder, his cast and crew all talking about why Superman is this great icon, and what he’s been through over the decades.
  • The panelists spent a lot of time discussing a lot of the more divisive elements of Man of Steelincluding its depiction of Lois Lane and how it depicted Superman as a character. They were pretty protective of Zack Snyder’s choices – and considering that some of the most influential people in the crafting of Superman mythos, that’s saying something.
  • The panelists went around and shared personal stories of when they first became aware of Superman. Stories ranged from one person having started reading the comics (like his mom) when he got his tonsils out – to Bruce Timm describing being at home trying to get a signal on his dinky TV and seeing a flying man appear the static.
  • The comic book / animation creators talked about what it is like creating Superman mythos today as compared to the past. They get to have their own fun.
  • We were treated to a TRAILER for WB and DC Animation’s combo effort for a Superman animated short created by Zack Snyder and Bruce Timm [WATCH IT HERE]. It’s a pretty spectacular homage to just about every major incarnation of the character from all forms of media – using actual still iconic images of the character that come to animated life. The full short will be featured on the Man of Steel Blu-ray. It will also air (eventually) on DC’s cartoon network animation block.

Superman 75th Anniversary NYCC Superman 75th Anniversary Panel; Creators Defend Man of Steel


  • First question was – OF COURSE – about the Man of Steel ending controversy. Bruce Timm and the other creators were cool with it. (So maybe you can be too?) One guy joked about the people in the train station during the calamity. They were headed to Gotham, apparently. 
  • One girl brought up product placement in comics. Dido said if they have fan support, it won’t be needed. Challenge extended, fans.
  • When asked about the biggest takeaways from Man of Steel, Bruce Timm said he was sucked in and intrigued by a new take on the mythos. It taught him that this character CAN be continuously updated and kept relevant. Dido like seeing a warrior Jor-El.
  • When what the overall theme of Superman is in the modern age, the overwhelming response was ‘What you do with power.’
  • Bruce Timm confessed in response to a question that he would’ve changed his depiction of Superman in Justice League: The Animated Series season 1.
  • Dido commented on the Superman/Wonder Woman relationship in the New 52. He promised fans they have NOT abandoned or forgotten Lois Lane.
  • The creators shared memorable moments from the comics that they still love.
  • The screened the TRAILER for the short film one more time. After some technical difficulty.


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    • +1

  2. Wicked jealous of you right now, Kofi.

    Where are we on that link to the guys who are selling those DC motor-cross jackets?

    • +1

  3. Love Superman, loved The Man of Steel but does anyone know how he shaved his beard? fingernail?

      • Sorry for taking up so much space didn’t think it would do that.

        • Cheers for that Lex but as I was saying I’m talking about MOS not earlier as at one point he looks like Hoboman then hes gets a quick makeover it’s just funny is all.

          On a side note have you read Lex Luther “Man of Steel” that’s the take on Lex I would like to see in Superman vs Batman. Also Lex has a nice Atkins style dinner date with Bruce Wayne in it.

      • the way the tie-in gillette commercial was made, it was suggested that how he shaves would be in the film, but it was not.

      • surely that would break the mirror right? or if not burn his face off?

        • Whichever way you look at it it wouldn’t work but it’s a superhero film so probably just shouldn’t have mentioned it.

          • I liked Kevin Smith’s take- he used a piece of the ship he arrived on Earth with as a sort of ‘razor’.

    • that’s exactly what I was thinking it does make sense

  4. HOLD ON! why didnt you guys fit Tom Welling’s pic in there !? He was only Kal-El for 10 years. Im just saying

    • I didn’t watch the last several seasons of “Smallville”, so don’t know for sure, but did he ever appear in “uniform”? All the pics are in full-on Superman mode. If there isn’t one of Welling as Supe, that would explain his absence.

      • It wasn’t till the last episode Welling put on the costume.

        • Still, there’ Kirk Alyn,Superman:TAS-JLU animated Superman not pictured.

          • Kirk Alyn. First screen Superman.

        • he was never in the suit. just crap cgi.

      • He never was seen in costume. They CG’ed him as Supes, but never any close up shots, nothing you could see all that well.

        • Which is weird because on the Smallville set, he wore the suit that he missed out on wearing when he auditioned for Superman Returns and lost out to Brandon Routh.

          • Tom Welling auditioned for Superman Returns?

            • Tom Welling, Henry Cavill and Brandon Routh all auditioned for it.

              Routh got the part.

              By weird coincidence, Routh auditioned to play Clark Kent in Smallville but the role went to Welling instead.

              • That is crazy, they all got their chance.

    • From what I’ve seen of Smallville there wasn’t a whole lot of what I love about Superman/Clark included. It always seemd like ‘the OC featuring Clark Kent’ and too teen-drama-y. It was really far from interesting.

  5. Superman is & always will be my #1 favorite superhero. He’s passed the test of time with flying colors with people trying to bring him down.

    R.I.P Christopher Reeve. “You had us believe a man could fly”.

  6. Wow, imagine 75 years since 1938 if Superman was not from Krypton, he would have been very old by now. So just be happy guys he’s still the Man of Steel. Right? And I’m not asking. I’m telling you

  7. Seriously in MOS no one has any idea how he shaved his beard?

    • On Lois & Clark, it’s shown him shaven by reflecting his heat vision in the mirror. I guess that would get rid of the beard. Styling & cutting his hair is another question. Which I guess only he can do.

      • Yeah he first did that in the Man of Steel(’86) comic IIRC. And yeah I grew up on Superman. ‘Til this day people bring it up. Good to see him get his props.

  8. Glad to know the creators for both the comic and the movie are in harmony. Look forward to what they’ll show us!

    • Yeah but he didn’t do it in the movie did he? I don’t really care it’s just funny thinking about it. He just put’s the suit on and bamb hair done beard gone like he just stepped out of a salon

    • You mean all the creators CLAIM to be in harmony with the version depicted in Man of Steel. You don’t think WB/DC is going to allow their employees to badmouth a franchise that they’ve already sunk hundreds of millions of dollars into producing and promoting do you? I’d like to hear what some of those creators REALLY think of Snyder’s Superman In Name Only.

      • I don’t know about them, but Man Of Steel sucked. I mean it just sucked a$$ on so many levels. I know Hollywood believes if they throw enough money at anything they can even make $hit smell like a candy factory. Unfortunately… It’s still $hit. The only thing that kept Man Of Steel going was its blitzkrieg of seizure inducing special effects & even with those it still sucked.

        • …in your opinion.

          It’s a shame you missed the wonderful film so many of us DID get to see.

        • These people make me laugh. What would you have preferred, the lame-dragging dullness of Returns? MoS was larger than life, and I couldn’t think of a better way to do a Superman story in these times than a first contact story.
          But I’m all ear, how would a good Superman film have been scripted/filmed? Oh, you don’t know? Maybe because you’re a nobody wit ha 5h1tty opinion who couldn’t direct a GEICO commercial wit ha caveman and a bad joke lol
          But hey, I guess some people just think it’s cool to dislike things that are awesome. The word for those people is ‘pathetic’.

        • Thanks for taking the time our of your busy life for stopping by to post a comment on an article about a movie you clearly, and ignorantly hated.
          You are a true scholar.

  9. Frank Castle – I totally agree with your comment on Christopher Reeve!

    • @ Fernando

      Thank you.

    • Although I loved Cavill’s portrayal in MOS, I will always hold a special place in my heart for Reeve’s…the version I grew up with.

      As for those wondering about (concerned with?) the lack of the full roster of versions in the graphic at the top, if SR had actually tried to include ALL (or even most) of them, each image would’ve been only a micron wide!


      I’m sure the short will be all-inclusive…

      • I think of Reeve’s Superman the same I think of the West and Keaton takes on Batman.

        Grew up with them on the big and small screens, enjoyed them but find them a little too cheesy nowadays with nostalgia making me continue to like them.

        It’s like having a friend who keeps using that same bad joke you heard millions of times as a kid. You grow up, mature and find you can’t stand hearing it any more but after a long time has passed, you start to miss it and indulge yourself just one more time then put that bad joke back into the nostalgia box until the next time.

        • Cavill’s is my favorite portrayal, but, although by modern standards the Reeve films are quite the cheese-filled pastries, they STILL manage to make me smile because Reeve so earnestly embodied the character. Many believed “a man can fly”. Me? I believed in Superman, himself…

        • Have you revisited Burton’s Bat-flicks recently? They are really, really awful. Hard to watch, if Keaton wasn’t the sole saving grace of those films.

  10. I enjoyed Cavill’s portrayal. But it was his Clark Kent that intrigue me more as his version of Superman was the same as others. Only more action was within film by today’s standards.I wished more was shown of Clark as a reporter for the Daily Planet. Still MOS was a good film.

    • MOS had soem flaws [and poor chemesity with Adams :c] but I still like the ilm. However Reevee and welling will always be the real man of steel to me. with Cavil.

      • You lost all credibility with the mention of Welling. Sorry. Not Superman.
        Not. Even. @#$%ing. Close.

    • I’ll tell you the same thing I have told friends that mentioned the same about him @the Planet- this was a story of self discovery. Hiding Clark behind the glasses at the Planet would have been pointless, and detrimental to the story. No idea why that is so hard to grasp, but I can safely assume the mass-majority of Superman fans aren’t up on their literary analysis, or much in the way of big readers that understand how a plot is supposed to work as a whole.

  11. The modern Superman movies really have not done it for me. However, I am planning to buy the DVD for Man Of Steel when it comes out…looks reasonably good. I have only seen trailers for it so far, so the first full view will be when I get the DVD, but I am hopeful this could be a turning point in Supes flix.

    • @ Goldilocks

      Imo MOS was a good modern Superman film. Krypton looked great in it, Cavill,Costner,Shannon,Crowe,& Diane Lane gave great performances. There was some stuff I would like to seen done differently. As SpellMoon above stated, there were flaws as any film has. I too wasn’t impressed by Amy Adams’s Lois Lane & the action,well you’ll see for yourself.

      I’ll buy the DVD eventually. I hope future DC films will be better regarding their heroes/villains to which we haven’t seen yet.

    • @ goldi,
      don’t they have 2nd run theaters in your area? the one here (louisville) has movies all the time for $2.50. wouldn’t it be cheaper to go watch it there 1st then buy the bluray/dvd if you like it? i cant imagine spending $25+ on something i’m not sure about, but thats cause i’m a broke-@$$.

      • The $15 I spent to see the first showing opening day was worth it. I didn’t blink once during the first hour of the film. The bluray is spectacular, and a must-have.
        DVDs are a waste when it comes to films this good, with an intense visual presentation.
        It’d be like walking into a Ferrari dealership and saying ‘give me the one that tops out at 50mph’.

    • Considering there has only been ONE, there isn’t much to base that on. The Singer film was really awful, and if you’re a true Superman fan, then you don’t even consider that, so I don’t know what to tell you. Watch it or don’t. Not super concerned with what others watch or don’t watch. Seems pointless to care about the viewing habits of complete strangers.

  12. My question would be why Man of Steel didn’t display his super breath???
    Haven’t seen or heard a comment on him using that power…still listening and looking. Is he gonna develop that in the sequel at such a late stage in his life?
    That was my only very very small gripe with Man of Steel.

    • Oh I forgot, love the pic above, especially with the Superman Returns inclusion…more love..

    • There wasn’t much application for it, no exposition, as they say. It would have just been their for fanfare, and I’d rather see him use the arctic breath for a specific purpose.

  13. So glad they used the Richard Donner music for this!

  14. And yes i know they used zimmers music too. But you cant escape the fact that if you are out somewhere and humming the donner theme to yourself people know what it is compared zimmers!