TreasuryCast #81 – Superman

Rob welcomes back superfan Henry Bernstein to discuss LIMITED COLLECTORS' EDITION #c38 starring Superman!

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11 responses to “TreasuryCast #81 – Superman

  1. Great discussion of a Treasury I don’t own and have never seen in the wild. Just a couple of comments.

    This has to be a Neal Adams cover.

    Professor Louis Lang was an archaeologist, always finding relics and totems with wacky powers. But I think he even wore the pith helmet in Smallville. We get it dude!

    Luma Lynai was the super-hero of Staryl. She starred in Action #289. And it was Supergirl who set Superman up with her because Luma looked like Kara grown up. It includes one of the cringiest Superman/Supergirl panels ever! (

    And like Henry, I love Mxy stories. Love them. Love this one. Susie Thompkins is always a pain and was actually a villain in Grant Morrison’s New 52 Action run.

    Lastly, it is a great time for Superman. Phillip Kennedy Johnson is crushing it on Action Comics.

    1. Yeah, on Prof. Lang, I was just about to say that he often appeared in that helmet in Smallville – but you beat me to it.
      I’ll just add that Earth-2 Lana’s Insect Queen identity was a result of some artifact found by her archeologist father.

  2. FYI: In October 2023 there will be a Superman conference at the Cleveland Public Library. It’s hosted by the Ohio Center for the Book. Scheduled guest keynote speakers include Mark Waid & Philip Kennedy Johnson. One of the folks spearheading the event in Valentino Zullo, a BGSU alum. If anyone will be near Ohio this autumn, I hope to see you there.

  3. Another fine episode with a fine guest. Never had this particular book, nor even read the stories, but your conversation about Silver Age Superman stories reminded me of my own thoughts about them when I was reading the various Superman digests.
    And your comments about yet another of those panoramas on the back cover of a treasury again remind me that even as a notorious cutter-upper of comics back in my earliest comics-reading days I did not, in fact, take up the challenge of trying to make one of those work.

  4. Great job, Rob and Henry! I bought this treasury new back in 1975 (and for 9 year old me, a whole dollar was a very big expenditure!), and I loved it because it was a rare chance for me to enjoy some Golden Age Superman, although now in my advanced adult years, I realize that the story quality for this edition was, shall we say, erratic.

    My vote for who did the cover was Bob Oskner on pencils, but Neal Adams inking it. It wasn’t entirely unknown for Adams to do that, sometimes just for the heck of it.

    Even as a kid, I thought that the name “Steve Snapinn” was odd for a Superman story. Usually you’d expect such a character to be named something much more WASPly generic, like “Steve Smith”. But I eventually learned about Milt Snapinn, one of DC’s top letterers since the 1940s, and I’m going to guess that writer Jerry Siegel (or editor Mort Weisinger) chose perhaps as an inside joke to use Milt’s surname. Or else Milt himself, who after all possibly did the lettering for this story, just decided, “Screw it, I’m just going to write my name instead!” Haha

    I really wish that in the later 1970s, DC had done a treasure which collected some of the more recent Superman stories from a few years earlier. For me, that era is criminally overlooked to this day. In my head canon, I even have a theme for the treasure: Powerlessness. I’d collect SUPERMAN #269’s “The Secret of the Eighth Superman” by Cary Bates, Curt Swan and Murphy Anderson, along with the epic four-part “Who Took the Super Out of Superman” storyline from SUPERMAN #296-299, by written by Bates and Elliot S! Maggin, with art by Swan and Oskner. Heck, I’d love to see DC collect them into a trade now, just to remind fans of how good so many of the Seventies stories were.

    1. I’m with you Gene, the Bronze Age of Superman is horribly underrated. There’s bugger all on DC Infinite, for one thing.

      ‘Who Took the Super Out of Superman’ was collected in a UK digest, Superman Pocketbook #1 from Egmont, it’s pretty cheap on eBay when it shows up. There were 20 issues, full of Bronze Age joy. The covers are at the Grand Comic Database if you want to see what’s in there.

  5. Great episode and I guess it really does all come back Superman .
    Also on random subject I just got pick up sliver age omnibus featuring a certain government sponsored super villain team and few other’s featuring that same team I picked up at Ollie’s bargain outlet in Oklahoma. And I want want every one think are the best issues . As I plan to read it after I’ve finished my x-men read though . I’m currently on x-men issue 3 of the classic run .

  6. Silly Superman stories succinctly summarized, seriously soothed Sirois’s stressed synapses.
    What I meant to say is, after a very stressful weekend, this episode of Treasury cast was exactly what I needed. It was fun to not listen to the wild plots that sent Superman through time, into outer space, or challenged by bratty kids and annoying inter dimensional imps. It was even more fun to hear the reactions you gentlemen had to them. Thank you both so much.
    While I don’t want to see superhero comics go back to these zany antics. I do feel that the stories have become far too serious. The sense of fun and whimsy seems to be sorely lacking in the majority of today’s superhero adventures.
    This episode, much like Mountain Comics (which I hope will be back soon) reminded me of the sheer joy and fun comics offer. The reason I loved them to begin with. It’s just what I needed at this moment.
    PS Rob, if you need any help at the cabin this year, drop me a line. I’ll bring the Yoo-Hoo

  7. Highly entertaining show, guys!
    This was one of those times that I hadn’t recalled owning the Treasury until I got a glimpse of the cover. Then the memories started flooding back. I certainly feel the same about it being a Neal Adams image drifting past the Statue of Liberty.

    But I’d like to present a defense for those of us who did indeed destroy the back cover to cut out (albeit poorly) the diorama. It is very easy to throw the shade of today’s collector standards on a child of the “70’s but the fact of the matter is the concept of collectability and minty goodness simply didn’t exist back then. At least, not for a seven year old kid. I kept my comic book collection in cardboard under the bed storage boxes, for Christ’s sake! Unbagged! So do I wish I had a nice, readable copy of this and other lost Treasury Editions? Sure. But do I regret putting my fingers in danger using the sharp family scissors (no such thing as “safety scissors” back then, folks) to cut out Superman and have a neat little diorama to display in my bedroom? Not one bit. It was fun creating something from books that I loved oh so much. If the 80’s and 90’s can be faulted for anything, I’d say the era snatched a lot of the fun from comics.

    Those comics I owned are gone now, as are the dioramas. But they remain a treasured part of my childhood and I wouldn’t trade those memories for any mint condition comic you offered up.

    Thanks for letting me have my say. The defense rests.

  8. I haven’t had a chance to listen to the episode yet (I’m behind on my podcasts), but the cover looks to be by Bob Oksner to me, and that’s who Mike’s Amazing World credits. It’s tricky, because Oksner could channel/absorb artists like Adams, Curt Swan, and JLGL (PBHN). Swan could have possibly been involved as penicler with Oksner on inks, because that kid’s face looks quite Swan-like. Adams did the artwork on a Power Record release that has a very similar pose, with a kid riding on Superman’s back. Both images are from 1975, so I don’t know which one came first.

    If this was covered in the episode, I apologize. But anyone who knows me, knows I can’t resist a comic credit mystery!

  9. Great show Rob and Henry. Lotta Swan talk in this one.

    While I didn’t know about this particular treasury, I actually own an original copy of one of the stories. Unfortunately, it’s Action Comics 315, the first part of the Zigi and Zagi story. Now with the magic of this treasury, I was able to find out how things turned out for these little scamps. And it was to assist Superman in getting some strange. Zigi and Zagi set up Supes with their space sister Zyra while her boyfriend slowly suffocates on a dead planet. Fortunately for this guy, Superman’s weakness – fear of commitment – inspires him to save the boyfriend and reunite him with the straying Zyra. I’m sure everything will work out great for those two. Very grim, Mr. Dorfman.

    50’s/60’s Superman was fascinating. He was a do-anything skirt-chaser with a fluctuating moral compass, and despite being the fittest man on the planet, always seemed like he had a 45-inch waist. This guy would save an entire solar system one minute, and then the next, publicly humiliate Lois to teach her not to have her own hopes and dreams. Just an amazing time.

    Always love the page-fillers. The Super Game is great. Ma Kent’s been working out. And Lewis Lang? Who the hell is this guy? Was Lana’s dad a colonizer?

    Keep up the good work.

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