So, what are the people of Metropolis, the people of DC Earth, like?
Here's one version:
Boy, are they naive idiots.
Here's one of the examples of criminals trying to tarnish heroes they talked about: the post-Crisis mini-series, Legends:
Today's DC, though? They've decided that they prefer the "before" to the "after," as they try to make their universe as unfriendly to heroes as the first issues of Legends were.
For example, from this week's Action Comics #45:
Even after Superman saves a bunch of people from a storm...
Now, the last few weeks have revealed that there is some nebulous being called Wrath in the background, making everyone angry and, well, wrathful. The nu52--for those who thought Jack Kirby's villain names were too subtle!!
Another point we should note is that all of this (recent round of) public hatred of Superman is not just because he's an alien--that's been pubic knowledge for awhile (and how could it not be, with every other villain having "ties" to Krypton).
No, people are upset because they found out that Superman had been living amongst them, "posing" as a mere human.
Now, it seems to me that a lot of fear and distrust could be cleared up by Clark giving a TV interview--to Oprah, say--explaining that he wasn't "posing," he was living with the name he was given and raised with by his human foster parents--he's always been Clark Kent, and Superman was the assumed identity. Not for nothing, this goes back to the Legends era, because that was the punchline of Byrne's Man Of Steel relaunch:
Speaking of the Kents, well, there was one more effect of Lois doxxing Clark:
To be fair, though, it's possible it wasn't the government that exhumed the Kents' bodies. No, maybe they just burnt up from the friction of spinning in their graves when they heard their son did this in last week's Superman #44:
So that's why I'm dropping the Superman books. Even the "good one," Action Comics, is forced to wallow in this dire plotline. Superman blackmailing erstwhile allies and blowing up hideouts? Clark without most of his supporting cast? An entire universe turned against heroes, not just as part of a mini-series to redefine what heroic is for a "new universe," but as a permanent condition? The news leads with polls showing him having lower public opinion polls than Donald Trump? The man who has saved Earth Rao knows how many times is wanted, despised, hunted? Former staunch allies turned on him? (Hey, Perry, if what he did is so bad, when are you giving back the Pulitzers the Daily Planet won for covering Superman?!? Huh?)
I don't mind anti-heroes, even if I don't care to follow most of them. It's a big fictional universe. But I do mind when an entire fictional universe becomes anti-hero, and the people are portrayed as merely a collection of our baser instincts. I object when Superman is supposed to inspire others to be better, to do the best they can, and that message is rejected, forcefully, by the government, by his friends, by the vast majority of the American population.
That's the Anti-Life Equation, folks. That's the world that Darkseid was trying to create in Legends. And the folks running DC have given it to him.
So I'm hopping off this trolley. I'm not asking, or expecting, anyone else to do the same--I'm just trying to explain why I'm not buying these books anymore, and why you'll be reading a lot less about nu52 Superman around here for awhile.
In the meantime, perhaps you can ask yourself, which version of the DC Universe do you prefer--the one described in the paragraph I reprinted at the top of this post, or the one we've been given today?
[For a fuller, and much better, review of Action #45, please go check out Anj's post. He's probably more rational than I am.]