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Superman and DC celebrate the anniversary of an American cultural touchstone moment with this original graphic novel anthology ACTION COMICS: 80 YEARS OF SUPERMAN, which features a previously unpublished Golden Age Superman epic! Join us for an 80th anniversary celebration of the single most important comic book in American history: ACTION COMICS #1, featuring the first app Superman and DC celebrate the anniversary of an American cultural touchstone moment with this original graphic novel anthology ACTION COMICS: 80 YEARS OF SUPERMAN, which features a previously unpublished Golden Age Superman epic! Join us for an 80th anniversary celebration of the single most important comic book in American history: ACTION COMICS #1, featuring the first appearance of Superman! It's an extraordinary party as we revisit classic stories from across the decades featuring the debuts of not just the Man of Tomorrow, but also Supergirl, Brainiac, the Fortress of Solitude and so much more! See the work of generations of top writers and artists on the original super hero! Enjoy sparkling essays from literary wizards who have won Pulitzer Prizes and hit the New York Times bestseller lists, including Jules Feiffer, who relives his memories of when ACTION COMICS #1 first hit newsstands. Plus, a historical essay by guest editor Paul Levitz, and all one thousand ACTION COMICS covers presented on a special poster! As a bonus, don't miss a previously unpublished 1940s Superman tale believed to be by writer Jerry Siegel with art by the Joe Shuster studio, salvaged from the DC Comics files fifty years ago and hidden away until now.


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Superman and DC celebrate the anniversary of an American cultural touchstone moment with this original graphic novel anthology ACTION COMICS: 80 YEARS OF SUPERMAN, which features a previously unpublished Golden Age Superman epic! Join us for an 80th anniversary celebration of the single most important comic book in American history: ACTION COMICS #1, featuring the first app Superman and DC celebrate the anniversary of an American cultural touchstone moment with this original graphic novel anthology ACTION COMICS: 80 YEARS OF SUPERMAN, which features a previously unpublished Golden Age Superman epic! Join us for an 80th anniversary celebration of the single most important comic book in American history: ACTION COMICS #1, featuring the first appearance of Superman! It's an extraordinary party as we revisit classic stories from across the decades featuring the debuts of not just the Man of Tomorrow, but also Supergirl, Brainiac, the Fortress of Solitude and so much more! See the work of generations of top writers and artists on the original super hero! Enjoy sparkling essays from literary wizards who have won Pulitzer Prizes and hit the New York Times bestseller lists, including Jules Feiffer, who relives his memories of when ACTION COMICS #1 first hit newsstands. Plus, a historical essay by guest editor Paul Levitz, and all one thousand ACTION COMICS covers presented on a special poster! As a bonus, don't miss a previously unpublished 1940s Superman tale believed to be by writer Jerry Siegel with art by the Joe Shuster studio, salvaged from the DC Comics files fifty years ago and hidden away until now.

30 review for Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman Deluxe Edition

  1. 4 out of 5

    Alejandro

    80 years and still kickin' !!! AND THE REST WAS HISTORY... My main reason to buy this TPB (as if I'd need a reason to buy a Superman TPB) was that this collection celebrating the 80 years of Action Comics included precisely Action Comics #1, which I hadn't been able to read. I have Detective Comics #27 like in three different re-printings, but ironically I hadn't Action Comics #1 in any kind of re-printing, in fact I hadn't a clue of what was about. Well, it was a shock (and not a good one) 80 years and still kickin' !!! AND THE REST WAS HISTORY... My main reason to buy this TPB (as if I'd need a reason to buy a Superman TPB) was that this collection celebrating the 80 years of Action Comics included precisely Action Comics #1, which I hadn't been able to read. I have Detective Comics #27 like in three different re-printings, but ironically I hadn't Action Comics #1 in any kind of re-printing, in fact I hadn't a clue of what was about. Well, it was a shock (and not a good one) since okay, Detective Comics #27 is a blatant rip-off of an older The Shadow story, but at least that one has narrative, a real storyline... ...but in the case of Action Comics #1... ...well, let's say that I am astonished that they could publish the #2... ...and I have my fair share of Gold Age comics' reading to understand that I have to adjust my mind to that kind of vintage stories... ...but Action Comics #1, has zero storyline (Siegle just mounted a series of isolated feats), an awful artwork (not once, Shuster was able to draw an "S" in the uniform's shield, that you can distinghish as such alphabet letter). Yes, I can imagine how incredible must be to see a hero with superpowers beating each imaginable bully: gangsters, politicians, dictators, etc... but even so... ...compared with first stories of other following super-heroes, Action Comics #1 is a poor example of what evolved into an awesome reading genre. WHERE ARE LUTHOR & ULTRA-HUMANITE? I can understand that the TPB was a celebration not only of Superman but actually of Action Comics where many characters (heroes & villains) debuted, so you can find here, the first stories of Zatara (Zatanna's father), the Vigilante and the Human Target... ...and while you have the introductions of Brainiac and Toyman... ...it was a huge disappointment for me, not being able to read the origins of Lex Luthor and Ultra-Humanite (first villain with superpowers) that they directly linked to Superman universe and after all, in the cover the TPB is merchandised as "80 Years of Superman", so one would expect a content totally oriented to Superman instead of a more widely spectrum of the pages of Action Comics. MAID OF STEEL About Supergirl aka Kara Zor-El, you can't have objections about her, since you have, not only her arrival's story to Earth, but also her official presentation to the public. Maybe they're not profound reading, but definitely they are the issues that I was expecting to find in this kind of compilation project. SUPER-STUFF You'll have other iconic moments, like the introduction of the Fortress of Solitude (but the climax of the mystery there was too campy, even for me); when Clark revealed his secret identity to Lois; an astonishing moment when Superman (unable to ask to his allies of using robots) appealed to the most unlikely (but also the coolest one) character to pose as "Clark Kent"; along with more modern issues where it's "retold" iconic moments in the life of the Man of Steel in his persona as Clark Kent as well as the Earth's Greatest Hero, So... ...don't get me wrong with my 3-stars rating (that after all, it's still in the fair side of a positive reading experience) since the TPB is really great, but between my disappointment with the #1 issue and the absense of Luthor's & Ultra-Humanite's first tales, I felt that it was dishonest to rate it with higher level... ...BUT... ...definitely, if you're fan of Superman (like me!) definitely this TPB must be in your collection. Up, up and away!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jedi JC Daquis

    Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman Deluxe Edition is a compendium of different stories across eight decades of its existence. It is a compact volume that celebrates a modern mythology that has come a very, very long way since it was conceived by Siegel and Shuster in 1938. It is quite neat to experience in just a few sittings what has changed in 80 years. The progression of stories from several Action issues obviously changed, although they all point to the same thing: Superman, as cliched as it Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman Deluxe Edition is a compendium of different stories across eight decades of its existence. It is a compact volume that celebrates a modern mythology that has come a very, very long way since it was conceived by Siegel and Shuster in 1938. It is quite neat to experience in just a few sittings what has changed in 80 years. The progression of stories from several Action issues obviously changed, although they all point to the same thing: Superman, as cliched as it is, is a beacon of hope. He is the man people look up to. Clark Kent is Superman and he is our superhero. This deluxe hardcover makes sure that each story here ends with hope and optimism. Near the end of the book the stories are a bit muddled though. The unifying theme that has persisted across the issues seemed to take a backseat. You know what it feels like starting an essay with the best words and end it in a rather mediocre fashion? That's what I felt here. I cannot recommend this book to everybody. Sure it is a piece of history because after all, Action Comics is the first superhero comic book to reach 1000 issues, but you can get more (while paying less) reading the actual 1000th issue of Action Comics.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Artemy

    80 Years of Superman was released by DC in April 2018 as a companion collection to go with the Action Comics #1000. It collects 21 Superman and related stories from different decades, starting from the very first appearance in Action Comics #1 and up to modern day, and it even includes one never before published Superman story from 1945 by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, the creators of the character. It also includes 8 essays from famous comics people about Superman, his legacy, his origin and hi 80 Years of Superman was released by DC in April 2018 as a companion collection to go with the Action Comics #1000. It collects 21 Superman and related stories from different decades, starting from the very first appearance in Action Comics #1 and up to modern day, and it even includes one never before published Superman story from 1945 by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, the creators of the character. It also includes 8 essays from famous comics people about Superman, his legacy, his origin and his creators. I was on the fence about getting this collection — after all, I usually struggle with older comics, and more than half of this collection consists of the material written in 30's–70's. That said, the Golden, Silver and Bronze Age comics in this book were actually the comics I enjoyed the most, not only because they show a clear progression of Superman as a character, but because they are also surprisingly fun. Siegel and Shuster’s original Superman work reads incredibly well for something that was written in late 30’s–early 40’s — it's not extremely wordy, the remastered artwork looks nice, and the stories, while definitely showing their age, are still perfectly enjoyable. In Action Comics #1, Superman's very first heroic feats include stopping a wrongful execution, saving a woman from her violent husband and rescuing Lois Lane who got kidnapped by gangsters. At this time, there was no planet Krypton (though he was an alien from the very beginning), no Smallville, no ma and pa Kent, and Superman didn't have the ability to fly — he could only leap extra-long distances. But right in the first issue there is Clark Kent the reporter, Lois Lane as his rivalling colleague, and the Superman who took no crap from any lowlife criminal. He was much simpler, younger, angrier, but in general, it's amazing how much Siegel and Shuster got right on their very first try. It was also interesting seeing this original version of the character and realising that that's where Grant Morrison's take in his superb but underrated Action Comics run came from. It makes sense to me, because that's the beginning of the road for Clark as a protector of the people — just a young man with extraordinary powers, so fed up by injustice that he decides to do everything in his power to stop it. In the next couple of decades, Superman evolved into pretty much the character we would all recognise. Golden Age was the time of war, and Superman's adventures were very down to earth — a mobster here, a corrupt government official there, maybe an occasional train heist, and of course the nazis. But as Golden Age passed and Silver Age began, Superman’s adventures became more and more extravagant and sci-fi oriented. He started fighting aliens and mad scientists, he mastered time-travel, started flying to space and visiting other planets, fully explored his Kryptonian past, built his Fortress of Solitude and populated it with wondrous creatures and souvenirs from his incredible adventures. His Super-family began to expand, as well, most notably with the introduction of Supergirl. Different writers and artists started working on the title, too. I especially enjoyed Otto Binder’s introduction of Brainiac in Action #242, an excellent comic from 1958 that reads almost as as well today. Superman was doing really well up until the 80's, when several things happened to disrupt his popularity. Batman and Superman were more or less always good friends up until then, but Frank Miller's Dark Knight Returns put an end to that by making Batman defeat Superman — not only in the comic, but in the eyes of the public, as well. A travesty, if you ask me, but what can you do. Then came the great reboot of the DC universe called Crisis on Infinite Earths, an event that destroyed pretty much all the previous history of pretty much every character — a successful event of its time, but the one that took all the rich history away from Supes. And Crisis led to John Byrne's long tenure writing Superman, which is generally well loved, but you can tell that something has changed — Superman's confidence and heroism faded away, replaced by doubt, angst and insecurity. Superman now had to prove his worth, it wasn't presumed. And the whiff of this sea change is apparent in this collection once stories from the 80's, 90's and 00's start rolling in. Instead of fun Superman adventures from the last 50 years, the comics started to be about Superman himself, and why he's important — through deconstruction, body swapping or role reversal, every writer felt their need to say that Superman was still cool and necessary, but not a lot of people actually could or did write him like that. It's sad to realise that one of the best characters in the history of comics was subverted so much by one very angry writer and a string of unfortunate events. The collection ends on Grant Morrison's Action Comics #0 from New52. Not the best issue from his run, but a good fit for this collection, and much better than the stories from Byrne, Stern and Kelly that come before it. The book also collects multiple essays from some of the smartest and most experienced people in comics, literature and journalism, like Paul Levitz, Jules Feiffer, Tom DeHaven, Marv Wolfman (who is also personally responsible for saving that never-published Superman story from 1945 — a fascinating story of how that happened is included in his essay), Larry Tye and Gene Luen Yang. I loved reading all of these because every person knows a bit of Superman's history and has their own unique perspective on him and his influence (for example, Jules Feiffer read Action Comics #1 when it first came out — and it's still vivid in his memory, 80 years since!). Laura Siegel Larson, Jerry Siegel's daughter, also contributes a piece about her father's life and work, and it's such a sweet, inspiring and sentimental read. This collection won't be for everyone, but it certainly was for me. If you are a hopeless Superman fan and apologist like I am, at the very least this collection will be an excellent educational material. Surprisingly enough though, I also found it to be a great read, because — who knew — Superman was awesome from day one, and nobody will ever take that away from him. Once again, I say happy birthday to my favourite character.

  4. 4 out of 5

    John Ferrigno

    There have been 1000 issues of Action Comics, and compiling a collection of single stories over that 80 year period seems like an impossible task, yet DC Comics has managed to pull it off with this collection. Starting with the obvious first appearance of Superman in Action Comics #1, we then get other historic stories, including the first appearances of Zatara, The Vigilante, Brainiac, the bottle city of Kandor, The Fortress of Solitude, Supergirl, and the Human Target. There are also stories in There have been 1000 issues of Action Comics, and compiling a collection of single stories over that 80 year period seems like an impossible task, yet DC Comics has managed to pull it off with this collection. Starting with the obvious first appearance of Superman in Action Comics #1, we then get other historic stories, including the first appearances of Zatara, The Vigilante, Brainiac, the bottle city of Kandor, The Fortress of Solitude, Supergirl, and the Human Target. There are also stories included from throughout Superman's history, with most of his most important creators represented. While some of the earlier stories are very dated, their historical importance makes their inclusion a must, and they are fun reads if you can transport yourself back to the childlike mindset they were made for. Later stories are more sophisticated, and the anniversary story from Action issue 800 is particularly well done. Between the stories are a collection of essays about the creation of Superman and his impact on the comic book industry, popular culture, and the world. All are well done, and break up the stories nicely. For any fan of Superman, or comic history, this is a must own. Doing justice to 1000 issues over 80 years is a seemigly impossible task, yet DC Comics, just like Superman himself, managed to do the impossible. This is a great book that I am thrilled to add to my collection.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Lashaan Balasingam (Bookidote)

    You can find my review on my blog by clicking here. On April 18th 1938, Jerry Siegel and Joe Schuster introduced Superman to the whole world in Action Comics #1. Their idea took the world by storm and gave birth to a character that has evolved from being a fictional superhero to an immortal idea. To mark the first superhero’s 1000th comic book issue as well as its 80th anniversary, DC Comics unleashed this beautiful, bulky and eye-opening collection featuring some of the Man of Steel’s most iconi You can find my review on my blog by clicking here. On April 18th 1938, Jerry Siegel and Joe Schuster introduced Superman to the whole world in Action Comics #1. Their idea took the world by storm and gave birth to a character that has evolved from being a fictional superhero to an immortal idea. To mark the first superhero’s 1000th comic book issue as well as its 80th anniversary, DC Comics unleashed this beautiful, bulky and eye-opening collection featuring some of the Man of Steel’s most iconic moments throughout this comic book run. Interspersed with several commentaries from award-winning writers, this deluxe edition firmly states how Superman is the archetype of mankind at its pinnacle. One of the most astounding observation you’ll inevitably make with this collection is the evolution in the artwork. Sorted in a chronological order, the featured stories not only highlight Superman’s first encounter with some his villains as well as quintessential elements of his lore (such as his Fortress of Solitude or the introduction of Supergirl), but it also shows how all the different writers and artists envisioned the might and majesty of the character. The artwork started off with an abundance of eye-catching primary colours in the background of each panel, a very photographic sequence of events and a lack of attention to details. Over time, characters started to get more defined with more attention given to facial expressions, character movement and colours. The boldness in contours and the thickness of the colours for characters were put aside to make more room to minute details and an artwork style that is much softer to the eye. This evolution in the comic book industry is beautiful and is what has led us to all the various designs and styles in recent years. What’s even more noticeable is the story-telling. In the earlier issues of Action Comics, everyone preferred a more “show” rather than “tell” approach. This greatly impacts the way a story is appreciated as a lot of potential is sliced off from the start. Some stories could even get extremely wordy with very little artwork doing any of the story-telling. Over the years, with Superman quickly becoming a character that everyone would know about, as if they were born with the idea itself, stories started to assume that the reader had a pretty solid idea of what Superman is capable of, and if not, to discreetly show rather than tell. The beauty of it is how much more room is given to the artwork to speak for itself. Nowadays, pictures are worth a thousand words as all you’ll need is to see Superman carry a spacecraft with his sheer strength to understand that you don’t want to get on his bad side. Throughout the collection, there are also a couple of two-page commentaries from certain writers who help us further understand the history behind Superman’s character, his impact on society and the story behind the creators. The words they had to share gave a nice insight into Superman and helps destroy anyone’s firm conviction that Superman is an overrated character with cliché powers. Sure, there are stories that are pretty cheesy, but it’s not about the complexity of those stories that matter, it’s what Superman represents to the reader. In fact, it’s how he shines as a beacon of hope for mankind and gives each and everyone of us a reason to believe that there is good in anyone if only they decide to believe in themselves. Throughout this character, people find the power to fight off their own demons and to come out as the strongest version of themselves. Even if he’s an alien who has come live among humans, he remains the honorary example to follow. Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman is a history lesson in the form of comics books. You won’t find the most exquisite stories ever told in the medium, but you will find at its core the reasons why the Big Blue Boy Scout is the first person you’ll think of when asked about superheroes. With stories introducing some of the mythos behind Superman, essays by famous writers, and artwork from way back in the Golden Age all the way to today, this beautiful deluxe edition is a must-have for any fan of Superman. Yours truly, Lashaan | Blogger and Book Reviewer Official blog: http://bookidote.wordpress.com

  6. 4 out of 5

    Paul

    Overall, 80 Years of Superman is a superb chronological anthology of Superman’s exploits throughout the years. It’s evident that a lot of time and care went into celebrating this great milestone for Superman. Thank you to NetGalley, DC Comics, and all the authors and artists who worked on this book. Full review can be found here: https://paulspicks.blog/2018/03/06/80... Please check out all my reviews: https://paulspicks.blog Overall, 80 Years of Superman is a superb chronological anthology of Superman’s exploits throughout the years. It’s evident that a lot of time and care went into celebrating this great milestone for Superman. Thank you to NetGalley, DC Comics, and all the authors and artists who worked on this book. Full review can be found here: https://paulspicks.blog/2018/03/06/80... Please check out all my reviews: https://paulspicks.blog

  7. 5 out of 5

    Shannon Appelcline

    This Deluxe hardcover is a nice collection of Action Comics tales over the years, focusing on Superman. The '30s and '40s stories are a bit hard to read. They've clearly been written in the style of daily comic strips, and so the stories are all over the place, without a strong central focus, even given their relatively short lengths. Still, it's clearly important to have these stories here. The stories from the '50s and '60s feel the most notable, because we get the first stories of mythology ele This Deluxe hardcover is a nice collection of Action Comics tales over the years, focusing on Superman. The '30s and '40s stories are a bit hard to read. They've clearly been written in the style of daily comic strips, and so the stories are all over the place, without a strong central focus, even given their relatively short lengths. Still, it's clearly important to have these stories here. The stories from the '50s and '60s feel the most notable, because we get the first stories of mythology elements like Supergirl, Brainiac, and the Fortress of Solitude. They're still very enjoyable to read. Moving on to the '70s and '80s, it's obvious that Superman has become a legendary figure. Some of the authors recognize this and begin telling stories of a modern myth, rather than a man. It's an intriguing change (and usually involves some good storytelling techniques). One of my favorites from this era that I've never read before is the Earth-2 marriage of Clark and Lois (and then of course we get the Earth-1 courtship of these two in the '90s). It's perhaps no surprise that there's a big gap from 1991 to 2003. The longest comic is on the other side, in Action Comics #800, and it's another of the best, with a great modern retrospective of Clark's life before Metropolis, interwoven with those who have been affected by him. Choosing a Morrison story to represent nuDC and the '10s is another good choice. It's nice that this volume also chooses to highlight a few other characters born in Action Comics, like Zatara, Vigilante, and The Human Target. Honestly, none of the stories are great, but they're a good reminder than Action is about more than just Superman. Overall, this book does exactly what it should do as a retrospective of 80 Years of Action Comics (which is what the title should be, more appropriately than 80 Years of Superman).

  8. 4 out of 5

    Kevin

    What a great way to celebrate the 80th year of publication of ACTION COMICS and its star, Superman! Twenty-six stories, most of which I had never read -- considering I've been reading comics for more than 40 years, that was a plus. What a great way to celebrate the 80th year of publication of ACTION COMICS and its star, Superman! Twenty-six stories, most of which I had never read -- considering I've been reading comics for more than 40 years, that was a plus.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Theediscerning

    This is a book that should get five stars – it's not just a thing worthy of a flippant paragraph or two, it's a cultural event, something that should be marked with approval and sheer happiness at being around to see it. 1000 issues of Action Comics, who'd've thunk it? Except, too much of the contents here are more than a bit naff. You take the rough with the smooth as ever, with DC – and the very first story is indicative of that. Yes, the first episode ever seemed a perfectly readable introduc This is a book that should get five stars – it's not just a thing worthy of a flippant paragraph or two, it's a cultural event, something that should be marked with approval and sheer happiness at being around to see it. 1000 issues of Action Comics, who'd've thunk it? Except, too much of the contents here are more than a bit naff. You take the rough with the smooth as ever, with DC – and the very first story is indicative of that. Yes, the first episode ever seemed a perfectly readable introduction to Superman, even if it's half of a woolly two-parter taking us from the shocking sight of him duffing up a car he's picked up, to mangling an airplane's propellers, midflight. It's all in the aid of pointing out the pointless, inane and meaningless nature of two sides duffing each other up (and how different the history of DC would have been if they had risen above using just that as a sole plot point about 60,000 times over the last 80 years). The naffness continues through other characters from Action Comics being introduced, the Toymaker featuring for the first time, and a pathetically exposition-heavy, but very of-its-time, welcome to the Fortress of Solitude. But it goes on – Supergirl is meh to a modern sensitivity, doing some super-housekeeping and sending an SOS in a bottle to a bloke with the hots for her; and jumbo issue #800 is distinctly ropey, acting as it does as a moping Eurorailer's journal, interspersed with fictionalised memories of his existence. Highlights here in the book are slight on the ground, including the inked artwork of a saved-from-the-furnace short story, not ever finished nor seen in this form, and some commentary from key players in the DC world (of which there deserved to be more – and of which there deserved to be a female representative). The "dang it, Lois, I've a secret to tell you" episode wins, not because of how notable and momentous it is, but because of the everydayness of it – a bland, forgettable baddie, helped by a very minor character, and copious editorial notes to stories passim to prove it's nothing special. It's when the creators sought the entertaining, as opposed to the Officially Memorable and Commemorative, that the pages come to life. Only recently, it seems, have people (even Grant Morrison) realised that we have seen it all before, so don't try for the flash-bang epic, just keep the ball rolling another couple weeks til the next issue. That way you don't hinder yourself seeking the superlative, you maintain something that could, with a prevailing wind, last 80 years. Sure it's unlikely, but the results are better. Still, it was a privilege to read this, alongside the actual, echt, #1000. This jumbo-sized issue brings us many different little tales, and benefits from it. No, the buyer of this celebratory book at hand needn't worry, as the sample from #1000 compiled in it is by far the worst DC could have chosen, but what the purchaser of both gets is a multitude of snapshots of an iconic entity, that doesn't try to be too iconic. (It also acts as a major plug for the Next. Big. Iconic. Event., which kind of deflates my argument, but there you go.) I love Superman, and always have as far as I'm aware, but I also reserve the right to dismiss the grandiose in the way he's published; others may find exactly the opposite their taste, but it all goes to prove in a nutshell that we all can find our own appealing Supes, thanks to generations of creatives. But that Superbrat – boy, he really does test my resolve...

  10. 5 out of 5

    Jason Bergman

    A decent, if slightly schizophrenic collection of Superman stories. The text pieces by Levitz and especially the great Jules Feiffer are welcome, as is the excellent (if brief) piece by Gene Luen Yang. But the reprinted stories are all over the place. The previously unpublished piece believed to have been written by Jerry Siegel is great, if only because of the amazing story (told in his introduction) of how it was saved by a young Marv Wolfman. And I will always be up for Superman stories by gr A decent, if slightly schizophrenic collection of Superman stories. The text pieces by Levitz and especially the great Jules Feiffer are welcome, as is the excellent (if brief) piece by Gene Luen Yang. But the reprinted stories are all over the place. The previously unpublished piece believed to have been written by Jerry Siegel is great, if only because of the amazing story (told in his introduction) of how it was saved by a young Marv Wolfman. And I will always be up for Superman stories by greats like John Byrne, Neal Adams, Curt Swan or any others I've loved over the years. But did we really need a Human Target story in this book? Or Zatara: Master Magician? If this is a retrospective of Action Comics as a whole, then sure. But it's 80 Years of Superman in Action Comics, which makes those feel particularly out of place. But still, good collection. Don't go expecting this to be a comprehensive book of the best Superman stories ever told (DC has books with those names, but they're hardly definitive), as this is limited to tales that appeared within the Action Comics run. But it's a decent collection, and some of these stories haven't been collected elsewhere. Worth reading if you're a fan for sure.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Milky Mixer

    Great collection of Superman stories from his first appearance 80 years ago to the modern style of today. I loved reading some of the early tales I've never read before, like how Brainiac got the city of Kandor into that bottle and Supergirl's original origin story and first appearance. To me, the essays felt redundant and uninformative - "Superman is important because..." I would have preferred those pages be used to cram in more comics since they had 80 years of action to choose from. The exce Great collection of Superman stories from his first appearance 80 years ago to the modern style of today. I loved reading some of the early tales I've never read before, like how Brainiac got the city of Kandor into that bottle and Supergirl's original origin story and first appearance. To me, the essays felt redundant and uninformative - "Superman is important because..." I would have preferred those pages be used to cram in more comics since they had 80 years of action to choose from. The exception is the tale of how Marv Wolfman rescued a never published Superman story as DC was tossing it out. The comic itself is also included and is a standout for those wanting unique material. Also, as much as I love the cowboy Vigilante character, I felt like the 3 non-Superman stories were out of place since the book is seemingly focusing on 80 Years of Superman. Again, was that the wisest use of pages? Or, if they were going for the anthology approach, would it have killed them to at least include Black Canary's feature from Action Comics Weekly? All in all a sweet set for the Superman fan with deluxe page size and a beautiful hardcover format.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Rick Lee Lee James

    A very good collection of stories selected from the 80 years of Action Comics. I questioned a couple of the choices for the compilation but for the most part they are very enjoyable stories about the Man of Steel, and a few other heroes who appeared as backup stories in Action Comics.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Om

    I really like how the authors put almost every single big moment of supermans' life in this book. it's really fun to look back at all the art styles that were used in the past 80 years and also to see all the stories that have been shared and loved all put into one book that anyone can pick up and read. one story that was in this trade that I personally liked was when the world got introduced to the caped crusader. it was about when Kal-El first landed on earth and got taken in by the Kent famil I really like how the authors put almost every single big moment of supermans' life in this book. it's really fun to look back at all the art styles that were used in the past 80 years and also to see all the stories that have been shared and loved all put into one book that anyone can pick up and read. one story that was in this trade that I personally liked was when the world got introduced to the caped crusader. it was about when Kal-El first landed on earth and got taken in by the Kent family. He grew up to be a journalist at the Daily Planet wearing glasses and a suit to hide he is really Superman.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Mhorg

    The first and still the best I hope a copy of this goes to the Smithsonian. Superman is a uniquely American creation, whose Ben adopted by the world. This volume captures everything that makes him great.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Kole

    A worthwhile collection for any Superman fan. If I had any complaints it's that I wish there was more such as the first issue included Lex Luthor or something focusing on Krypto or other lesser Superman characters. Overall, still has about what you'd expect and some good writings, the old stuff is cheesy and the new stuff, unlike some of the other 80 years collections (Batman, Flash) are actually good issues! Recommended for Superman fans. Overall: 4/5 A worthwhile collection for any Superman fan. If I had any complaints it's that I wish there was more such as the first issue included Lex Luthor or something focusing on Krypto or other lesser Superman characters. Overall, still has about what you'd expect and some good writings, the old stuff is cheesy and the new stuff, unlike some of the other 80 years collections (Batman, Flash) are actually good issues! Recommended for Superman fans. Overall: 4/5

  16. 5 out of 5

    Cheese

    Some great nostalgic comics in this special edition and lots of forewords from creators but a tad boring and not every story is great. The big bonus is being able to read action comics #1!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan

    Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman: The Deluxe edition (2018): edited by Paul Levitz: Not Action Comics 1000 but a companion volume. With Action Comics the first mainstream American comic book to reach 1000 issues, DC released both a special anniversary issue and this thick volume of reprints, the latter containing one never-before-published story from the Shuster studio, and a new story by editor Paul Levitz and legendary artist Neal Adams. Created by Cleveland teenagers Jerry Siegel and Canadi Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman: The Deluxe edition (2018): edited by Paul Levitz: Not Action Comics 1000 but a companion volume. With Action Comics the first mainstream American comic book to reach 1000 issues, DC released both a special anniversary issue and this thick volume of reprints, the latter containing one never-before-published story from the Shuster studio, and a new story by editor Paul Levitz and legendary artist Neal Adams. Created by Cleveland teenagers Jerry Siegel and Canadian ex-pat Joe Shuster (cousin of Frank Shuster of Wayne and Shuster), Superman came to life in 1932 and was then met by complete indifference from the comic strip syndicates for the next 6 years. Finally, what would become DC Comics bought Superman from Siegel and Shuster for less than a thousand dollars in 1938. In Action Comics 1, cover-dated June 1938, Superman ignited the superhero genre. Everything with American superheroes springs from that moment, this creation of Siegel and Shuster. Neal Adams (him again!) led the battle in the 1970's to get more compensation for Siegel and Shuster beyond that initially paltry sum. Time Warner, DC's corporate overlord, caved to a certain extent, granting the Cleveland duo a pension. More lawsuits and settlements would follow over the years. Here we are, 80 years later. Action Comics has reached 1000 issues, though recently it wasn't always numbered that way as DC restarted the numbering in 2012 for reasons I won't bother explaining before returning to the original numbering (folding the new numbering in as well). Detective Comics should have gotten here first, but Action Comics was a weekly for a year back in the 1980's. Thanks, Action Comics Weekly! Paul Levitz has assembled 300+ pages of stories, essays, and covers. It's solid work -- and I don't think this type of anniversary volume is easy to assemble, as Levitz had to serve history as well as artistic achievement. Thus, this isn't The Best of Superman. For one thing, Levitz was charged with presenting the other recurring DC heroes who first appeared in the pages of Action Comics (Vigilante, Zatara the Magician, Supergirl, Human Target). For another, the book emphasizes Firsts and Anniversaries along with major stories. That still leaves lots of material. So pretty much all the great writers and artists are here, though some are by necessity omitted. The raw power of the first two Superman adventures by Siegel and Shuster still compels, to the extent that one wishes Superman would return to his left-wing, agit-prop roots, when stopping a domestic abuser and saving a wrongly convicted woman from the electric chair were more common moments for the Man of Steel than punching it out with some angry-ass super-villain or another. Oddly, the book doesn't present any of the two-page Superman stories from Action Comics Weekly, I assume because they presented a serialized story in emulation of the Sunday full-page comic strips. In any case, there's a lot here to delight both a Superman aficionado and a casual reader. The reproduction of the art is generally good, not always easy when the originals don't exist (the muddiest looking reprint comes from 1978, which is a shame because the story is a humdinger of a 40th anniversary issue). A Joe Kelly-penned, many-artist-illustrated anniversary story from the oughts is excellent. A never-before-printed story from the Shuster Studio is a rare find, as is Marv Wolfman's tale of how he rescued it from the garbage. Paul Levitz pens an original story to end the volume, illustrated by comic-book-art Titan Neal Adams. The essays are fine, too -- none match Ray Bradbury's text piece from Superman 400, but that's a pretty high standard to meet. So all in all, a satisfying volume that I'd be happy to read at twice the length. Long may the Reign of the Superman continue! Highly recommended.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This is an excellent, EXCELLENT collection. Not only does it perfectly chronicle the history of both the Man of Steel and ACTION comics, but it also provides a fascinating, and at times downright heartwarming, look into the Superman character. This book is a tribute for not only what Superman means to fans, but also for the impact his stories have had on the world as a whole. Even if you're not a comic fan, you know who Superman is and what he symbolizes, and that is an impressive feat for a med This is an excellent, EXCELLENT collection. Not only does it perfectly chronicle the history of both the Man of Steel and ACTION comics, but it also provides a fascinating, and at times downright heartwarming, look into the Superman character. This book is a tribute for not only what Superman means to fans, but also for the impact his stories have had on the world as a whole. Even if you're not a comic fan, you know who Superman is and what he symbolizes, and that is an impressive feat for a media icon introduced eight decades ago. There are very few things that have the staying power that Superman has had, and the scope of that influence is difficult to sum up--but this collection does exactly that. The interspersed editorials throughout the volume paired perfectly with the stories collected. It was even interesting to see a couple issues featuring other ACTION heroes, particularly Zatarra, since he's one of the few that has stuck around nearly as long as Superman (even if he hasn't captured the world quite as heartily). My favorite issues were towards the end, particularly the ones that followed a young Clark Kent growing into the Superman we know and love. The stand-out issue was definitely the one that included black-and-white accounts of everyday people in Superman's world being inspired by him--in ways that very much reflected how real people are inspired to overcome real dilemmas by the ideals he embodies. Clark's coming-of-age story written alongside those (with different artists contributing) was a testament to what this character is all about. The New 52 issue was worth reading, only because I haven't read a ton of New 52 Superman--though, there's a reason why. Especially included in a collection with so much of the "real" Superman, it's clear that those stories just lacked something that made them... well... super. But the story itself--of a boy using Superman's cape to stand up against an abusive parent--was one that simply "got" what Superman means: finding the strength in yourself to be a hero. Ordinary acts of heroism pave the way for extraordinary acts.--as paraphrased from the aforementioned "coming of age" comic. That's who Superman is, and that's what he will always represent. This collection is a celebration of not only the character, but the bit of Superman we all have inside us. Congratulations, ACTION comics, on 1,000 issues. Here's to 1,000 more.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Chris Wing

    So! I've got a new fascination. Or rather, a resurgence, if you will. I've started picking up graphic novels. My novel reading has taken a little bit of a downward turn as a result (I've comfortably hit my GoodReads target for the whole year already, so hey), but that's okay. Quick, non-jibey disclosure: I had this graphic novel sat around since late last year (it was a present for a now ex-girlfriend's birthday, and we broke up prior to said birthday, so this book had no home), so I decided that I So! I've got a new fascination. Or rather, a resurgence, if you will. I've started picking up graphic novels. My novel reading has taken a little bit of a downward turn as a result (I've comfortably hit my GoodReads target for the whole year already, so hey), but that's okay. Quick, non-jibey disclosure: I had this graphic novel sat around since late last year (it was a present for a now ex-girlfriend's birthday, and we broke up prior to said birthday, so this book had no home), so I decided that I was going toread it myself. After all, it's one of my favourite series, with one of my favourite artists (a perfect gift for an art enthusiast, who tends to draws sequential art). And, as I prepared to digest it, Action Comics 1000 came out. So I picked this up (I picked up Superman #75back in the 90s, the last Superman monthly book I've bought - I think!), read it, and put it on top of the lonely copy of Midnight Nation. I heard also that DC were bringing out a very big celebratory volume covering 80 years of Superman, so, after picking up one or two other trades in between, I finally popped and picked this up. It's a very big book! And quite rightly too. We have a selection of comic strips from every era of those 80 years and some great essays from people in the buisness. Now, I'm Marvel through and through (by whim of availability of UK comics in my childhood I guess, lots of Marvel reprints, rarely any DC, in my experience!), so looking at DC as a whole universe of comics history that I know very litle about. I mean, I know more than the non-comic reading masses, but not *too* much more... This was great way to start not only a collection of DC trades, but a collection of graphic novels. I'd recommend it to fans and non-fans alike, albeit non-fans looking for an in into DC/Superman, wh are happy to spent £25.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Ben Truong

    Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman is a compilation of some of the best representative Superman stories over the years to commemorate both the eightieth anniversary debut of one of the most iconic comic characters and to celebrate the (then) upcoming one-thousandth issue of Action Comics<, collected and edited by Paul Levitz. Over the years, there were many incarnations and depictions of the Man of Steel and this collection explores them all rather well. This anthology collects Action Comics #1, Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman is a compilation of some of the best representative Superman stories over the years to commemorate both the eightieth anniversary debut of one of the most iconic comic characters and to celebrate the (then) upcoming one-thousandth issue of Action Comics<, collected and edited by Paul Levitz. Over the years, there were many incarnations and depictions of the Man of Steel and this collection explores them all rather well. This anthology collects Action Comics #1, 2, 42, 64, 241, 242, 252, 285, 309, 419, 484, 554, 584, 655, 662, 800, and 0 (New 52). As a whole, Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman is a rather interesting collection comics and essays. While Superman appeared in the first issue of Action Comics, it doesn't solely focus on him, as there were many characters introduced in this series like Zatara, the Master Magician and the Vigilante. Limiting the story selection to the Action Comics series was wise, since it is also a celebration of the series, but is still must have been a Herculean Task as there was close to one thousand issues to choose from and it is no easy feat to pick out the best or favorites from the masses. Logical choices were made like the first issue of Action Comics, the first appearance of Superman, the first appearances of Supergirl, Brainiac, the Fortress of Solitude, and much more. Furthermore, it also spotlights an unpublished written by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster – the creators of Superman and a brand new story by Paul Levitz. Additionally, there are essays from the comic industry alumnus. All in all, I think Action Comics: 80 Years of Superman is a wonderful selection of stories over the eight decades that Superman has been around. It is a good anthology for both the avid and subdued fan alike. However, for the newly initiated I would recommend a collection that is more substantial and cohesive.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Michael

    Superman is, to me, the most iconic of all superheroes. He is the oldest, certainly: 1938. He is a simple character in many ways; a person who personifies a certain kind of American archetype. Heroic, strong, good. Straight to the point, down to earth (except the flying!), patriotic. Superman is a personification of our heartland values. He is God, family and country. Mother, flags and apple pie. He's truly an American good guy. He was born in the midst of the Great Depression, and for 80 years, Superman is, to me, the most iconic of all superheroes. He is the oldest, certainly: 1938. He is a simple character in many ways; a person who personifies a certain kind of American archetype. Heroic, strong, good. Straight to the point, down to earth (except the flying!), patriotic. Superman is a personification of our heartland values. He is God, family and country. Mother, flags and apple pie. He's truly an American good guy. He was born in the midst of the Great Depression, and for 80 years, he has flown around in our imaginations in comic books, television shows, and movies. This collection is some of his earliest and greatest hits across the decades. Truth be told, Superman is a bit boring to read about: he is incredibly powerful, and his stories are so well-known that they can seem a bit trite. He lacks some of the depth that other, less than perfect superheroes bring to a narrative: Batman's brooding, Byronic darkness; the Flash's uncertainty and immaturity; the gender issues faced by Wonder Woman. Still, I love me some Superman, and will defend him to my dying breathe. At a time when our country was reeling from economic catastrophe, and when the world was sinking into the mire of war and dictatorship and despair, the humble Clarke Kent flew out of Smallville and into our dreams. Superman, to me, is a symbol of hope, and an example of who We the People can be at our best.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Kent

    I've been a fan of Superman for as long as I can remember, so it's easily over 50 years. I watched the reruns of George Reeves as Superman as a boy at my Grandmother's house and distinctly remember walking with her to the local grocery store where I always ended up with a new Superman comic (those issues have long disappeared). When I was older and had money to burn on comics the real collecting began which finally stopped in 2008 when I couldn't bear continuing with the collection that had grow I've been a fan of Superman for as long as I can remember, so it's easily over 50 years. I watched the reruns of George Reeves as Superman as a boy at my Grandmother's house and distinctly remember walking with her to the local grocery store where I always ended up with a new Superman comic (those issues have long disappeared). When I was older and had money to burn on comics the real collecting began which finally stopped in 2008 when I couldn't bear continuing with the collection that had grown to more than 600 books; consequently it's been almost 10 years since I've read any Superman comic. The 80th anniversary was to hard to pass up and I've clearly missed a lot. This deluxe edition was well done and includes classic stories and art, essays on the cultural impact of Superman, as well as short biographies of the major artists and writers that have produced Superman for 80 years. It was a truly a joy to spend time with Superman again, and who knows maybe it will provide a restart of something I once loved and which played a part in my growing up to the person I am today. Highly recommended reading for all Superman fans.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Michael Emond

    Not sure what others are raving about, the stories hand picked here are not even above average Superman stories. A Toyman story from the Golden age, some Supergirl stories from the bronze, a very weak Byrne story from the dark age (they named it that, not me). While it is interesting to see how Superman has changed over the years these stories are not the best ones I have ever read, they feel very disconnected and there is no common theme. One other thing they highlight is how many times DC has Not sure what others are raving about, the stories hand picked here are not even above average Superman stories. A Toyman story from the Golden age, some Supergirl stories from the bronze, a very weak Byrne story from the dark age (they named it that, not me). While it is interesting to see how Superman has changed over the years these stories are not the best ones I have ever read, they feel very disconnected and there is no common theme. One other thing they highlight is how many times DC has rebooted the character and their Universe which (IMO) is what is destroying comic books - the reboots after reboots after reboots. What used to have a rich history now has a new history every few years or so. I'd give it a pass - and reread Grant Morrison's All-Star Superman again.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Gregory

    This is a must for Superman fans, especially a companion piece to Action Comics 1000. I enjoyed the stories, especially the one that was considered lost for years until now. The book is great showing how Superman has evolved and remained the same. The volume has a story that is my personal favorite and still have the issue of Action Comics #384 titled "If Superman Didn't Exist" which is also a tribute to Siegel and Shuster as the heroes of the story and a lesson that being dreamers always change This is a must for Superman fans, especially a companion piece to Action Comics 1000. I enjoyed the stories, especially the one that was considered lost for years until now. The book is great showing how Superman has evolved and remained the same. The volume has a story that is my personal favorite and still have the issue of Action Comics #384 titled "If Superman Didn't Exist" which is also a tribute to Siegel and Shuster as the heroes of the story and a lesson that being dreamers always change the world. With the success of recent movies such as Wonder Woman and Black Panther, these comic book characters owe their success to Superman and the Late Stan Lee had acknowledged that as well. Happy Birthday Superman and here's to another 80 years.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Brian Rogers

    Got this as a Christmas present and found it an enjoyable read that I likely wouldn't have purchased for myself. The book is as much evidence of the changes in comics storytelling as it is any change in the character. It's clear with the back to back stories from Superman and Zatarra exactly how dynamic the original Superman story was, even without the addition of all the super powers and costume. The Vigilante tale from shortly after that shows how much more dynamic the visual language became i Got this as a Christmas present and found it an enjoyable read that I likely wouldn't have purchased for myself. The book is as much evidence of the changes in comics storytelling as it is any change in the character. It's clear with the back to back stories from Superman and Zatarra exactly how dynamic the original Superman story was, even without the addition of all the super powers and costume. The Vigilante tale from shortly after that shows how much more dynamic the visual language became in a short time. The back quarter of the book with the contemporary stuff left me as cold as much of the decompressed comics these days, with the added aspect of tying to justify Superman in ways that aren't, or shouldn't be, required.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jaime Guzman

    Action Comics has reached a thousand issues in It's 80 years. This book collects many stories from It's significantly long run. The majority of the stories are of Superman but there were also tales of other superheriies that appeared in Action Comics like The Vigilante (the red scarfed cowboy hero), The Human Target (The master of disguise who impersonates his clients) and Supergirl. There is one Superman story that has never been printed before and could only be found in this book. The mist of Action Comics has reached a thousand issues in It's 80 years. This book collects many stories from It's significantly long run. The majority of the stories are of Superman but there were also tales of other superheriies that appeared in Action Comics like The Vigilante (the red scarfed cowboy hero), The Human Target (The master of disguise who impersonates his clients) and Supergirl. There is one Superman story that has never been printed before and could only be found in this book. The mist of stories were mediocre in my opinion but I did enjoy some of the artists like John Byrne, Neal Adams, Dick Giordano, and Gil Kane. I would give this read 3 1/2 stars.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Seth Woodley

    This is a great volume to see the evolution of Superman over the last 80 years. As someone who has only been reading comics for a few years, I enjoyed this collection quite a bit. It highlights some of the bigger events and captures the essence of the character. I prefer the more recent art style, and I generally find the dialogue and story-telling to be a bit better in the more recent issues. I really enjoyed the short essays throughout, and I particularly liked "A Hero's Journey" and "The Boy This is a great volume to see the evolution of Superman over the last 80 years. As someone who has only been reading comics for a few years, I enjoyed this collection quite a bit. It highlights some of the bigger events and captures the essence of the character. I prefer the more recent art style, and I generally find the dialogue and story-telling to be a bit better in the more recent issues. I really enjoyed the short essays throughout, and I particularly liked "A Hero's Journey" and "The Boy Who Stole Superman's Cape." Superman gets a lot of criticism for being cheesy and too powerful, but there is a lot of good stuff to take away from Superman.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jamy

    LOVED IT! A nice way to celebrate 80 years and 1000 issues of Action. (As noted when ordering, issue #1000 is not included.). A sampling of some of the titles from its debut in 1938 to the Modern Era. The introduction of Supergirl, Brainiac, the Fortress of Solitude, along with an appearance by some of the Super animals from years past 🙄. Also a cameo or two by a former President of the United States. My favorite story is “A Hero’s Journey” (Action #800) which incorporated stories of “real heroe LOVED IT! A nice way to celebrate 80 years and 1000 issues of Action. (As noted when ordering, issue #1000 is not included.). A sampling of some of the titles from its debut in 1938 to the Modern Era. The introduction of Supergirl, Brainiac, the Fortress of Solitude, along with an appearance by some of the Super animals from years past 🙄. Also a cameo or two by a former President of the United States. My favorite story is “A Hero’s Journey” (Action #800) which incorporated stories of “real heroes” between scenes of a reimagining of the Man of Steel’s journey from infancy to adulthood.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Logan Muha

    Superman is one of the greatest, most influential fictional characters to ever grace the public eye, and this tome is a lovely tribute for both hardcore and casual fans of the man of tomorrow. I was disappointed by a few stories that didn’t make the cut (namely Lex Luthor’s first appearance in #23, and “What’s so funny about Truth Justice and The American Way?” from 775), but beyond that, everything that’s here deserves to be. Here’s to the next 80, Superman.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Aaron Frasier`

    For an 80th anniversary of Superman, it included none of the greatest Superman comics and a lot of, in my opinion, really boring obscure ones. and it’s incredible how bad comics were in the early days. There’s so much text on the pages you can’t even enjoy them and it literally has to narrate what is happening in every single comic square. Show me that with the picture. Don’t tell me what’s happening

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