Supreme The Return 1A NM Alan Moore Awesome Chris Sprouse Cover Movie 1st print


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Supreme The Return (1999) #1A

Published May 1999 by Awesome
Cover by Sprouse & Gordon
Script by Alan Moore
Pencils by Chris Sprouse
Inks by Al Gordon

Although Supreme was originally a violent, egotistical Superman archetype, he was retooled by Alan Moore as a tribute to Mort Weisinger’s Silver Age Superman.

Korgo challenges President Clinton to single combat, Supreme has it out with the Shadow Supreme and Suprema takes on Optilux in “Through a Glass Darkly…” Part 2 of 2, continued from Supreme (1993) #56. Appearances by Vor-Em, Slaver Ant, the Televillain, Radar. Plus: 4 pages of unlettered Jim Starlin art from Supreme The Return (1999) #2.

Branching from ‘Supreme’, This “sequel” has Supreme and Suprema set to battling their escaped enemies released from a mirror prison of an alternate dimension. As Korgo controls the White House after punching out President Bill Clinton, Suprema battles Optilux at a Bon Jovi concert, Supreme fights Shadow Supreme and a lot of cheesy in-jokes unfold including Radar- Dog Supreme set to voice his own dissent with the foes.

Whereas Morrison put much of that love into All-Star, Moore takes whatever was left after penning “For The Man Who Has Everything” and uses it to breathe new life into a Robert Liefeld creation that no one before or since (Sorry, Erik Larsen) has managed to make feel vital and fresh. Yes, he does this by turning him into Superman, essentially, but he’s able to explore themes and ideas DC seldom lets anyone tackle with Big Blue. From showing Supreme’s difficulty with understanding the moral implications of resurrecting his dead girlfriend as a robot (in Supreme #54’s “The Ballad of Judy Jordan”) to showing the feral, violent side of Krypto stand-in Radar (In Supreme: The Return #1), Moore injects enough new ideas into his Superman pastiche for it to evolve into its own curiously infectious beast.

Alan Moore and Chris Sprouse pick up the story where they left off, so deftly, in fact, that it’s difficult to believe that this new issue #1 wasn’t already finished and ready to hit the shops as issue #57, so it’s much more likely that it was a business-and-production delay, or maybe a delay on what followed, rather than a creative delay on their part.

But Sprouse only sticks around for this one last issue, and then it’s a rotating artistic team for the rest of the series.

So Supreme: The Return #1 concludes the battle begun in the final issue of the previous series, without even a Rick Veitch flashback to break up the action. Because the comic takes place in the 1990s, Moore throws in some political humor as Korgo, Trampler of Galaxies, seizes the White House, knocks Bill Clinton unconscious and orders Hillary to have herself “perfumed and brought to his chamber,” where she will consummate her status as his new “wife number one.”

By the end of the issue, Korgo is quietly begging Supreme to put him out of his misery so he can escape her domineering clutches.

Other than that, it’s pretty straightforward action.

Maybe this Chris Sprouse-era Supreme wasn’t as great as I had remembered. It’s still compulsively readable, but there’s not much meat on its bones in this final, Sprouse-drawn issue. Looks nice. Really nice. But that’s about the extent of its substance.

Yesterday, Rob Liefeld revealed that he had been receiving phone calls regarding the film rights to Supreme. The website comicbook assumes interest could be there because of Alan Moore’s run and not Liefeld’s.

So that’s TWO studio lit. departments calling about SUPREME film rights in one week. Hmmm, could the Marvel/DC stranglehold finally be over?
12:42 PM · Sep 10, 2014

In October of 1992, Rob Liefeld introduced comic book fans to Supreme in Image Comics’ Youngbloods #3. He was considered to be the most powerful superhero in Liefeld’s universe, something along the lines of Superman. He went through many incarnations but the earliest version had him quoting scripture and had a god complex. He received his own comic book series, which lasted 56 issues. Supreme was published by Image Comics (1992-96, 2012), Maximum Press (1996-98), Awesome Entertainment (1999-2000) and by Arcade Comics (2006).

During its run, Liefeld asked Alan Moore if he would like to takeover the writing duties on Supreme. Moore is the legendary but cranky comic book writer that wrote Watchmen, V for Vendetta, and From Hell. He agreed to write Supreme, a comic he described at the time as being “not very good,” but wanted free reign, which he received. Moore then reinvented Supreme with inspiration from Silver Age Superman. Instead of mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent, Supreme’s alter ego was Ethan Crane a mild-mannered comic book artist. Where Clark/Superman loses his powers when he comes into contact with kryptonite, Ethan gains his powers from coming into contact with a meteorite made of a fictional element known as supremium. Coming into contact with it caused his hair to turn white and gain the power of flight, super-speed, super-intelligence and a laundry list of other Superman-like powers. Other Superman-like characters appeared in Moore’s run: Darius Dax was Supreme’s Lex Luthor, Suprema was a reference to Supergirl, Radar the Hound Supreme was reference to Superman’s super-dog Krypto, Judy Jordan was a reference to Lana Lang and Ethan’s love interest Diana Dane was a reference to Lois Lane.

What made the Moore’s run most interesting was that it didn’t completely toss out everything that had previously been done with the character. It was self aware. It used the based storylines with the run treating them as a parralel universe. Moore’s run was highly-acclaimed and he received the 1997 Eisner Award for Best Writer.

Near mint, 1st print. Bagged & Boarded.