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Superman: Secret Origin Paperback – December 13, 2011

3.9 out of 5 stars 53 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Geoff Johns is an award-winning writer and one of the most popular contemporary comic book writers today. Johns is the author of The New York Times bestselling graphic novels Aquaman: The Trench, Blackest Night, Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps War, Justice League: Origin, Superman: Brainiac and Batman: Earth One which hit #1 on the bestseller list. He is also known for transforming Green Lantern into one of the most critically and commercially successful franchises in comics.
 
Johns was born in Detroit and studied media arts, screenwriting, and film at Michigan State University. After moving to Los Angeles, he became an assistant to Richard Donner, director of Superman: The Movie. He and his mentor Donner later co-wrote Superman: Last Son featuring the return of General Zod.
 
Johns has written for various other media, including episodes of Smallville, Arrow and Adult Swim's Robot Chicken, for which he was nominated along with his co-writers for an Emmy. He is the Chief Creative Officer of DC Entertainment and resides in Los Angeles, California.


Gary Frank, a native of Bristol, England, began his comics career working on various titles for Marvel UK before entering the American comics scene as the penciller on Marvel’s Incredible Hulk. Frank then came to DC Comics where he was the original artist on BIRDS OF PREY and pencilled the adventures of SUPERGIRL. He has also worked on WildStorm’s GEN 13 as well as his creator-owned series Kin. Frank, along with writer Geoff Johns, has worked on the bestselling titles SUPERMAN: BRAINIAC, SUPERMAN AND THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES. And the New York Times #1 bestseller, BATMAN: EARTH ONE.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics; 1st edition (December 13, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 140123299X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401232993
  • Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 0.4 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #110,265 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By K. A. Piccolo on October 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a terrific retelling of the origin of the Man of Steel! Definitive, and concise without missing a beat, it clarifies the "why"s of this American icon. The artwork is stupendous, with a wonderful resemblance to the Christopher Reeves version (even Lana looks like Annette O'Toole). Very well designed, without a single loose end. Two thumbs up.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While a lot of the best Superman stories take place outside of continuity, this is my favorite reboot and revisiting of the origin. It pays wonderful tribute to the Reeve films and succeeds in every way the film Superman Returns does not. Leads into excellent comics such as Last Son and Brainiac.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Another excellent achievement from Geoff Johns. The artwork was good and the storyline was an interesting take on the Man of Steel's origin. I would recommend it to anyone wanting some modernized Superman backstory.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I don't think this is the definitive retelling of the Superman origin as it's been described as much as its a showcase for Gary Frank's super artwork. Geoff Johns certainly does a good job in telling a fast paced story with the usual cast of Superman characters but overall this is really Gary Frank's baby. The great artwork dissolves any quibbles one might have with this Superman tale. In the end this story is all too familiar but Johns keeps it fresh enough with a modern twist. Pick it up in softcover.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
To every Superman fan across the country, this story is perfect for anybody who will love to see the early days of Clark Kent in Smallville, to Metropolis as he revals himself as Superman. Perfect way to show it to everybody
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is yet another Superman origin story. If your don't want to read another one than this isn't really for you. This story hits all the basic beats and covers quite a lot of Superman's life. Geoff Johns seemed to want to get as much story and to bring together all kinds of Superman stories into one. We have things from Superman the Movie, Smallville, Birthright, and more I can't think of right now. I think the real stand out of this novel is the artwork, it is really great. Also Clark/ Superman in here feels like a version of Christopher Reeve's Superman, which is fun and awesome to see.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Geoff Jones and Gary Frank are the dynamic duo when it comes to Superman. I'm fresh of reading Superman and the Legion of Superheroes and now this, Superman: Secret Origin. I normally take my time to read new book but this one, I had to keep reading and tasting the writing and the art. What a story!!.

First of, Jones makes an UMBELIEVABLE work on writing Superman. It was like having a Superman story with all the ingredients Superman: The Movie had. I'm not saying that the book is based on the movie, but it have the "flavor" and it's given in such a sutil way that it made me smile every now and then.

The art by Frank is FANTASTIC. Combined with Jones writing, is like seying Christopher Reeve making his thing one more time. It was so unique!. An experience that I haven't had with no other artist.

What makes this story so damn good is how Geoff Jones makes Superman believable. His Superman is not doll nor out of fashion. He's as confused as you and I would be if we try to save the world alone. He have doubts. He's not perfect, but reachs a point where he knows what to do and what NOT to do.

Smallville portion was all about the parents and the true friends. The Legion of Superheroes portion was a breath of fresh air, and the Metropolis portion was a big bang bum!. Funny, touching, action, characters introduction.

Like I said, I can't stop loving this book.
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Format: Hardcover
Superman Secret Origin is yet another (possibly unnecessary?) re-hash of Superman's origin, with still further claims by DC that it is the "definitive" origin for now. There have been several in the last 20 years alone and though all have their charm and attraction, SSO was billed as an ultimate intimate portrait of what made Clark Kent into Superman. Written by the prolific Geoff Johns and drawn by the definitive Superman artist of the last ten years, namely Gary Frank, SSO promised a lot.... and mostly fails to deliver. You can usually tell when a collection of stories doesn't quite hit its marks - look for a foreword or introduction by a famous person that mostly avoids talking about the actual work or makes the barest mention of the pages that follow.

Although ostensibly about Superman's "origins," Johns, in a genuine surprise, wastes no time going over where Superman is from or how he got to earth. Rather, his initial interest is in the "secret origin" if you like, of Clark Kent. To that end, much of the series is dedicated to some of the smaller moments that help Clark eventually become Superman, and in his early days, that help Superman claim his place in Metropolis. When we meet Clark, he's a young boy about to learn a crushing secret that changes his life forever. With the support of his adoptive parents, Clark quickly, (actually faster than a speeding bullet) adapts to his new status in life, gains acceptance in the form of his friendships with members of the Legion of Superheroes, and eventually moves to Metropolis, where his personal alienation from his co-workers and ordinary people is eventually eclipsed by his widespread acceptance as Superman by the people of Metropolis, although not without some significant support from Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen.
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