Hello. I’m Alex Jaffe, better known in the DC Community as HubCityQuestion. My personal mission: to take on any question you have about the DC Universe—no matter how strange, granular, or obscure—and present you with an answer. As a faithful steward of the truth, I offer my time in this monthly column to address these inquiries. If you’d like to submit a question of your own, you can stop by my virtual office over in the Community at any time to state your case. I’ll do my best to address them all to the best of my ability.
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Are there any other canon examples of main universe Superman being a genius? Which version of Superman showed the most intelligence?
“Super intelligence” is among the least demonstrated of Superman’s powers, but it’s one which writers do remember to bring up from time-to-time. In the Silver Age, it was Superman’s “super-memory” which allowed him to recall his own birth and the destruction of Krypton. Kryptonian super-intelligence was similarly given as the reason that Krypto, when exposed to our yellow sun, could think and reason on a human level. Throughout Pre-Crisis comics, we see Superman continuing his father Jor-El’s work as a scientist and inventor, constantly tinkering with projects in his Fortress of Solitude.
Morrison, as you mentioned, is probably the most likely modern Superman writer to utilize “super intelligence,” from absorbing every text in a medical library, to performing complex interstellar calculations faster than a super-computer. The most impressively intelligent Superman, in fact, is likely Morrison’s own in All-Star Superman, who creates an entire universe in miniature as one of his final feats on Earth.
That said, I personally don’t quite care for when Superman is able to super-think everyone. It’s like letting him run faster than the Flash, you know? Let some other members of the Justice League do some stuff better. But who asked for my opinion? Well, that’s the kind of editorializing one must occasionally endure in exchange for answers when you ASK…THE QUESTION.
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