The Many Faces of Superman

@macjr, thank you for sharing. Funny how each of us has their own ideal versions of their favorite characters in their heads. I like that you mentioned we all have different preferences, because I’ve seen folks get a bit too heated over stuff like S shield size or the correct shade of blue. I think having different interpretations adds to the fun of it all. For instance, while some of the looks posted here are not my favorite, I think the amazing art elevates all of them. Familiar with the old Superman blue and red (Curt Swan…60s?). If we had a better image posting system, I would have posted those next to the 90s versions in the same comment :slightly_smiling_face:

Speaking of big S shields…how can I forget Alex Ross?


I was far more resistant to the changes made to the Superman suit, style changes and such, early on. I have become more accepting of change since then. Some of the newer looks are not all that bad (grudgingly admitting), but more than likely, the Curt Swan style will always be my favorite, since that was the Superman I first grew to admire and wish I could be like.

I also have an ability, developed more and more over the years and decades, just to place most newer versions of old storied into ElseWorlds, away from the reality I was raised in. :wink:

Sadly, or at least sad in some ways, my reality, the one I was raised in, no longer exists except in back issue collections. Each day brings new realities to explore, and this is not entirely bad. It just depends on the direction of the flow of dark and light, and how and where it is spreading. Is it changing things for the better, or for the worse? Sometimes that is really hard to tell. Not all things are as dark as they first appear, and not all things remembers were as good as we thought they were.

Reality is what you make it, maybe more so than any of us realize. It is best to try to let go of what you think was better, and look for the positive that you do find around you today. In comics, and in life.

I just have to keep reminding myself of these things as I age.



As for all the looks the Superman suit, some of these I had not seen yet. Some were better than others, and I am sure my list of better suits would be different from yours, as other’s lists would be different from both of our lists. So it goes.

I am also a “trunks guy”. The suit just looks better that way. Too much blue otherwise. The read trunks breaks that up to balance the look much better.


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@macjr…last thing I expected when I made this post were some words of wisdom…a welcome outcome. Thank you :blush:

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When I was a kid in the sixties, the only version of Superman I liked was Curt Swan’s rendition. I hated Wayne Boring’s Superman back then because he drew him (to my ten-year-old eyes) fat and stiff. Other Superman artists of the time, Jim Mooney, Al Plastino, Kurt Schaffenberger, just couldn’t measure up to Mr. Swan. Years later I learned to appreciate all these men (Jim Mooney had a long run on Amazing Spider-Man that rarely gets noticed). And then 1971 came and like a bolt from the blue DC teamed Curt Swan with Murphy Anderson and Superman never before–or since–looked so good. Some of those books are on here now so check them out and be amazed.
And, yes I am a fan of the red trunks because they work artistically; they simply break up all that blue. Without them, Superman is wearing a blue scuba suit (Man Of Steel).

I’m a big fan of the McGuniess cartoony look


I also love the modern-classic John Byrne design.

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@baseballmaniac, will check out those Swan/Murphy issues out for sure. Thanks for pointing them out. Funny, I never heard the Man of Steel suit described as a scuba suit :joy:. I actually liked it; though trunkless, I felt like the sheen and the intricate patterns throughout gave us plenty to visually admire.

Sorry missed your previous Byrne post

Michael Turner added an element of “cool” that I havent seen matched since.

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@DCComicsCrisis…so we have John Byrne as a mutual like :slightly_smiling_face:. Never really read any of the McGuinness stuff, but I’ve seen many images…boy is that a unique style. I think they based one of the DC Collectibles Superman statues on his art.

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Now that I look at it I don’t know if the previous Turner pic is actually a Turner original. So here’s this one.

@moro he drew much of Jeph Loeb’s run in the late 90s/early 2000s. Its really good stuff you should check it out. Doug Mankhe did a lot of work there too.

@DCComicsCrisis, I was wondering how he managed to draw the reborn suit when he died well before that. That last image isn’t showing up on my end.

It’s showing up here. But let me try again.

Eh…no luck…I’ll check it out on the computer later. Maybe it’s my phone. Will check out some of those Loeb/McGuinnes issues…thanks for the recommendation :slightly_smiling_face:

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Have to give Ed Benes a shoutout.


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I love this thread!

My favorite Superman look is the New 52 Supes, with the belt (no trunks). I appreciate the trunks, and loved seeing it on Action Comic 1000, but I thought the belt was a nice update to the classic suit.

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@DCComicsCrisis, I love that image. Not many artists successfully pull off the determined no nonsense gonna kick your ass facial expression on Supes…but this guy certainly does.

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