A little under a year ago I wrote a series of articles called Jimmy Olsen, Life Wrecking Idiot. In it, I wrote about how Superman‘s pal, Jimmy Olsen, was a horrible human being. It was the Watergate scandal of comic book articles, and I’m quite sure it resulted in Jimmy Olsen getting shot in the head in Batman v. Superman. I have been drunk with power ever since. I’ve decided to revisit this theme with a series of articles about Superman’s female protege, Lois Lane.
When people think of Lois Lane now, they think of a professional woman who is great at her job. She forms healthy relationships and has a pretty level head. When she first appeared in Action Comics #1, she was a no-nonsense reporter making it in a job that (at least in 1938) was mostly dominated by men. She turned down the romantic interests of Clark Kent.
Yet at the same time eventually developed a romantic interest in his alter-ego, Superman. Superman, however, kept her at an arms-length. Apparently, by the 1950s and 60s, this constant rejection drove her insane. This is the part of my article where I tell you to buckle up.
The Jilting of Superman
From Showcase #10
The Set Up:
Lois Lane appears on a quiz show, where she is able to win the grand prize by answering all the questions in the
“Superman” category correctly. She wins new cottage in the suburbs, however, there is a catch: she can only obtain
if she can get the man she loves to marry her within 10 days.
We all know how crazy in love Lois Lane is over Superman. Instead of doing something sane, like telling him how she really feels or learning how to deal with rejection if he turns her down, she instead tries to trick him into marriage. Because why have mutual attraction, matching personalities, or compatibility when it comes to marriage. Lois won’t have any of that, especially if there is a free house on the line. She clearly has her priorities in the right place.
Lois goes to her friend Millie for advice. Apparently, Millie is a garbage person as well because she suggests doing what she did to trick her husband into marrying her: Pretend to be married to somebody else so the guy you want gets so jealous and expose their true feelings. This plan is contingent on the fact that when you finally reveal that you’ve been messing with their emotions they’ll still gladly marry you.
Coincidences in the DC Comics universe are about as common as skid marks in a roadside washroom, so it’s no surprise that while she’s hatching this scheme, Lois runs into an actor named Tony Lester. Lois had written an article about him previously, and she is not above trivializing her journalistic integrity to win the man of her dreams. She manages to talk him into pretending to be her happy husband-to-be so that Superman gets jealous enough to ask Lois to marry him.
Then she rubs salt on the wound by convincing Superman into helping her move:
Then she throws out all the presents he gave her over the years:
Does it Backfire?:
One Word answer: Spectacularly!
Tom isn’t exactly a victim in this story, he actually goes along with the plot until Superman saves his life on the set of a film. Tom probably wisely realizes there is nothing worse than meeting the ire of a guy who could punch you into the sun, so he tells Superman about Lois’ trick and the two begin plotting to get her back. They decide to have a mock fight in her new house, effectively trashing it.
When Lois is wondered that Superman is fighting over her, Superman instead tells her that he and Tom were practicing for a new television role for Tom and fly off. That’ll show Lois, leave her with a wrecked house that she has to pay for, right? Right?…
Lois Lane, Super-Chef
The Set Up:
In this story, Lois Lane once more wonders how she can win the heart of Superman. When walking past the offices of “Mister Romance”, the Daily Planets romance columnist, she overhears him telling a tearful woman that the way to a man’s stomach.
Lois Lane decides to take this advice for herself but wonders how on Earth she can win over Superman with food. Again, a sane and rational person would just invite Superman over for dinner. They’re close enough friends that this is somewhat practical. But that’s clearly not good enough for Lois, she learns that a local diner is looking for a new chef. Even though she has no experience in working in a restaurant she takes the job.
To make this insane plan complete, she manages to get a leave of absence from the Daily Planet to pull off this b-s scheme. To try and entice Superman into coming into the diner and eating her meals, she names all the food after the Man of Steel.
Lois tries to pull her heart-through-stomach scheme, but every time she tries there is some emergency that Superman needs to take care of. Sorry, Lois but blind-siding Superman with your super-steak takes a backseat when there are subway trains about to derail.
After Superman accidentally incinerated her steak, she tries another dish. She settles with pancakes because apparently battered breakfast food is immune to x-ray vision, I guess? This plan also backfires because:
Not to worry Lois! Superman comes in and helps Lois with the job he seems incapable of accomplishing on her own. Before she can get a chance to make Superman some of her pancakes he has to fly off on other business. However, the fact that Superman has been coming to this diner has boosted its business.
When Superman comes back again, Lois makes him an ice cream sundae that is sculpted to look like Superman. I should point out that sculpting ice cream is not cooking, but I digress.
Anyway, because the universe is a series of checks and balances, whenever Lois Lane comes up with something ridiculously elaborate to try and win over Superman, Superman in turn, unintentionally wrecks it with something equally as ridiculous. Case in point:
He then flies off to re-freeze a melted tub of ice cream by flying it into space, because that is a practical use of Superman’s time.
With Dick Morgan ready to come back to work, Lois Lane soon begins to panic because her highly impractical plan is not working out as well as she planned.
When Superman does come back to the restaurant on her last day the best thing she can cook for him is a bowl of alphabet soup.
The real reason Superman went back is because he left his fingerprints on a salt shaker and needs to destroy the evidence in the off chance someone manages to use those prints to figure out his secret identity. Instead of doing something practical, like palming it (which he can do at super-speed you), Superman does this instead:
To his credit, Superman leaves Lois Lane a message in the soup anyway, but doesn’t tell her and leaves her guessing. What happens next is this:
Well, I’ll leave you with this for now, we’re not done with Lois Lane yet we’ll be back with a few more of these little diddies soon, providing more proof that Lois should probably work on herself before finding Mr. Right.