In Superman and the Authority, the Man of Steel becomes a powerful antihero who bears more than a striking resemblance to an X-Men powerhouse.
WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Superman and Authority # 1, on sale now from DC Comics.
Superman is rebuilding the Authority, and the telepathic antihero Manchester Black is his first recruit. This ends an evolution that has seen Black, who was initially created as a member of the analog team of the violent Authority The Elite, go from villain to ally at a time when Superman desperately needs him.
It is a trajectory reminiscent of a character created by Superman and authority writer Grant Morrison. Manchester Black follows in the footsteps of an X-Men villain turned team member, Quentin Quire, also known as Kid Omega.
In this issue, Superman takes Manchester Black to the Fortress of Solitude and admits that he needs him to make one last desperate move to save the world before his powers are completely exhausted, setting the sun on his superhero career. While Black is initially tough, he eventually helps Superman fight a group of attackers from the Phantom Zone and agrees to help Superman recruit other DC and WildStorm heroes and antiheroes to create a new version of the Authority.
All about how black gets into Superman and authority # 1, by Morrison, Mikel Janin, Jordie Bellaire and Steve Wands, is reminiscent of Kid Omega. His psychic powers, his dismissive attitude towards traditional superheroes, and his pastel hair are similar to the young X-Man.
I wanted your first appearance in New X-Men # 135 by Morrison, Frank Quitely, Tim Townsend, and Chris Chuckry. After being introduced as a prized student of Professor Xavier, Quire quickly turns into a terrible child. Under the influence of the sensitive bacteria Sublime, Quire and his Omega gang start a riot at the Xavier Academy. It ended with the apparent death of Quire. Like any self-respecting X-Man, he grew better and went on to find an unlikely mentor in Wolverine, establishing himself as one of the most prominent X-Men of his generation and one of Marvel’s most powerful mutants.
Black’s story is not completely analogous to Quire’s, given that it takes place in multiple DC continuities. After being defeated by Superman in his first appearance, in Joe Kelly, Doug Mahnke and Lee Bermejo’s Action comics # 775, Black vowed revenge. After a disastrous mission to free Doomsday with the Suicide Squad, he made his move.
In the “Ending Battle” crossover, Black learned of Superman’s secret identity and sent dozens of supervillains after everyone in Clark Kent’s life. With Superman busy, it appeared that Black killed Lois Lane. It turned out to be an illusion, broken when Superman refused to lower himself to his level and kill Black in retaliation.
Black made his DC Rebirth debut in Superman # 23 by Peter Tomasi, Patrick Gleason and Doug Mahnke. Combining his rivalry with Superman with his interest in teenage heroes, Black brainwashed Superman’s son Jon to work alongside him. After being defeated, his conscience got caught in a dairy cow.
The Manchester Black of Superman and authority It appears to be another version of the character, who exercises his psychic powers in his own body. He has the same relationship and the same disdain for Superman as his predecessor. Like Quire, he has a jaded take on traditional superheroes that he’s not ashamed to share. He also chooses to fight them when it comes time to choose a side. Black helped the weakened Superman when he was fighting a losing battle against the fugitives from the Phantom Zone.
Despite his posturing and anti-establishment streaks; Black and Quire’s actions indicate that ultimately they both want to do the right thing, even inspiration forced them to accept that idea. Quire only enrolled in the Institute as part of a deal Wolverine made with Captain America to keep him out of jail. Meanwhile, Superman rescued Black from authorities in his native London.
While Quire finally got his second chance and became the seasoned hero he still is in X-Force today, Black is just starting down that path and will get that chance as part of the Superman team, assuming he can withstand prolonged exposure to the. Iron Man. .
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