In this decade alone we’ve been subject to two vomit inducing Superman movies. Man of Steel and Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice were the equivalent of hate mail to every superhero fan and insult to the combined intelligence of anyone who could read with paltry excuses like Zack Snyder’s claim that his iteration was closer to the source material.
While I am still anticipating Wonder Woman, Shazam!, Aquaman, The Batman, and, with much cautious optimism, Justice League, I have all but given up on seeing a Superman movie that could even remotely be described as “not made for idiots.”
Thankfully, much like the true Man of Steel would have inspired in mankind, fans across the world have gotten together to work on short films to fill the void created by the admirable incompetence of the Snyder-Nolan-Goyer trinity.
In that vein of fan made superiority is Zachariah Smith’s It All Goes Away.
Based on “Sam’s Story,” a back-up story in 2006’s Superman/Batman #26, the tale deals with young Clark Kent’s first real encounter with loss and grief. Set in the pre-Flashpoint continuity, this was one of the many emotionally anchored tales DC often seeded throughout various titles as little reminders of how human their heroes really were.
But the real story is a lot more of a tearjerker.
Sam Loeb, son of then-Superman/Batman scribe Jeph Loeb, was supposed to have made his comic-writing debut with “The Boys Are Back in Town,” a story following Superboy and Robin on one of their many adventures. Sadly, Sam, who had been battling cancer for three years passed away before the completion of the comic.
However, the story was then completed by some of the biggest names in the industry, including Jim Lee, Rob Liefeld, Ed McGuinness, and the late Michael Turner, Geoff Johns, Paul Levitz, Brad Meltzer, and Brian K. Vaughan. Even Joss Whedon and John Cassaday were given an exception on their exclusive contracts by Marvel (they were working on Astonishing X-Men then) to contribute to the execution of Sam Loeb’s story. Eventually slated for issue 26 of Superman/Batman and set to be released in April of 2006, the issue was a milestone of sorts.
Marking the conclusion of Jeph Loeb’s 2-year run on the series, it was also the end of actual continuity impacting stories being carried in the pages of Superman/Batman. Additionally, it is Joss Whedon’s only comic book work for DC Comics to date and was rumoured to be one of the stepping stones towards his selection as writer/director of an earlier attempt at a Wonder Woman film.
But most significantly, the issue coincided with the death of Superboy in the pages of Infinite Crisis, at the hands of the crazed Superboy-Prime. Sam Loeb’s story, under the expert care of so many talents, was recrafted to not only tell of one of the last adventures between two best friends, but also served as a eulogy to both character and writer.
Jeeps Loeb penned the back up story of “Sam’s Story” which was also featured in the same issue, and in doing so gave young Clark Kent a friend who could teach him a lesson or two that Pete Ross and Lana Lang just couldn’t.
Fortunately, Zachariah Smith and team saw fit to bring it to life.