I don't know if this has been done before, but inspired by Brutalis's animated Batman poll, I figured I'd do one with Superman.
Tough choice, but I'll go with the 1988 Ruby-Spears Superman, with Superman: The Animated Series second and Super Friends 3rd. It's a shame that the 1988 series only lasted one season. I think it's a great, and underrated, portrayal of Superman, and a bit of an homage to the Christopher Reeve Superman.
Sorry, but I ran out of options and didn't have room for an "other" selection.
Last Edit: Dec 31, 2018 17:42:18 GMT -5 by dbutler69
Post by MechaGodzilla1974 on Dec 31, 2018 16:48:11 GMT -5
Fleischer's Superman was the best and the original; the next two would be Filnation and the Super Friends. But, the Ruby Spear version is right for the time and the modern Animated Series was excellent too.
In terms of pure effort and quality, the Fleischer Bros. should win, hands down, but I truly love the Warner Bros. incarnation, especially that pilot episode that intertwined Brainiac's origin into Superman's. Genius.
Warner Bro's/Timm Superman for me. Fleischer was great for the time and looks spectacular but with how much Supe's has evolved those 'toons just don't feel like Superman for me. Superfriends takes 2nd place as those are the ones i grew up with. Filmation in 3rd place. Can't even remember the Ruby Spear's 'toon as it came/went so quickly.
Post by chadwilliam on Jan 7, 2019 20:23:20 GMT -5
Fleischer without hesitation.
I could never get into the 1996 series and strangely enough, I think it might be because whereas The Fleischer cartoons served as inspiration when it came time to do Batman, with Superman, it was a "gold standard" as thwhtguardian put it, which couldn't be surpassed and therefore something whose influence was avoided. I believe Timm and co. originally went with a 1940's style for the series but balked when they realised that by drawing attention to the Fleischer brothers with their series, their work might look less impressive by comparison. I think it was a mistake to not go with their original instinct.
Animation aside - and what they ended up with certainly wasn't bad - the series never really felt like it wanted to let loose. Whereas Batman: TAS took inspiration from wherever it could (from the Fleischers to the Silver Age, to Rogers and Englehart and O Neil and Adams, to Dick Sprang, etc), Superman: TAS seemed forever shackled to the same rigid rule book his comic book counterpart was during the era. Don't have fun with kryptonite; don't have fun with the dual identities; don't have your number one enemy do more than plot crimes from his office; don't make Superman too powerful (in one episode for instance, Superman got tossed around by Bane of all people). I realise that these are some of the same criticisms I've levelled at the comics, but I really think that for an adventure cartoon for kids, a half hour inside the bottle city of Kandor or Superman split into two is more exciting than a two-part episode with Lobo.
I liked the Ruby-Spears run as well. It was a nice blend actually of pre and post-Crisis Superman. You got Businessman Luthor and living Kents, but also mild-mannered Clark Kent and a self-sufficient, confident Superman. I thought it was a nice blend, though I'm surprised that nine-year old me wasn't thrown off by the changes.
Post by taxidriver1980 on Jan 8, 2019 11:59:24 GMT -5
Bane threw Superman around? Wow. What episode, Chad?
The Fleischer ones are my favourites. So timeless. Some very good stories. Made me smile in the first episode when Supes throws that mad scientist in jail. Watch carefully, I'm surprised the mad scientist didn't die, given Superman threw him head-first - and the scientist landed on his neck. You could have paralysed him, Supes!
I bought these on VHS as a kid. Then again on DVD. I never tire of watching them.
The 1966 cartoons are okay. My mother rented some for me in the 80s. They worked then, but when I saw them as an adult, there was nothing there to keep my interest.
I like the Ruby-Spears run, particularly those shorts at the end. Very solid.
Fleischer first above all others, with S:TAS a distant second.
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Post by codystarbuck on Jan 15, 2019 0:34:19 GMT -5
Fleischer by a long yard, with Superman TAS in second. The Filmation stuff was decent, though I though Batman was done far better. The Ruby-Spears one would be next, though it suffered from lack of comic book villains, beyond Luthor (and a revamped/renamed Brainiac).
The Super Friends had some really good Superman episode, especially things like the 1st series episode "The PLanet Splitter," which retells Superman's origin; but, the restrictions on the series made it tough to do it consistently.
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