Superman gets a new logo, animated short for his 75th anniversary

May 30, 2013 | 11:30 a.m.

Superman is about to be everywhere. America's favorite superhero is celebrating his 75 anniversary, the highlight of which is "Man of Steel," which opens in theaters June 14. We're kicking off the festivities by digging into the L.A. Times' and DC Comics' media libraries to find 75 super images -- and 75 super facts -- celebrating the one-and-only Superman. (Credits, clockwise from upper left: Warner Bros., DC Comics, Associated Press and DC Comics. Center: Getty Images. Gallery by Rene Lynch.)

Superman made his first appearance in "Action Comics" No. 1 in June 1938. It is considered one of the world's most valuable comic books. (DC Comics)

The character proved to be so popular that Superman later earned his very own comic book series. (Associated Press / Sotheby's)

He goes by many nicknames, including "The Last Son of Krypton." We turned to DC Comics' encyclopedia for more facts -- some well known, some not so much -- about the world's most famous superhero. (DC Comics)

So let's start with some of the basics: Superman is the most powerful being on Earth. (Warner Home Video)

His original name? Kal-El. His legal name is Clark Joseph Kent. (Jim Lee / DC Comics)

His place of birth: Kryptonopolis, Krypton, a foreign planet. So, technically, he is an alien. (Getty Images)

Superman's origin story -- as well as his artistic look and costume -- have evolved over the years with each reboot. But DC Comics documents one strain of his origin story thusly: The child Kal-El was sent to Earth by his scientist parents, Jor-El and Lara Lor-Van. (Wizard)

The reason they sent their son away: The planet Krypton was facing doom, and Kal-El's parents wanted to give their son a chance at life. (Warner Bros.)

Employing a gestation chamber, they sent Kal-El to Earth. There, the advantages were many: Exposure to the sun would "supercharge" his cells and give him his amazing abilities. (DC Comics)

Upon his arrival on Earth, the infant was found by a kindly couple, Jonathan and Martha Kent, of Smallville, Kan. (Handout)

The Kents raised the infant as their own, keeping his unusual arrival a secret. (Warner Bros. Pictures)

But it was increasingly clear that Clark was... different. His superpowers grew as he did. Among them: super strength. (The WB)

His adoptive parents finally told him the truth when he turned 18. (Associated Press / DC Entertainment)

Clark Kent made the decision that he would keep his superpowers secret. (Associated Press)

But Clark -- instilled with high moral ideals by his adoptive parents -- decided he would still use his superpowers to fight for truth and justice. One of the most famous Superman covers of all-time: Fred Ray's original art from the issue of "Superman" No. 14, in 1942, showing a signature wartime image of the "Man of Steel." (Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

With the help of his adoptive parents, Clark Kent moved into public life -- but under a secret identity. ("Max Fleischer's Superman" / Paramount)

The costume did not include a mask -- so that the public would better trust him, his mother reasoned. (DC Comics)

He decided to dramatically change his everyday physical appearance and mannerisms, "so that nobody would suspect" his true identity. (DC Comics)

That cover? The absolutely adorkable mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent, of course. He was played to perfection by the late Christopher Reeve in "Superman." The 1978 film was one of many ways in which Superman and Clark Kent made the leap from comic books to films and more. [For The Record, 11:29 a.m. PDT March 28: A previous version of this caption said the film was released in 1987. It was released in 1978.] (Associated Press)

Some other Clark Kent facts courtesy DC Comics: He graduated from Metropolis University. (Credit: Brandon Routh in "Superman Returns" Warner Bros. Pictures / David James)

He later met with the lovely and ambitious reporter, Lois Lane. She would come up with the name "Superman" for the high-flying man in tights. (Image from the movie "Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut." Warner Bros. Entertainment)

Some of Superman's finest adventures would involve Lois Lane, as in this edition, when she's forced to masquerade as a "lady dictator" in a bid to manipulate Superman. (DC Comics)

While Clark was working alongside Lane and cub reporter Jimmy Olsen, he crosses paths with villian Lex Luthor -- at least according to one strain of Superman's origin story. (DC Comics)

Luthor, a sinister businessman, tries to corrupt Superman, but of course it does not work. Thus starts the legendary feud that has lent fuel to Superman's story ever since. (Associated Press)

Another origin strain has Lex Luthor and Clark Kent growing up as friends -- a plot twist played up in TV's "Smallville," which starred Michael Rosenbaum, left, as Lex Luthor and Tom Welling as Clark Kent. The boyhood friendship is destroyed after Luthor's father is killed in a fire, according to one story.

Over the years, Luthor has tried to destroy Superman by many methods, among them: Green Kryptonite, which can steal a Kryptonian's superpowers. (DC Comics)

Other Superman adventures over the years: He fought Muhammad Ali and lost. How's that? Because the fight took place on a distant planet whose properties temporarily rob Superman of all his superpowers, that's how. The battle was envisioned as a political statement, its creator, Neal Adams, told Hero Complex. (DC Comics)

He also took on Titano, the Super-Ape, who has an ability to shoot Kryptonite rays from his eyes. (DC Comics)

Some more biographical facts about the enduring character created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster ... (Reuters / Warner Bros. Studios)

Superman is 6 feet, 3 inches, 235 pounds. He has blue eyes and black hair. (Warner Bros. Pictures)

According the DC Comics' official guide to Superman, Clark Kent's favorite sandwich is peanut butter-and-jelly and his favorite sport is football. (Warner Bros. Pictures / Sony Pictures Imageworks)

His birthday is Feb. 29. This makes Superman's zodiac sign Pisces.(Warner Bros. Pictures)

His "base of operations"? Fortress of Solitude, Hall of Justice or Metropolis. Or where ever crime needs fighting. (DC Comics)

League members have changed over the years, but original members include Aquaman, Batman, the Flash, Green Lantern, Martian Manhunter, Superman and Wonder Woman. (Cartoon Network)

Even when the "S" is not visible, you can tell which one is Superman by the granite jaw. (Alex Ross / DC Comics)

Superman is quintessentially American, but he is a citizen of Earth as well. In this issue of "Action Comics" No. 900, Superman renounces his U.S. citizenship because of his concerns that his actions are seen as instruments of U.S. foreign policy. (Associated Press / DC Comics)

In other adventures, Superman, DC Comics, and UNICEF joined forces to help in a mine-sweeping campaign in Bosnia. Private agencies and a NATO-led peace force distributed the comic book, showing Superman swooping in to rescue two boys hunting for war souvenirs, in order to get the word out about the dangers of mines. (Associated Press / DC Comics / UNICEF)

Superman's strengths are many, although the exact magnitude is unknown. (Warner Bros. Pictures)

DC Comics says it is "generally accepted" that he has the ability to lift at least 1,000,000 tons. (Associated Press / DC Comics)

His body is deemed "nigh-invulnerable." He survived a blast equivalent to a million nuclear warheads, for example. (DC Comics)

According to DC Comics, his "greatest feat of durability" was withstanding the explosion of a sun -- although the blast did temporarily knock him out. (DC Comics)

His super immune system makes him impervious to toxins and disease. (DC Comics)

Superman's X-ray vision is played to great effect in "Superman Returns" for Xbox 360. (EA)

He also has heat vision, the ability to fire beams of intense heat from his eyes. (DC Comics)

He has a genius-level intellect and almost unimaginable analytical powers. He can "read information directly from machines (and, with careful usage of his heat vision, he can even reprogram machines)," according to his DC Comics bio. (DC Comcs)

Superman also has an indomitable will, "completely free of evil or temptation." DC Comics adds: Superman "is very optimistic and never gives up, even when things look bad." (DC Comics)

He can fly faster than "light speeds," tends to fly at Mach 10 and has flown into outer space. He can reach the moon in minutes, if he desires. (Associated Press)

His superhuman stamina means he can hold his breath forever, and does not need to sleep or eat. He just needs exposure to the sun. (DC Comics)

This 1992 cover marked one of the most notorious moments in Superman's history. It proclaimed "The Death of Superman." (DC Comics)

Spoiler alert: Superman survives his battle with Doomsday, but not before the world mourns and several others try to take Superman's place. (Associated Press)

Superman's personal life has been complicated, as might be expected. But there has been no shortage of female admirers. Here, he gets busy with Wonder Woman. (Associated Press / DC Entertainment)

This 2006 cover of the Advocate kicked up controversy by suggesting that Superman might be miscast by the masses. (The Advocate)

But, as everyone knows, Lois Lane is Superman's one true love -- even after she finds out the truth about his secret identity. (DC Comics)

How symbolic and beloved is Superman? He infuses our culture through and through. When the NBA's Shaquille O'Neal wanted to send a message, he had Superman's "S" tattooed on his arm.(NBAE)

A Superman mural greets visitors to Six Flags Magic Mountain in Valencia for the Superman: Escape From Krypton ride. It's billed as the first ride to reach speeds of 100 mph, a feat theme parks had been trying to reach for decades. (Los Angeles Times)

The ride begins in Superman's Fortress of Solitude and accelerates to 100 mph in seven seconds before shooting straight up a 41-story tower. (Los Angeles Times)

There's no shortage of Superman toys, games and other memorabilia. (Sideshow Collectibles)

...starring Bob Holiday in 1966's "It's a Bird, It's a Plane, It's Superman!" (Los Angeles Times archives)

While Superman usually gets top billing, he played a sidekick in "The Adventures of Seinfeld & Superman," online-only shorts for American Express. In the films, the pair pal around, taking in a Broadway show and even fighting crime. (American Express)

Actor George Reeves portrayed Superman in the 1950s television series. (Associated Press)

Others playing Superman on TV included Dean Cain, here with costar Teri Hatcher in "Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman." The series ran from 1993 to 1997. (ABC)

His look has changed dramatically over the years. A cape just causes drag, right? This Superman costume upends the red-white-and-blue homage. (Reuters)

We'll close on that classic Superman pose. Here's to another 75 years, Superman! (Associated Press / DC Comics)

Superman is getting a new logo for his 75th anniversary.

Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment today unveiled a new commemorative logo featuring the last son of Krypton in a striking blue silhouette to celebrate the character reaching his landmark pop culture milestone.

SM75_Vert_Preferred_Color_FINALThe logo will appear on the upcoming “Superman Unchained” comic book by Jim Lee and Scott Snyder due out June 12, just two days before Zack Snyder’s “Man of Steel” flies into theaters with actor Henry Cavill in the title role.

As part of the unveiling, the companies also announced that Zack Snyder will produce a new “Superman” animated short, designed to pay homage to Superman’s history and legacy. The short will be promoted in San Diego at Comic-Con International in July before its late summer release.

QUIZ: How well do you know the Man of Steel?

Anticipation is high for “Man of Steel,” and the director has promised that the film will treat the character quite seriously.

“It’s the most realistic movie I’ve made,” Zack Snyder told Hero Complex. “There’s no tongue in anyone’s cheek. I’m not apologizing for Superman in any way. I’m saying, ‘Superman is a thing that must be taken seriously and embraced and understood.’”

“It very much is a story of hope,” added Cavill, the British actor who starred in “Immortals” and Showtime’s “The Tudors.” “Hope is strength and victory against adversity, or at least the hope of victory against adversity, and that is what Superman represents.”

PHOTOS: 75 images of Superman

What do you think of the new logo? Are you excited for “Man of Steel”? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Follow us on Twitter: @LATHeroComplex

– Gina McIntyre and Noelene Clark


Man of Steel Zack Snyder: Superman ‘must be taken seriously’

PHOTOS: 75 images of Superman

Emotional ‘Man of Steel’ trailer: Krypton’s doom

QUIZ: How well do you know the Man of Steel?

Orson Scott Card’s ‘Superman’ comic delayed

Zack Snyder on ‘Watchmen’ legacy

Zack Snyder on directing ‘Star Wars’: No thanks

‘Man of Steel’: The Superman we ‘need and deserve’?

Superman still ‘jewel in the DC crown’


6 Responses to Superman gets a new logo, animated short for his 75th anniversary

  1. Atomic Kommie Comics says:

    The Times has run this slideshow (with minor revisions) several times, but still NO Kirk Alyn (star of two Superman movie serials), nor Bud Collier (the radio and both movie and tv animation Superman).

  2. ted says:

    When is Paramount going to "clean up" all of those fabulous Max Fleisher cartoons that have gotten darker/dirtier over the ages? It's about time…

    • Atomic Kommie Comics says:

      Paramount no longer has anything to do with the Superman (or any other Fleischer/Famous) series.
      There are a couple of remastered DVDs of the Fleisher cartoons available, (Image/Bosko and Warner Brothers).
      In fact, one of the covers is included in the slideshow above (#18).
      While not perfect, those two discs are much better than the many cheap PD collections using badly-damaged prints presently available for anywhere from $1.00 to $4.99.

  3. George says:

    Logo is strange. The 7 and 5 overlap is distracting. Also, slide-shows are disgusting. Just present the information on a single, scrollable page.

  4. Quentin says:

    Logical Error: Light gets to the moon in approx. 1.5 seconds, so if Superman can fly faster than light, it shouldn't take minuets.

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