[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/steel_7192.jpg]]

'''''The Man of Steel''''' is a six-issue mini-series, by Creator/JohnByrne, published in 1986 by DCComics.

It lays the foundation for the PostCrisis version of Franchise/{{Superman}}, retelling his origin and showing his first encounters with his friends, Franchise/{{Batman}}, and SelfDemonstrating/LexLuthor.

Issues:
# Superman's origins on Krypton, being found as a baby and raised by Jonathan and Martha Kent, discovering his powers, resolving to use his powers for good, and creating the costumed Superman persona with his parents' help as a way of keeping his heroing and the resultant celebrity separate from his personal life as Clark Kent.
# Told from LoisLane's point of view as she attempts to get the first interview with Metropolis' new superhero (and gets a bad first impression of new colleague Clark Kent).
# Superman investigates a vigilante in Gotham City, and winds up helping Franchise/{{Batman}} crack his latest case. The two heroes gain a grudging respect for each other, but (in deliberate contrast to the PreCrisis status quo) are too different in outlook to become close friends.
# Superman and Lex Luthor meet for the first time, when terrorists attack one of Luthor's parties. After Superman cleans up the terrorists, Luthor reveals that he knew they were coming but had his security hold back so he could see Superman in action, and offers Superman a job. Superman's response is to run him in for endangering his party guests.
# An attempt by one of Luthor's pet scientists to create a Superman duplicate results in a bizarre warped copy that attempts to live Superman's life, trying to do good deeds for people who are as afraid of it as of what it's trying to rescue them from, and forming a connection with Lois' sister Lucy.
# Clark Kent goes to visit his parents in Smallville, reminisces about the past, and discovers a recording of Jor-El that teaches him about his Kryptonian origins. He affirms that, although he appreciates knowing where he came from, he now thinks of himself not just as an alien visitor but as a citizen of Earth.

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!!This mini-series contains examples of:

* AnythingButThat: "[[ShoutOut NOT HAPPY BIRTHDAY!]] '''[[WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes NOT HAPPY BIRTHDAY!]]'''"
* BatmanGambit: Batman has one ready to keep Superman from immediately apprehending him for vigilantism before having a chance to see the good he does. It's brilliant, it's specifically tailored to Superman's strengths and weaknesses, and (especially the key detail revealed at the end of the issue) it says a lot about how Batman sees the world; Batman's ''ExactWords'' are that if Superman touches him, [[spoiler:it will set off a bomb hidden "somewhere in Gotham City", which will kill "an innocent person."]]
-->'''Batman''': It's a touch Machiavellian, I admit. But my end justifies my means.
** On the last page, Batman reveals that [[spoiler:the bomb was ''in his utility belt the entire time.'' The only life at risk was his own.]]
* BlindAndTheBeast: Lucy Lane and the Bizarro-Superman in issue #5.
* ChildhoodFriendRomance: Lana has a crush on Clark Kent, who only sees her like a sister.
* CorruptCorporateExecutive: Lex Luthor, for the first time.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: In the first issue, the Kents are being spied on. [[spoiler:It was Dr. Emmett Vale, who used his science to create Metallo.]] The same character is the one snapping a pic of Supes without him realizing at the end of issue #4.[[note]]Superman states in internal monologue that he tries to make himself blurry and indistinct for photos and video, to prevent people from taking an exact measurement of his height, what he looks like, and so on.[[/note]] And also took the rocket, and Superman saw tire tracks driving away from where the rocket was hidden.
* GroinAttack: In Issue #4, Lois and Clark encounter a couple of South American terrorists onboard Lex's luxury liner during a party and even though the terrorists themselves are armed, Lois isn't afraid of them as she kicks one of them in the groin so that she can then get his gun and start to fight back against the terrorists until Superman arrives.
* HeroicSacrifice: "Bizarro", apparently.
* IronicEcho:
** In #3 and 4.
-->'''Batman:''' [Magpie]'ll find herself a hotshot legal eagle, and be back on the streets before you're halfway home to Metropolis.\\\
'''Superman:''' ''(to Luthor)'' I thought you'd still be off conferring with those lawyers of yours. The one who had you back on the streets in less than two hours.
* ItsPersonal: After being arrested by Superman, Lex swore he'll make him back and show Metrpolis who's the most powerful man in the city is.
* LikeBrotherAndSister: Clark assumes he and Lana Lang are this, oblivious to her obvious feelings for him.
* LivingLieDetector: Superman is established in issue #3 as a living polygraph; his super-senses let him monitor the heart rate, breathing, etc. of anyone he talks to and spot subtle stress signs.
* MegaCorp: [=LexCorp=]
* MythologyGag:
** Clark's secret identity would be his "Fortress of Solitude". It would be some time before the actual Fortress of Solitude was re-established PostCrisis, and at first it was just called "the Fortress". In one story, Superman hid his secret identity from a telepath behind a door identical to that of the pre-Crisis Fortress.
** In issue 3, Batman wonders if he and Superman could have been friends in [[TheSilverAgeOfComicBooks another lifetime]]. At the time, the intention was that they would ''not'' be friends in their PostCrisis lives. Inspired by their dynamic relationship in ''ComicBook/TheDarkKnightReturns''.
** In the splash page of issue 5, Superman captures who the reader assumed was Lex in a [[http://static.comicvine.com/uploads/ignore_jpg_scale_medium/2/27500/730185-402px_lex_luthor_with_warsuit.gif familiar looking power suit]]. [[spoiler:But it was one of Lex's {{mooks}} in an experimental [=LexCorp=] suit.]]
** "Bizarre-- Oh, forget it!"
** The plot of Issue 5 is similar to Bizarro's debut in ''Superboy'' #68.
** While the cover of each issue features a character facing the reader, Issue 5 has Bizarro facing his back on the reader. A nod to his pre-Crisis counterpart being a mixed-up, backwards creature.
** In the issues where he appears, Lex Luthor sports a head of red hair, but it is clear from the progression of time that he is losing his hair (Lois at one point says, "You're beginning to look like Fred Mertz!"). In a SilverAge ''ComicBook/{{Superboy}}'' story, Lex blamed Superboy for an accident that resulted in his being bald. In this story, he blames Superman for his being arrested like a common criminal. It's not said, but it's implied that Lex blames Superman for his stress-induced male pattern baldness as well.
* NoNameGiven: The imperfect duplicate was never named "Bizarro" in-story. Though, ''Who's Who: Update '87'' #1 gave it that name.
* PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad: In this series, Kryptonians were born in a "birthing matrix," and immediately isolated from every other Kryptonian. In this manner, there was no way ''anything'' one Kryptonian said or did could possibly offend another. When Jor-El contemplated sending his child to Earth, he initiated a face-to-face meeting with the child's mother, Lara; the first such meeting between Kryptonians in several hundred years. When Lara views Jor-El's images of Earth, she is horrified at the sight of a field worker with his shirt off. Nevertheless, Jor-El convinces her to send the birthing matrix to Earth and they continue their illicit affair until Krypton is destroyed.
* PostCrisis
* RetCanon:
** Byrne borrowed elements from the 1978 ''Film/{{Superman}}'' film. Krypton was depicted as a cold and emotionally sterile planet, and Smallville was placed in Kansas. He also kept Ma Kent alive to see Superman debut, though he kept Pa alive too (Pre-Crisis, both had died when Clark was still Superboy). Clark also never became Superboy like in the film.
** Byrne's characterization of Clark was derived from George Reeves's portrayal in ''Series/TheAdventuresOfSuperman'' TV series. Unlike Christopher Reeve's Clark, which was an act once he got the Superman costume, George Reeves's Clark reflected Superman's true character more, being much less timid and wimpy. For Byrne, Clark was as much or even more of "the real person" as Superman was.
* SecretKeeper: Lana Lang, instead of Pete Ross, in this continuity.
* ShoutOut:
** In issue #3, the Magpie kills one of her henchmen using a re-enactment of the "Happy Birthday" gag from the WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes cartoon "It's Hummer Time!" (it's a NonFatalExplosion in the cartoon, but the henchman doesn't have the good fortune of being a cartoon character. Plus she puts the dynamite right in his mouth).
** Lois insults Lex by saying he's starting to look a lot like [[Series/ILoveLucy Fred Mertz]].
* StevenUlyssesPerhero: The villain Batman is after in issue #3 is the Magpie, who is driven by a compulsion to steal and hoard valuable artworks. Her real name is Margaret Pye.
* SuperHeroOrigin
* SupermanStaysOutOfGotham: Addressed in the third issue. Batman tells Supes that "Defending a planet and cleaning up a city are two very different things... Gotham City isn't your turf. It requires a different approach." By the end of the issue, Superman warns Batman he'll come after him if he ever cross the line.
* UnintentionalPeriodPiece: Of the mid [[TheEighties 80's]]. Women jog and jazzercise in legwarmers and spandex, the villain is a CorruptCorporateExecutive, computers are important but huge, boomboxes appear...
* VillainousBreakdown: Magpie. [[http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_ndMhsNIci6A/S-HvodW2UNI/AAAAAAAAADU/kNdnLSoKNl8/s1600/2010-05-05.2.JPG Discussed]] by Superman and Batman.
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