Reign of the Supermen #130: Bizarro No.1

Source: Action Comics #254 (1959) to Superman vol.1 #423 (1986)
Type: Bizarro
I thought about doing a joke post all in Bizarro-talk, but Bizarro is just too important to popular culture to brush him off! In fact, you'd EXPECT a Bizarro-talk post here, so I'm doing the OPPOSITE of that. (Convinced yet?)

Now of course, Bizarro appears before Action #254, having his roots in Superboy #68 the year before, and soon showing up in the newspaper strip. Those Bizarros'll get their day, but the Bizarro who would one day wear the #1 medal to set himself off from the other Superman duplicates he created really starts in Action 254. Inspired by Professor Dalton's work from Superboy 68, Lex Luthor recreates the duplicator ray that created the teen Bizarro and uses it on Superman. He loses control of the good-hearted Bizarro though, and the poor creature, Frankenstein-like, spends some time helping people and trying to commit suicide. Until he sees Lois Lane and falls in love, that is, and hilarity ensues. Lois will fix everything by duplicating herself a Bizarro-Lois. The imperfect doubles leave Earth to find their own place in the universe and the rest is history.

Bizarro will be a villain, a pest, an ally, a monster, and a clown. He'll get his own back-up strip in Adventure Comics and his own cube version of Earth filled with all manner of craziness. His place in mainstream popular culture was no doubt assured by well-known Superman fan Jerry Seinfeld. We all remember the episode of Seinfeld in which Elaine goes out with Bizarro-Jerry who has an entire Bizarro entourage and even a Bizarro statue in his apartment. Everybody has a Bizarro version of themselves just as everybody has a Lex Luthor. That person who is just like you in most ways, but opposite in every way that counts. I had this crazy kid who somehow showed up everywhere I did - same comic book shop, same shelves at the library, walking behind me a ways whistling obscure songs I thought only I knew - but who was a hyperactive, asocial pest. Well, maybe not THAT opposite. Your Bizarro-you SHOULD freak you out. That's the whole point. A cautionary tale. A dark mirror. And for some of you, an ideal one (you know who you are).

Another legacy left by Bizarro is the unavoidable arguments about what "opposite" means in any given Bizarro story.

Superman's continuity is unbroken between the Silver and Bronze ages, and so is Bizarro's. We get to say goodbye in a rather touching sequence in the pre-Crisis Superman's last story, "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?"
"Opposite" taken to a chilling extreme. It took Bizarro 27 years to accomplish what he set out to do in his very first story.

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