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Missed Directions: Long Live World of New Krypton!

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Tuesday, Feb 2, 2010

With the publication of its penultimate issue as part of the World Against Superman crossover series, it’s the perfect time to reflect a bit on the most politically relevant new series to unexpectedly come out of the DCU in some time—Superman: World of New Krypton. . .and to call on DC Comics to continue the series as a stand-alone comic beyond its initial 12 issue run. To not do so would certainly be a Missed Direction for the DCU.
  
Saved by Superman from the clutches of Brainiac, the miniaturized city of Kandor is brought fully back to life and size, first residing on earth and then on the planet of New Krypton orbiting close to Superman’s adopted home. Now, Superman and Supergirl are not the only survivors of the doomed planet of Krypton, but an entire city of formerly imprisoned Kryptonians begin to create a new civilization.


Despite the murder mystery/adventure intrigue of its storyline, World of New Krypton (and, yes, I am avoiding the WONK acronym) is at its strongest when dealing with the class structure of Kryptonian society. Organized into guilds such as the science, art, military and labor guilds, New Krypton has a rigid class structure where all are not created equal. The main difference between old and new Krypton? Everyone on New Krypton has superpowers fueled by the yellow sun.


Most poignant is the plot-line involving the Kryptonian Labor Guild’s struggle for rights in this new world and the mysterious illness that seems only to be infecting them. They have no representation on the Kryptonian Ruling Council and, essentially, no rights. They are the perfect symbols for the dispossessed in America’s own economy not only during this time of crisis, but in general. On earth, despite the efforts of many, there is no classless society.


By turning World of New Krypton into its own stand-alone series without Superman or Supergirl’s constant involvement in the series (which could become a distraction), DC has the opportunity to create an entirely new universe that still has some familiarity to it. Most importantly, World of New Krypton is the perfect set-up to explore the political, economic and cultural struggles facing contemporary global society in combination with great storytelling and the creation of new characters and relationships building on long-term Superman mythology.
DC, keep the World of New Krypton going! To not do so would be an offense against Rao!

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