JLA: Age of Wonder! Part 1 of 2
13 pages out of a book of 50
Had to write up a lot as trunkated text to show what's happening and keep it under the page limit.
It's the 1876 Centennial Exposition at Prospect Park, Phildelphia.
Lex Luthor, empolyee of Thomas Edison, is showing around plucky reporter Lois Lane.
Clark gets a job with Edison using his heat vision to mass produce lightbulbs, where he also becomes friends with Nikola Tesla and Lex, who is revealled to be far less important to Edison's operation then he said he was.
This outlines the underlining theme of this miniseries, Clark is out to use Science to make people's lives better, while Lex is out for using Science to make piles and piles of money.
Anyway, Lex manages to get Clark, Nikola and himself a job with a company called Westinghouse who has agreed to license out Tesla's patents from him (instead of Edison making money from their ideas).
They build a power station at Niagara Falls,
And so, Clark makes himself a uniform. Only it's more of a military riff than the acrobat version the regular Superman's based on.
The Kents reveal to Clark the spaceship he came to Earth in, and shows it to his friends,
The "Utopia!" guy is Tesla if you were wondering.
From this point on, some superheroes begin to appear. With Clark's friends Theodore Knight creating a gravity staff from studying Clark's Kryptonian ship, and Barry Allen getting superspeed when Ted accidentally blasted him with his staff while he was handling some chemicals.
Their attempt to improve the world with SCIENCE!!! doesn't go so well...
Following this, Lex begins to rapidly loose patience with Clark's idealism.
1896, an alien Green Lantern crashlands in Nevada, and the army call Clark along to have a looksee.
The Green Lantern, here looking like a Gray, tells Clark that he's been selected to be replace him as the alien is dying. Clark says that he isn't worthy of the job, and gives the ring to a nearby soldier called Hal Jordan, as he's a decorated war veteran and obviously brave enough for the job.
While Clark, Hal and their group, nicknamed the New Olympians or the League of Science, are attempting to make the world a better place, there is growing unrest amongst the people who have lost their jobs to machines invented by the group.
Meanwhile, Clark and Lois get married, much to Lex's growing jealousy. Things are made worse when Lex goes and gives himself radiation poisoning by carrying unshielded radium ore across the Atlantic in an airship.
The New Olympians get the SOS from Lex's airship, and, after evacuating the crew, blow it up so that the radium couldn't be used for evil.
Lois' marriage and the Olympian's destruction of his cargo cause Lex to begin to crack, as he begins to think that Clark is out to use his science for military means.
Clark, Ted and Barry fall out with Lex and Hal over the use of their SCIENCE!!! to create weaponry, with Clark and Co. saying that it would be misusing science while Hal says they should be allowed to make them for self defense. Reasoning that the above posted riots showed that there were people willing to fight over their technology, and they should be allowed to defend themselves.
With this in mind, Hal is approached by Lex who says that he's got an idea to share with him...
Later, Thomas and Martha Wayne take their son to the League of Science's HQ, only for the typical result of a Wayne family outing to occur.
Clark finds leaflets suggesting that the bombing was caused by a group called the Spartans, after Spartacus, who want the poor to rise up against big business, shoot the scientists, bomb the factories etc.
Getting the address of the group from Lois, Clark and the others go to where the group meet, only to find the people there are less than happy to see them. They are semi-attacked by a version of Green Arrow, who lectures them about how their inventions have caused mass unemployment, and says that although the New Olympians stand for science and progress, they don't actually stand for justice as he defines it.
He then tells them that he is going to find the bombers, and after telling them to get out of his neighbourhood, Ollie promptly disappears into the slums.
Some time later, Lex meets with Hal and tells him that it's time to put their plan into action. Lex says that America is the leading industrial nation in the world, and that Clark's possible attempts to share their power and wealth could open themselves up to greater threats along the line.
Taking this into consideration, Hal gets Clark to go up to their observatory on the Moon (the two of them are the only people able to go their) and promptly uses his ring to blast Clark onto a passing comet so he's sucked away into the dark reaches of space...
The book ends with the world learning that Clark apparently died while "wandering too close" to said comet, and Lois attempting to get back in with Lois while she's grieving her husband by knocking on her door with a bunch of flowers...