'Superman,' by Larry Tye: review SupermanThe High-Flying History of America's Most Enduring HeroBy Larry Tye(Random House; 409 pages; $27)Superman has the name recognition and approval rating that politicians would kill for, plus the income. He's been eclipsed in wisecracking irony by Spider-Man and the X-Men, out-camped by Batman and given a reality check by Everyman Homer Simpson. In a world where young people are locked between the smirking sensibilities of Matt Groening and Quentin Tarantino, Superman is as indestructible as the cockroach. The High-Flying History of America's Most Enduring Hero, Larry Tye is in thrall to a character who, for all the good that he's done, has as much humanity as the Oscar statuette. The former Boston Globe reporter's homage reads like a marathon newspaper article fueled by sustained ardor for a boyhood love. Superman, true to form, weathers every shift to a new medium as if it's a costume change - from comics, to ingenious animation by Max and Dave Fleischer, to radio (voiced by Bud Collyer from the TV classic "To Tell the Truth"), to television's wooden George Reeves, back to comics, to camp on Broadway, to cinema, to television again and to film sequel after film sequel. Mort Weisinger, an obese autocrat who terrorized the writers and artists of Superman comics from 1957 to 1970, had a "know your readers" rule that Superman's market was boys from 8 to 12 years old, who would grow out of their ardor for superheroes fast enough to justify recycling stories every few years. Yet his blue suit seemed drab, as comics from the 1950s on explored more real and more frightening worlds than anything the Man of Steel faced, into Mad magazine spoofs, R.

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  • Larry Tye: Superman, born of Jewish roots
    He didn’t look Jewish. Not with his perfect pug nose, electric blue eyes, and a boyish spit curl that suggested Anglo, as well as Saxon. No hint in his sleek movie-star name, Clark Kent, which could only belong to a gentile. His social circle didn’t ...
    11/28/2013 - 4:19 pm | View Link
  • Author Larry Tye explores Superman's Jewish roots
    WORCESTER — The infant Moses was sent down the Nile in a basket to save him from the Egyptian pharaoh. Superman was blasted off Krypton so he would survive the planet's destruction. His Kryptonian name was Kal-El — very Semitic. Superman's creators ...
    10/8/2013 - 1:00 pm | View Link
  • Author Larry Tye to Discuss Latest Superman Novel
    New York Times best-selling author Larry Tye will be the featured guest at a book discussion for his latest novel, "Superman: The High Flying History of America's Most Enduring Hero". The event is scheduled to take place from 7:30PM to 9:00PM on Wednesday ...
    09/9/2013 - 10:12 am | View Link
  • Helping a new generation discover Superman
    Lexington author Larry Tye wrote “Superman: The High-Flying History of America’s Most Enduring Hero” out of love for the character. Unlike the darker Batman or the complex, tortured Spider-Man, Superman is “a hero of the light,” Tye says ...
    07/6/2013 - 10:04 am | View Link
  • Quiz: Superman at 75 — how well do you know the Man of Steel?
    and never wavers from the light or is sidetracked by anxieties,” said Larry Tye, who wrote “Superman: The High-Flying History of America’s Most Enduring Hero.” Tye told Hero Complex that Superman’s history reflects America’s history.
    03/26/2013 - 10:39 pm | View Link
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