Superman is a favorite of many just as he is. Changing him drastically typically doesn’t go over well with those fans, such as when we had Electric Superman or shortly after he came back to life. But those drastic changes touch on my problem with Superman. He’s too powerful.

The main part of that is that he lacks limitations. This is a hero who can travel halfway across the globe in the shot of a bullet, a hero who fly through light years of space without needing air, a hero who can see and hear practically anything he wanted to on Earth. How does anyone escape him? They can’t outrun him. They can’t flee the planet. You can’t hide. As he is, Superman is the ultimate tracker. If you add in his high invulnerability and immense strength, it’s hard to imagine him finding the person running from him and not winning.

He simply needs limitations. He’s too fast. He’s faster at his norm than the Flash. By all accounts, he should be equal or, preferably, slower.

He shouldn’t be able to hear everything on the planet. I could understand him being able to hear everything in Metropolis or maybe even in suburbs around there, but being able to hear something happening across the planet seems a bit much. It seems to me he’d go crazy from all the noise, that it’d be too hard for him to choose amongst what he hears. No, he needs more localized hearing. Then it might make sense for him to have Justice League monitor duty.

The animated WB TV show gave Superman a space suit. John Byrne made it so that he could only fly as far as his lung capacity would allow. Over time, people just kept writing his lung capacity to be bigger and bigger, to such an extent that he pretty much reverted to his Pre-Crisis form, at least in that respect. Admittedly, the idea of Superman putting on a space suit sounds a little tacky. I mean, he’d have to cover up that well-known attire of his. But perhaps something else could be arranged. In New Earth continuity, he was once a member of the Legion of Super-Heroes and has a flight ring leftover from those adventures. Legionnaires, at least for a while, seem to have had the ability to fly through space with no special suit. It’s quite likely that the Legion flight ring is the reason. Superman could just put on that ring to fly uninhibited through space, though he might still need some kind of air-providing device.

The other problem, which I agree with upon discussing the matter recently, is a lack of variety in his villains. Traditionally, the villains relied on Kryptonite to defeat him, whether it be Luthor, Metallo, or even Conduit. It doesn’t take long for that to get old. He is vulnerably to magic, which is usually only a noticeable problem when he fights alongside the Justice League. And there are those villains that just fight him toe-to-toe. Bizarro, various Zods, Mongul, Darkseid, Doomsday, etc. That, too, becomes repetitive.

Quite simply, he needs a more varied group of enemies. The Silver Banshee can kill him with sound. Prankster defeats him with technology and planning. Parasite can drain his power. Mxyzptlk annoys him using magic. Manchester Black and, sometimes, Brainiac (among others), rely on mental manipulation. Livewire uses electricity. There was a briefly used Japanese foe who had enchanted blades or somesuch that could hurt him. Cyborg Superman could wear him out simply by constantly transferring himself (not that he’s ever tried).

I’m not suggesting he be limited to those. He can still have the traditional villains that show up every so often. He just needs other villains to balance out all the repetition.

Finally, he needs more supporting characters. He lives in an apartment, so he should have some neighbors. Who else works at the Daily Planet besides Lois, Jimmy, and Perry? I know they incorporated Jack Ryder into that office, which I thought was a nice touch, but I’m sure there are others. Where are those supporting characters from prior years? People like Steel, Dan Turpin, and Kat Grant? I know Steel has moved on to a certain extent, but that doesn’t mean he can’t still be a frequent ally or advisor to Supes.

There you have it. That’s my problem with Superman. In actuality, it is probably more like three problems. Hmm…

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