We take quite seriously our vow to never, ever touch E4F again. But we also really want to abuse Kirk Hastings for kicks.
If you think we're being overly harsh, we're really not. This is a guy who once, while composing some hate mail, hid behind the guise of a supposedly unbiased, dispassionate lawyer (by the name of "Grant Gardner") who found Irreligiosophy a disservice to atheism by dint of sheer coarseness. When Hastings's pathetic deceit was uncovered after a cursory IP check, the schlub tried to pass it off as an April Fool's prank... even though the email was dated the 22nd of April. Breathtaking, I know. If that's what passes for a sense of humor in Kirk's daily life, his is a sad, sad existence indeed. Though there's no doubt he himself is a clown of a person.
"Grant Gardner" was the name of the original Captain America, betraying Kirk's love for all things retro. Ordinarily I wouldn't think anything of that, but with Kirk it's like he's yearning to return to the good old days--and his mentality is trapped in this ye olde comic book attitude. In his brief defense of the Grant Gardner email, he said this: "If comic book heroes can have an alter ego, why can't I?"
Life isn't a fucking comic book, Kirk. Believe it or not, the world ISN'T divided down the middle into the GOOD CAMP and the EVIL CAMP. Things, actions, people in real life have nuance, shades of grey. If you do something blatantly deceitful in order to weasel in a cheap blow at somebody, guess what, you're not automatically absolved because you're in the Jesus camp. You've shown your true colors, and no amount of petulant name calling is going to seal that genie back into the bottle.
We're not saying you're a demon or an irredeemable louse, as you would seem to want to cast us. You're a human who wants to do good. But until you can pry your head out of your ass and free yourself from the chains of your ego, we're going to ridicule you for the fucking peabrain you are.
This isn't only just because Kirk is a premium grade harbinger of hot air. Wherever comically bad fanfiction cries out to be riffed, it is my duty as a snarky young fiction-obsessed man with time on his hands to oblige. And as far as material to work with, this shit doesn't disappoint. I'll be exercising my talent in ridicule, honed during my early years of bashing badfic, to its fullest.
Yes, that's right: after some Google fu, our veteran helpmeat Tort discovered a treasure trove of lulz: Hastings's Fanfiction.net account--the man is over 40 and a published author. I don't know whether or not that's kind of admirable Tort: It would be adminable if his stories weren't fucking atrocious. Anyway, we'll be having Tort on with us today for his sharp perspacity, his propensity to skewer stupidity, and his dashing good looks. He's a better Hastingsologist than Matt Wakefield, who should really stick to Hovindology. And, in the interest of fairness, my own shitty fanfiction is at username Gliblord, so if you want to tear me down a couple of pegs, fucking bring it. I do want to say before we spend a whole episode ripping on fanfiction that not all fanfiction is as truly abominable as Kirk Hastings'. There are some good authors who have well written, interesting and engaging stories, and some that are nothing but making characters people like bone each other, then there are the Kirk Hastingses of fanfiction. I liken them to the best parts of reality TV singing contests, you know the ones I'm talking about, the delusional ones who sing like a bag of cats in a wood chipper but think they are world class. Kirk Hastings is that but in writing.
God is he ever. I wouldn't have inflicted this corball ass trash on the reading public when I was fucking 16, and writing reams of nonsensical Harry Potter crackfic. At least the shit I wrote had color, man. If I had to describe Kirk's fiction succinctly: Cardboard with a few kiddy stickers.' No creative vibe. It's all mundane and underwrought, the same tired pulp tropes. The reader's eyes will only light up once something stupid happens, because everything else that's halfway competent is so muddy and predictable.
As a final aside, Kirk may bleat and whine about how mean-spirited this is, but listen here: The Irreligiosophy forums once hosted humoristic slash porn of the hosts (written for lulz), and they all but encouraged it. Now THAT, I can respect. Whereas Kirk's got thinner skin than a flayed amoeba.
Before we get to Kirk's The Adventures of Superman wank, we shall jigger up a JIS for our resident Batman fan. Since, as I'm sure even Kirk understands in his heart of hearts, Batman >>>>>> Superman.
Taking God's Name in Vain is a Sin!
"Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain: for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain."' -'''''''Deuteronomy 5:11 The voice you just heard is that of Harry Caray (1914-1998), the famous radio and TV broadcaster for the Chicago Cubs baseball team for many years. Mr. Caray was renowned for his exuberant saying, "holy cow." Such misuse of the word "holy" was also a featured element in the 1970's Batman series... "Holy ______ Batman!" Never in the history of America have so many people misused spiritual terms, and used God's name in vain as today. Any mention of the word "holy" should only be reserved for that which is Biblically holy.
- What about the nautical age? It isn't called the naughtycal age for nothing. Many more swearing hard-knock sailors than today; more groaning, sweat of the night seamen than even inside David J. Stewart's padlocked closet!
Not only do American's curse in God's name, but they love to hear it in their movies as well. In the Hollywood movie First Blood, with Sylvester Stallone, actor Brian Denny (who plays the Police Chief) curses in God's holy name repeatedly, over and over. This is evil. Deuteronomy 5:11 warns... "Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain: for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain." Yet, everywhere we turn in America, we hear people using God's precious name in vain. Do these people not realize that God's last name is not DAMN!
- Yeah! It's DAMMIT. Jesus is an illegitimate son because his name is Jesus Cock Shit My Unbelievably Ball Assing Fuck Cunts, as was discovered in AD 1874 when a carpenter in Minsk dropped a hammer on his toe. More accurately, it's Yeshua Cock Shit My Unbelievably Cunt Assing Fuck Balls.
It is a horrible sin to use God's name in vain, and that doesn't just apply to cursing either. It is common for TV's late night shows to mock and make sport of spiritual matters. Conan O'Brien's show blasphemes the Lord Jesus Christ. They are using God's name in vain. This is a woeful evil in America. We have sinned against God and flaunted our sins in His face, even naming one of our most vile and wicked cities--SIN CITY! People are so used to hearing God and the Bible blasphemed that they have become desensitized to it. In Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, Harrison Ford (i.e., Han Solo) make the statement... "Then I'll set you in Hell." It is disturbing to hear such Hollywood actors admit that they're going to Hell. Of course, Harrison Ford has cursed in God's name repeatedly in most of his movies. Taking God's name in vain is the insignia of Hollywood movies.
- Jesus can describe gruesome wailing and gnashing of teeth and evangelicals can wield the threat of hell against anybody they like, but you can't mention hell as a shady smuggler's punchline, an evangelical would never wish hell on people they consider enemies. Even portraying a sinning swearer will send you straight to the selfsame hell.
It is more than coincidental that even your Atheists curse in God's name, especially when they get angry. If you don't believe the Bible for the Bible's sake, then believe it for the self-incriminating nature of man. At the climax of pain, anger, joy, or pleasure... God's name is often taken in vain by the sinful world. A common expression heard today is... "Oh my God!" This is sinful when used is passive speech.
- I'm sure Dr. Emma can corroborate that all speech is absolutely voluntary, and that whenever a patient of hers has blasphemed, their tongues instantly turned into flocks of ravens. Damn self incriminating nature of man.
Have you noticed how the Devil is twisting things around nowadays? I hear young people referring to good things as being "wicked." Good tasting foods are often called "sinfully delicious." Folks, sin is not a joking matter to God. Increasingly, TV commercials tease about homosexuality, adultery, and many other evils condemned in the Scriptures. Prime Time television programming is sexually perverted. Don't think for a moment that this is all coincidental. Satan is working relentlessly to kill, steal, and destroy (John 10:10). 1st Peter 5:8 warns, "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour." Jesus warned Peter that the Devil desired to sift (i.e., beat) him like stalks of wheat (Luke 22:31). Oh! Listen friend, it is a horrible sin, and blasphemy against God, to take God's name in vain. Think about the things people utter out of their sinful mouths... "Jesus fu%#*ng Christ!"... "Holy sh@$!"... and so forth. It is unthinkable! No one should ever sacrilegiously mention Biblical terms, or the name of God. The fastest way to identify yourself with the Devil's crowd is to take God's name in vain, which is exactly why so many God-haters do it. God is a Holy God... "Be ye holy; for I am holy" (1st Peter 1:16).
- Can I just say that I really fucking hate it when people censor curse words in text with asinine ampersands and dollar signs and shit? YOU'RE STILL SAYING THE CURSE WORD. No amount of bleeping will change the fact that you beamed the word into our brains and called it to our attention. It's completely fucking pointless.
Now onto SUPERMAN IN CUSTODY
Superman in CustodyEdit
One of the reviews (a tad more measured than our impending orgy of poo flinging) put it perfectly: "Compared to the reality of our own 1950's, it sounds like a mythic paradise." and "I think a little nod to some of the progress of society such as civil rights might have made it a better balanced, better story. After all, not everything that happened post 1959 was bad."
Little did that reviewer understand the dark underbelly of Hastings's antipathy for things post 1959.
Kirk is a fan of Fleischer-era 40s and 50s Superman, the upright, morally spotless titan of justice who always won. You know, that intensely boring and unrealistic, blank-ass nothing of a character. That Superman was more of a symbol than a flesh and blood human being (or alien, in this case). Once again, Kirk's affinity for the grit and tangle of reality shines bright.
It's kind of funny, too, though, because if you actually take a gander at Superman comics back then, they portrayed him as anything but wholesome. In fact, he was a pretty tremendous dick pretty much 90% of the time. For those of you who are unacquainted, go visit superdickery.com, and gasp as Superman sabotages his friend's lives for progessively dodgier reasons, up to and including unhooking Lois's astronaut suit in the dead of space (with the winning header "In space no one can hear you scream.") Not even the TV series ("The Adventures of Superman) treated Lois as anything more than a cosmic punching bag, since while the comics Lois was single-mindedly hunting Supes's penis and faced a life of constant humiliation, the Lois on the small screen fared only marginally better. A particularly memorable scene has Superman saving one victim from a pit, but not Lois--after mind-levitating Lois to serve as an anchor against the pit's crushing walls! Oh, and this is the particular incarnation of Superman Kirk is writing fic for (it aired from 1951-1957. Is Kirk seriously that old? No way).
Superman in Custody ostensibly serves as a tribute to George Reeves, "the one true Superman." Apart from that, though, the fic is stale and long-winded. Let's just say that judging from Kirk's tendency to write needlessly drawn out sentences like "He also answered in the negative when he was asked if he wanted to make a phone call to anyone. and "I believe that I may have stumbled onto the method by which we may be able to travel backward and forward through time," his published novels must be pretty padded.
So Clark, Lois and Jimmy chill out at some diner, and Jimmy pops a sheepish manboy chub for the owner's waitress daughter. That owner, named Tony, says... says this:
"Mister Kent. Missa Lane. I'm a'sorry it take so long to bringa your orders over, but as you can see my bambini she'sa somewhat distracted at the moment."
My bambin.i. My. BAMBINI!? Fuck you for all time, Kirk. Jesus Christ. Oh well, there's an argument to be made that horribly stereotypical Itanglish is far better than the boring ass tripe before it. Tort - In Kirk's universe Italian people are apparently unable to speak Italian or English. It's worth noting that this is the closest Kirk gets to allowing a person of colour into his story. It's a european so you know maybe he has a tan, the character is horribly stereotyped, and tellingly he's in a service roll. Lois and Clark call him Tony but he's careful to call his white betters Mister Kent and "Missa" Lane.
Lois tells Clark he's got to get "Superman" to meet an ally scientist named Professor La Serne for some urgent time experiment stuff. La Serne shows him to a quote "huge mechanical contrivance," which although Hastings was fishing for the word "contraption," I couldn't agree more that a perfectly functional time machine created by a single man is, in fact, a huge contrivance. But what am I complaining about, this is in continuity with perfectly absurdly human aliens who are randomly granted fully formed superpowers in proximity with our sun. Tort: We also have to mention that great writers like our Kirk Hastings use literary techniques in order to draw the reader into their stories. One Kirk likes to use is the addition of sensory detail. Superman doesn't just fly he makes a whooshing noise, this comes up repeatedly in pretty much all of Kirk's superman stories. So whenever we talk about superman flying somewhere I want you to imagine Kirk running around the room with his arms in front of him making whooshing noises.
Superman's token skepticism: "Doesn't the past cease to exist once it becomes the present? And isn't the future made up of events that have not as yet happened?"
Lol, what if La Serne then just went "D'oh! You're right! I hadn't thought of that!!"
And now, Tort and I attempt to voice act the following coversation without cracking up.
- Doesn't the past cease to exist once it becomes the present? And isn't the future made up of events that have not as yet happened?"
- La Serne folded his arms and tugged thoughtfully on his chin. "That is what we have always thought up to now, yes. But I may have accidentally uncovered in my research a scientific principle that was up to now completely unknown. Science has known for years that matter and energy cannot be created or destroyed. They simply change form. Thus, nothing is ever lost."
- "Yes. So far I understand."
- "But what we did not know up to now is that, since nothing is ever created or destroyed, eternity isn't just the unending reality that we become part of once we physically die and leave this temporal existence. It exists here and now. It has always existed. Eternity is a constant that stretches from the very instant that time began up until the moment it will end. Thus, the concepts of past and future as we know them simply describe parts of reality that normally we cannot experience because we lack the physical ability to move between them."
- "I think I'm beginning to understand, professor," Superman responded. "Are you telling me that somehow you have discovered a process whereby you might be able to bridge that gap, allowing a living person to freely move back and forth along the straight line that comprises eternity?"
- Professor La Serne nodded. "Precisely." His expression became grave. "But what I have discovered is not yet proven. It is still theoretical; untested. I must have a living subject to test my equipment. It must be someone who would be likely to survive the possible dangers inherent in such a process, because he would need to come back to tell me what he had experienced."
You can probably guess what happens next; Supes is shot 40 years into the future. What horrors will await him MODERN TIMES!? So the plot is now set, A professor wants to run a stupidly dangerous scientific experiment, he needs a living subject but he can't use a rat with a camera because the animal rights people will be all over his arse. So instead he is going to send the most important person in the world through a completely untested process that may or may not kill him and may or may not send him into the future, no one even questions how he's going to get back and he isn't told to gather any data. Kirk next time just stick with "a wizard did it" if you want to send one of your characters through time. The specific lame excuse Kirk came up with is that the time travel process is too turbulent for normal people, so only a person with Superman's fantastic endurance can withstand it. I imagine Professor La Serne discovered this by... how, exactly? Did he throw in a fistful of rats? If they never came back, maybe it's not because time travel ripped them to shreds, maybe they really are teeming in the lap of the future, happy as can be in their new habitat with no predators. And I guess Professor Quinn's time machine from the next story we'll be tackling is the more user friendly variant.
Superman's aghast when he encounters three "toughs" in stereotypical cartoony biker gang attire, complete with mohaks, long hair and baggy pants, all overdescribed to the point where you want to eat yourself. The toughs are beating up on another young man in your classic "superhero mops up street thugs in an alley" scene.
- The tough instantly turned on Superman and tried to bury his knife in Superman's chest. The blade broke off with a loud snap.This development did not phase the knife-wielder. Shouting repulsive obscenities he then tried to kick Superman in the groin using a martial-arts technique, but that didn't work either.
Okay, look, I can tolerate these ridiculously cliche scenes from the standpoint that they're meant to be an homage to that era. But when one of your toughs tries to bean Superman in the groin after his fucking knife snaps on his iron pecs, nope, sorry, you've crossed the line into cheesy-as-plain-bad. Also everyone is Kirk's stories apparently knows marshal arts
- A middle-aged man and woman walked across the entrance to the alley. Superman turned toward them and told them to call the police. They stared at Superman for a moment and then moved off, making a point of the fact that they were ignoring his request.
- What kind of a city is this? Superman thought to himself. What kind of people are these?
Yes, because in MODERN TIMES, people "make a point of" neglecting to call the police. Hastings's devastating social insight, someone find this man a dozen Pulitzers and shake his wang.
I'd also like to note that back in the era whence Superman came, a heartless megalomaniacal businessman routinely attempted to kill him just to line his own pockets, but I guess that was an age of simplicity to long for because you could drive a fist between your wife's eyes and expect her to shit out a turkey with stuffing while you rammed your mistresses on the kitchen table. And what, there were never any cliche mugger confrontations back then? No corruption, everything was a gleaming utopia? Shut the fuck up, Superman. You wouldn't know a sociopolitical context if it tore through your eyelids, you fucking white ass well-to-do alien motherfucker.
So Supes takes the poor victim's body to a nearby hospital, where they declare him DOA. How Supes could have missed the boy being dead is KIRK HASTINGS. The attendants grill Superman with suspicion and he gets all huffy when they suggest he's got to stay for questioning. Yeah, how dare they assume an alien who's been missing for forty years and apparently hasn't aged wouldn't suddenly show up there and now to save some random alley rat? A whacko could never pull off his sculpted chin! How dare they assume Superman would be like lowly peons and be accountable to the procedure of justice? Well, at least Hastings didn't depict those evil MODERN TIMES hospital workers feasting on the kid's flesh.
I like how Superman changes back into Clark Kent in a convenient alleyway, despite the fact that he didn't bring a change of clothes. Anyway, he hasn't been transported to the future, but to an alternate reality where he never existed, and New York City stands in place of Metropolis. However, the 1950s of this alternate future remains conveniently the same!
- He resumed going through the newspaper files. Though this world's American society of the 1950s resembled the one he had left behind in his own reality, Kent learned that this world's American culture apparently went through numerous social upheavals during its decade of the 1960s. The basis of the upheaval was a broad-based but not well-thought-out "counter-cultural" movement that began in the mid-1960s that caused many traditional belief systems to be questioned and then largely superceded by various "new" and radical ideas about how American society should think and operate. Those ideas were promoted primarily by certain groups of people who referred to themselves as "hippies", "cultural elites" and "free thinkers". The result of all this was that the many public institutions and proven methods of social behavior that had been accepted without question for hundreds of years began to be undermined, and then corrupted – only to be eventually replaced by other, less proven ways of doing things. Throughout the decades following the 1960s the counter-cultural movement's effects so permeated American society that most of that society's institutions found themselves being drastically changed and altered in ways that no one could have predicted. Many of the societal restraints that had previously acted as controls on people's behavior began to disappear. This in turn had a dramatic effect on how people behaved, both in public and in private.
- Kent thought about the strange-looking, murderous young men that he had encountered earlier in the evening.
- He read on. According to the newspaper files, after the 1960s rebellion against any form of law or tradition became the norm, instead of polite obedience to society's rules. Eventually even the political and legal systems became affected by the new attitudes. Suddenly criminals were being better protected by the law than their victims were, politicians could be blatantly dishonest or corrupt and still be re-elected to office, and no one was being held accountable for their actions anymore. Everyone now had a justification or an excuse for what they did, no matter how absurd or evil their behavior was. And more and more the legal system refused to reprimand or properly punish people for what they did. Thus crime and lawlessness became epidemic. Can you imagine?
Where do we begin with this horseshit. Where?
How about how crime rates have been falling steadily since the 80s? Just how drastically race relations have improved in the space of mere decades? How much more colorful and diverse our media is?
Just like with every Christian's conception of YHWH, Kirk's conception of Superman just happens to agree with him on everything! What a coincidence. Why. whoever heard of writing characters as human beings with their own feelings and flaws?
How long had your perfect 50s Picture o' America identical white suburbanite society been the norm before the bone-chilling social upheaveals of freethinking, Kirk? A century? Two? Try twenty years at best.
Here's a clue, Kirk--Grown men in 1950s probably wouldn't have embraced a guy who wrote Superman fanfiction. It's almost as though they were close-minded or something. Here's another clue, free of charge: Christopher Reeve was an atheist for 50 years, and joined the Unitarian Church a bit before he died. Some tribute this is. Don't make him another of your sock puppets, Kirk.
- play air raid klaxon*
Golly gee, Non-Doctor Emma, it's yet another nuke drill, duck under the desk! No, no, Tort, don't duck towards where the COLOREDS are, silly!
YOU GUYS INSERT COMPLAINTS HERE
~Tort - So I just want to talk about Kirk Hastings nostaglia fetish for a little bit. This idea that communities knew each other and stayed together in the 1950s and everything was so much better then is racist and sexist. It's the distillation of white male privilege. Nothing changed, the people in your community are still nice friendly people but now some of them are black, some are hispanic and they are demanding equal treatment. Now women are willing to stand up against the sexist bullshit you've been spewing, now they want equal pay, freedom from sexual harassment. Suddenly the minorities you've been oppressing for centuries are starting to challenge some of your behaviours that are assissting in that oppression and because of that you're feeling some small fraction of the hostility they've had to face their whole lives and you react as if suddenly the whole fucking world is ending. If you watch clips from the 1950s superman and the 1950s B movie republic pictures that Kirk is so fond of women are either stupid docile comedy props who's entire screen time is devoted to failing and lusting after a more important man who having a penis is allowed to have a fully developed character; see Lois Lane, or sex objects who's entire pesonality consists of how they display their boobs; see Sgt O'Hara who we'll talk about later. But if we call them on that suddenly they are being persecuted. I'll add too that the only thing they can really complain about is globalisation and the rise of big business but the no way these ultra conservative fuckwits are going to critisise the free market so it must be all the hippies fault.
Fuck you, Kirk.
Back to the fic, he reads about a bunch of isolated unjust cases like the OJ trial and extrapolates from that (as only an evangelical can) it means everything's fucked to hell and this world is a hellhole of injustice. Superman breaks up a riot police assault against pro-life picketers, and surrenders himself to police custody, fearing that any bullets unwittingly fired at him might ricochet and harm innocent folks. He's brought in to court as John Doe for disturbing the peace and resisting arrest, and he stoically endures, pleading not guilty, but the judge hands down the sentence like a second later. This is of course merely an excuse to have Supes speechify about the integrity of God and country, including a right wing tirade against "liberal judges" who purportedly create new laws according to their own philosophies as opposed to interpreting the law. It is telling that the one person superman feels is a good person in this future, the one person he likes is a fucking abortion protestor carrying a sign that says abortion kills children. I'd also like to mention that supermans rant includes this line unironically:
- Evidently you are one of many judges in this country today who believes not in preserving, protecting or defending the Constitution as it was written, but in rewriting it by filtering it through your own personal political biases...
This is par for the course in American conservatism, Tort. Of course, the judges are only being evil activist judges when they rule in favor of liberal positions.
Supes breaks out and returns to his own reality, where he tells La Serne it was a dud, and then comments that all is right once he sees Jimmy's landed a date with the hot waitress. Nope, no social unrest or tension here in fantasy 50s land!
Journey Back into TimeEdit
JOURNEY BACK INTO TIME starts as do so many of Kirk Hastings stories: with a list of actors playing the part of key characters in his story. Psst... Kirk, it's a written story, there aren't any actors. Although we should respect that Kirk is a published author so clearly knows more about writing than the rest of us mere unpublished plebs. Actually this story and most of his stories have just one acting credit, and it's Joi Lansing as Sgt. Helen J. O'Hara. Kirk has a bit of a crush on Joi Lansing, who you will be shocked to learn is a blonde haired, blue eyed, B movie starlet noted for her 1950s pin up posters. She appeared in exactly one Superman episode where despite being a police officer she did nothing but get kidnapped and rescued by Superman, and wear a tight blouse to show off her boobs. So I know what you're thinking, that Kirk has finally embraced the fine tradition of fanfiction and written a story primarily to have two of the main characters bone. Unfortunately there is no boning in this story, or in any of Kirk's stories for that matter, which is a real tragedy as I think a sex scene written by Kirk Hastings would be truly hilarious.
So this extremely generic tale of derring-do begins with Superman sitting at his desk when suddenly he hears a burglar alarm and takes off "with a loud whoosh." The alarm is coming from the first national bank, because apparently banks just have regular burglar alarms in Kirk's world. I'll also note that Kirk writes a lot of bank robberies, here it's the first national bank, in Superman's wife it's the 4th and 5th national banks. The other banks don't have names, I think he ran out of numbers that he knew. The numbers are all busy floating in space, Tort.
Then tragedy strikes, a bullet bounces off superman because he's too lazy to catch it and it hits a bank teller and she dies.
Kirk's Superman is awfully dumb if he thinks bullets ricocheting off his chin is some unavoidable ur-tragedy. You're Superman, you're faster than a speeding bullet. I bet he was trying to angle the ricochet so that it "accidentally" grazed a seam into Sgt. O'Hara's jacket and unhooked her bra. Superman thinks himself "directly responsible" for the teller's death, which is retarded: Following the logic within the story, how is a bullet fired at you randomly hitting some other person instead your fault?
So Superman has sad feels and decides he's going to use a time machine he'd confiscated so it'd never be used again just to save her. This one was created by Professor Oscar Quinn, so we've got two indepently crafted fully functional time machines in the same continuity. I like how it only occurs to Superman to use the time machine hours later; a little slow on the uptake there? And what, has he never regretted anything else he's ever done? Yeah, never mind the thousands of other people who have died, this one had a marginal effect on superman so it's more important. Sgt. O'Hara is walking into his apartment (having, unbeknownst to Supes, "penetrated" his secret identity some time ago) just as he switches on the machine and they both get sent back to ROMAN TIMES, next to, quote, an "ancient-appearing concrete building." KIRK HASTINGS, ACE AUTHOR. Supes somehow understands from the surrounding architecture that it's first century AD Rome, whereas a silly guy like me would have thought concrete to be rather anachronistic for the period.
According to Kirk the rotation of the earth is what has moved them from America to Rome.
- "Why would we end up in ancient Italy, then, instead of ancient North America?" she asked.
- "I would imagine that we're probably in the same spot in space as the one we left," Kent conjectured, "but because of the revolution of the earth, we've ended up in a different location on the earth's surface."
Let's ignore all the other movement that's going on like the rotation of the earth around the sun, let's ignore the change in velocity between the ground they are standing on and the ground they land on and try and work out how the rotation of the earth could somehow move them to a different latitude. Anyway, he can't get back because his time machine has run out of Corborium-X. Once again Kirk has managed to come up with a less believable premise for his story than "a wizard did it"
So superman flies off to go find some unobtainium and Sgt. O'Hara sneaks into a Roman's backyard and steals some clothes off a clothesline. Seriously.
- "Sure, I'll be all right. I'll, uh, borrow some of that clothing over there, so I won't stand out."
- Superman nodded. After telling her to be careful, he took a running start and leaped up into the air.
I think there's something a bit off about this line of thought, but I can't quite put my finger on it.
Kirk does make sure to take his time to describe exactly how Sgt O'Hara is dressed. So just in case it wasn't clear, we are all now keenly aware that Kirk Hastings is masturbating to the mental image of Joi Lansing dressed up like an ancient Roman.
- O'Hara watched him depart. Then she walked back to the clothesline. She took off her shoes, stockings, coat, holster, gun, and blouse, and slipped the tunic on. There was also a longer outer tunic on the line that was designed to be worn over the shorter one. This she also put on, clasping it at the shoulder. She hid her 20th century clothing securely behind some stones, and then walked out of the alley. There were no sandals available, so she just went barefoot.
Okay, so. One, was she just nude out in the open like that? Jesus Christ, Kirk. Two, this is pretty stupid, even if she did blend in with her raiment, she'd still be a really tall blonde blue-eyed girl with no grasp of Latin. She's going to stand out no matter what. Stop getting your story ideas from the backs of cereal boxes.
In any case, a Roman soldier drives by in full armour on a chariot for no reason--evidently they drove chariots around in full armour when they're on the way to the shops to buy a hills hoist. He sees the hot girl and of course kidnaps her.
- The tribune stepped down from the chariot and walked over to O'Hara. Struck by her blonde beauty, the tribune remarked that she must be a goddess since she was so beautiful.
- It was an obvious come-on, even for 65 A.D., but since O'Hara could not understand ancient Latin she had no idea what the tribune had said. She just smiled and nodded.
It was an obvious come the fuck on.
In Kirk's conception of ancient Rome, women don't go outside unless they are wearing a hooded cloak, quote, "to hide their beauty from eyes other than those of their husband's". So he can't help himself, totally not his fault. And there was a perfectly available man in a loincloth there for the raping, too, in the person of his chariot driver! Capable Sgt. O'Hara executes a judo move, because again in Kirk World everybody knows martial arts, and she gets arrested and dragged off to the jail/colosseum, which is apparently one and the same. She's tossed into a cell, and who else is in the cell but the most persecuted group in Kirk's mind, Christians.
Superman comes back with his unobtanium (off an extremely convenient handy-sized meteor) and can't find the personality-free sex object he brought with him so he follows her footprints and then chariot tracks. I don't know what she is leaving footprints in and what the chariot is leaving tracks in, even a dirt road in a city is going to be so compacted as to not leave any footprints. He loses the tracks when the streets become concrete, not cobblestones, concrete. So the Romans are of course going to feed the Christians and the star of Kirk's spank bank to the lions. Superman arrives just in tiime to save them and immediately beats the shit out of the lions, the Romans send in some soldiers and he beasts the shit out of them too. Superman then tells the Romans not to kill anymore Christians, picks up the boobs and flies away. PROBLEM SOLVED!
Superman tells Judo Chop Sex Object that nothing they did would impact the timeline, because this is an "obscure province." Nobody remembers an alien dressed in red and blue tights effortlessly clobbering lions and then shouting at them about how they should bow in worship of the Jewish god, in a famous ampitheater with a seating capacity of 50,000 spectators. Totally plausible.
- "Do you think anything we did here will change history?" O'Hara asked.
- "I doubt it," Superman responded. "This is an obscure province. And I think I – to use a old expression – "put the fear of God" into these people. I don't think what they saw will go beyond this town. If it does I don't think it will be believed."
These are ancient Romans, people who believe in gods able to descend to the world in the guise of humans and affect events. Of course they'll fucking believe it, you empty skull cavity.
Anyway he gets back to the present--despite the fact that last time he used the machine he was off by 2000 year--he's now able to make this thing accurate to the day so he can come back the day before the robbery that way he won't have sad feels anymore. And then he'll presumably never touch the time machine for any other preventable tragedy, because they'll never involve a bullet bouncing off his peen.
Other Assorted WorksEdit
I'll just quickly summarise a few other stories so you can get an idea of the depth of Kirk's originality and imagination.
THE STOLEN COSTUME - This one is a follow up to a rather controversial episode of the TV series where two criminals have discovered Superman's identity and so, rather than turning them into the police, he leaves them on a cabin on top of a mountain. Kirk's story starts with Superman returning to the mountain, only to find that they've attempted to leave the cabin and subsequently fallen to their deaths. Superman eventually gets arrested thanks to a mob lawyer who is intimated to be doing something underhanded and illegal but actually just seems to be the only person following legal procedures in this story. Though I'm still working out why if he's a private defence attorney he has any say in who gets prosecuted. During some kind of preliminary hearing a private investigator bursts into the room and tells everyone he has important information. The judge decides to have him testify immediately and he provides information that proves Superman was innocent. Sounds like an Ace Attorney game. You see the criminals caught hepatitis off a drug dealer. Now not so much like an Ace Attorney game. The judge immediately releases Superman and everyone is happy, (guess this guy wasn't an activist judge to be scorned). Except, the dead guy's cousin who opens fire on the judge and the mob lawyer who's trying to work out how any of this shit is legal.
SUPERMAN IS MISSING - Superman gets amnesia and ends up in an Amish community. He slammed himself head first into a prototype ICBM that was launched accidentally at southern Pennsylvania. Again, Kirk, "a wizard did it" would have sufficed. Naturally, the Amish have no idea who Superman is, either.
- "Now – what shall we call you?" she asked.
- The stranger shrugged his shoulders.
- "Are you sure you can't remember anything?"
- "Well, I've been thinking – the name 'Jim' keeps popping into my mind."
- "That's a start. Anything else?"
- "I seem to have heard the name 'White' before too."
- "All right. Then how about we just call you Jim White for now?"
- "I guess that would be all right."
He remembers Jim and White but not anything else. Brilliant.
And then Superman crushed the Amish girl to dust in an embrace! Just kidding.
Sex Object McBlonde arrives after putting two and two together that the missing Clark must be Superman, but then she gets kidnapped literally out of fucking nowhere. It's hilarious hack writing.
- Jim noticed a very pretty blonde woman in a dark blue suit talking to an Amish man outside of the store. After a moment the Amish man walked away. The blonde woman turned, and looked directly at Jim.
- She froze, staring at him.
- At that exact same moment a large black sedan pulled up to the curb next to her. The rear door of the car opened and a huge, burly man dressed in a brown suit stepped out. He looked to be well over six feet tall. His shoulders were extraordinarily wide, and he had an enormous barrel chest.
"Oh shit, I forgot to write an actual conflict in this story because nothing fazes Superman, oh I know~"
THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS - Sgt. O'Hara gets kidnapped, and even though they plan to kill her the whole time, they hold her for a few days and only finally go to shoot her once Superman is already on the way to their hideout. There are two ethnic people in this story, count 'em two... wait one of them is just Superman pretending to be Italian by putting on a fake moustache.