10 Superman arcs to prepare you for 'Man of Steel'
Which stories inspired Zack Snyder's film?
"You're the answer to 'Are we alone in the universe,'" Pa Kent says to his young son Clark in "Man of Steel." That germ of an idea -- and nearly that exact line -- was taken from Mark Waid's "Birthright" and helped pave the way for Goyer's vision of the film as a first contact story. Indeed, the 12-issue mini-series had a heavy influence on the film in general. While the bulk of the arc details Superman's first showdown with Lex Luthor (Luthor is not in the new film), it carries a number of elements that made their way into the mixture, from a globe-trotting 25-year-old Clark Kent to a Lois Lane investigating the "myth" of a good samaritan super-being to the notion of the iconic "S" being a symbol of hope. It even offered some Kryptonian design cues. But it's also just a great story, with a robustly detailed newsroom environment at the Daily Planet, a badass gun control display to handle "faster than a speeding bullet" and a hauntingly beautiful final moment.