Wonder Woman w/o Powers Pt. 40: Superman #241-242
It was only moments ago… the Man of Steel won his hardest battle! For, deprived of his powers, he triumphed over a trio of deadly, determined killers! Now he stands bruised and panting, hearing the anxious words of the Oriental wise man, I-Ching, and making a decision… a decision that could affect the future of the earth!
Feeling the accomplishment of winning without his powers, Superman is reluctant to get them back. However, Ching convinces him and prepares his “magic…”
Testing his powers to make sure they’ve returned in full, Superman begins acting strangely.
Ching believes he may have brain damage from his ordeal. He and Diana discover a sand duplicate of Superman from the spirit dimension of Quarm. Its fading existence is somehow related to Superman’s strange new attitude.
The action resumes in Superman #242 with an increased-ego, reduced-power Superman defeated in battle by a paper-created monster from a Chinese parade. Jimmy Olson finds him lying in the street and he’s rushed to the hospital…
When the paper monster crashes into the building, Diana tries to help stop it…
We see nothing more of her after this panel…
...and Ching is left to return Superman back to normal…
You may as well say that Ching is the guest star in Superman #241; he carries more weight than Diana in a story that continues from Superman #240. I did not read that one, but #241 opens with him comforting a weary, post-battle, Superman.
It’s nice to see Diana, although she looks a little different as drawn by Neal Adams and inked by Murphy Anderson. Her face is a little… wider… than usual, her hair a little flatter, her eyes a little less bright.
Her contributions include two fun details. First, she is apparently familiar enough with Superman’s activities that she recognizes something unusual in the newspaper headlines. Second, she uses her feminine wiles to distract him with a kiss:
She ramps up her participation in Superman #242, although it’s limited to only a couple of her powerless moves. They’re ineffective against a giant monster, but we never really see the consequences of her fight with it. Just as the story started, it ends with Ching.
Issue #: 241-242
Cover Date: Aug. 1971 and Sept. 1971
On Sale Date: June 15, 1971 and July 13, 1971
Writer: Denny O'Neil
Penciller: Curt Swan
Inker: Murphy Anderson
Editor: Julius Schwartz