The Adventures of Superman

Starring: William Hootkins, Stuart Milligan, Lorelei King, Jon Pertwee and Burt Kwouk
BBC Audio
RRP: 12.99
ISBN-13: 978 1 40567 739 4
ISBN-10: 1 40567 739 2
Available 02 April 2007

During the 250th Anniversary celebrations of Metropolis, a plane has a mid-air collision and is helped to land by a mysterious flying man. While Daily Planet reporter Lois Lane stages an accident to get an interview with Superman, unscrupulous businessman Lex Luthor sets up a number of 'emergencies' to test the superhero in an attempt to make him his own. This includes terrorists aboard a yacht, and a battle suit rampaging through the city. The capsule he arrived in as a baby is stolen, and Lex has a scientist produce a clone from cell data found within. However, something goes wrong and Superman is obliged to protect his identity from a simpleton Bizarro double. Lex fashions a ring from Kryptonite against Superman, but is forced to let him go to save a nuclear reactor exploding...

The Adventures of Superman was originally broadcast as two separate serials in 1990 and 1991. They were repeated together in 1993, and released on cassette the following year. This is it's first outing on CD, and follows the recent remastered releases of Dirk Maggs' Batman: Knightfall and Superman: Doomsday and Beyond. The stories in this one are updated versions of the original comic tales, so give the impression of being lighter and more family-orientated, as opposed to the two aforementioned audio movies which are darker and harder-hitting.

As I explain in the review on my own website, I'm not a fan of the Superman character because I feel he lacks depth. The story here is fast-moving, and the sound effects and atmospherics are great, but it is curiously lacking in humour. There are also no outtakes at the end.

In my opinion, this isn't one of maestro Dirk's better adaptations, but it's welcome all the same. The remastering is crisp and clean, and the eye-catching packaging contains notes from the man himself. Let's hope that this will pave the way for more remastered versions of Dirk's work, and maybe even a first release of Batman: The Lazarus Syndrome and The Gemini Apes.

Ty Power

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