Here’s a list of wrestling comic book covers from DC Comics. Expect a lot of Superman and Superman tie-ins.
10. Superman’s Pal: Jimmy Olsen #111
You have to pretty ugly to be called Ugly Superman while Bizarro Superman lurks around. In this issue, Jiimmy Olsen has turned himself into Mr. Fantastic and is using his power of elasticity to build a wrestling career on. but despite looking like a dolt, Ugly Superman isn’t as dumb as he looks and uses some of Olsen’s elastic serum because apparently the only thing Super about Ugly Superman is that he wears a Superman costume. And if you’re wondering if Jimmy Olsen tried this wrestling thing out for a bit…
9. Superman’s Pal: Jimmy Olsen#82
Jimmy Olsen had been wrestling quite a few issues before taking on Ugly Superman. Here he is taking on, and getting the upper hand on, regular ass Superman. Before becoming the Elastic Lad, Olsen was known as “The Unbeatable” Jimmy Olsen. Probably thanks to another kind of serum. His tights are different, but he’s staying consistent with the green trunks. Perhaps they’re made of kryptonite, even though he’s rubbing Perry’s face in the fact that he didn’t have to use it to beat Superman. Two issues in and Jimmy Olsen is already the worst side character in the history of comics. How the hell did he get his own series?
8. Superman’s Girlfriend: Lois Lane #8
I guess if Jimmy Olsen could have his own comic series, why not Lois Lane? Here she is having fallen in love with Ugly Superman, proving that she’s a sucker for a man in uniform. Doesn’t matter how ugly he is. Ugly Superman appears to just wear the costume as a wrestling gimmick. Although the Iron Sheik look-a-like making a hole in the ring with his ass a la Cactus Jack would indicate that Ugly Superman does indeed have super human strength. Like the previous cover, this issue also lets you know the time period when this took place, not because this comic book cost 10 cents, but because of the fact that people used to go watch rasslin’ matches in suits and dresses, and not in black t-shirts.
7. Hellblazer #122
There’s a good chance that John Constantine said some nasty stuff about the good ol’ U-S of A to incur the wrath of a man in star-spangled tights. A popular choice of attire for American wrestlers who feel obligated to protect their country’s honor. I like this cover because it doesn’t make the wrestler look weak at the expense of a celebrity guest, which is too often the case when celebrities show up on WWE television. You’d think that dealing with the supernatural Constantine wouldn’t sweat a guy in tights who fake fights, unless said guy in tights is the devil’s other favorite demon.
6. Superman Confidential #12
Man, did Superman creatives love them some wrestling tie-in issues. Here The Man of Steel is taking on every fictional luchador south of the border. As if the all-mask crew wasn’t a dead giveaway that Superman is in Mexico, the artist made sure to drive the point home by adding the slug “Mucha Luchadores!” (which is grammatically incorrect), and by making the ropes green, grayish white, and red. Unless this match is taking place in an underground lucha temple in a predominantly Hispanic neighborhood of Los Angeles. My only gripe with this cover is that here, Superman is easily disposing of nine luchadores, meanwhile on other comic book covers on this list, you’ll find that it only takes one non-luchador to get the best of him.
5. Action Comics #372
Here’s a future glimpse of Injustice: Gods Among Us Superman, as an apparent amnesia has forced him to drop his moral compass, don a mask, and do what every person with newfound super human strength decides to do: try their hand at a staged athletic performance whose outcome is predetermined. Talk about going into business for yourself. Look at nondescript bald wrestler #6’s face. It screams of…
“Yup, that’s me.”
Right before Superman paralyzed the poor bastard.
4. Firestorm: The Nuclear Man #51
So Drax was a DC Comics character before joining the Guardians of the Galaxy. It’s hard to tell exactly what the set up is here. Seems like a wrestler Hulked-up and decided to go old school carny and challenge people from the audience. The blurbs also read that a minute ago he was a man and a minute from presumably this moment in time, he’ll be a monster. Even though he looks like he’s already gone full-blown monster. Luckily, Pyro’s DC brother is there to help, which means he’s got some next-level Spidey senses, or he’s a down low wrestling nerd who just happened to be at the matches.
3. Superman #406
Five years before Marvel finally addressed the legal situation with the whole Incredible Hulk/Hulk Hogan trademark in comic book form, DC was seemingly mocking the entire thing with this issue. Apparently, there’s a wrestler going by the name Superman who is fighting actual Superman for the right to be called Superman. Which was actually pretty cool and funny of DC Comics. Not only does wrestling superstar Superman go by the same name as the Man of Steel, but he seems to possess the same physical attributes as his superhero counterpart. Who knows? Maybe he only got to one doing that punch in the corner thing, instead of the usual ten.
2. Batman ’66 #27 (full review)
This is Bane the way Bane should’ve been introduced and maintained during his original DC Comics introduction and run. Bane has always been considered a wrestler, and actually played by a real-life terrible wrestler in his first film incarnation, but nothing was ever actually done with that background. Here, Bane is a superhuman luchador who rules a small Mexican town where all the luchadores wrestle, including El Santo and Mil Mascaras. And even though it’s not the actual move that does it, with Batman hoisted up on Bane’s shoulders the way he is, you can tell this is all leading to the famous backbreaker heard round Gotham. KRAKT!
1. Superman #155
Before Superman crossed paths with Muhammed Ali in the ring, he was having a hard time dealing with real-life wrestler, Antonino Rocca. Which goes to show the length in which wrestling promoters would go to protect the sanctity of kayfabe back in the day. Had this issue been released in the last 25 years, Rocca would’ve been jobbing to the much more famous Superman. This would be the only crossover comic book to feature an actual living professional wrestler on the cover of a major comic book until… 52 years later when Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian appeared on Aw Yeah Comics’ Christopher Daniels & Kazarian wrestle Aw Yeah Comics! Which totally counts.