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"Prisoners of Time! (1986 A.D. to CCLIII A.D.)": Inside the Museum of Art in Metropolis, Jimmy Olsen and and Karen browse the displays. Karen shows Jimmy the new Roman exhibit that was recently added, and she highlights on an averse shield, and the shield apparently b

Quote1.png What a great bunch of guys! I feel like writing their story! Quote2.png
Jimmy Olsen

Action Comics #579 is an issue of the series Action Comics (Volume 1) with a cover date of May, 1986.

Synopsis for "Prisoners of Time! (1986 A.D. to CCLIII A.D.)"

Inside the Museum of Art in Metropolis, Jimmy Olsen and and Karen browse the displays. Karen shows Jimmy the new Roman exhibit that was recently added, and she highlights on an averse shield, and the shield apparently belonged to the Gaul chief Vercingetorix, who surrendered it to Julius Caesar when Gaul fell to Rome. Just then, two burglars break in, and hold Karen and Jimmy at gunpoint. Jimmy activates his signal watch, and grabs a nearby sword. One of the men grabs the shield, and Jimmy attacks the man. Superman crashes through the window, having received Jimmy's signal from his watch, and quickly dispatches one of the criminals. The second man tries to smash the shelf over Jimmy's head, but Jimmy spins around and slashes with his sword, tearing the shield to pieces. Jimmy asks if Superman can repair the shield, but he tells Jimmy that he can't recreate matter. Jimmy suggests going back in time to retrieve the shield, but Superman says that they shouldn't change history. Karen, crestfallen, says that the shield must remain broken.

In 235 A.D., the soothsayer Prolifix makes his way through a forest with his home. He reflects on how rotten his luck has been, noting how he heard about the single Gaulish village that the Roman Empire couldn't conquer. He heard about how the secret to the Gauls constant victories was a super-strength potion that had been created by a druid from the village. Prolifix thinks about his plans for stealing the secret of the potion, and using it to become the new Roman emperor. He notices a nearby troop of Romans, and hides in the bushes. Prolifix uses one of his magical pouches, and uses it to create a smokescreen. He appears to the Roman garrison, declaring himself a warlock. He demands to see their centurion, and they take him to him. Back at the Roman camp, he tells the centurion that if he helps him, then they will be rid of the Gauls forever. Prolifix and the centurion begin to from a plan to capture the druid. Later, four Roman soldiers are picked to go out and capture the druid. In the forest, the druid, and one of his friends Columnix, walk through the forest. The Romans, hiding in the bushes, immediately notice the hulking form of Columnix. The Romans sneak out of the bushes, and politely ask the druid to come with them as their prisoner. The druid pics Columnix on them, and walks off. Bucket the camp, the Romans report to the centurion, who is furious. Prolific goes into his tent, and looks for a magic astrolabes that an Egyptian named Magus gave him. The "astrolabus" appears to be a large, metal disc, which the soothsayer promises will bring them the champion they need to defeat the Gauls. Prolifix presses a button, and the disc homes in on the champion, Superman.

Back in the present, the magic begins to take effect, and Superman and Jimmy disappear, and begin hurtling through the time stream. Superman gives Jimmy his cape to protect him, and Jimmy asks what it will protect him from. Before Superman can answer both of them land, in separate places. Prolific and the centurion find the unconscious form of Superman in the jungle, and Profilix uses his vapors of Epona to render Superman helpless. The centurion questions the validity of Profilix's claims that Superman's strength is great, and Profilix commands Superman to uproot a tree, and throw it far away. Superman easily does this, and Profilix, noting Superman's S symbol, decides to call him Superix. Elsewhere, Jimmy Olsen crash lands in a pond. Two Gaulish fishermen rescue Jimmy, and pull him into their boat. He wakes up, and Rockix, one of the fishermen, slaps Jimmy with a fish, knocking him out again. Together, he, and Bulwinkelmus, the other fishermen, carry him back to the Gaulish village. They present him to the druid, named Picturix, and the druid introduces him to their chief, Flipmybix. Jimmy talks with Picturix, and they agree to go speak with the Romans the next day. In the morning, Picturix and Jimmy leave, and they take Columnix with them. They dress Jimmy in the garb of their greatest warrior, who died some time ago. Pictures explains that Columnix fell into a vat of his super strength potion when he was a baby, and because of this he gained permanent super strength, and a magical life extension as well. Columns was apparently best friends with the fallen warrior whose garb Jimmy is wearing. They recruit Columnix, and leave for the Roman camp.

The three of them meet with the army of Romans from the camp in the field in front of the camp. The Romans immediately attack, and Pictruix gives Jimmy some of the super-strength potion. Columns charges the Romans, and smashes into them, easily taking them all down. Suddenly, a strong force collides with Columnix, and topples him. Columns gets up, to face Superman, in full Roman armor, still under Profilix's control. Columnix punches Superman on the chin, but he shrugs this off. He knocks Columnix back into a tree, but the Gaul quickly bounces back, and rams into Superman, before uppercutting him into the air. He looks around for Superman, unaware that the Kryptonian can fly. Superman lands on Columnix, and the two begin beating on each other, creating a cloud of dust. As Superman knocks Columnix unconscious, Jimmy wonders why Superman is acting so weird, and he takes some of Picturix's potion. Jimmy, imbued with super strength, attacks the other Romans, beating them quickly. Prolifix appears, and stops the fight.

Prolifix tells them that if they don't surrender he'll order Superman to kill Columnix. They agree to surrender, but Picturix refuses to reveal the secret of the magic potion to Profilix. Only when Profilix puts a knife to Jimmy's throat does Picturix give in. Picturix brews the potion, but sets a trap. The Romans and the soothsayer decide that the wizard probably messed with the potion, so they have Superman try it. The potion brings Superman out of Profilix's control. Columns wakes up, sees Superman, and knocks him into a Roman tent. Superman gets up, and Jimmy introduces Superman to Columnix. Superman and Columnix make up, and Columnix begins trashing the rest of the Romans. Amid the fighting, Superman grabs Profilix, and tells everyone to stop fighting. He makes the soothsayer confess to the Romans that the Roman Empire fell ages ago, and that the Gauls from Lutetia now rule, so the Romans and Gauls don't have to fight anymore. Flipmybix and the centurion call a truce, and cease fighting. That night, at the Gaulish village, everyone sits around a campfire, was they eat dinner. The chief asks if Superman and Jimmy would like anything else before they leave, and Jimmy asks for the chief's shield, which looks a lot like the broken one in the present, and the chief grants him it. The following day, Superman and Jimmy say their goodbyes to the Gauls. Pictures and Columnix sail away on a ship, but vow to come back to the village some day. Superman and Jimmy promptly leave, with Superman flying away, taking hem back to the present.

Appearing in "Prisoners of Time! (1986 A.D. to CCLIII A.D.)"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

  • Jimmy Olsen
  • Columnix (Single appearance)
  • Picturix (Single appearance)
  • Flipmybix (Single appearance)
  • Romans
    • Centurion (Unnamed) (Single appearance)
    • Numerous others (Unnamed) (Single appearance)


  • Two Thieves
    • Tommy (Single appearance)
    • Mike (Single appearance)
  • Prolifix the Warlock (Single appearance)

Other Characters:

  • Karen (Single appearance)
  • Bulwinkelmus (Single appearance)
  • Rockix (Single appearance)
  • Myopix (Single appearance)
  • Metropolis Police Department






  • This issue is set in the short period where the Superman of Earth-One (and all his supporting characters and villains) existed on the post-Crisis New Earth. This period ended when the effects of the Crisis "caught up" with Superman (et al) in The Man of Steel #1.
  • Story is a homage to the classic French comic, Asterix created by Rene Goscinny and Albert Uderzo.
  • Although it's referred to as Lutetia in this story, Lutetia would later become Paris, France.

See Also

Links and References