"The Limits of Power": Following their exposure to cosmic radiation in space, the crew of the Space Shuttle Excalibur crash-lands on Earth. Out of the wreckage, the crew members find out that their bodies were affected by the radiation. In the case of Steven, his body is made out of cosmic r
- This is all theory, of course, but remember that we WERE experimenting with that radiation when we ran into trouble. And it had fantastic properties which deviated from anything we'd seen before. Add the solar flares ...
Synopsis for "The Limits of Power"
Following their exposure to cosmic radiation in space, the crew of the Space Shuttle Excalibur crash-lands on Earth. Out of the wreckage, the crew members find out that their bodies were affected by the radiation. In the case of Steven, his body is made out of cosmic radiation, and Jim turns into a mass of rock, gravel, and wreckage of the ship, feeling constant pain and being unable to speak. With Hank Henshaw and his wife, Terri, seemingly unaffected, the team decides to travel to Metropolis and use LexCorp's facilities to treat their conditions.
In Metropolis, Lois invites Clark to have dinner at her apartment. The evening is suddenly interrupted by the reports of "four radioactive paranormals" invading LexCorp. Lois goes with Perry to the scene of the events, leaving Clark in her apartment to take care of the dinner, since he's just a freelance writer now. But Clark turns the stove off, changes to his Superman suit, and flies to the scene.
The battle at LexCorp escalates quickly, with both sides accidentally hitting Superman. Steven goes completely berserk, but Superman uses Luthor's battle suits to contain the radioactive being. Before the battle could continue, Hank explains the situation to Superman, who accepts to help them. The crew gets inside the facilities and starts looking for a cure, but Hank's body is rapidly decaying, while Terri fades out to another dimension. Steven breaks free from the containment suit and flies straight to the sun. Superman tries to stop him, but Steven is faster than him. Back in the lab, Hank dies seconds after Superman's return. Superman uses a radiation chamber to return Terri to her normal state, but Jim commits suicide by entering a Magnetic Resonance Imager. With Terri now alone and in shock, Superman takes her to the hospital.
Clark returns to Lois's apartment just before her return. Clark tells her that he wants to move forward with their relationship and kisses her on the doorstep.
Appearing in "The Limits of Power"
- Excalibur crew
- LexCorp Space Shuttle Excalibur (Destroyed)
- The story of the Excalibur crew continues in Adventures of Superman #468, and Superman next appears in Action Comics #653.
- The cosmic transformations of Jim Garrison and Steve are homages to the Lee/Kirby Human Torch and the Thing.
- This issue is reprinted in Superman: Dark Knight Over Metropolis.
- The story interestingly resembles the origin of Marvel's Fantastic Four team, except that it takes a rather tragic turn for its participants.
- Superman Recommended Reading
- Action Comics (Volume 1)
- Action Comics (Volume 2)
- Adventures of Superman (Volume 1)
- Batman/Superman (Volume 1)
- Batman/Superman (Volume 2)
- DC Comics Presents (Volume 1)
- Superman (Volume 1)
- Superman (Volume 2)
- Superman (Volume 3)
- Superman (Volume 4)
- Superman (Volume 5)
- Superman/Batman (Volume 1)
- Superman Confidential (Volume 1)
- Superman: The Man of Steel (Volume 1)
- Superman: The Man of Tomorrow (Volume 1)
- Superman/Wonder Woman (Volume 1)
- World's Finest (Volume 1)