"Neverending": Taking place over the course of one day, "Neverending" is a non-linear narrative that jumps around in time over the course of a single day. As presented:
Synopsis for "Neverending"
Taking place over the course of one day, "Neverending" is a non-linear narrative that jumps around in time over the course of a single day. As presented:
7:02 AM: Superman takes a group of terminally ill children on a sightseeing trip to Egypt. Returning them to their hospice, the doctor thanks Superman--he replies that it is "the least (he) can do".
11:25 PM: Superman begins the composition of his last will and testament in the Fortress of Solitude.
10:25 AM: Van-Zee and Sylvia watch the immense visage of Superman peering down on them, as Van-Zee reflects on his encroaching old age and how far their civilization has fallen since Krypton's Second Golden Age. Professor Quintum Prepares to miniaturize down into Kandor to converse with the Kandorian Council. Journeying into the Bottle City in Jimmy Olsen's "authentic Kryptonian formal wear", Quintum (mistakenly referred to as Quin-Tum by the Kryptonians) informs them he may have a solution to Superman's inability to enlarge them.
12:01 AM: Wondering if, when he's gone, Earth will be able to survive without him, and realizing the only way to find out was to observe such a world, Superman performs "a nano-optical transfusion of pure solar energy" to the Infant Universe of Qwewq, quickly giving birth to "Earth Q".
4:35 PM: Superman prevents a train wreck, and goes to stop the rampaging Mechano-Man, momentarily delayed by the discovery of a time-capsule from the year 2312. After saving Lois from Mechano-Man's clutches, she confronts him with her knowledge of his death (Professor Quintum had earlier informed Superman that he told Lois the truth about his impending demise, not wishing him to face it alone): she demands he promise her that he will find a way to survive, but he instead replies that their biology is incompatible, preventing them from having children or a future together, and has to leave when he hears a cry for help. Miles away, a teenaged girl named Regan is about to throw herself off a roof as her doctor yells over the phone that he is on his way, overheard by Superman--he arrives in time to comfort her and prevent her from killing herself.
11:00 AM: Quintum's statements--that it is time for the Kandorians to leave their bottle, regardless of their size--sparks outrage amongst the council, Councillor Zora in particular concerned of their status as bacterial compared to humanity, while others ponder the benefits of emerging into the light of the yellow sun. The council is approached by the Kandorian Emergency Corps with a plan to save Superman, asking Van-Zee to rejoin them.
11:59:59 PM: On Earth Q, time has passed forward at a rapid pace; Australian Aboriginals paint pictures of gods based on their observations of the stars.
3:27 PM: Superman uses his microscopic vision to examine his own DNA code.
11:59:59:914 PM: On Earth Q, a man carves a statue of Krishna.
5:13 PM: Superman meets with Luthor in prison, asking him to spend his remaining days using his mind to improve the world as he always said he would have were Superman not in the way: Luthor responds by spitting at Superman's face, the glass divider the only thing keeping it back.
11:59:59:980 PM: On Earth Q, Giovanni Pico della Mirandola delivers his Oration on the Dignity of Man.
9:10 PM: Superman opens the 2312 time capsule in his Fortress to find a recording from ROO MAC2, 24th century scientist. Though forbidden to interfere in the past, ROO MAC2 feels obligated, as he owes his life to Superman saving his distant ancestor (Regan), to warning him of the coming of Solaris.
11:20 PM: Superman prepares his solar-proof suit for his upcoming battle for Solaris.
4:30 PM: Superman and Professor Quintum place Kandor on Mars, allowing the civilization to flourish free and with Superman's abilities, while still remaining a safe distance from humanity; Superman's will notes "To the proud survivors of Kandor, my kin, I leave a Third Golden Age". Discussing the difficulties in creating a successful clone of Superman, each effort resulting in a corrupted Bizarro replica (Interlude: At 11:59:59:996 PM, on Earth Q, Friedrich Nietzsche works on "Thus Spake Zarathustra", penning the passage "Behold, I teach you the Superman..."). Superman gives Leo a sample of his genetic code, along with that of Lois Lane's, and tells him that he not only copied his DNA sequence into a book, but also left instructions on how to combine human and Kryptonian strands, allowing the possibility of growing a second Superman; Superman's will notes "To Lois Lane...I leave our future.".
6:45 PM: The plan of the Kandor Emergency Corps to cure Superman from within fails; Superman thanks them for doing their best, and knowing that they would be able to tackle any human affliction with ease, goes back to the children's ward, having the Kandorians cure them of their cancer.
11:49 PM: Lois receives an email from Superman, a look at an upcoming Daily Planet headline: "SUPERMAN DEAD by Clark Kent", as Superman's will concludes "And to Clark Kent...the mild-mannered reporter who never let me forget how it feels to be a downtrodden, ordinary man...I leave the headline of the century."
Appearing in "Neverending"
- Lex Luthor
- Mechano-Man (First appearance)
- Regan (Single appearance)
- ROO MAC2
- All-Star Superman Universe
- In this issue, Superman accomplishes the following Super-Feats
- Superman creates Life (Earth Q)
- Superman liberates Kandor
- Superman leaves behind the formula for Superman 2
- In creating Earth Q (a stand-in for the real world), Superman is shown in this issue as creating us.
- 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)