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"Identity Crisis"

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Superman: TAS episode
Identity Crisis
"Identity Crisis"
Airdate: September 15, 1997 (USA)
Production Number: 020
Airdate Order: 19
Animation Services by: Koko/Dong Yang
Written by: Robert Goodman
Joe R. Lansdale
Directed by: Curt Geda
Episode images (9)

"Identity Crisis" is the sixth episode of the second season of Superman: The Animated Series, and the 19th of the overall series. It depicts the birth of Bizarro. Superman suddenly finds himself face to face with a seemingly perfect copy of himself, but soon discovers this copy is actually imperfect and becomes a chalk-white creature with impaired intellect and all of Superman's powers. Now Superman must try to save Metropolis and Lois from this creature's "heroic" acts.

Plot

Superman saves Clark Kent

"Superman" saves Clark Kent.

A young boy clings tightly to an electrical tower and is too afraid to climb down. Superman flies down and saves the boy. After a short lecture, Superman flies off and notes a police chase going on through the city. Right after the police is Lois' car. Superman intercepts the car the police are pursuing but since they are on a winding road, Lois nearly drives off the road and Clark is thrown from the car. Superman catches a confused Clark and cautions Lois to be more careful. Lois claims she's never careful and Superman invites her to dinner to talk about it. Clark decides to leave for the time being.

Superman continues his work and saves a helicopter from crashing. After he leaves, he runs into another Superman. The two confront each other and one of them starts to develop white patches on his skin. He insists that his double is doing this and attacks. However, before the other Superman can retaliate, the first falls in pain. The second Superman tells him that he doesn't look too good and his adversary who now has totally changed in appearance attacks him and leaves.

Lois Bizarro dinner

Lois in a restaurant with Bizarro.

The imposter heads off to a laboratory in the mountains and finds Lex Luthor waiting for him. Luthor apparently knows this creature and orders him to calm down. However, the order is unheeded. Luthor then asks a nearby scientist, Dr. Teng, what is going on. Dr. Teng explains that the alien DNA was unlike anything they ever cloned before. He expresses a desire to quit the project and get rid of the rest of the clones but Luthor won't allow it. All the while, the strange Superman confusedly babbles on. He finally gets to see himself and questions what he is. Mercy snidely dubs him "Bizarro" which only upsets him. Bizarro goes out to prove he's really a hero.

Now determined to prove himself the real Superman, Bizarro goes out into Metropolis and starts "preventing" disasters. He hurls a wrecking ball towards a park in order to save a building and nearly causes a boat to crash by holding a drawbridge in place. Fortunately, Superman manages to prevent the disasters from occurring. He insists that the ambitious Superman is not the real Superman.

Bizarro saves the day

Bizarro saves the day.

Later, Bizarro meets up with Lois on the roof of the Daily Planet to go on their date. Superman shows up and is attacked. During the fight, the planet is hurled off the top of the building and Lois falls off the roof. Caring about Lois, Bizarro saves her while Superman catches the planet. Since Superman is occupied at the moment, Bizarro manages to leave with Lois.

Bizarro takes Lois to a restaurant and explains his confusion. During the talk, Lois takes out a tape recorder and learns of the laboratory where Bizarro was created. Lois asks him to take her there, so he does. In the lab, Lois discovers that there are several attempted clones of Superman and Luthor is behind it all. Luthor explains that he obtained Superman's blood from his museum during Superman's fight with the mechanical dinosaur.[1] Bizarro grows agitated at the sight of the other clones but is stopped by an electrical discharge. Luthor decides to destroy the laboratory, and thereby all the evidence. Dr. Teng initiates the self-destruct sequence. However, Bizarro recovers and goes on a rampage blocking the exit and destroying the main terminal. Now there is no escape and the sequence cannot be canceled.

Fortunately, Superman had learned of the laboratory from Lois' tape and re-opens the exit. However, Bizarro now has a hatred of Superman and attacks him. While Superman and Bizarro fight, Luthor and Dr. Teng manage to escape from the lab but Lois is trapped under a large piece of cement. Superman goes to save her and Bizarro realizes that his true enemy is not the real Superman. The ceiling collapses soon after but Bizarro catches and holds it, telling them to escape. Lois and Superman leave just as the lab is destroyed. They both hope that Bizarro survived the explosion that destroyed the lab.

Continuity

Background information

Home video releases

Production notes

  • When Bizarro destroys the lab's terminal, the ensuing explosion is reused footage from the gas canisters that Superman ignites in "The Way of All Flesh".

Production inconsistencies

  • When the duplicate Superman deteriorates into Bizarro, his suit likewise decays to signify his degenerated status, whereas it should remain unchanged since it is not a part of Superman's physique.

Trivia

  • This version of Bizarro is based on the Post-Crisis Bizarro from The Man of Steel #5 and even has scenes from the comic story arc "Bizarro's World", such as his preventing a bridge from opening.
  • Dr. Teng sets the self-destruct to two minutes, yet the time between the on-screen activation and detonation is around three minutes.

Cast

Actor Role
Tim Daly Superman/Clark Kent
Bizarro
Dana Delany Lois Lane
Clancy Brown Lex Luthor
Lisa Edelstein Mercy Graves
Robert Ito Dr. Teng
John Rubinow Helicopter Pilot
Joe Lala Maitre D'
Kendall Cunningham Tommy
Ryan O'Donohue Boy #1
James Cronin Boy #2

Quotes

Boy #1: What if he dies?
Boy #2: I'm not telling his mom.


"Superman": All right. Who wants to explain what you were doing up there?
Tommy: They dared me!
Boy #2: We didn't think you'd do it!
"Superman": I know it's tough to turn down a dare, but sometimes being brave means using your head and not doing something dangerous just cause other kids pressure you.


Clark: Er, thanks, Super... man...
"Superman": Maybe you two should leave the dirty work to the authorities, hmm?
Clark: Er, I...
Lois: Yeah, right... Have you ever known me to play it safe?
"Superman": (ponders) I suppose not. We should have a word about that. Maybe over dinner?


"Superman": It's a date!
Lois: A date? Hmm, must be this new perfume.


Lois: Hey, Smallville, you alright?
Clark: Er, yeah. A little shaken up, I guess. You go on ahead, Lois, I feel like... walking it off.
Lois: Are you nuts?! We're miles from nowhere! What about the story?
Clark: You know us country bumpkins... 10 miles to school and all that...
Lois: Your loss! My byline...


Superman: (to "Superman") Excuse me. I know you're a busy guy, but I'm dying to get your autograph.


Bizarro: I... have... problem.
Luthor: My friend, I would call that an understatement.


Bizarro: What am me?
Mercy: Bizarro, that's what you am.
Luthor: Mercy!
Bizarro: Bizarro? That not my name!
Mercy: If the shoe fits, handsome...


(Bizarro crashes through Lex's Lab ceiling)
Luthor: (to Mercy) That's coming out of your pay.


(Superman saves some people at a wedding from a falling crane)
Superman: Don't ask me. I just catch 'em.


Bizarro: Me am Superman! Me am hero!
Luthor: Sorry, my friend, but you am toast.


Bizarro: Me no am Superman. You am Superman. Superman save Lois.
Lois: You are a hero!


Lois: Do you think he survived?
Superman: I don't know. I've never been in a half kiloton blast. I hope he did. He turned out to have a good heart.
Lois: Well, naturally. He came from good stock.



Previously produced episode:
"Target"
Episodes of
Superman: The Animated Series
Next produced episode:
"Mxyzpixilated"
Previously aired episode:
"Livewire"
Next aired episode:
"Target"


References

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