Monday, June 10, 2013

Lois Lane Super Tribute Part 2: The Adventures of Superman

Sort of a double feature (or should I say feet-ure? :-D) . The 1950's Superman television series had two women play Lois Lane. Both actresses offered their own portrayal to the character showcasing different sides of the character's personality.
Phyllis Coates
Coates played the role of Lois during the first season of the series 1952-1953. Coates depiction showcased Lois' fiery side. She gave Lois a sharp tongue and a strong personality. She also gave the character a competitive streak having her compete with Clark Kent over getting the scoop on different stories.  For the 1950's time period this version of Lois was ahead of its time showing that a beautiful woman can be fierce and determined at the same time. 

Noel  Neill
An interesting sidenote is that the Adventures of Superman aired during the transition of Television from Black and White to Color. As a result some episodes are filmed in Black and White while the later ones have color to them.
That classic Superman line came straight from this series. ^_^
After the first season of Superman, Phyllis Coates was unable to film as Lois because she was contracted to another series. Noel Neill replaced her in the role playing the character for the remainder of the series (1953-1958). It was actually the second time Neill played Lois because she also played Lois in the Superman Serial movies.  In contrast with Coates' depiction, Neill's spin on Lois depicted her as more sympathetic. The Television series in general began to take a lighter tone than some of the first season episodes and as a result you see a less serious version of the character. This version of Lois added an element sweetness and playfulness giving a certain amount of charm to the character while still giving viewers the sense that she a bright and capable reporter. Neill's role as Lane made her a recognizable icon of 1950's television. She also went on to have cameos in the Superman: The Movie (1978), The Adventures of Superboy (1991) and Superman Returns (2006).

I think that both actresses in their own way did a great job portraying the character and both depictions had a role in influencing later interpretations of the character. That Tsundere-like combination of toughness and Sweetness remains an important part of the reporter's personality in all her later depictions.

As a series the "Adventures of Superman: definitely left its mark on the title character. Some of the lines of the opening of this series ex. "Look up in the sky, it's a bird,  it's a plane" are still recognized as connected to character today over 60 years after the television series aired.

:-D Ok I think that's a note to end this segment. More Lois still to come as this tribute week to the first lady of comics continues.

Until the next entry...Up Up and Away!!


  1. Don't like this entry. But the Lois Lane tributes are an Awesome Idea :D The Animated Series should follow,right?

    1. Yes. Lois Lane tributes all week and the Animated Series will definitely be one of them. ^_^

  2. Phyllis Coates was the more attractive of the two, IMHO. Good post, overall. :)

  3. Once more, I bow to your superior presentation skills-great job, sir.

    1. Thanks Lionel. ^_^ This tribute was fun to work on. :-)