DC promised a new Superwoman title this fall for Rebirth, and now we know it's none other than Lois ... presumably Lois Lane. The question is, which Lois Lane?
The Superwoman series by writer/artist Phil Jimenez and co-artist Emanuala Lupacchino was announced last month as part of Rebirth, but the publisher specified at the time it would star a "new character," and hasn't named the character since. But DC has just added a colored version of the penciled image (originally released during WonderCon) to their official website as part of their Emerald City Comicon coverage, and the filename identifies the image as "Lois."
Several women have been Superwoman in DC Comics history, but Lois Lane debuted in that role in 1943's Action Comics #60 in a dream sequence where she received a blood transfusion from Superman. She also took the role of Superwoman in Grant Morrison's All-Star Superman, taking a serum as a gift from Superman that temporarily granted her his powers. Prior to the "New 52," Lois's sister Lucy Lane also became a somewhat villainous version of Superwoman through hacked Kryptonian science.
Of course there are now two Lois's in the mainstream DCU - the "New 52" Lois, and then the post-Crisis one from Superman: Lois & Clark. With Superman and Clark Kent existing separately in Rebirth according to incoming Action Comics writer Dan Jurgens, there has been some speculation that the "New 52" Superman - who has been heavily implied to be the Clark Kent in that equation - will lose his already dwindling powers permanently.
Rebirth also launches New Superman, a title in which a Chinese teenager gains some of Superman's power. Could "New 52" Superman's power loss be New Superman and Superwoman's gain?
If the character is indeed new, is DC introducing a third Lois on its main Earth, or does the new series take place on a separate Earth ala Marvel's Spider-Gwen?
In Earth 2: Society, Lois has taken on the mantle of a different hero, Red Tornado. If the new Superwoman is from an alternate universe, could she be from one we've seen before? Grant Morrison's Multiversity Guidebook introduced several worlds where a brunette Superwoman exists, including Earth 11, where all superheroes are gender-reversed; and Earth 38, where Batman and Superman aged normally beginning with their creation in the 1930s and their descendants have taken up their roles. A few brunette Superwomen were also seen in Convergence, in which characters from many of DC's worlds collided.
Keep in mind that there's already one Superwoman in the primary DCU - Earth-3 Crime Syndicate's Superwoman, now appearing in Justice League's "Darkseid War." She's currently aligned as a villain, with a vastly different costume to boot.
Superwoman writer/artist Phil Jimenez posted a sketch from Superwoman showing members of the supporting cast, with the hashtags #thepast and #thefuture, and an invitation to fans to guess their identities. Check it out:
A photo posted by Phil Jimenez (@philjimeneznyc) on
DC's Rebirth Superwoman series is scheduled to debut August 10.