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It’s A Bird, It’s A Plane, It’s Superman – Original Broadway Cast Recording 1966

It’s A Bird, It’s A Plane, It’s Superman – Original Broadway Cast Recording 1966

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Synopsis

The action takes place at the present time in and around the city of Metropolis, U.S.A. Superman, the Man of Steel, knows that his goal in life is Doing Good, an inescapable task imposed on him because he is a superhero. His feats are the stuff young damsels dream of, and tall among them stands Lois Lane, star reporter at the Planet, who ignores Kent’s advances and dreams only of being loved by Superman, unaware that they are one and the same. Lois’s admiration for Superman is not shared by everyone at the paper, least of all by theatrical columnist Max Mencken, who has little patience for the hero or for his incredible feats – We Need Him. Despite Max’s sarcastic comments about the object of her dreams, Lois is undaunted in her feelings for the strong, silent type (It’s Superman) and closes her eyes and heart to the advances of handsome Jim Morgan, a lab assistant, who obviously has a crush on her – We Don’t Matter At All. Dr. Abner Sedgwick, professor at the respectable M.I.T. (Metropolis Institute of Technology) and a ten-time Nobel-Prize loser, is bent on revenge for all the indignities he’s suffered from the scientific community and has vowed to destroy the world’s symbol of goodness, you guessed it!, Superman – Revenge. Max Mencken has his eye on Lois and attempts to seduce her with a typical song-and-dance routine (The Woman For The Man), straight out of the Broadway musicals he reviews for the Planet. As for Sydney, Max’s pert secretary, she has developed a crush on Clark Kent and vainly attempts to change his square personality – You’ve Got Possibilities. Lois, however, appears increasingly lost: on the one hand, she pants for the only one apparently not interested in her, Superman, who even though he’s already saved her life fifteen times has yet to utter a word of endearment to her; and, on the other hand, she is pursued by several men with obvious ulterior motives, but not one of them turns her on, all of which sends her into a moment of total despair – What I Always Wanted. Having invited Superman to the inauguration of the M.I.T. physics hall, which has been named for the superhero, Dr. Sedgwick then subjects him to a session of psychoanalysis that leaves the invincible man from outer space broken down. But while the dedication ceremony is going on (It’s Super Nice), the platform on which the speakers are standing collapses, and Superman must support it. Taking advantage of Superman’s momentary incapacity, Dr. Sedgwick blows up Metropolis’ City Hall. Humbling Superman, however, is not sufficient. Using a newly invented computer and his knowledge of behavioral engineering, Dr. Sedgwick wants Superman dead. And to accomplish this, he has devised a plan so evil, so nasty, so devilishly clever that the world will have to finally recognize that he, Dr. Sedgwick, is, indeed, a great scientist. At the Planet, Max has similar feelings toward the Man of Steel. In his column he tears his rival apart with obvious relish and gloats over Superman’s evident inability to protect City Hall, thinking that his insidious remarks will eventually prompt his readers to turn away from the strongman – So Long, Big Guy. Max’s attacks and the Doctor’s experimental tampering with his psyche have begun to take effect: Superman questions the very tenets of his life as a Saviour of Humanity – The Strongest Man In The World. Sydney, now aware of her boss’ terrible vanity, tells him so in no uncertain Terms (Ooh, Do You Love You!), but Max is too infatuated with himself to listen. Knowing that the Professor shares his hatred of Superman, he forms an uneasy alliance with Sedgwick – You’ve Got What I Need. To achieve their common goal, Max and Sedgwick have Lois abducted by an acrobatic team, the Lings, and brought to a power station where they set up a trap for Superman. Is it the end of the strongest man in the world? Fade to Lois who gamely accepts her fate, knowing that her knight in a scarlet cape will soon come to save her – I’m Not Finished Yet. As if on cue, Superman arrives, fighting like the devil in a mad ballet that sends his opponents flying in all directions – Pow! Bam! Zonk!. Sedgwick inadvertently electrocutes himself, simultaneously discovering electricity and what not to do with it. Lois is safe, but before she has a chance to tell Superman how much she appreciates what he’s done for her, off he hurries, “up, up and away!,” allegedly to stop a dangerous missile headed for Metropolis.

Credits

Superman / Clark Kent: Bob Holiday Max Mencken: Jack Cassidy Lois Lane: Patricia Marand Perry White: Eric Mason Sydney: Linda Lavin Dr. Abner Sedgwick: Michael O’Sullivan Jim Morgan: Don Chastain Father Ling: Jerry Fujikawa Dong Ling: Bill Starr Tal Ling: Murphy James Fan Po Ling: Juleste Salve Ming Foo Ling: Michael Gentry Joe Ling: Joseph Gentry with (in alphabetical order): Michelle Barry, Lori Browne, George Bunt, Gay Edmond, Dallas Edmunds, Eugene Edwards, Tina Faye, Les Freed, Haruki Fujimoto, Bick Goss, John Grigas, Mara Landi, Marilyn Mason, Dick Miller, Jayme Mylroie, April Nevins, Judy Newman, Dal Richards, Bob Scherkenbach, Roy Smith, John Smolko