‘Superman & Lois’ battles two major DC villains this season: the Mary Sue

Superman & Lois Season 3 premiered on March 14, 2023, and wasted no time introducing two of the season’s biggest villains. Since the series premiered in 2021, it has intrigued viewers with its portrayal of Clark Kent’s (Tyler Hoechlin) experience as a father and its exploration of the various DC villains who tend to push the hero away from the his family life. So far, the series has featured the likes of Morgan Edge (Adam Rayner), John Henry Irons (Wolé Parks) and Ally Allston (Rya Kihlstedt).

In the first episode of Season 3, “Closer,” the show introduced DC Comics villain Onomatopoeia and also brought back Atom Man (Paul Lazenby). It’s unclear whether Atom Man will continue to play a prominent role in Season 3, but the first episode seemed to establish Onomatopoeia as a formidable threat. The actor behind Onomatopoeia is still unknown, but as the series progresses, fans anticipate a deep dive into the mysterious DC character. However, the episode also established that onomatopoeia doesn’t work alone.

In the final scene, Onomatopoeia is revealed to be involved with Bruno Mannheim (Chad L. Coleman) and Mannheim’s Intergang.

Who is Bruno Mannheim from Superman and Lois?

David Ramsey as John Diggle in Superman & Lois(The CW)

While “Closer” was the first time Superman & Lois viewers saw Mannheim, it’s not the first time they’ve heard about him. His appearance in the series was first teased in Season 2 Episode 15, “Waiting for Superman”. In the episode, a new incarnation of John Diggle (David Ramsey) visits Irons and asks him about Mannheim, the leader of Intergang who has quite an extensive list of criminal activities to his name. Irons has never heard of Mannheim before and is confused as to why Diggle approaches him to discuss the band leader. That’s when Diggle explains that Mannheim killed the Irons’ doppelganger from this world, and he wants to find out why.

After dropping the name in Season 1, it was no surprise that the Season 3 premiere briefly put a face to the nefarious foe’s name. Unfortunately, not much is known about Mannheim yet, as he only appeared at the end of the episode. However, he doesn’t even have to use his voice to get his minions and Onomatopoeia to do his bidding, illustrating just how much power he has. Meanwhile, the actor playing him has plenty of experience playing a DC villain; Chad L. Coleman played Tobias Church in Season 5 of Arrow Mannheim’s character will be quite unique, but as he is a remarkable strategist and manipulator with many layers to his persona.

Who is Bruno Mannheim in DC Comics?

Bruno “Ugly” Mannheim was first introduced to DC Comics in 1971 in Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen #139. He is the son and successor of Moxie Mannheim, who founded Intergang under the supervision of Morgan Edge. Mannheim established Intergang as a prominent crime syndicate and became noted for unleashing gruesome attacks on heroes like Guardian. He also used manipulation tactics to try to discredit and defame Clark Kent and Lois Lane.

In later editions of DC Comics, he was pretty much left out of the ending after stating that Darkseid had been reborn. He turned Intergang into a cult that literally worshiped crime and lived by the Crime Bible, which was supposedly made from the stone Cain used to kill his brother Abel in the biblical book of Genesis. Mannheim’s crimes became even more brutal at this time, and even took the form of cannibalism and human sacrifice. Anyone who refused to be a part of Intergang would be quickly killed, while every superhero he could get his hands on was also brutally killed, increasing the fear factor of Mannheim and his gang.

Mannheim’s character has varied somewhat due to various relaunches in the DC Comics universe. At times, he was the most sophisticated mastermind Superman and Lois could be shaping, while at other times, he was one of the most brutal and deranged gang leaders in the DC Universe. Only time will tell what iteration the program will eventually become.

(featured image: The CW)

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