- Not to be confused with Soul Power.
"Solar Power" is the 11th episode of the second season of Superman: The Animated Series, and the 24th of the overall series.
Things are as normal in Stryker's Prison, but Edward Lytener walks toward a helicopter that has landed in the prison yard. A guard tries to stop him, but Lytener activates a device that enables him to become invisible and steals the helicopter. The guards try to track him, but the helicopter itself becomes invisible.
The weather turns stormy. At the Daily Planet, Clark, accidentally drops a pen under his desk. Unable to reach it, he looks around to make sure no one is watching, then lifts the desk. To his surprise, he feels his strength waning, and drops the desk, feeling a pain in his arm. Lois gives him a call and tells him she's heading for Stryker's to interview the guards. Clark warns her that Lytener may try to come after her again, but she brushes it off.
However, Lois finds herself in peril when the cable trolley she's riding stops, and a planted laser device starts cutting through the support. Lytener's also left a recording, saying that, this time, it isn't personal and Lois is just the bait.
Superman appears to save Lois but finds himself unable to handle the trolley's weight. As he struggles to hold it up, Lytener appears floating beside him in a specialized suit, now calling himself Luminus. He says that things will only get worse. Superman barely manages to save Lois, after which he tests his powers, and finds that they are still fading. The clouds part and much to Superman's surprise, the sky is red.
Scientists explain that Lytener has hijacked an array of LexCorp satellites and used them to project a force field over the Earth; the sun is still yellow, but only the red rays are getting through the field, effectively making a red sun like that of Krypton. Lois calls up Luthor and accuses him of being an accomplice to Lytener's plan but he calmly denies it.
In spite of Luthor's denial, Jimmy, Clark, and Lois follow up on the lead. Clark notices a signal in the sky, similar to the Bat-signal, and leaves. Superman finds Luminus waiting for him on a building. Superman attacks, but Luminus proves to be nothing more than a hologram. Several more appear, and though not solid, the holograms are capable of firing laser beams at him. Severely weakened, Superman still manages to find the real Luminus by spraying him with water from a broken pipe. Luminus is stunned, but manages to escape. Superman notices now that he's actually bleeding.
Lois and Jimmy follow a lead to an address, but find only a vacant lot. She sees a bird sitting down in midair, and realizes that there's still a building there, only it's invisible. The two enter, but are captured in a laser grid.
Elsewhere, Superman prepares to go into space to disable the satellites, but Luminus shows him an image of Lois and Jimmy tied up and gagged, and an invitation to his hideout. Superman has no choice but to go after his friends, he is told to follow the bouncing ball of light.
Inside the building, Superman finds a variety of fantasy settings, placed by holograms: an old-fashioned western bar, a train track, and a pirate ship at sea. Luminus attacks him throughout these settings, using holograms capable of delivering solid blows, through the use of laser fields.
Superman manages to open a hole in one of the holographic worlds, and makes his way into a real room, where Lois and Jimmy are tied up and gagged. Luminus attacks him with a laser gun. Superman is weak, but manages to grab a satellite dish and deflect the laser beam into destroying the satellite controls, also destroying half the building.
Luminus rises from the debris of the explosion and sees the force field is gone, letting in yellow sunlight. He attacks Superman with his bare fists, but he regains his powers far more quickly than he expected, and easily subdues Luminus. He hands him over to the police, and flies off into the bright blue sky and the big yellow sun.
- Luminus assures Lois that this time his attack is not personal. This refers to the episode "Target", in which Lytener repeatedly attempted to kill Lois for having spurned him.
Home video releases
- As Luminus, Lytener seems very much like other characters from the DC Universe such as Mirror Master, and Dr. Light.
- When Lois and Jimmy discover the invisible building by seeing a bird perched in midair, Lois says, "Look, up in the sky" to which Jimmy replies, "It's a bird"; an obvious homage to the beginning of the classic Superman introduction.
- The background music in the saloon hologram is used again in the Justice League Unlimited episode "The Once and Future Thing Part One: Weird Western Tales".
- The trainyard hologram is the same that was featured in the Batman: The Animated Series episode "It's Never Too Late".
|Tim Daly||Superman/Clark Kent|
|Dana Delany||Lois Lane|
|David Kaufman||Jimmy Olsen|
|Clancy Brown||Lex Luthor|
|Victor Brandt||Professor Hamilton|
|Castulo Guerra||NASA Spokesperson|
|Robert Hays||Edward Lytener/Luminus|
Luminus: See you soon... Even if you don't see me.
(On the phone)
Luminus: Getting weaker, I see. You must be at—what? Half strength by now?
Superman: And how are holograms suppose to kill me?
Lois: Look! Up in the sky!
Lois: If you had an invisible door, would you bother to lock it?
Luminus: Get those lights out of my eyes!