Conclusion. The ever-increasing popularity of superheroes across all media during the past 25 years, a trend initially fueled by the 1978 movie "Superman," is examined. Also: the re-imagining of Batman in the "Dark Knight Returns" comic books of 1986; the sophisticated take on the genre of "Watchmen."
Part 2 of 3. The flawed superheroes that emerged in the 1960s, and the socially relevant stories they often found themselves in, are recalled in this look at the years 1959-77. Also: the introduction of black superheroes, such as Black Panther in 1966 and Luke Cage in 1972.
Part 1 of 3. The story of comic-book superheroes starts during the Depression and WWII years, when star-spangled heroes were in demand. The 1950s saw comic books come under government scrutiny, however, due to their popularity with kids. Though under attack, the industry survived and thrived thanks to the success of the "Adventures of Superman" TV series, which premiered in 1952. Liev Schreiber hosts and narrates.