Bizarre (& Unauthorised) Turkish SUPERMAN Films - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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Bizarre (& Unauthorised) Turkish SUPERMAN Films

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it an unlicensed rip-off? Yes it is!

In the same way that many foreign films have been made that featured Batman but without bothering to squire an official licence from DC Comics, not that they'd get it half the time based on the content (as we discovered here, here and here), the Dark Knight's stable mate from Krypton has seen his fare share of unofficial Superman features. So join us as we take to the skies, sort of, as we look back on a rather bizarre collection of knock-off Superman movies.

The Philippines proved a rich source for unofficial Batman films, but it's Turkey that gave Superman a variety of shady adventures, and despite the popularity of the character prior to any of these adventures, once the filming got underway the Turks seemed quite confused by Superman's powers.

First up is 1967s Kilink Istanbul'da, or Kilink In Instanbul.

The chap in the skeleton outfit is Kilink, an anti-hero who is also a rip-off of another character featured in the Italian photo-novel Kriminal. A trio of Kilink films were produced (I use that word in the loosest possible term) charting his journey to redemption, with the first of the two films of the series featuring Superman.

In the films, the evil skeletal criminal called Kilink is created by a scientist, who is then killed by Kilink. The scientist's son, wanting revenge, meets a wizard who offers him superpowers, so that he might get revenge. The powers he gets include: The strength of Hercules, the speed of Mercury, et cetra. He transforms into Superman by saying a magic word: "Shajam!"...

Yeah, "Shajam!". I'm guessing someone got confused with DC's Captain Marvel and his magic transformation word, "Shazam!"

Throughout the Kilink films, Superman is referred to repeatedly as The Flying Man, and has a markedly different costume from the Superman we know. he wears a mask, has striped underwear rather than solid red, maybe because his costume is primarily red.

The first sequel arrived the same year, titled Kilink uçan adama karsi, it picks up right where the first installment left off, with Superman locating Kilink's hideout on a remote island where his fiancé and her father are being held behind bars.

Turkey grounded Superman for its next unofficial take, this time in the form of Süper Adam.

The first of three films arrived in 1971 with Süper adam Istanbul'da (Super Adam in Istanbul - he really liked the place, perhaps it was the naked women on the poster?). Initially, this take on Superman carries a gun to enforce his brand of justice, but for the 1972 sequel, Süper Adam Kadınlar Arasında (Superman among the Women), he discards the gun as ladies are present! It's all very sexist 1970s stuff here and the only things Super Adam really has in common with Superman are his super strength and the “S” on his chest. The third and final movie in this series, also arriving in 1972, introduced Super Adam's secret identity, American secret agent Clark Kent. He can't fly but he's so enamored with Istanbul (and its ladies) that he takes a plane from the good old U.S.of.A. to Turkey, dishes out some justice (and loving) and then flies home coach.

Next up we have Demir Yumruk: Devler Geliyor which features sort of a Superman/Batman hybrid character

This 1973 Turkish film translates as Iron Fist: The Giants Are Coming, and it a weird hybrid of superheroes, including a giant Super-Batman, a wheelchaired transvestite super-villain called Fumanchu, bikini clad assassins, hook-for-hand gangsters plus more! Clearly director Tunç Basaran just couldn't make up his mind which direction to go so he threw everything at the screen, and at the hero's costume...

Moving on, before the 1970s were out Turkey would have you believe that a man could fly...

...sort of.

Right, you're going to need to pay attention here. 1979's The Return Of Superman, clearly hastily put together to cash in on the Richard Donner film, features the main character of.... wait for it.... Tayfun. What? You thought it would be Clark Kent or Superman? Oh no! That would be far too easy. And just to make it even more confusing, Tayfun is played by an actor called Tayfun.

Rip-off messed-up plot time... After graduating school and looking to become a journalist, Tayfun's Earth father drops the not inconsiderable bomb shell that he found Tayfun as a baby in a rocket that crashed in their garden. Using a stick of, what is meant to be Kryptonite, Tayfun, for reasons, throws it into a nearby cave, only to then feel drawn by its mysterious powers.

After entering his Cave of Solitude, Tayfun meets his father, named Superman, last of the Supermen, from the dead planet Krypton, who tells Tayfun he too is a Superman. He goes on to say that he'll soon be bestowed the Strength of Hercules, the speed off Mercury, etc, and will basically once again be Shazam, rather than Superman, just like in the Kilink films.

The flying was achieved through a doll on a string against a piece of paper which had the backdrop of Istanbul projected on it. Oh, Superman loves that place so much!

Probably the most noteworthy thing about The Return Of Superman is that it ends with Tayfun deciding he'd like to return home to Krypton, so he leaves Earth behind. Technically you could make an argument for this being the true prequel to 2006's Superman Returns, being that the official Man of Steel does indeed return from Krypton to Earth.

Bringing things up to date with our final Turkish Superman film, and we have 2012's SüperTürk.

Super Turk opens with a planet in a galaxy far from the earth about to disappear. Two of the babies on this planet are sent to our world via special capsules. One of them lands in 1960s America (you know that story), the other lands in Turkey. Surprisingly, geven his penchant for the place, he doesn't make landfall in Istanbul, rather a small town named Kucukkoy.

Crashing in a poor farmer's garden, he and his wife raise the child as their own. Naming him Ekber they attempt to keep his powers secret, because young Ekber can fly! He also has both laser and x-ray vision, ice breath, and super hearing.

Destiny calls when Ekber's childhood love Zeynep moves to Istanbul. Come on, you knew he'd be making his way there, surely?

This lighthearted spin on Superman's mythology stars Tamer Karadagli as the middle aged Ekber and is at least closer to the real Superman than any of the other Turkish knock-offs. It's still completely bizarre and unauthorised though.

Next time, we widen the search for other bizarre and unauthorised Superman films from around the world.

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