Up in the Iowa sky, it's a bird, it's a wind turbine, it's... two men who played Superman, and were born right here in the Hawkeye State. While this may seem like an exciting thing for any Iowa superhero fan to hang their hat on, there's a sad twist that involves the work of both of these actors.

First off, the first actor most consider having donned the giant "S", Woolstock, Iowa native George Reeves. George was not related to Christopher Reeve who'd later launch Superman's popularity into orbit when he played the Man of Steel in the late 70s-80s. In fact, his real name was George Keefer Brewer according to Wikipedia.

 George Reeves

The story of Reeves' Superman doesn't start tragic. Not at all. In the early 1950s, Reeves scored the role of Superman for the TV show Adventures of Superman, which ran until 1958, a total of 6 seasons.

Reeves was initially skeptical feeling a TV show was a huge step down from being a film actor. At the time, television stars weren't viewed as nearly as famous as movie stars. Despite this, the show was successful and Reeves enjoyed the character.

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Reeves enjoyed being a role model and quit smoking. Unfortunately, he grew to dislike the role and wanted to move on. Sadly, he never did. Tragedy struck during the wee hours of June 16, 1959. Reeves allegedly committed suicide.

His death would be the subject of much discussion and controversy, as some felt he was murdered, or that his death was simply an accident. A 2006 film called "Hollywoodland" explores Reeves's death, and the aftermath.

George Reeves As Superman
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The other Iowa native to don the red cape and tights was Brandon Routh.

Brandon Routh

Routh was born in Des Moines, Iowa, and went to the University of Iowa. Routh began acting in 1999. In 2006 he landed the role of Superman for the film "Superman Returns". An inspirational sequel to the Christopher Reeve-era Superman, the film was viewed by many as a flop, and Routh would never play the role again.

Routh's life since Superman has not been as fruitful as others who've played the role, but the Iowa native is still alive and well, and still acting.

2019 Comic-Con International - "Arrow" Special Video Presentation And Q&A
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Personally, I enjoyed "Superman Returns" and feel it's a nice compliment to the Superman movies I grew up with. But, that's perhaps just my opinion.

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