Man of Steel #1-6 covers by John Byrne, Dick Giordano & Tom Ziuko. 1986.
John had this to say about Man of Steel at his forum 10/29/2013.
One of the worst thing to happen in comics in the last thirty years or so was MAN OF STEEL. Not because there was necessarily anything inferior about the product per se, but because, pretty much all by itself, it created a MINDSET. Before MoS, writers, artists and editors picked up a new assignment and understood that their job was to continue from the point at which they arrived. After MoS, it became all about “reboots”.
At the time I accepted the Superman assignment, many DC staffers had only recently become enamored with desktop computers, and computer terms were flying around the Office. “Reboot” was one. I have wondered many a time since, if I had come to Superman as little as a year earlier, before everyone was in love with computers, would I have been allowed to do the “fix” as I wished — as a multi-issue in-continuity story that took Superman from where he was to where I thought he should be — instead of as a “reboot”.
If I had, perhaps comics would not be in quite the same mess they are today. (Tho, truth to tell, the poison was already seeping into DC veins, and from there into the rest of the industry. The poison was called CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS.)
Man of Steel Revisited
It’s fascinating to me that John Byrne would have this take on his own, in my opinion, disastrous influence on Superman, and consequently all of comic book-dom. As a lover of pre-Crisis DC, I am proud of him for pointing the finger of blame at exactly the right culprit: Crisis on Infinite Earths (and all of its hellspawns).
Post-Crisis DC has never been as fun or interesting as its predecessor, and DC Comics squandered the opportunity to bring its stable of classic characters into the era of contemporary comics along the only honorable path, i.e., through good story-telling and masterful art—and avoiding crass, commercial gimmickry.