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Meet the Real-Life Inspiration for Lois Lane

“Joanne Siegel was Lois Lane,” says comic book authorBrad Ricca.

Mike Olszewski, president of The Siegel and Shuster Society, shares the funny story behind Joanne Siegel — then Joanne Kovacs – first meeting with Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster in this mini-documentary from Robert Kirkman‘s Secret History of Comics.

As a young woman, Joanne Kovacs answered an ad in a paper looking for a model — and when she arrived, was surprised to be greeted by two teenagers: Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. “She didn’t realize what she was getting into,” says Olszewski. Adds Ricca: “Joe didn’t know; he hadn’t been trained in art. They were going to put a female lead in Superman and he wanted to learn how to do it. And she became Lois.”

But even more than posing as the physical model for the iconic journalist, Joanne Kovacs became the heart of the character as well, with Joe and Jerry being inspired by her strong will and tenacity, which they mirrored in Lois Lane on the pages of Superman. “She was always Jerry’s champion,” recalls Mike Sangiacomo, reporter at The Cleveland Plain Dealer. “She was the one who would go in there to DC Comics and just say, ‘You’ve gotta give him a chance. What you did is not right.’ She forced their consciences open.”

Learn more about how Joanne Siegel shaped Lois Lane into a modern woman in this mini-documentary.

See the latest episode now on amc.com and AMC apps for mobile and devices.

Robert Kirkman’s Secret History of Comics airs Mondays 10/9c.  To get more exclusive extras, sign up for the Robert Kirkman’s Secret History of Comics Insiders Club.

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