Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Action Comics #2

Poor Clark is strapped down for a lot of this issue, so he doesn't get to leap and bound around the pages like he did in issue one. And since the lead character spends most of the issue in a chair, we naturally get to spend a lot more time with other characters as Grant Morrison re-imagines Superman's supporting cast.

Lex Luthor gets a lot of face time. I like the way he's equally parts cruel and paranoid about Superman. He clearly enjoys torturing Supes, but at the same time I think he's actually afraid of the reasons Superman came to Earth. Seeing John Henry Irons is fun; I hope there will be a Steel in the DCnU.

The Lanes get some pages too (most of which are drawn by Brent Anderson, I think). Lois is still pretty awesome, she's manipulative and clever, and clearly she usually accomplishes her goals. It seems she still has some ties to John Corben, the once and future Metallo (who gets his own seeds planted here). I think we're also getting our first glimpse of Brainiac on the last page too.

It's odd, but as all those classic elements start to show up, I can't help but lose interest a bit. Last month I felt like I was experiencing some sort of crazy, new Superman. A high-powered young man out to right the world's wrongs without spending too long thinking about it. When Brainiac, Luthor, and Metallo start showing up, I feel like I'm seeing the same old Superman, just with different creators. How is this different than Geoff John's recent Secret Origin mini?

Rags Morales' art is inspired once again, and I do like Brent Anderson's work, but together they are not such a great mix. Especially when opposite pages have different artists. Rags' kinetic Superman is escaping from prison, and suddenly there is a more bulked-up Supes standing in the elevator surprising Lois. It doesn't quite work.

I should mention that this comic is short. I think it has 20 pages of story, a few pages of admittedly interesting back-material, and the price is $3.99. I'm afraid that's not going to cut it for me.


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