The Oz Effect Part 4 (Action Comics #990 Review)


   The Man of Steel strives to save the world as it descends into chaos. Meanwhile, Oz reveals more of his plan to Jon,  Making Jon wonder if he is making the right choices in his life. Superman now has to come to terms that his son might be on Oz’s side, and will do what he must to protect Oz!


Writer: Dan Jurgens
Artist: Viktor Bogdanovic
Cover Artist: Nicholas Bradshaw
Colorist: Mike Spicer
Publisher: DC Comics

The Man of Steel strives to save the world as it descends into chaos. Meanwhile, Oz reveals more of his plan to Jon,  Making Jon wonder if he is making the right choices in his life. Superman now has to come to terms that his son might be on Oz’s side, and will do what he must to protect Oz!


What You Need to Know:

Oz has now revealed himself to Lois Lane and shortly after, Jon Kent. Oz took more of an interest in meeting Jon, and brought him to the Fortress of solitude where Oz showed Jon a glimpse of a new world called “The Bliss”. Oz tells Jon that it is a place where he wouldn’t have to hide his abilities and also important his family goes along. Superman has been dealing with the war in Logamba while the followers of Oz, like J.B.(suicide bomber) and Janet (mysterious follower),  cause problems there, Metropolis, and the rest of the world.


What You’ll Find Out:

Superman continues to attend to the war in Logamba. The rebels are now attacking the Logamban government. Superman stops their chemical gas from taking lives by twirling it into space. Soon after, he takes both leaders forcefully and brings them to a secure area to come to an agreement to end the war. Superman tries to come up with ideas to solve both Leaders’ problems, but both disagree.

In Metropolis, Lois uses Jimmy Olsen’s watch to get Superman because Jon is still missing. At the fortress, Jor-el shows Jon a hologram of the Bliss, unveiling the lands and beings with extraordinary talent. Some powers looked similar to Kryptonians. Jor-el goes on about Jon having to hide his true self to people and how Superman has to hide behind “Clark”, deriding how erroneous a life his son has lived. However, Jor-el tells Jon that Superman does wonderful by saving lives, but humans repay by violent actions. Jor-el restates that Jon and his family must leave to the Bliss and warns of a threat elsewhere that is deadly and unbeatable, a threat no one has ever seen or stands a chance against.

In Logamba, Superman gets every weapon around into one pile, shocking the leaders and heat visions the pile to flames. As he hears Jimmy’s watch, Superman leaves.

In Metropolis, Oz follower Janet is seen talking to Mr. Oz’s Anointed Ones. They are dressed in tactical gear with masks. Anointed leader says phase 2 must be initiated. They mean to unleash a deadly gas to destroy Metropolis. Superman blasts through unexpectedly! Superman recognizes The Anointed Ones are the people who tried to capture doomsday from Action Comics #962. The Oz followers reveal they are the ones who put humanity in the position to make bad decisions and show its true nature. Now confirming Oz is revolved around all the madness, Superman stops the Anointed Ones plan and heats the gas pipes just enough to where nothing can pass through.

Atop the Daily Planet, Superman finally gets to Lois and finds out Jon is missing. They both go over Oz’s involvement. Jor-el and Jon show up surprisingly. Jor-el reveals he took Doomsday, locked up Mxyptlk, and killed Metallo. Jor-el rehashes the looming danger line; right before Superman decides to advance against him but is protected when Jon is seen stopping Superman’s punch.



What Just Happened?

Superman has solved the Logamba problem for now by piling up all weapons, including guns and knives, by destroying them with his heat vision. I wonder if that was a jab at another “real-life” situation America is going through that Jurgens felt he needed to write in the Oz Effect series since the previous issues have been showing “real-life” situations being dealt with. I’m not against it, I thought it was funny. I also feel the way Superman twirled the chemical gas into space was inspired by Superman IV when he stopped tornadoes in a similar fashion, I am a sucker for the Chris-Reeve Nostalgia.

Now his problem is his son has taken Oz’s side for now. Jon has been hearing his grandfather out and at the same time, Jor-el is not lying. Though, Oz is definitely responsible for shaping things the way they are to be using the Anointed Ones. It has been a plan all along, and his main goal is to get Superman to go with him.

There is the threat that is mentioned by Jor-el. Who is it? What is it? Dr.Manhattan related? More is revealed, but not all.

I believe we also get treated to the first time Jon stops the might of Superman. Superman got angry with his father and looked to lay a mean ol’ hook to that pizza-faced kryptonian, but just as Supes punch is released, Jon yells “no!” and says to listen because they will all die. Very interesting to see where they go next with the father/son relationship(s).

The art was great, the ending panels happen to be my favorite way of putting a big conversation into a page. The lenticular cover is awesome but I found it misleading, as Jon and Jor-el did not go out and heat vision stuff. It could come to pass though, and that would be something. The variant, in my opinion, was better and depicts an evil-looking Jor-el with Jon by his side.


Rating: 8.7/10


Final Thought: Majority of Oz’s plan is revealed but we are left still wondering who or what the unstoppable force coming to destroy Earth is. It is mentioned that The Justice League can’t stop it? Intriguing. There is action and well-drawn art to get this issue by, even with the story slowly progressing to the finale. I am surprised, yet impressed, with the certain direction they are taking the characters to and I look forward to the next issue impatiently.


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