Rogol Zaar has been vanquished, the fortress destroyed, Lois and Jon have gone to parts unknown, it’s a new dawn for the Man of Steel. The world will always need saving, and Superman will always be there.
Title: Superman #1
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Pencils: Ivan Reis
Inks: Joe Prado
Colors: Alex Sinclair
Letters: Josh Reed
Publisher: DC Comics
What You Need to Know:
Following the events of Man of Steel, Superman is alone, without a Fortress of Solitude, and lacking direction. The first step in a new series has him overcoming the events of the old series for a fresh start.
What You Need to Know:
We open on Superman roaming across the galaxy, looking for Jon and Lois. (the communicator Jor-el gave him was broken in the fight with Rogol Zaar) He comes across an invasion force from everyone’s favorite 80’s alien invasion event, (hint: it’s literally titled Invasion) foiling their efforts in seconds, he realizes the Earth is somewhat defenseless without him, and decides Lois and Jon will contact him when they can. He heads home.
Once home he is haunted by happy memories of his family, no room in his house is free from them, he heads north, to his other home, former home anyway. The Justice League meets him there and offers there help, he declines and grabs a crystal from the wreckage.
If anybody else reads DC Nation they’ll know the location of the new fortress, but I’ll leave it for folks who don’t to discover, the new location and look are killer, Ivan Reis is so incredibly talented, I can’t wait to see inside. Fingers crossed for a silver age style “tour of the fortress” page with all the stuff marked, I’ve always liked those.
Once Superman makes it back to the city he is telepathically contacted by my favorite Martian, of the Manhunter variety. J’onn expresses sorrow at the revalations about Kryptons fate revealed by Rogol Zaar, and drops a bit of a bombshell on Superman, as well as letting him know he isn’t alone.
I’ll leave the review there for now, as the end of the issue is a bit of a big moment. Read this issue for yourself today!
What Just Happened? (minor spoilers)
First issue of Bendis’ main Superman series has me liking some things a lot and thinking some things are a bit off. When the Dominators invaded the Earth before it took a lot to stop them, Superman turns them away in less than a minute. I also feel like as much as he is a man of the people it felt a bit out of character for Superman to almost immediately give up looking for Lois and Jon. I love the new Fortress, which does seem to have offended some purists but I’m willing to give change a chance in this case, just because something has been a certain way for 60 years doesn’t mean it can’t change, and sometimes it means it should. It does seem a bit like they just ticked off boxes of things that haven’t happened in Superman recently, in an effort to make 6 non necessarily related scenes into a singular story.
I did think the sequence with him missing his family was great, I know if my family left for an extended period of time I would be sad without them, so the scene is very relatable. Likewise the couple panels where Clark is writing up yet another puff piece about himself and deleting it made me smile, it’s always been a bit funny the way he kind of talks himself up sometimes.
I love love love that Martian Manhunter is back and has made cameos in several books already, I’m glad he’s getting some facetime, he’s been especially interesting in Justice League, and also showed up in Detective Comics recently. That said I feel like the content of their conversation was extremely out of character for him. Enough so I’m curious if it’s really him.
Of course, Bendis being Bendis he can never seem to resist doing his weird Bendis dialogue thing he does. “The phantom zone? the kryptonian phantom zone? the phantom zone full fo criminals? it’s the phantom zone! the phantom zone!” a bit cringey but whatever.
The pencil work by Ivan Reis is fantastic as always, the new Fortress in particular is amazing in design and I can’t wait to see the interior.
I feel like this issue was a slight step down from the Man of Steel miniseries, although as I said I liked more than I didn’t and overall it was pretty good. A good starting point for new fans, and a different take for old ones.
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