I will be that guy who says it, while I understand that comics goes through changes, I am not wholly happy with the fact that in comics continuum, Jor-El still lives. That’s kind of beside the point with the Man of Steel comic currently being written by Brian Michael Bendis.
Of course picking up where it left off, there are still 3 recurring storylines: The mysterious fires plaguing Superman’s “hometown” (which I thought was Metropolis…go back to issue #3) that he and Batman were investigating, Jor-El coming to take Jon with him to teach him his Kryptonian heritage and the fight with Doomsday lite (oops…I mean Rogol Zaar) who has come to do a Kryptonian purge.
Reading these past few issues, I feel as if all of this probably could have been condensed into 1 or 2 issues, and did not need to be weekly. The way these storylines are running, I am really hoping that they resolve quickly as so far, as their links to one another make no sense. These past issues feel uninspired with rehashed battles that we have seen before, and it all felt underwhelming. Superman being punched to the moon? Been there, done that, and did a movie about it. There is a lot of action and energy, but it feels so unfocused and out of place. The only reason why I would consider sticking around for issue 6 is just to see how it ends. So far, what I have seen of this book gives me serious revelations about what will happen once Bendis gets his hands on Superman proper. This run has been about as forgettable as it could be. The other things that hurt this book are the stream of thought word balloons that sometimes one may have to read twice to keep up with some of the jarring transitions of the story. It feels as if this story wanted to be the big summer blockbuster, but it really falls short with the controlled chaos of the story telling.
As far as the art, considering that multiple artists worked on this book, it was very kinetic and fluid. I was pretty happy with the direction the art went with its gritty interpretation of Bendis’ writing. This time around though, good art can’t save a bland story — and if you are still on board with this book, the art is really the only thing about it.
Rogol Zaar does nothing for this book. The plotlines and mysteries do nothing to keep the story interesting. For what it was worth, it would have been easier just to trot doomsday out for another go at it, or make this a one shot comic than try to tide fans over a few months until the full-fledged Superman issues come out. If you made it this far, finish it and pray that it gets better. If you just picked this up and are confused,
wait and get the trade. pass on this book.
1 Doomsday wannabe out of 5