Wednesday, September 7, 2011

NB of the Week

Action Comics #1 - Superman Versus the City of Tomorrow
Last week started off the "The New 52" with Justice League and while I felt that issue was way too much set-up for my liking, this issue really started off the new universe with a bang.
(And in case you aren't following it, DC is relaunching everything new, some things staying pretty close to the last run, most things changing and taking new approaches. Biggest change is that super-heroes have only been around for about five years and that was mostly started by Batman forming the League. Justice League and Action Comics are the only two that take place in the past.)
Very first page we are given a new Superman (one that has been said to be more Kryptonian than human because both Ma and Pa Kent died when he was a child). As Supes flies onto a nice balcony with men in suits, his first words spoken are,
"Rats. Rats with money. and rats with guns. I'm your worst nightmare."
As police race to the room, they arrive to find Supes holding a man over his head while he stands in the balcony's railing.
"I'll put him down.. Just as soon as he makes a full confession. To someone who still believes the law works the same for the rich and poor alike. Because that ain't Superman."
Through some intimidation and force, he ends up getting his confession and taking off. We then see that General Lane and Lex Luthor are scheming to get this Superman under control. They begin staging "accidents" to draw him out and try to trap him. The last one being an atempt to blow a train up. A train that Clark's good friend Jimmy Olsen and his work pal Lois Lane are on, following a scoop. We get the definition of his "more powerful than a speeding locomotive" attribute as Supes come swooping in, in front of the train, trying to stop it with all his might (interesting fact, Luthor makes reference to Superman becoming more powerful and getting new powers as things move along). Anyway, After pinning Supes to a wall, exhausted and passed out now, Luthor leaves us with great, final words.
"The Brown Tree Snake, introduced to the US territory of Guam right after World War Two, caused dozens of indigenous birds and reptile species to become extinct. The Cane Toad, sent to Australia as a pest control agent, decimated local biodiversity. Non-native strains will destroy entire ecologies, given the opportunity. Our planet is playing host to a powerful and parasitic alien organism masquerading -- somewhat ineptly, I have to say -- as a human being. We have to stop it but ordinary bullets don't work. We've tried mortar shells and even they barely slow it down. But I aim the world's biggest bullet at it's head with the help of a very disgruntled businessman...
You wanted Superman, General Lane. Dead or alive. Behold. I give you Superman."
I fully admit to being a little biased over this one because of how much I like it's writer Grant Morrison, but good story is good story and this was good story. From jump street, we get that this is a different Superman, coming off as more Batman than Superman at times and I'm ok with that. This is before the new suit and the Justice League so a lot of authority figures don't trust or like Superman's methods but that's awesome. He still fights for the rights of all people and protects the innocent so what's the real differences? A few, madder faces. A little more anger towards the corrupt.
Who cares?
Morrison is off to a great start to what I'm hoping will continue to be a great book and I'm very excited to see what comes.
(and on another, interesting note, Flashpoint ended with a mysterious figure telling Wally that their world had been split into three long ago and it needed to become one again. I presume she meant the Wildstorm, Vertigo and DC universes. Turns out, she has been in the background of every book so far. Not sure who she is or what her plans are, but I like that DC is trying to make things tie together somehow. Only time will tell exactly how, though)

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