Written by Grant Morrison
Artwork by Andy Kubert and John Dell
In the six issues so far released for Action Comics, Grant Morrison’s work has been exceptional. Issue #5’s weird – and seemingly unprovoked – jaunt through the past being the exception, Morrison has really been stepping it up for one of DC’s most iconic titles.
In this sixth issue, we find our titular hero still sifting through the time-travelling fudge-ups that have led to the involvement of the Legion of Super-Heroes. Morrison takes a few panels to pound in the idea that superheroes only arrived half a decade ago. “Down there, right now, the word superhero has just come into existence,” explains Superman to the surprise of no one. I get that DC is trying to drive home the structural integrity of it’s new universe, but making Superman come out and literally tell the reader what’s going on? That’s a bit much, even for Morrison.
Fortunately, the rest of the issue is spent giving us a sort of “crash course” in new-Superman’s character history. We get to see the Legion’s visit to a teenage Clark Kent kept in-continuity, which was a good choice considering DC has two Legion-based titles on the ‘New 52’ roster. This is the first we’ve seen of ‘New 52’ Lana Lang and Pete Ross, as well as a great few pages where Clark gives his childhood farm to a family in need. Apparently, the Kent’s are dead by the time Clark goes to Metropolis. And while the purpose of all these flashbacks and time travel gets somewhat lost in a convoluted plot (from Grant Morrison?!?! REALLY???), the main sentiment is conveyed, leaving readers with a satisfying dose of Superman mythos.
Andy Kubert and John Dell’s art is fantastic. The Kubert family is known for bringing excellent work to the table and Andy’s work in Action Comics is no different. Full of emotion, believable body movement and that near-unexplainable ‘comic book feel’, Kubert’s art is a good match with the ‘New 52’s younger iteration of the Man of Steel.
Overall, I was much more impressed with this issue than the last. Simply put, I’m excited to read the next issue, which is one of the main goals a single issue should achieve.