Writer Greg Pak and artist Aaron Kuder are ready to shake up Superman and Action Comics in a big way with their brand new “Truth” story line.
Is it good?
Action Comics #41 (DC Comics)
Taking place sometime after Superman #41 and #42 according (kind of weird since neither books are out), Superman has lost his powers or is nowhere as strong as he used to be. With seemingly nowhere to go and his general reception from the public diminished, Superman begins traveling the country and heading back towards Metropolis. What will he find there?
Outside of the fact that I have no idea what is going on with this whole power loss situation (DC should have really launched Superman #41 first this month to provide actual context), I found this to be a very enjoyable issue. The story is about Superman trying to adjust to the loss of the lion’s share of his powers and his return to Metropolis, despite the problems brewing there when he first left. It’s quite engaging and Pak does a good job showing Superman reflecting on what he has lost, but not letting it really get him down too much; instead, he focuses on being positive and looking on the bright side of things, while still trying to reach out to help people. Seriously, after seeing that sneak peek for the comic, you think he would be a bigger wreck or something, but that’s not the case at all. Despite everything that has happened to him and how he looks, this is still very much Superman.
Later, Superman would learn the nasty effects of eating a gas station burrito.
Pak’s writing on the book is enjoyable. The characterization is solid and well handled and the new direction for Superman is intriguing. There are plenty of interesting scenes with him in this issue, especially regarding his reaction to the “Kentville.” The villains introduced so far are kind of stock a-holes and shadowy government types and the’re really not that compelling or all that memorable (probably the weakest point of the comic). The dialogue and narration are pretty well handled, except for one line that felt a bit too silly and odd for me — Superman saying “hell yeah” felt rather jarring. (Editor’s Note: We monitored J.R.’s blood pressure to make sure he didn’t have an episode due to Superman’s brazen language.) Ultimately, this was a fine comic and there’s really not much to say else about the writing or story. It’s just really good and I feel very disappointed in myself for not coming back to this series sooner.
Aaron Kuder continues with art duty and is still doing a pretty good job. The characters are drawn well and full of expression. I mean, sure, some of the mouths look incredibly huge in areas, but that’s kind of it. The layouts are constructed well and very easy to follow, allowing for a good sense of motion and kinetic energy throughout the issue. Though there’s not much in the way of action, but what is there does look nice (though the punches thrown don’t often look like they connect with their targets). The colors are nice as well, with no real problems at all. Just a fine looking book from start to finish.
That’s nice and all, but let’s see you do that with SIX kids now!
Is It Good?
Action Comics #41 is a great start for this new storyline (sort of, since we still don’t have the issues that come before this that’ll explain… well everything). The story is enjoyable, the characterization is great, and the writing and artwork are terrific. There are minor grievances here and there and I’m sure not everyone will be keen on this new direction for Superman (can’t really blame them), but I would be lying to myself if I did not fully recommend checking this out. This issue was a lot of fun and I really do look forward to seeing where the future lies.