Review – Superman: Action Comics #1013: Thorny Roses

Comic Books DC This Week
Action Comics #1013 variant cover, via DC Comics.

Superman: Action Comics #1013 – Brian Michael Bendis, Writer; Szymon Kudranski, Artist; Brad Anderson, Colorist


Ray – 8/10

Ray: Superman: Action Comics is where Bendis shines most in the mainstream DCU, as he indulges his noir instincts (where his career began) to tell a story far more at home in Gotham or Bludhaven than the Metropolis we know.

Last issue introduced Rose and Thorn back to the underbelly of Metropolis, but now not one but two powerhouses from various events are roaming around. Not only is Leviathan making his offers and targeting anyone who resists, but now Lex Luthor’s drones are roaming around to upgrade anyone he deems worthy. In the opening segment of Action Comics #1013, Leone gets a visit from one of those drones and receives Luthor with her trademark charm before abandoning her current base for a more secure one.

Robinson Goode, meanwhile, is regaling Perry White with what she learned from Rose and Thorn last issue – starting with how Leviathan nearly killed Rose’s ultraviolent alter-ego. The fight scenes in this flashback are among the best of the series so far.

Superman does appear in this issue – a semi-rarity for this book, which focuses more on supporting characters and Clark Kent – when he faces off against a Leviathan soldier sent to assassinate Thorn and finds that he’s a terrified kid essentially locked into armor he can’t control. When Superman tries to open the armor, it becomes clearer how Leviathan’s power works – and asks the question where all those people who disappeared in Leviathan’s attacks actually went.

Robinson Goode, meanwhile, continues to play both sides of Metropolis against each other but her powers are quickly going out of control. A visit by Lex at the end of the issue provides her with a convenient upgrade – and us with our first look at her upgraded, true form. I’m not sure how well she works as a villain because her motivations are still very vague, but her power levels are impressive and I’m intrigued to see what she can do with her new upgrade. The real star here is those gritty fight scenes when Bendis unleashes Thorn.

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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

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