Review – Superman: Action Comics #1026 – Metropolis in the Balance

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Action Comics #1026 variant cover, via DC Comics.

Superman: Action Comics #1026 – Brian Michael Bendis, Writer; John Romita Jr, Penciller; Klaus Janson, Inker; Brad Anderson, Colorist

Ray – 8/10

Ray: As we head into the final act of Bendis’ dual Superman runs, the Super-family may be up against their biggest threat yet—while Lois Lane deals with her own challenge much closer to Earth. When we left off, a mysterious entity working with the Invisible Mafia descended, sucking the power out of Conner Kent and seemingly killing him. John Romita Jr’s art on this title has been very different from the way the Supers are portrayed in other books, but he’s perfect to depict the supernatural beings attacking in this story—his angular, line-heavy art gives them a genuinely surreal vibe. The identity of this mysterious being is kept a secret until the end, but a name dropped in the early pages makes it kind of obvious who it’s likely to be. Conner’s fate also isn’t much of a mystery—they didn’t bring him back from limbo just to kill him again—but it is great to see the Supers working together as a family for the first time in a while. More of this, please.

Unleashed power. Via DC Comics.

The eventual resolution of the big fight is clever, but there’s no time to celebrate as the sadistic Red Cloud wants her own shot at the weakened Superman. Meanwhile, her partner in crime Leone is confronting Lois Lane at the Daily Planet, and she has her own cards to play—accusing Lois of being an infiltrator from another dimension, which may actually be true depending on how you interpret the events of Superman Beyond. That emphasizes one of the problems of this run—Bendis is working in a lot, and some of it is frankly nonsense. Superman’s dealt with some bizarre storylines over the last decades, and Bendis is treating them all as strange flourishes on a linear history similar to the way Morrison does with Green Lantern or Batman. It’s an acquired taste, and so much information has been dropped that it’s hard to see how it all gets resolved in two more months of story. Entertaining, but a lot of unanswered questions.

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1 thought on “Review – Superman: Action Comics #1026 – Metropolis in the Balance

  1. Hi , I picked up Action # 1026 and I have to say that my copy looks terrible. The art work looks bad and everything is very very dark. Like the printer used too much ink. The story in itself is not bad , but the choice to have some panels upside down or or double vertical splash page, just doesn’t work for me. No character looks like they should normally look, there’s no consistency. The paper that DC is using also does not help, it’s terrible for a $4.00 book. At least with the Batman books the art is consistent. I’m sad to say that Romita Jr. just is not the guy to be doing Superman , just like in the New52. I feel like taking my book back to my LCS and just give it back to him to return as damaged . Can’t wait till Bendis is done with Superman and Romita is off the books too. Romita was good on other characters , but Superman is not one of them. The art work distracts too much from the story.

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