I’ve read all of Gene Luen Yang’s comics, so it was a no-brainer that I would be reading his version of Superman. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy it. Actually, I’ve never really enjoyed a Superman comic, so this may be on me.
But before we get to the actual comic, a complaint. WTF, why is the DC comics universe so messed up??? I mean, it took me an hour after reading this to determine which version of Superman I was reading, where it was in the continuity, and how things had gotten to be the way they were. I mean, right away you’re thrown in and Lois doesn’t know Superman’s identity, but Jimmy Olsen does. Superman also has this weird flare power, and whenever he uses it, he’s human for a day after. Even with his powers, he’s different than the Superman I’m used to. He can’t fly, he just jumps. Anyway, superhero comics are an unholy mess. Just this taste of the DC universe (this is the New 52 I think?) is worse than even that Secret Wars thing Marvel had going on. Sigh. Standalone comics for me, thanks.
This actually opens up with a fun little issue written and drawn by John Romita, Jr. where the Justice League is testing out Superman’s new powers, but then when Yang takes over, it quickly transitions to a story involving Superman being blackmailed by a mysterious figure who threatens to release his secret identity as Clark Kent if Clark doesn’t do what he wants. He turns out to be the head of a mysterious syndicate that collects blackmail on practically everyone in the world. I mean, it was okay. I was really bothered by the characterization of Lois. Not sure if that was Yang’s idea or not, but it really rankled me when she SPOILER outed him as Superman. That’s a really fucking huge decision for her to just make for him, when clearly he knew the consequences and was choosing to take the punishment so that his identity would remain secret. It also seemed very dumb that just because everyone suddenly knew Superman’s identity, that all these dumbass villains would come out of the woodwork to take him on. I mean . . . he’s still Superman. The only tactical advantage there is the ability to threaten his loved ones, but then the idiots still have to take on Superman after that! Makes no sense! END SPOILERS
I could probably continue on with this series, but I only foresee frustration in my future so I will stop while I’m ahead, despite how much it pains me that I will have unread Gene Luen Yang books in my future.
Also, I really wasn’t a fan of the art.
[2.5 stars rounded up]