SYNOPSIS: Superman brings Lois to the Fortress of Solitude for a private interview. Meanwhile, the Russians launch their first assault with their mighty Metallo in hopes of drawing the Man of Steel out into the open. Witness as the power of the people breaks Superman!
After an entertaining first issue, Venditti creates a feeling of deja vu as Superman flies Lois Lane to the Fortress of Solitude for the first time…as far as she knows. There’s a bit of awkwardness to the scene, allowing Superman to feel more emotionally vulnerable and relatable to the reader. This feels like the human side of Clark peeking out from the more confident Kryptonian. Much like Batman, there is often the debate on which identity is “the real one”. Here, in the privacy of the Fortress of Solitude, as Lois talks to his parents, I feel we see his true self.
And Lois! Venditti has got the voice of Margot Kidder’s Lois Lane down. Her exuberance, the way she bombards with questions, and her lovestruck frustration. It’s so easy to hear Kidder’s voice as one reads.
I was happy to see Superman introduce Lois to the various bottled cities from the last arc, particularly Kandor with Jor-El and Lara. It’s nice to see the world-building and continuity and that Superman has a set of parents to turn to again, allowing him to learn about his heritage. On the world-building side, I think it’s a safe bet that “Highball” the pilot seen aiding Superman, is Hal Jordan, future Green Lantern. It would be something if Venditti starts adding other DC heroes to this universe, unencumbered by special effects and casting budgets!
In true Superman fashion, his plans to reveal his identity to Lois (again) get scuppered by calls for help, leading to the first confrontation between Metallo and the Man of Steel. The issue starts to lose me here. Not that it’s bad, by any stretch, but the scene takes up half the book and the pacing makes it go by so fast that I felt there wasn’t much substance by the end.
The issue looks great. There’s a moment or two where I didn’t see the likenesses as spot on, but overall, I felt the characters looked enough like Reeve and Kidder. The body mannerisms by Guidry are pitch-perfect and I love how amused his Superman can look. The action felt padded out, but looked good.
While I enjoyed this comic, it was over far too quickly for me. I would’ve liked to have seen more of Lois’ interview with the Els for starters or more happening on the page during the fight. Your mileage may vary, but the great moments at the beginning felt far too brief, giving way to a one-sided fight that was dramatic, but took no time at all to read. – Javier E. Trujillo