SYNOPSIS: Superman and Metallo battle it out in Russia! Can Superman appeal to Metallo’s humanity and put an end to the bloodshed, or will Metallo finally crush the Man of Steel beneath his boot?

Rocky IV, I mean, Superman ‘78: The Metal Curtain, concludes with this issue! Can the Man of Steel do his best impression of the Italian Stallion to unite two groups of people separated by an ideology?


Because he’s Superman.

 Venditti wastes no time getting to the action in the story, quickly showing the reactions of The Daily Planet staff before launching into the title bout in Moscow. Like prior issues, this entry is paced at breakneck speed; understandable given that it’s a big fight. What matters are the interactions during the battle, and Venditti makes them count, showing the Man of Steel winning over the people who should be against him.

Guidry is no Gary Frank when it comes to the art, meaning the likeness to Christopher Reeve isn’t as apparent as it has been under others’ pencils. Still, I really appreciate the power his Superman conveys, along with the character’s gentleness. The easy smile he gives a small child he rescues says it all.

Despite some great moments, I still feel like it was wrapped up all too quickly, that more could have been brought to the table. Lex and the Els were noticeably absent. The Planet staff didn’t have much to do beyond fret and worry about the scoop they weren’t getting. However, Superman was true to form, his optimism and goodness transforming the hearts of those around him, bringing out and underlining our common humanity.

While the first movie felt like a big blockbuster, a Superman II, if you will, The Metal Curtain, came off as its more modestly budgeted younger sibling, a Superman IV, to continue the comparison. Its heart is in the right place, but it doesn’t have quite the same grandeur and scope. Still, if the Christopher Reeve interpretation of Superman is your jam, I would recommend you check this title out because it is a good time, giving us a glimpse of adventures we could only see in our imaginations until now. Javier E. Trujillo



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Javier Trujillo
Javier E. Trujillo was a Batman fan long before the 1989 blockbuster opened on his 12th birthday. After following BATMAN-ON-FILM.COM -- the "Dad-Gum Original" -- since its inception, he started to write for BoF in 2019, covering Batman's 80th anniversary. He's a lover of all eras and aspects of The Dark Knight, but artist Jim Aparo will always be how he pictures him. When on the internet, odds are it's because he's talking about Batman or James Bond (or MAYBE Wally West). He resides in the "Live Music Capital of the World" (and also the genesis of Adam West's Bat-Boat), Austin, TX. You can follow him on Twitter @JaviTru or on Instagram @TheBondIsNotEnough.