We conclude our series reacting to DC Comics’ relaunch announcements. After covering the Justice League, Green Lantern, Batman, Dark, Teen and Edge series, we look at DC’s flagship: Superman.
Action Comics · Superman · Supergirl · Superboy
Kelson: I’ve only ever sporadically read Superman: an issue here, a story arc there. In fact, over the past decade I can only recall picking up four Superman stories: The single issue contrasting Superman with the Authority by way of The Elite, the three-part battle between Kal-El and Kal-L during Infinite Crisis, JMS’ Superman: Earth One…and Grant Morrison’s All-Star Superman. If Morrison’s run on Action Comics is anything like that in terms of the sense that anything can happen…well, I might actually be buying an ongoing Superman book for the first time in my life.
For the record: I don’t think we’ve seen the final design of Superman’s new costume yet. But I think it’s good to finally move past the underwear-on-the-outside look. It made sense in 1938, in the context of circus strongman outfits, but now it’s an artifact of a bygone era, just like Clark Kent’s hat or the giant collar on Nightwing’s original costume.
Greg: I can’t say much about Grant Morrison on Action Comics that hasn’t been said about All-Star, or in the recent speculation that he would be handling the Man of Steel. Grant Morrison comic books work on levels that few others do, if any. His Batman saga has simultaneously taken the character to new extremes while reinforcing the foundation, a herculean task considering the visibility of the Caped Crusader. Morrison on a regular Superman title, especially one looking at a different era than we’re used to, is the most exciting announcement to come out of the reboot so far. If you’re going to re-start Action Comics at #1, this is the only reasonable way to do it.
Lia: I’m not a Superman reader, but it’s tough to argue with the creative team of Grant Morrison and Rags Morales (although Morales’ characters often have very similar-looking faces, a habit I wish he’d break). This should be a good book, although it’s not enough to get me to buy it.
Devin: I like Superman as an ideal and as a character in the Justice League. I even loved Lois & Clark and parts of Smallville but I have never been able to get into Superman as a series. These character designs aren’t going to change anything when it comes to that. This new costume looks hideous. In fact every member of the Superman family has a costume worst than the last. I can get over a lot of things but a poorly designed costume I can’t. So many better options too. And what is with that belt? With Grant Morrison attached I was thinking about giving it a chance but the costume ruined that.
Greg: When I heard rumors that the master, George Perez, would be working on Superman, I was unsure of his ability to produce timely artwork for a monthly book. His working on covers, scripts AND layouts, however, is just as exciting and should prove to be massively entertaining based on his previous work with the character. The cover shown in the announcement is classic Perez, and based on his work in Flashpoint: Secret Seven, I bet we’re in for some fantastic stuff.
Lia: As with Action Comics, having George Perez on board here is quite a coup. That costume design is odd, though — since when does Superman need armour? And of course, the “startling new status quo” comment in the solicitation is a bit worrisome. I know why they need to change aspects of his life/history, but it’s still depressing that they’re doing it.
Lia: I know nothing about any members of the creative team, but the hint at Supergirl as a superpowered anti-hero is interesting.
Kelson: Interesting point that, not having grown up on Earth, Kara would have a less rosy view of humans.
Devin: I really hope they bring back Kon’s tactile telekinesis and more unique aspects of his powers. Being a Superman clone doesn’t mean that he literally has to be a clone of him.
Lia: Wow, another Scott Lobdell title. Hopefully they aren’t rebooting Superboy and planning to retell his stories all over again, because that’s what the solicitation and cover suggest to me.
And that’s a wrap!
Part 1: Justice League
Part 2: Green Lanterns
Part 3: Batman
Part 4: Dark
Part 5: Teen
Part 6: Edge
Action Comics is one I’m probably gonna get but otherwise I’ll pass. Grant Morrison & Rags Morales on Action Comics #1 is really hard to pass up. Hopefully I won’t bs passing up #2 either but that’s up to them. 🙂
i like Superman & the fam… but these titles leave me no desire to actually pick these books up.
a couple of people said they like Grant Morrison, but his stories are so all over the road it makes me feel like he’s drunk driving… And the costume designs… I cannot even put into words how horrid they are…
Sorry, I absolutely must agree with Kelson concerning the new Superman costume. And as for “horrid”, that applies to the original suit. The promo pix haven’t shown Superman’s feet, but I’m guessing the ridiculous boots are gone too. Good.
And except for the collar they’ve just simplified it. That belt is clearly a work in progress. In the “League” image it’s totally different.
But the obvious issue, & the commentators REALLY should have picked up on it, is this: The driving force behind the costume redesigns is HOLLYWOOD. It’s one thing that Tinseltown does right. Mark my words, that’s essentially the costume for next year’s “Man of Steel”. Shame on everyone for not figuring that out.
I think the one in the cover of Superman #1 is Superboy Prime returning from the “Legion of 3 Worlds” story-arc.
I think that Action Comics will show us the real new version of the character, who looks like a farmer, actually.
The Superman Family titles are really the only DC titles I follow intently other than Flash and LSH. So, naturally, out of all of DC’s announcements, this bunch concerned me the most.
Morrison scares me. His work is so hit-or-miss for me. I loved his Doom Patrol yet his X-Men work leaves me flat. Same for his Batman stuff.
Yet I loved All-Star Superman so I have hopes for him here. Morales is a terrific artist.
As for Perez, he is the Master so there’s little room for doubt here.
All in all, I am looking forward to getting all the S titles, probably the biggest chunk of change DC will get from me.
I just hope they do not screw the character up too much. All-Star Superman was incredible, but I wonder if DC would be willing to make something like that the mainstream version of Superman. Perez draws one of my favorite versions of Superman, so that should look great.
“It made sense in 1938, in the context of circus strongman outfits, but now it’s an artifact of a bygone era, just like Clark Kent’s hat or the giant collar on Nightwing’s original costume.”
Well, then what about the cape? That’s clearly from the bygone era of Victorian/Vaudevillian stage performers…so why not dump that if you’re dumping the red trunks? Honestly, I’ve never been able to figure out all the angst surrounding the red trunks.
As for the costume on the Perez cover: The visible seams are a sure way to attract people who’ve never been regular comic book readers. That’s the sure-fire ticket to get the attention of the next generation. The robot boots will also be a hit with the kids.
Some are obsessed with the idea of turning Superman into a gritty, deranged hero-type that populates so many other comics. The first step for them is basically throwing out much of the classic costume and modernizing it. They might as well add a gun…
I don’t think Grant Morrison will give us the same version of Clark Kent that we saw in All Star Superman. A.S.S. was deeply enamored in old Silver Age stories. Rich Johnston dug up some interesting comments that Morrison made: “I’d like to do the early Superman, who just lifts trucks and who can be hurt by a bursting shell. I’d like to do something really interesting with that guy. The young, angry Superman.”
As for Supergirl, isn’t it kind of laughable how many reboots this character had since Crisis on Infinite Earths? There was Proty-Kara, Angel-Kara, Jeph Loeb Kara. She has never worked for me since the Silver Age.
The Superboy reboot makes me think of the Young Justice cartoon.
I have a love/hate relationship with Morrison…..Loved JLA, liked All-Star Superman, hated Batman Inc…..so the jury will be out on Action Comics.
George Perez is a proven Superman writer and artist, so I fully expect no surprises…just good stories with solid artwork.
I imagine that the two books may “play” off one another, meaning that Morrison is setting the general “direction” for the new books. Time will tell if this is good.
I don’t collect either Superboy or Supergirl, but I wish the titles well.
I was hopeing we would see a slimmed down DCU. Less titles with better writing etc. and greater creativity.
A buffet table with 52 types of crap to choose from is still just a bunch of crap.
Give me a few prime choices like Filet mignon, Chicken, and BBQ. Less choices, but cooked to perfection. I will come back to that buffet over and over.
New and continued readership means more interest. Hit us up with a special every now and then or an event every blue moon. Advertising dollars would increase based on the number of devoted readers.
Maybe than the industry would push to make movies less based on the lowest common denominator and more based on quality writing. But that is another conversation.