I consider myself a Superman fan. In much the same way as I consider myself a Beatles fan. Superman is just one of those things. He’s an institution and he’s been a part of way more good things than bad so he gets a pass. When asked my favorite superhero I’m not going to say Superman because liking him is a given. Of course I like Superman. Just like of course I like Batman. Of course I like Spider-Man. Unless you are able to then deconstruct things about that character or are able to make that character unique to you, you just kind of skip those lines on your top ten until you hit a character that’s a little more personally revealing. For me that’s Howard the Duck. That doesn’t mean Superman is worse than Howard the Duck, even though, if you ask me who my favorite comic character is that’s what I’m going to answer. I have two Superman posters on my wall. I have Superman trade paperbacks. I have every Superman movie, the entire Superman animated series. I have Man of Steel for the Xbox and I actually liked the reboot. Obviously I’m a Superman fan. Who isn’t? He’s a great character.
I like Superman and occasionally I get curious about him. When I heard he was getting a new super power I was intrigued. Why not? This has really been the only thing that’s interested me in the New 52. Joker cutting his face off interested me too but it didn’t leave a whole lot more impression. Although talking to Tony S. Daniels in a jewelry store did. That guy is just great. I helped him buy a watch in my watchmaker days and he got me re-interested in New 52 Batman. I digress. Superman is getting a new power. It’s a flare. A “super flare”. Not “super flair”, that’s where he puts on a shiny gold pair of pants, pink alligator shoes and a vest full of buttons. Also not “Super Flair” which is pictured below:
Nope, it’s super flare. An extension, and I’m just going to spoil this for you because it’s nothing all that original, an extension of heat vision only instead of energy coming from his eyes its energy pouring out of every cell in his body. Genius. This leaves him human for 24 hours afterwards. Main Man Dustin’s prediction is that this will be used as a plot device to make Superman ‘too dangerous to be around’. I think they’ll use it as a way of making an otherwise invulnerable character somewhat vulnerable.
The rest of the issue is alright. It’s the end of a major arc and it hints at what has happened enough that you can kind of understand what is happening now but the issue is definitely more about the flare. Sadly there is no truth, justice and jet flyin’, limousine ridin’, kiss stealing. Instead we get a cameo by Batman and a slightly bizarre secret identity reveal to Jimmy Olsen. It’s drawn by JR Jr. and I like his art but I just think its much better suited for something like Kick-Ass then it is Superman. It’s just too gritty for the bright and clean Man of Steel. If you like Superman then this probably isn’t going to dissuade you too much. If you weren’t interested in Superman before then you probably won’t be after.
Writer: Geoff Johns Artist: John Romita Jr. Colorist: Laura Martin w/Ulises Arreola, Dan Brown & Wil Quintana Publisher: DC Comics Price: $5.99 Release Date: 2/4/15 Format: Ongoing; Print/Digital