By Garrett Hanneken
The highly anticipated Superman comic is finally here. After getting a taste of Bendis’ Superman in Action Comics #1000, readers can now better gauge what will be in stores for them. Personally, I thought the preview in Action Comics #1000 was outstanding for its villain, action, and twist at the end but despite that, The Man of Steel #1 proves to be a slower start than initially expected.
After reading this issue, I understand why Bendis decided to go the route he did. That route consists of making sure he got the characteristics of Superman right. This is important because Bendis made the leap from Marvel to one of DC’s most renowned characters. In order to show fans that he knows what he is doing, he needed to display that he understands the character. However, I think at this point we all understand that Superman is compassionate and friendly and I felt that this issue was trying too hard to prove that.
It is not a bad thing to showcase these boy scout characteristics by any means, but it becomes a bit dull when you make that the meat of the story. That is not to say that there wasn’t anything that intrigued me. In fact, I still think the villain Rogol Zaar is an interesting character with heedful motives. With that being noted, Zaar’s storyline outshined Superman’s.
Since I found the subplot to be more interesting than the main plot it does propose a problem. However, because I know that Superman and Zaar will interact in a brawl later on in the series still gives me hope that the comic will shine.
As for the art, Reis does a good job in showing emotions of anger by Zaar and affection by Superman. Through these emotions, you already know these two will clash once they meet. As for everything else, Reis is great at displaying the various superpowers that Superman holds: flight, speed, freeze breath and X-ray vision. Besides Reis, Fabok also draws a couple of pages and although Fabok is another distinguished artist he isn’t given enough space to draw anything appealing.
With all that being said, The Man of Steel #1 sacrifices any outstanding or invigorating moments in order to affirm Superman holds onto his virtuous characteristics. The result is Bendis assuring fans that he knows what Superman stands for while any exhilarating parts, in which we got a taste for in Action Comics #1000, will come into play later.
The Man of Steel #1