the_mighty_monarch's Action Comics #22 - Atomic Knights, Part One; The World of Krypton, Part 3: Darkest Depths review

Superman: Downfall

After the trippy Morrison epic, and even the amazingly character rich Andy Diggle story, Action Comics has hit it's downfall with this issue. It feels like an issue of the New 52 Superman, which is appropriate because it shares the writer, Scot Lobdell, and carries over many of the plot details. SO basically Action Comics is now the place for Lobdell to dump his extra story to give us his mediocre Superman twice a month. Up until now, Action Comics felt very interesting and unique in the way it was separated from the rest of the Superman family. And it was always more interesting. But not now.

Just like Lobdell's regular Superman, this week's Action Comics is oozing with unnecessary exposition and avoidable conflict. I mean, seriously, "just once" you're going to 'not' give the alien the benefit of the doubt? The alien who Hector Hammond lead you to after noticing all he destroyed was an immensely dangerous doomsday device? THIS is the one alien you're NOT going to give a chance to show he's a hero Not only is that completely un-Superman-like, it's just monumentally stupid. Ok, he elbowed you after you grabbed him from behind, but ALL other evidence points to him being someone you could call an ally. Superman is idiotic and way out of character here.

What I CAN say, is that Tyler Kirkham definitely carries over Tony Daniel's efforts to keep the 'action' in Action Comics. The brawl, while started for stupid reasons, is pretty awesome. Even Straith's destruction of the doomsday weapon oozes epic scale. But the fights this issue are cluttered up with all sorts of awkward dialogue.

The Co-Feature loses the awesome art of Philip Tan, but Tom Derenick does some surprisingly solid replacement work, and the tone is kept the same. Things are starting to piece together a lot better, and now we see what we've been building towards, a personal favorite Superman supporting character of mine.

In Conclusion: 2.5/5

Lobdell's had some good issues of Superman, but this is not like them. The action's boss, but the banter is blech. And the plot is just... it just kind of happens, and then there's a huge fight that could've been avoided if Lobdell knew how to write Superman.


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