Team Superman vs Team Doomsday - Round 2
I’ve really enjoyed Cornell’s run on Action Comics and am saddened that it will be finishing in 2 issues time. However, that gives Cornell plenty of time to weave a fantastic story with the threads he’s already created.
Team Superman escape from the mysterious ship and attempt to stop the ship from destroying the Earth.
· Cornell starts the story with an interesting twist, that being the Doomslayer showing remorse for killing the Eradicator. True, there has been a speaking, sentient Doomsday before but to see a Doomsday struggle with his emotions and conscience is quite interesting to see as is his warped belief that by destroying the earth, this will wipe Doomsday’s existence off the face of the universe. This adds another layer to this villain, making him more than just another possible Doomsday clone.
· As with the previous issue, Cornell nails all the character’s voices and personalities. Superman is shown sticking by his ‘No Killing rule’ which is good to see him exhibit once in a while and Supergirl gets some pretty nice dialogue under Cornell particularly “We’re gonna do this. We’ve gotta do this.” This kind of dialogue shows that Kara, whilst different from Superman still has his determination to overcome any challenge. And Steel’s tech related moments are sweet, like when he opens a door to escape the ship or distributes nanites that allow Team Superman to talk in space. These little things are real perks of the issue.
· Also, we get some good interactions between Superman’s supporting cast. The conversation between Lois and Jimmy is a very pleasant one as while Jimmy frets for the end of the world, Lois maintains her firm belief that her husband will be able to save the day. Cornell has done an excellent job at bringing the Clark-Lois relationship out of the rut it was in thanks to Grounded. With a relationship portrayed like this, why does there need to be a reboot that wipes out Clark and Lois’ marriage?
· Furthermore, Cornell nails the team dynamic of Team Superman. Superman is excellently written in his role as leader and the strength of his leadership qualities really shine through, inspiring anyone following him to obey him without question, even if it means leaving him to possibly die. But even without Superman, Cornell shows Steel, Superboy and Supergirl working as an efficient team to disperse a tidal wave created by the crashed ship.
· The highlight of this issue has to be when Superman is about to stop the crashing ship single handedly and he thinks to himself about saving Lois and Ma first before remembering that millions of lives are at stake. Cornell effectively not only displays Superman’s unwavering moral compass but also humanises Superman through the thoughts of him saving his loved ones before saving America. It’s moments like this that show the qualities of a brilliant writer.
· Brilliant story aside, Rocafort absolutely kills it on the art. His unique pencils combined with bright digital colouring mean that the ship stopping sequence is rendered in an exquisitely stunning way. Rocafort really outdid himself on art duties this time. And to his credit. Gimenz also does some great art as well. The tidal wave event is his high point and shows that even after Rocafort’s exceptional artwork, he can still pull off some great art as well. Despite their differences, the artwork is much less jarring this time round.
· The cover looks a bit like a typical confrontational cover. A beaten Superman, 4 Doomsday fists heading straight at him. But the background is lovely as well, all thanks to an excellent Rocafort cover.
So there’s nothing really wrong with this issue at all. It’s a great read and really picks up on the Reign of the Doomsdays storyline. Definitely a worthwhile Superman read before the reboot.