It's no surprise that the fourth issue of Grant Morrison's ACTION COMICS continues to bring about more changes and updates to Superman and the DC Universe around him. This time around there are some big changes along with some continuing tweaks from the previous issues. It's strange how we're looking at the early days of Superman yet we have a feeling that some things are on a rapid course to meet the familiar territory we know, and others are veering off into new places.
As in our previous looks at ACTION COMICS, there will be major spoilers below. Do yourself a favor and read the issue for yourself to get the full details on what has changed and what remains the same.== TEASER ==
We saw last issue that how John Corben became Metallo was different. The Army had their Steel Soldier program set to prepare against alien attacks. Unfortunately with Lex Luthor involved, he actually sided with one such alien threat.
Wanting to be a hero, Corben is now forced to hunt down Superman with little regard for the safety of others. He appears fighting for control when he sees Lois but his speech is taken over with, "I am the voice. The voice of the colony." Metallo is no longer looking for revenge against Superman, he is on a mission by aliens to track down and destroy him. He is also referred to as 'Metal-Zero.'
Steel Makes His Armored Debut
We saw in issue #2 that John Henry Irons was a doctor working with the Army on the Steel Soldier program. Originally Irons had been saved by Superman at one point and after his death fighting Doomsday, he was inspired to become a hero himself. When Corben and the other robots (controlled by the aliens) were attacking Metropolis, Irons decided his time to become a hero was sooner than what we knew before.
Despite quitting the program (after witnessing Luthor torturing the captured Superman to try to study him), he still had possession of a suit in him home. In a sense, this is doing away with the Reign of the Supermen storyline (in which we get the impression that Superboy's origin doesn't have anything to do with it either).
Superman Wears More Than One Shirt?
While we've been getting used to seeing Superman wearing jeans, a t-shirt and boots, we discover that he has more than one color scheme for his shirt. When Clark has to run off and become Superman, he shows up wearing a white t-shirt with the S-logo (similar to what Supergirl wore long ago).
The question also comes up as to where does he keep his costume. He may be able to move at high speeds but we know he isn't able to fly yet. When he was with Lois when the attack started, he was wearing sneakers. Thus, he had to run off somewhere to get his work boots.
The white t-shirt gets pretty shredded so we'll have to see if he wears a white one again or if he has any other colored shirts.
Lois and Corben Had a Big Past Together
We know there was some connection between the two when they spoke to each other in issue #2. It was easy to see that Corben was a little sweet on Lois and there was the possibility that they might've dated or hung out. When Corben is transformed and going a little crazy, Lois mentions their time together in Maui. At least it can be assumed they were there together. Going off to Maui together implies more than casual dating.
A New Origin for Kandor?
The story of Kandor getting shrunk down and collected in a bottle involved Brainiac. When it was revealed that Lex was secretly working with an alien force, the suspicion was the alien would turn out to be Brainiac. When the attack begins, it's announced that they are the Terminauts. It is possible that Terminauts refers to the robot drones. When we see a part of Metropolis bottled, we get a glimpse at part of the alien's entire collection. Last issue showed us a bit of Krypton's destruction so it could be that Kandor is in one of the bottles seen here. The creature has a tiny resemblance to Brainiac but it's a pretty big departure from his past forms.
Those are the big changes so far in ACTION COMICS. Even though we're four issues in, the changes and updates continue to come in. Next issue will focus some more on Krypton so we'll have to see what else will be changed.