Comic Vine Review

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Action Comics #21 Review

3

There's a big threat to Metropolis but that's the least of Superman's worries and he soon finds himself fighting another foe.

The Good

There's so much that I enjoy out of this from the beginning. Having this story take place a year ago and even seeing something like Suicide Slum make an appearance immediately feels like this is a Superman story. We also get quite a bit of Lois and Jimmy in action, trying to cover the story which just feels like old times.

Superman is faced with a giant threat that is gaining strength. Lives are at risk and it's starting to look like Superman may have met his match. Just as it looks he might have things figured out and also accepts a little help, he has another threat to deal with. It's a fight you'll want to see and one that's been long overdue.

Tony Daniel's art shines here. His action sequences are great to see. It's not your typical Superman fight in terms of the location. You also have to take notice of his depiction of the other characters. In other words, he draws a great Lois Lane. Okay, Jimmy looks good as well.

The back up story is written by Frank Hannah and features art by Philip Tan. We get to see Lara Lor-Van, Superman's mom, kick some butt. It's a great looking tale from Krypton, long before its destruction.

The Bad

The main story feels it's been cut short. We know there was some unforeseen circumstances and it's unfortunate because you could feel the potential in the story. Will Superman win the day? You can take a guess. Tony Daniel does a remarkable job pulling double duty with the art and scripting but the story is just over too abruptly.

It's still unclear how Dr. Veritas is able to do everything she does. At one point during Superman's battle, she comments on how she was able to track him by his signature. Does this mean she could locate him at any moment? How is she able to 'see' him? Are there cameras everywhere? There's also the question of her having unexplained teleportation technology that isn't used by anyone else.

The back up story is fun in fleshing out Lara a little more and showing some of the things she's capable of. It does feel a little unclear what the point of the backups are, whether they're all connected and if there's an overall direction or just showing us more about Superman's parents.

There is also basically a two-page advertisement for the other Super-titles and next month's issue. It feels these pages could have been used for telling more story in the main or backup (which was only six pages).

The Verdict

This unfortunately marks the end of Tony Daniel's run on the series. Handling the art and scripting from Andy Diggle's plot, it feels as if the story got cut short and it would've been nice to see the story fleshed out a little more. There are some great sequences and Daniel's art really captured the essence of Superman/Clark, Lois and even Jimmy. The backup story focusing on Lara on Krypton is interesting but it's not fully clear what we'll get from this or other installments. There are some nice touches to the story and it's just unfortunate it had to come to an end so quickly. Fingers crossed the next issue will keep up the momentum this arc started.

18 Comments
Posted by Hawkguy

I was going to pick this up for the sake of completing the little arc but... I'm glad I didn't. I'm sad Lobdell is on this now, and quite honestly, I wish they had just put Snyder and Lee on this title.

Also, where's east of west 3???????

Posted by G-Man

@hawkguy: East of West is just above North of South. It's coming.

Staff
Posted by mark15

This 3 issue arc felt like the start of a big run that could have just been the start of what Lex had in store, the moments with his psychiatrist in the first issue were awesome and this issue had zero character development, this could have been such a good story I wish Diggle stayed on

Edited by doordoor123

@hawkguy said:

I was going to pick this up for the sake of completing the little arc but... I'm glad I didn't. I'm sad Lobdell is on this now, and quite honestly, I wish they had just put Snyder and Lee on this title.

Also, where's east of west 3???????

QQ

Posted by davidgrantlloyd

Yes. I would've been great to see the story completed as it was originally intended.

Hopefully, the next arc Lobdell has will be cool ... I like a good Superman space adventure.

Posted by Shallbecomeabattoo

Oh man, its so sad... Superman hasn't had a great run since... well... All Star Superman and Geoff Johns run on Action, I suppose. Thats YEARS ago!

I don'tget it. Superman should be DCs second biggest focus, when it comes to getting a great creative team. Lobdell is sadly not enough and we certainly don't need him on Action AND Superman. Get Meltzer back into comics, or get Warren Ellis on Action Comics, or the guys who did the Adventures of Superman digital issue, or at least some other big name writer who has to say something with the character, but don't handle Superman like a C list character! He deserves as good as Batman, and Batman has had great runs, with great creative teams, constantly! I know Snyder is coming and that will be great, but how come the main Superman books are so severely lacking? Its so sad.

Posted by ptigrusmagus

Sad that Diggle flaked out of this short stint on AC, the issued looked great anyways.

Posted by bladewolf

Beautiful issue in terms of art, but I agree that the story was rushed and uninteresting. I wish Daniel was staying for art duties at least; he draws a GREAT Superman.

Posted by Herokiller12344

When's Henshaw

Posted by Reignmaker

Tony Daniel has been given writing duties again?! Run for the hills! The cover is beautiful, but I seriously can't believe DC would do this after the disaster that was Detective Comics.

Posted by Rich711

Why do they let Scott Lobdell write? Does he have pictures of Dan Didio with a trani-hooker or something?

Edited by Mucklefluga

@rich711 said:

Why do they let Scott Lobdell write? Does he have pictures of Dan Didio with a trani-hooker or something?

QFT

Posted by Extremis
Posted by Kal'smahboi

@rich711 said:

Why do they let Scott Lobdell write? Does he have pictures of Dan Didio with a trani-hooker or something?

It's the only explanation. With the addition of Unchained and Bats/Supes this month, he's going to have control over half of the Superman stories out there and, surprise surprise, he's decided to cross them over. I'm thiiiis close to dropping the main title of my favorite hero, and Action isn't far behind.

Edited by Rich711

@kal_smahboi said:

@rich711 said:

Why do they let Scott Lobdell write? Does he have pictures of Dan Didio with a trani-hooker or something?

It's the only explanation. With the addition of Unchained and Bats/Supes this month, he's going to have control over half of the Superman stories out there and, surprise surprise, he's decided to cross them over. I'm thiiiis close to dropping the main title of my favorite hero, and Action isn't far behind.

Seriously, F#CK YOU! You scared me into thinking Scott Lobdell was writing Batman-Superman. I already ordered that book and had to go google all panicy to make sure that wasnt true. There are some things you joke about, Kal smahboi, and Scott Lobdell writing a batman book is NOT one of them.

Edited by Billy Batson

@rich711:

Lobdell will be writing just Superman and Action Comics. The latter one for the moment, though. Which would mean he'd be writing half of Superman's books.

BB

Posted by ILLO_29

Wait, wait, wait, so Lodell is indeed taking over Action?!? I remember two months ago when people were joking about it, well they were right. I guess I won't be coming back to action anytime soon.