Wow. Just wow.
Setting aside the extreme nostalgia that comes with reading Action Comics 1000, it is the cliff-hanger ending Brian Michael Bendis leaves us with that has the excitement peaked!
Artist Dan Jurgens kicks us off with some truly glorious Superman artwork. Dan’s illustration work is brilliant and iconic, transcending the reader back to one of the best Superman story arcs ever executed; ‘The Death of Superman’. The story is set in the current DC ‘Rebirth’ universe but due to the #TheTrunksAreBack, old-fashioned and legendary Superman look, the 80’s & 90’s vibe and wistful sentiment is particularly strong. Look out for the epic 2-page splash, absolutely stunning.
Action Comics is a collection of Superman short stories. The story’s range from Superman himself being the narrator to classic Lex Luthor interactions and mind games with a good dose of Superman interacting with everyday humans and being, well, Superman. The stories are solid and well written with some real stand-out artwork. Olivier Coipel’s art on a story written by Geoff Johns is nothing short of spectacular. Olivier brings an otherwise too simple, even mediocre story, to stunning and emotional life.
Brad Meltzer’s “Faster than a Speeding Bullet’ which is illustrated by John Cassaday is a homage to Christopher Reeve’s Superman and is superbly executed.
José Luis Garcia-López is too in great form with his artwork on the, being honest, fairly silly and probably the weakest of these collaborated stories; ‘Actionland’ written by Paul Dini. If you have never been a fan of ‘Mr. Mxyzptlk’ like myself, then go ahead and skip those pages. It was José’s artwork that kept me reading.
It is the closing story and as always visual eye-candy artwork from Jim Lee, a true master and legend in the comic book universe, that not just ends Action Comics 1000 stunningly but leaves the reader begging for more. Brian Michael Bendis recently came over to DC Comic after a long running stint at Marvel and it was with the promise of shaking things up a little at DC especially in the world of Superman. The edge-of-your-seat climax Brian and Jim Lee have delivered makes good on that promise of shaking things up. The reader will be left with questions, a whole lot of questions which have to do with the very origins of Superman and his destroyed home planet Krypton.
Overall the look and feel of Action Comics is an emotionally pleasant throwback to Superman of yesteryear. There are more than enough nods and winks towards the classic Supermen; George Reeves and Christopher Reeve in particular. Here is then perhaps the only point of criticism one may be able to make; there is absolutely zero acknowledgement to Zack Snyder and Henry Cavill’s version of Superman, the Man of Steel. For many Henry Cavill really is Superman, both on screen and off. Henry is renowned for genuinely being a super guy in real-life, working with charities and mixing with fans at comic conventions and red carpet appearances. It is a shame that the controversies surrounding last year’s Justice League and 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice have impacted the DC comics range as well. It seems that the entire DC/Warner Bros companies really are just trying to sweep Zack Snyder’s work off the table and under a heavy rug.
Action Comics 1000th issue is a ‘must have’ comic for any collector, even if you don’t collect Superman, this issue is also for you. Grounded stories, fantastic artwork and a cliff-hanger finish serve their purpose in bringing us a great 1000th issue of the Man of Tomorrow; Superman.
Action Comics is now available at your local comic book shop with nine various collector covers.