Review: ‘Action Comics’ #1052 Complicates The Matter

Action Comics’ new status quo continues to build. In #1052, it begins to get incredibly complicated.

Cover by Steve Beach

Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Rafa Sandoval, Matt Herms, and Dave Sharpe continue the Kent family’s new endeavors in Metropolis, with back-ups by Dan Jurgens, Lee Weeks, Elizabeth Breitweiser, Rob Leigh, Leah Williams, Marguerite Sauvage, and Becca Carey.

Conner is down, and Clark is the only hope to stop Metallo before he destroys the Steelworks. A victory won’t mean Metallo’s defeat. It might just show him and his benefactor that the only way to defeat the Superman family is creating a family of his own. But that benefactor may not be who or what Metallo thought he was…

I’m really enjoying a lot of this series. It’s using the Superman family to its fullest advantage. The best scene of the issue isn’t the throwdown between Clark and Metallo, it’s the family (not a team, family) hanging out after the battle is won. Johnson does so many small things to make the family feel authentic like Jon calling Kara ‘Aunt Kara’, and adding humanity to the characters. Osul and Otha are beginning a journey of healing from trauma and in just a few panels, it’s incredibly believable.

Sandoval and Herms work together a lot better this issue. Sandoval’s figures are very fluid, and he puts weight behind the blows of the fight. When you have a hero that can move mountains, it adds realism to a brawl that makes it much more grounded. Herms uses splashes of bright colors to emphasize the fantastic, adding emphasis to those uses of superpowers. The place where their art shines the most is in a couple quiet panels though, where we see Osul and Otha snuggling together on the floor, the Twins finding comfort in each others’ arms as well as a couple other small details that are heartbreaking the more you look at the panel.

As far as the back-ups, I’m still struggling with the flashbacks from Jurgens and team. The story is fairly forgettable, and does little to make itself stand out, or even justify its existence. The Power Girl and Omen story is the reverse. It’s so distinct visually that I can’t help but be drawn to it, and there’s so many fascinating ideas here, I wish it had more space. I would love to see the feature get its own miniseries, though I don’t think we will.

I’ll be fascinated to see where this series builds to. It’s a status quo that I think the Kent family deserves to run long term, and I hope it gets that chance.

Action Comics #1052 is available now from DC Comics.

Action Comics’ new status quo continues to build. In #1052, it begins to get incredibly complicated. Phillip Kennedy Johnson, RafaCOMICONRead More

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