Thursday, September 25, 2014

Superman: Doomed #2 Review

Written by: Greg Pak and Charles Soule
Art by: Ken Lashley, Szymon Kudranski, Cory Smith, Dave Bullock, Jack Herbert, Ian Churchill,
                    Aaron Kuder, Vincente Cifuentes and Norm Rapmund
Cover Price: $4.99
Release Date: September 24, 2014

The Ripple Effect

Well, it's been almost six months and the Doomed story is finally over.  Superman becoming Doomsday seemed like a gimmick at first, but it  actually became so much more.  What I thought would just be a huge beat 'em up became a look at the the psyche and vulnerability of the Man of Steel.  It didn't hurt that we also got a huge ensemble cast including all the heavy hitters of the DCU.  Greg Pak and Charles Soule get the honor of ending the story and they do so in a way that is consistent with the whole event and sets up a crazy future for everyone.

The issue starts with SuperDoom heading off to destroy the Avenger's Spaceworm and of course, Brainiac who is inside.  To finish the job, he's fully embraced the Doomsday thing and is pretty much a raging rage monster.  However, with the help of his friends, he uses his brain and heart more than his fists.  He's going to need help because it's going to take every ounce of effort to defeat Brainiac.

Pak and Soule give us a pretty ruthless Brainiac.  He will stop at nothing to create a new Universe including impersonating Supes friends and showing him visions of what could be.  These visions are my favorite part of this issue and possibly the arc.  They are "what ifs" featuring Lana Lang, Steel and Bruce Wayne (the best one).  Of course, they can only come true if Superman surrenders and everyone, including Superman, knows they are a Sham.  However, it's still nice to see an alternate reality where Bruce can grow old in peace.

Brainiac even tries his hand at being a sympathetic character, but in a too quick turn about for my liking, proves to be even more despicable.  In the end, Lois Lane becomes my hero by helping Superman in such an awesome way and the results immediately seem to ripple through the whole Multiverse.  The last panel is so great and promises a crazy yet awesome future for the whole DCU.

I enjoyed this issue, but a few things did bother me.  Throughout the event, the writers set up so much story with the guest characters, but this finale just uses them as simple motivation and fodder.  I wanted to see more of Wonder Woman and Mongul, but they are pretty much glossed over.  Plus, the ending makes the entire story seem like setup for another book and event.  Then there was the art.

Nine artists?  Since this is such a big story, I can only hope the amount of artists is by design and not from necessity, but why?  They do a decent job making the transitions not so jarring, but I didn't enjoy every one's work and there is a noticeable difference between them.  I shouldn't be surprised since DC likes to do this more often then I care to recall.

Bits and Pieces:

The Doomed story wasn't perfect, but it was a fun ride with Superman and his friends trying to defend Earth from two of his biggest villains.  While nine artists seems ridiculous, Pak and Soule's story is strong enough to make me look the other way a bit.  It may not be remembered as the greatest Superman story ever told, but it is the best the New 52 has given us so far and I'll take that any day.



  1. Is this worth buying in trade?

    1. Yes, I actually think it will read better as a trade. Hopefully DC will put it out in a timely manner, but they usually drag their feet. Overall, I think it was a good story, it was just a bit inconsistent at points and plagued by a crazy release schedule that often killed the momentum.