Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Action Comics #52 Review


Written by: Peter J. Tomasi
Art by: Dale Eaglesham, Scot Eaton, Wayne Faucher, Tomeu Morey and Rob Leigh
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: May 11, 2016

Here we are with another Final Days of Superman issue, which also happens to be the last issue of Action Comics before Rebirth comes in, slaps a super suit on Lex and gets back to the old numbering.  It's a weird ending for the series at large, but going in, my only concern was that it gets this "Final Days of Superman" story back on track.  After two awesome issues to start it off, it has been a connect-the-dots story that seems to be treading water until we get to rebirth.  The cover and solicit for this issue points to the Pre-Flashpoint Superman getting involved, but does that mean we are heading for an awesome conclusion or does it continue what I was talking about and seem like a guest appearance to setup the upcoming Rebirth books?  Let's find out...

The issue starts out with a nice little scene of Superman and Wonder Woman holding hands as they fly away from China.  It would have been nicer if we hadn't just seen an almost identical scene last issue.  This is another thing that has been bothering me with this whole crossover.  Tomasi spends parts of every issue telling the reader what they already know.  This is a crossover...if people aren't going to buy every issue, they are going to be confused and have to make a decision to buy all the issues or get off the train.  This scene wasn't the worst of them (Ulysses telling us that Superman is dying was the worst, in my opinion), but it did make me roll my eyes and wish we could get to something new and interesting...Like Superman losing consciousness and falling out of the sky.  Oh wait, we saw that with Supergirl.  I hate to sound as angry as I'm coming off, but I am pretty pissed off that we keep rehashing things with the end of this story in site.

The issue continues with a little pseudo explanation of why Batman doesn't want to use the Lazarus Pits to cure Superman.  He says, "I'm not sure what it would do to a Kryptonian.  It might makes it worse."  Really?  Saying it might make it worse is just the same as it might make it better!  I get it, it doesn't fit the story, but why bring it up now, just to brush it aside like that?!?  Okay, I'm going to go calm down before I continue because I actually do like parts of this issue.

I'm back and when the issue continues, we get a little Lois Lane and Solar Flare Superman action.  I liked the scene enough as Lois tries to explain to this Superman...well, what it is to be Superman.  It is a nice backdoor setup for when she starts wearing the "S", but feels a little odd after last week's cliffhanger.  Lois seems to be crusin' for a bruisin' here and after what we saw this imposter do, I was a bit worried.  However, I always love when Lois gets tough and it all leads to a trip to Salinas, California.  While I here it's lovely this time of year (if you can overlook the organized street gangs and associated violent crime), but we aren't here to sight, we are here to visit Superman.  Boy, this story is getting crowded!

I have been waiting to see Clark. Lois and Jon in this crossover, so when we see Clark and Jon making some pancakes, I had a huge smile on my face.  There isn't much time to settle in, however, as Lois and the imposter show up everything goes south really quick.  While it seems that being a glowing Superman look-alike that has a hankering for flapjacks and bacon isn't enough to upset Clark, you bring Jon into that equation and shit gets very, very real!

While that's going on, we go back to Batman, Wonder Woman and Superman and I immediately got angry again.  You see, last issue involved the Trinity heading to China because Batman picked up the solar flare signature and after fighting the "Chinese Justice League", they found out what Dr. Omen had been working on.  Whether it was Kenean Kong or not is a debate that rages on, but no matter what, our three heroes saw a solar flare superman in a tune and then watched him escape.  Did someone give the three of them one of Gob's "forget-me-now" pills because it seems like they don't recall that at all.  Batman apologizes for making them waste time  and says, "I don't know how I could be wrong about the trace to China".  The problem is, he wasn't wrong!  The trace just lead them to another Solar Flare Superman.  Of course, Superman corrects him, right?  Wrong!!!  He pokes fun at Batman saying, "It just proves the World's greatest Detective is Human."   WHAT?????  Seriously, am I the only one who remembers what the fuck happened?  AM I????  This is the sort of thing that I've come to expect from crossovers with different writers involved, not one person.

We leave that all behind when Batman finally gets it right and locates the only imposter it seems they care about and head to Salinas, California.  I hear it's nice this time of...  We see the continuing wreckage of Solar Supes and Clark's fight and the issue ends with all the Supermen (except the one in China that nobody remembers) having some face time.

I think I have made it clear what I didn't like about this issue and yes, it is a laundry list of hate. However, there are things I liked.  I loved finally seeing Clark White meet Clark Kent and I want to see more now!  The way this story has progressed, I'm guessing that seeing his older self will give our Clark the peace of mind that there will be someone to carry on when he's gone.  If that's the case, get me the tissues now.  Other than that, though, this is another issue that seems more intent to get characters involved more than telling a good story and because of that, I am falling deeper and deeper out of love of this whole thing.

Back to what I liked.  Actually, I loved the art in this issue.  Dale Eaglesham and Scot Eaton kicked total ass the entire issue and I really think that the star of it all was Tomeu Morey's colors.  It looked so good that I almost forgot some of the problems I had with it...almost.

Bits and Pieces:

While this chapter of the Final Days of Superman finally gets the New 52 and Pre-Flashpoint Supermen together, it is brief and rather anti-climactic.  Almost everything else in this issue goes against what we've already seen, is just more recap or feels a bit off.  The art was great and that's the only thing that kept this issue from getting an even worse score.  The Final Day can't come quick enough.



  1. Jim did you see that cover after rebirth where superman is holding Clark and Doomsday is standing behind both of them. If you did, then hear me out. I think there a chance the N52 Superman is not going to die. The Rebirth cover has a Blue lighted figure stretching out its hand at Superman. In the 90's there was "Superman Blue". Superman lost his Normal powers and got electron manipulation powers just like Dr. Manhattan. When he's not using his Blue Powers Clark was a Normal human.

    What I'm getting at here is that between the to covers I was talking about they made me think there's a chance we might see a Rebirth Version of Superman Blue. My Question to you is would you be cool with that? Some how one of the Lois's will become superwoman, and we are getting Kennan Kong as a Asian superman, and the Eradicator has been showing up, Lex is wearing a Superman Symbol custome, pre flashpoint superman is becoming the new superman and his son is the new Superboy, and even Supergirl is back in the picture. Do you think the N52 Clark has a chance to live, since apparently it's a Super world and there are going to be so many super characters, what one more?

    1. I do think that he will be Clark Kent of Rebirth...I think they are being cute with the Final Days of "Superman".

      I'd be fine with all of that and am looking forward to something better.