Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Superman: Year One #2 Review

Writer: Frank Miller
Art Team: John Romita Jr., Danny Miki, Alex Sinclair
DC Black Label
Release Date: August 22, 2019
Cover Price: $7.99

Superman Does What Now?!

Superman Year One, after the debut issue, seemed like it was a retelling of Clark Kent/Superman's origins, really taking the time for Clark to discover who is he as a person, before potentially preparing to don the ,cape and taking up the hero gig full time. It was surprisingly subdued for a Frank Miller joint, almost keeping you wondering where the twist was the entire time, besides the whole Clark going off to the Navy thing. Well buddy, if you were waiting for that twist, and returned here for issue two ol' Frank Miller certainly doesn't let you down.   Lets discuss.

The issue begins and centers on the Navy training of Clark Kent a bit too long, hammering home the point over and over that Clark is good at this stuff, yet still holding back a bit.  All in all not a horrible way to setup the beginning of this book, but the holding back stuff was established during last issue so wasn't needed to be so emphasized here, and of course Clark would succeed at these physical tasks without much challenge so there is just no build up.  It's all eventually only used as a means to an end, and even wrapped up quickly and brushed aside out of nowhere at one point, but does lead to the setup of Clark following a siren call.

The 'siren call' is what forces this book to take a left turn at Albuquerque, to which I don't think it ever really recovers, at least not this issue.  Initially, Clarks first visit to the Mermaid-land of Atlantis (I guess) leads to a discovery of a Kingdom, seemingly broken by military technology, so Clark lends a hand at cleaning up over the period of a few hours.  It's not a bad hero moment taken out of context, but ultimately what it leads to is very ham-fisted love story between Clark and a Mermaid named Lori Lamaris (get it), which Miller forces so much of the issues focus on.

I mentioned earlier that Clark's time in the military is quickly brushed aside, because once he returns to shore the next day from helping the Mermaids, his team is quickly sent on a mission that leads to a dishonorable discharge in the matter of a quick act of storytelling, all to get back to Clark's adventures at the bottom of the sea.  It's really such a perplexing turn of events her and when I came out of issue one liking the grounded nature of the title, and sending him off to military life, transitioning from that to Clark pursuing love at the bottom of the sea is just a far stretch that feels like I'm suddenly reading an Aquaman book.

All in all events begin to wrap up with Clark for one reason or another in his Superman duds, fighting Poseidon for the right to marry a Mermaid daughter, I think he (Poseidon) thinks he has incestuous rights to?! I just don't know what happened to the grounded Superman origin story I was enjoying.

Again I have to preface my art statements here by stating I'm not a huge fan of JR Jr. however I don't find it art to be anything that bother me in this book for whatever reason.  The blocky faces and figures were definitely more prevalent this issue than last but it's still been enjoyable and I though he and the entire art team did a great job handling the crazy change of pace thrown in their direction this issue.

Overall, Superman Year One got off to a nice low key start and I looked forward to jump into issue two to see where that took us from here. However our main character goes from spending his last nights before military life discovering his purpose, and sneaking in and out of Lana's house, to having dinner at the bottom of the sea with Sebastian and Flounder, while dating Mermaids. I'm just here wanting to read a Superman story not written by Bendis and I'm not sure that what this is anymore either. While I can see the craziness enticing to some it's turning out to not be my bag of chips.



  1. FACT: Frank Miller can only keep the crazy at bay for very short periods of time. Sorry you had to learn this way. Great review, though. I'm glad that Weird Science is one of the few places that will honestly call Frank "I will make you hate your heroes" Miller out on his insane crap.

    1. Lol! A lot of people faking the funk! Honestly, it is a long read and might be easier to just give it a 10/10 and move along!