Rating: 4/5 – Welcome Back, Superman.
By ComicSpectrum senior reviewer Shawn Hoklas.
If I could pick just one thing about the New 52 to change (although I would have loved to have changed a lot), it would have been the re-imagining of Superman. I was excited when I first heard that Grant Morrison would be writing Superman back when the New 52 was announced, but that excitement quickly faded as that Superman was, unlike Batman or Green Lantern, dramatically different from the one we knew before. Then came Convergence and although the series itself was a chore to read, the Superman I loved was back, and he had returned with some differences. Clark and Lois had a son that was introduced in the Lois and Clark series who definitely changed their dynamic, and they were living on a world that wasn’t their own on the New 52 Earth, but…he was back and that made me extremely happy.
Now, Peter Tomasi is writing this Rebirth issue starring this definitely missed Superman. For the most part this issue really isn’t necessary reading, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t enjoyable. After what happened in Superman number fifty-two, the pre-Flashpoint Superman encounters Lana Lang who’s committed to keeping a promise to the New 52 Superman. As the two discuss their thoughts, Superman recounts his fight with Doomsday which does go on for a bit too long, but does allow artist Doug Mahnke to draw some absolutely beautiful pages.
There’s a fantastic double page splash that has Superman and Doomsday charging each other with destruction in the forefront and the background. I love Mahnke’s art, especially when inked by those who are able to keep his lines clean. Although inker Jaime Mendoza may not be as clean as frequent Mahnke inker Christian Alamy, he does a nice job of providing depth to Mahnke’s muscular Superman. I do wish we could have gotten a bit more of Superman’s current situation rather than focusing so much on the past as it would have allowed new Rebirth readers to understand a bit more of how this Superman has changed since we last saw him.
Hopefully DC will give readers an extra page for a recap at the beginning of their new Rebirth titles as this will provide a bit more context to a character that they may not have read about since Flashpoint. Also, although I find DC’s All Access page at the end of their books to be informative at times, the lack of a letters page or editorial page unique to that title doesn’t give the book a personality that’s reflective of the creators involved. Although I don’t anticipate these things changing, I can still hope. Despite these complaints, Superman Rebirth welcomes back “my” Superman (and the Superman preferred by a lot of other readers). Although this issue isn’t a must read, it was an entertaining story with art that was as strong as the character himself.
Reviewed by: Shawn Hoklas
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