July 21, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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Noteworthy Issues: Superman: Space Age #2 (September, 2022)

Superman and Brainiac have a disagreement.

Mark Russell writes good, socially conscious comics.  Mike Allred has an art style that looks unique and like something out of the Silver Age.  Combine them, and you should get good comics.

Well, DC thought so since they gave the pair of them a different take on Superman.

Issue:  Superman: Space Age #2, September 2022

Writer:  Mark Russell

Artist:  Mike Allred

The Plot:  Brainiac comes to Earth with a  mission of his own.

Commentary:  Essentially, this is a Silver Age DC Universe story where characters age in something like real time.  What that ends up meaning is the Justice League sits around the Hall of Justice and isn’t even sure what it’s supposed to be doing.  Batman is starting to think his methods aren’t enough.  Superman just wants to do what’s right, and he isn’t sure what that is.  What is the purpose of the League?  There doesn’t even seem to be much in the way of supervillains in this world.

It also means his relationship with Lois Lane becomes really serious, and when he finally opts to tell her he’s Clark Kent, she already knows because she’s not an idiot.  She isn’t even upset.  Superman here can start a family, but this whole story is basically one where Superman is aware the Anti-Monitor is coming and he can’t stop the Crisis.  Unless there’s a big twist in the final issue, it will end as the first issue began with the destruction of this Earth, and Superman will be spending those final moments with his wife and son in the Fortress of Solitude.

The result here, as Brainiac arrives with a proposal to stop the Anti-Monitor that won’t sit well with Superman or any of his allies, is a series that, while it has its light moments, also has a rather melancholy feel.  These are superheroes who may have moments of happiness but also have no idea what they are doing half the time.  What is the right thing to do in a complicated world?  And does it matter?  It’s not what I thought I would get based on the concept or the artwork, but I think it’s been genuinely worth my attention all the same.

Grade:  A-