Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Review: Superman Lois and Clark #2

Last Wednesday was something of an interesting week for me to digest as a Superman fan. In one short week, we see that DC Comics simply doesn't have a cohesive vision for Superman.

We had JLA 3001 #6, where there is a classic Superman and a murdered depowered narcissist of a Superman.

We had Superman #46, another chapter of The Truth where a depowered Superman is fighting for money.

We had Superman/Wonder Woman #23 where our 'heroes' batter a helpless villain and then team up with him.

And then we have Superman:Lois and Clark #2, the most classic of the Superman books with an aspirational hero working with his loving wife and life partner Lois Lane.

Luckily, we get this book by Dan Jurgens and Lee Weeks reminding me of the true versions of these characters. This is a strong Lois, investigating evil and putting herself in danger. We get Clark, a Superman fighting crime but forced to do it in hiding. I love this book and I am glad it is on the shelves.

As for this issue, it didn't move things along too much. It builds on the foundation the first issue did, showing the struggle for this Lois and Clark to acclimate to the darker main DC world. And we see that the threat of Intergang is real. But, we knew both those things last issue.

Weeks is a more classic artist which is perfect for this book, even evoking Jim Steranko at one point.

Still, I can't help but like this book.

We start out with a flashback of Clark and Lois' early years on this planet. Lois has to adapt to being a sort of homemaker as the two try to settle in. She is Mrs. White, home with Jon. Not flashing press credentials. Of course, we know that Lois ends up using her skills as an anonymous whistleblower.

But how can I not like The Whites, living at house #1938. There is a lot of classic Superman stuff here.

Superman is off stopping a supervillain named Shockwave. Shockwave has the ability to set off earthquakes and wants to level Chicago.

Below the ground, Superman is trying to stabilize the tectonic plates, holding up the city.

There is something evocative of here of King-Size Hulk by Jim Steranko, also bringing a classic feel here. I love it.

At super-speed, Clark is able to defeat Shockwave and strip the villain of his armor.

But this Earth doesn't love their heroes. As Lois states, they had to adjust to the fear and suspicion of this world. It wasn't easy.

Even here, after stopping Shockwave and streaking away at superspeed, Clark is tailed by fighter jets who fire missiles at him. This isn't his Earth where there would be applause.

Now back in the present, we see that Clark isn't as hidden as he used to be. The government is investigating that Jupiter probe landing and Hank Henshaw. In particular, an investigator named Mr. Chambers is really looking closely. Perhaps, Chambers knows of Clark's existence?

Of course, given the current DCU, I assume Chambers is a 'bad guy', someone who will want to shut Clark down. Maybe he is a good guy?

As for Lois, she has been called by the school to pick up Clark who was caught watching the Jupiter landing on his iPad rather than paying attention.

I love the conversation between Lois and Jon. Lois thinks that she would have been watching the landing rather than school work as well. There is a very nice feeling of parental love here. And it shows that Jon is truly Lois and Clark's son.

The two don't get to chat more because a vehicle filled with gunmen run them off the road. Lois calls Clark and activates Protocol Omega.

While on the run, somehow Jon is able to take out some of the men with a tire iron.

Shades of Superman Returns!

I don't know why Lois looks so surprised. While this may be the first time Jon has maybe used 'powers', certainly she must have been watching for something to emerge over time.

Hopefully, I will like this kid more than the one from the Superman movie.

Clark ends up arriving and takes out the remainders of the gunsels.

And he then scans all the men and vehicles, removing any trace of who or what they men were trailing.

This whole thing about staying hidden is coming to an end. The spotlight is closing in on them. It is only a matter of time before they get revealed.

I do hope when that happens we hear a bit from this Clark about why he hasn't stepped out into the light during things like Doomed, or even now with The Truth.

Lois is sure these men were from Intergang. That would make sense given she is about to publish her expose on them. All these precautions aren't going to work anymore.

And then we get three reminders of ongoing plots. One, we see Jon peeking out the window listening to his parents talk. It is clear Jon knows what is going on. Second, Chambers saw that Henshaw was in the ship that landed. So where is he? And lastly, we see the alien hunting the Oblivion Stone.

It was great to read this couple again. This is the Superman and Lois I love. So even if this felt a bit like a filler issue, even as the second issue, I wasn't too let down. Still, as a mini-series, I was hoping for things to move a long a bit quicker. I suppose the chase sequence defines the threat, shows the secret is coming out, and shows us Jon. But there wasn't earth-shattering about those reveals.

Overall grade: B/B+


Martin Gray said...

I thought the investigator was a journalist, maybe a new version of Johnny Chambers aka Johnny Quick. Probably not!

It was great to see a Shockwave in this universe, put he needs some colour in that costume!

Anonymous said...

Nice review.

I am enjoying this book more than I have enjoyed Superman in a number of years. I hope this book can continue for a long tme

Jay said...

The way I see this mini ending in my eyes, which to me would be perfect, would be a multiverse-traversing pre-Crisis Supergirl arriving and telling Lois and Clark that she's found their Earth and can take them home, have them say their goodbyes to those on this Earth that they've come to know over the past several years, then Kara whisks them away to the post-Crisis Kent Farm. Final panel is little Jonathan running, or maybe flying, into the arms of Jonathan Sr. and Martha.

Nobile said...

Isn't Chambers the same specs guy who was spying on Lois in the first ish?

Besides, reading this mini I felt it has a very present TV-series pace: no costumes, undercover moderate action, secret organizations and threats. More than that: I would really like a show with this setup! Of course, instead of a depowered Superman in the background, we could have a sort of dark Earth-2 were the local Superman is gone or dead and heroes are government controlled.
I also think that Cain and Hatcher would be perfect for the main roles!

Now, back to reality...

Anonymous said...

It was the little things about this issue that made it enjoyable. Clark cushioning Shockwave with a gust of superbreath, Lois lamenting to toddler Jon about writing a puff piece, Jon's strong willed but inquisitive nature, character beats like that in a story helps a writer to define his characters well. And that's what Jurgens did right to me. Also Lee Weeks' artwork is gorgeous, very evocative, a classic comic sensibility at times and equally good in action or quiet moments. Plot didn't really go anywhere and the mystery space villain subplot is on the backburner but the high notes made it worth it.