Graphic Novel Review: Superman by Brian Michael Bendis

The Man of Steel by Brian Michael Bendis, with a host of famous and amazing artists. DC Comics, 2018. 9781401283483. Collects The Man of Steel 1 – 6.

Superman: Action Comics Volume 1: Invisible Mafia by Brian Michael Bendis, illustrated by Ryan Sook, Patrick Gleason, Yanick Paquette, and Wade von Grawbadger. DC Comics, 2019. 9781401288723. Collects Action comics 1001 – 1006.

Superman Volume 1: The Unity Saga: Phantom Earth by Brian Michael Bendis, pencilled by Ivan Reis, Inked by Joe Prado and Oclair Albert. DC Comics, 2019. 9781401288198. Collects Superman 1 – 6.

Bendis has been writing for Marvel for years, and recently started writing for DC instead. I’m not alone in being very (almost said “super”) excited to see him make this move. I haven’t looked forward to reading a Superman comic since Grant Morrison’s All-Star Superman.

Start with The Man of Steel. Clark is now married to Lois. They have a super-powered kid. Lois has quit the Daily Planet under somewhat mysterious circumstances. A BIG bad villain named Rogol Zaar comes to Earth to complete his cleansing of Krypton — he claims to have destroyed it way back when, and he’s come to finish the job. First stop: Metropolis, or was it the tiny Kryptonian city, Kandor? Plus someone is setting fires in Metropolis, but the tough new Fire Chief is one the job.

Bendis plays with time nicely, and it sets up the two next books very well.

Action Comics Volume 1 continues the story of the arsons. This is a small scale story about criminals who operate in Metropolis under Superman’s nose, with amazing art and colors. Bendis adds a bit of realism to Lois and Clark’s marriage, which is my favorite part of a great graphic novel.

Superman Volume 1 continues the Rogol Zaar storyline. Earth is in jeopardy and all the heroes pitch in. We get to see some of Krypton’s greatest villains on the battlefield, too. The art is epic.


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