Action Comics #893

Action Comics #893

A

Spaceman Spiff and I were talking the other day about how we both dropped the core Superman titles when the New Krypton story began. It just seemed like an awful idea to each of us—Superman is the last son of Krypton, y’know—and it soured us both on the entire Superman line. I managed to make my way back to Action Comics starting with #890, though, drawn in both by the fact that rising star Paul Cornell would be writing a Blackest Night follow-up starring Lex Luthor, and by David Finch’s amazing cover.

We’re now four issues in to Cornell’s run, and I’m convinced I made the right decision. In my mind, Cornell is at the very top of the “next Grant Morrison” list (a list I take very seriously)—he’s really great at action, humor, character moments, and moving the plot along, and knows how to balance all the elements of a story to really produce a compelling final product. It’s that skill that has me seriously looking forward to the Knight & Squire miniseries, and it’s that skill that makes every issue of his Action Comics run feel fresh and exciting. Generally, books where we get to throw the spotlight on the villains are a lot of fun, and this issue in particular gives us a really great Gorilla Grodd story with a lot of nice little touches that show us Cornell has really thought about Grodd, what makes him interesting, and how a character like that might actually operate if he were real (or, real within the bounds of the DC Universe). I particularly love Grodd’s twisted take on having his own library, and also his preferred weapon of attack. Cornell manages to make Grodd a little ridiculous and funny while still keeping his intellect, strength, and pride intact, giving us a threat both entertaining and serious.

On the art side of things, Sean Chen takes the pencil reigns away from Pete Woods for an issue. Sometimes, the words “guest artist” are among the most horrifying a comics fan can see, but Chen does a fine job here. It’s not quite up to Woods’ level, in my opinion, but it certainly gets the job done while not being inconsistent with previous issues. I feel that colorists are often underrated and are a key part of a series’ art feeling cohesive, and Brad Anderson helps a lot in allowing this issue to slide right in with the rest of Cornell’s run.

And then there’s that reveal on the last page. Unfortunately, pretty much all the promotional material for #894 spoiled this one (in case you don’t know, see for yourself), but it’s still really cool. I can’t wait to see where this goes—any chance for a Vertigo character to interact with the mainstream DCU is usually at least interesting, and I’m confident that under the direction of Paul Cornell and Pete Woods it will also be quite good.

tags: action comics, lex luthor, paul cornell, superman

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  • http://andrewstamm.com Spaceman Spiff

    This sounds pretty cool… gonna have to try and pick up Cornell’s run on the series

  • http://andrewstamm.com Spaceman Spiff

    Will I be lost if I have no idea—or even care—as to what happened in Blackest Night before picking these up?

  • http://nerdynothings.com Rebel Rikki

    Definitely worth it, although I haven’t found a shop yet that has any copies of #890 still in stock. Anyone know of any?

  • http://nerdynothings.com Rebel Rikki

    All you really need to know is that Lex got to wield a power ring during Blackest Night, and he’s been obsessed with doing so again ever since.

  • Mike M

    This was a great issue.I really enjoyed the Jimmy Olson backup I they keep it around for a while.Can’t to see what happens next.What a great cliffhanger that I was not expecting.

  • http://nerdynothings.com Rebel Rikki

    Mike, I’m glad you weren’t spoiled on the cliffhanger. I’d heard about it during the ComicCon coverage so I knew it was coming. Still, I thought it was really cool and can’t wait to see what happens next.

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