The Memories of All Restored

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Action Comics #976
Written by Dan Jurgens
Art by Doug Mahnke

This is part 4 of the Superman crossover that began here , and continued here, and here. This made me so happy! The real DC Universe…the one that was destroyed six years ago and broke my heart…is back! As Mr. Oz said in this comic, the memories of all has been restored. Superman now remembers his life before and after Flashpoint. What is next? Will everyone else remember their entire histories? Will Cassandra Cain remember she is Batgirl again? Is the “him” Mxyzptlk refers to Dr. Manhattan? Speaking of Mxyzptlk…I could see David Lynch directing a Superman  movie with him as the villain. This was a fantastic Mxyzptlk story. Thank you Dan Jurgens!

Action Comics Rebirth 957 – 975

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Action Comics #957
Written by Dan Jurgens
Art by Patrick Zircher

Ok here we go this is Action Comics Rebirth…the real Superman that I grew up with returning to Action Comics in his own series again! Written by the great Dan Jurgens no less. In this issue, the Pre-Flashpoint Superman comes out of hiding after Lex Luthor tries to replace the New 52 Superman as Metropolis’s protector after the New 52 Superman’s death. And if that itself isn’t mystery enough…someone who looks just like Clark Kent is now working at the Daily Plaent! This was a good start. I do wish Jurgens was the artist though. And I don’t really care about seeing Doomsday again.

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Action Comics #958
Written by Dan Jurgens
Art by Patrick Zircher

This issue has Doomsday brawling with Superman most of the issue while Lex Luthor helped. It was not exciting…and Doomsday is almost never exciting. But the mystery of Mr. Oz and the strange Clark Kent are enough to keep me interested.

Continue reading

Disappearing Act

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Superman (Volume 4) #18
Written by Peter Tomasi and Patrick Gleason
Art by Gleason

This was probably the most powerful issue of a Superman comic I have read in a long time. I was literally screaming at the pages! The creepy Clark Kent arrives with a photo book of Superman – the Superman I grew up with’s – life. He leaves it at the house and it spread an eraser fire literally deleting the house and then sadly Jon Kent from reality – although I know he isn’t gone for good it was generally sad to see the kid dissappear as he cried for his parents. Looks like a job for Superman! And I can’t wait to see what this has to do with Rebirth with Mr. Oz making an appearance and we even get to see Tim Drake!

Superboy 6-11

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Superboy (Volume 4) #6
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Marco Rudy

This issue opens with a quiet moment between Superboy and Red Robin that was really touching and showed their great friendship. I loved the mention of Superboy’s old costume and time in Hawaii. Love the continuity and that time period in DC history. Meanwhile, Simon Valentine begins working in Ray Palmer’s lab. The rest of this issue is part of the “Reign of Doomsday” crossover and it is okay although fights with Doomsday are never that exciting. The art is good but maybe doesn’t fit the tone of this book. It is a little dark for Superboy.

superboy_vol_5_7Superboy (Volume 4) #7
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Marco Rudy

In this issue, Superboy discovers an alien ship with a black mercy plant on it causing him to hallucinate that he has destroyed the planet and his Luthor side has taken over. It was an okay issue but hasn’t the Connor fears his Luther side been done to death. I never though it was that great back when Geoff Johns was writing it let alone now. I will see how this goes. It wasn’t bad writing or art, just had a been there done that feel.

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Superboy (Volume 4) #8
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Pier Gallo

Now this was a fantastic issue. It almost reminded me a little bit of PAD’s Supergirl only replacing Leesburg with Smallville. We learn about the dark occult past of the town and how it all connects to this well. Phantom Stranger shows up! It was a lot of fun and I am looking forward to where this is going. Gallo works so much better for this title than Marco Rudy.

 

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Superboy (Volume 4) #9
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Pier Gallo

I wonder if this Hollowville was inspried by Grant Morrison’s work with Klarion the Witchboy? Sure seems like it. As it turns out – Psionic Lad’s mission is not to kill Superboy but only to kill Simon Valentine. It turns out the real Phantom Stranger is under attack and the one with Superboy is an imposter and the evil plan is to move all the souls of Smallville into Superboy clones. What?! This was a crazy issue. I can’t wait to see what happens next. Gallo is a great artist. He almost reminds me of Jerry Ordway.

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Superboy (Volume 4) #10
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Pier Gallo, Pete Woods, and Paulo Siqueira

Most of this issue focused on the history of this evil sorcerer Tannarak. Who knew this story arc would tie into Atalantis and the Viking Prince?! Jeff Lemire makes great use of the DC Universe, even its obscure parts. This continuity nut loves it!

 

 

 

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Superboy (Volume 4) #11
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Pier Gallo

This is the final issue of this book before the New 52. It shows how incompetent DC’s management was at the time they would launch a book 11 months before rebooting the entire universe and ruining DC for five years. But anyways, this was a great finales to the series. All of the characters get their moment to save the day including Lori, Simon, Psion, Krypto, and Superboy. Jeff Lemire is a fantastic writer that needs to stay around DC. I wonder if he writes any of the Rebirth books? I love how he has a panel where a teacher is teaching about the JSA during World War 2. This was an ending to a series that should have kept going. Damn you Didio.

Action Comics 900-904

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Action Comics #900
Written by Paul Cornell, David Lindeloff, Paul Dini, Geoff Johns, David S. Goyer, Richard Donner, Derek  Hoffman
Art by Pete Woods, Jesus Marino, Ryan Sook, RB Silva, Gary Frank, Miguel Sepulveda, Matt Camp, and Brian Stelfreeze

This is the 900th issues of Action Comics and we get a special 96-page issue to celebrate. Some great things here. I loved that they actually mention Superboy’s tactile telekenisis power which has been ignored since the days of Young Justice it seems sometimes. Anyways, Lex Luthor is now a God and shows Superman some of the most emotional moments in the Man of Steel’s history, and then Lex finds out that Clark Kent is Superman finally! I love that Cornell has Superman confirming that the Kents made him who he is today. That is something that has been lost since Johns took over the Superman franchise and overemphasized Superman’s kryptonian heritage. The issue also shows how fundamentally wrong Lex is about Superman’s nature believing that he isn’t capable of human emotion which is the exact opposite because in many ways Superman is more “human” than Lex is. With all this look back at the death of Superman, would it have killed them to have the Matrix Supergirl/Linda Danvers involved instead of or in additon to Kara? That angers me but whatever. Anyways, Lex Luthor projects universal happiness well literally universally and we see even Death of the endless feel it. That was a genius moment from Cornell. Lex then learns that he can keep his new Godlike power and never kill Superman or do anything negative or he must give it up. Lex being the villain that he is chooses the second option and loses his memory of Clark Kent being Superman and the ending leads to what I don’t think looks that great called Reign of the Doomsdays. The rest of the book are smaller stories celebrating the 900th issue. Paul Dini, Geoff Johns, and David Goyer’s stories stood out. I loved Brian Stelfreeze’s final page art too.

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Action Comics #901
Written by Paul Cornell
Art by Kenneth Rocafort and Jesus Merino

This continues the Reign of the Doomdays arc which is stupid but Cornell shows he is a good writer even when given a stupid story. The Doomslayer is a clever creation too.  I wish there was just Jesus Merino on this issue though. It looks like The Eradicator may be dead.

 

 

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Action Comics #902
Written by Paul Cornell
Art by Kenneth Rocafort and Alex Gimenez

Wow! I was pleasantly surprised by this issue. Superman, Supergirl, Superboy, and Steel all work together and act like a real heroes. This is something that should happen on a regular basis and DC Comics but Paul Cornell really knocked it out of the park and had Superman not even want to have Doomsday die. I love that these are real heroes and I’m glad that they’re written that way.

 

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Action Comics #903
Written by Paul Cornell
Art by Alex Gimenez

This was a great issue with plenty of guest stars including the Justice League and the Teen Titans plus more I really enjoyed it and I was surprised by that. Paul Cornell is a good writer he knows how to create good suspense.

 

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Action Comics #904
Written by Paul Cornell
Art by Alex Gimenez and Ronan Cliquet

I’m very glad that DC is returning this book to its original numbering. This is the final issue before it relaunched under the new 52 Banner. It was a fantastic finale that it really showed Paul Cornell understands the character . I literally cheered out loud when Lois said Jonathan and Martha made Superman not Krypton. That was fantastic and it is the truth.

Justice League of America 55-60

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Justice League of America #55
Written by James Robinson
Art by Brett Booth

This James Robinson Justice League was so fantastic. It really was totally underrated. Robinson is a writer who understands that the DC Universe is so rich with diversity of characters. Anything CAN happen in the DCU and Robinson and really knows how to play with its toys. I also loved how odd this group of Justice Leaguers was at the time. This issue is actually part of a wider crossover but Robinson does what any good writer should do and incorporate the crossover into the ongoing story of the book without a hitch. It was cool to see Dick Grayson Batman’s space suit too.

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Justice League of America #56
Written by James Robinson
Art by Brett Booth

Congorilla calls in the Justice League Reserves which I didn’t even realize existed but I am sure glad they do because Zauriel is a great character to put against Eclipso. Robinson is brilliant with his use of DC characters. Even Manitou Dawn got a name drop! He joined the League back when I first started reading comics as a kid and has been barely seen since! I did find it odd that the Shade is aware that two heroes teaming up is called The Brave and the Bold. How would he know that in-universe? What does the media in the DCU say that?  The issue ends with Obsidian showing up as the Big bad.

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Justice League of America #57
Written by James Robinson
Art by Brett Booth

Robinson’s use of Theology in this DCU is fascinating to me. Earth as the Conduit for God’s love for the Universe. Theology in the DCU would be an interesting topic for a paper don’t you think? Anyways, The Spectre shows up now (Robinson is brilliant I can’t say that enough) to fight Eclipso and Eclipso absorbs Spectre’s power. His whole plan with this is to kill God. That is the ultimate villainous plot is it not?

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Justice League of America #58
Written by James Robinson
Art by Daniel Sampere and Miguel Sepulveda

Jesse Quick makes mention here that she is no faster than Donna or Batman now that she has lost her link to the speed force. Does Jesse Quick think that Batman has super speed powers? Because Donna does have superhuman speed so why is she saying that like Batman and Donna are equal in speed. I hate to sound like a broken record but Robinson’s knowledge of DCU obscurity is great and he uses that to a great advantage in the story. All of the Leaguer’s histories are mentioned in this arc so far and this time we get a look at Donna Troy’s past which is quite interesting. But I sure hope Eclipso did not just kill Donna at the end. I like Sampere’s art here.

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Justice League of America #59
Written by James Robinson
Art by Daniel Sampere

The Justice League defeats Eclipso in this issue and all returns to normal, but there is a tease that the League will be breaking up next issue (which is the last issue of this series) after the Atom expresses how impressed he is with this new ver

 

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Justice League of America #60
Written by James Robinson
Art by Daniel Sampere

This is the final Justice League issue before the New 52. Sad because James Robinson made this comic good for the first time since I can really remember. Certainly specifically this volume of the comic was pretty awful till he showed up. I look forward to reading more Justice League Comics during the Rebirth of the DCU. The beginning of this issue is a quick summary of an arc he probably had planned for the book where all the robots in the DCU get corrupted. How cool would that have been as a full arc! Robinson has so many obscure Robots name dropped. Instead he fast forwards through that and has the team meeting and talking about why each one wants to bow out of the League. Donna wants to discover who she is again now that her rage is gone, Supergirl wants to do the same after dealing with New Krypton, Jade wants to enjoy her second chance at life outside of the superhero costume, Jesse Quick is pregnant, Congorilla wants to become a hero for Africa, Starman is nursing a broken arm,  Batman thinks he will be too busy with Batman Incorporated,   They look back on an untold story (has to be another arc Robinson had planned, this guy is great!) about a war between Saturn and Thanagar and an untold story in Gemworld. Donna makes a comment at the end she wants the world to forget her which is ironic because I think at the beginning of the New 52 they had forgotten her. This was a very bittersweet ending to Robinson’s run and I love that we get a taste of what he would have done with this group if the book wasn’t ending.

 

 

Eradicated By Doomsday

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Outsiders (Volume 4) #37
Written by Dan Didio and Phillip Tan
Art by Tan

 

This is the second part of the Reign of Doomsday storyline that began in the Steel One-Shot. It was okay. Didio’s dialogue is of course horrible and everything, but Tan’s art has improved tremendously even if I did not know what was going on with the fight half the time. It looks like Eradicator is dead but I doubt it. At least we get to see Halo back in action.