Superman (vol.4) #5 (2016)
“Son of Superman, Part Five”
Story – Peter J. Tomasi & Patrick Gleason
Penciller – Doug Mahnke
Inker – Jaime Mendoza
Colorist – Wil Quintana
Letterer – Rob Leigh
Assistant Editor – Andrew Merino
Editor – Eddie Berganza
Cover Price: $2.99
Figured I’d give myself a little break from the Charlton Action Heroes, and take a look at a recent Superman release.
We pick up where we left off… Superman and family arrive on the Moon. Along their way to their final destination Jon is able to catch a glimpse of the American flag and the Apollo-15. Superman has seen fit to take them to a place on the dark side of the Moon… deep within a crater. To a secret facility built by Batman.
It doesn’t take long for the Eradicator to arrive, and Superman sends his family away so he can take on the threat head on. It’s all for naught, as the villain isn’t there for Superman… but Superboy… just as he has been for the past several chapters. He reaches for the impure youngster, but Superman interjects… and winds up inhaled for his troubles!
From here we enter a chase scene. Jon hits the baddie with a blast of heat vision before fleeing. The Eradicator immediately gives chase, leaving Lois among a bat-arsenal of bat-gadgetry. Just as the Eradicator is readying to eradicate… Bat-Lois shows up to kick some ass.
They fight for awhile, and we get a look inside the Eradicator. Superman is there among the Kryptonian spirits… I suppose this was his plan all along, as he needs a favor from these poor lost souls who have been unwittingly powering and lending strength to their host.
As the Eradicator has bettered Bat-Lois, he again turns his attentions to Superboy. At that very moment, he feels as though the spirits have vacated… and they have! They are now inside Superman… and he’s evacuating as well. Now we’re set for a souped-up Supes taking on the Eradicator once and for… now.
I’m afraid I’m gonna come off like a bit of a broken record here. Still enjoying this story… but, hopeful that we have less “six-parters” in our future. The formulaic writing-for-the-trade approach here really hurts the flow… by giving it a predictable flow. This issue ended just about the way I figured it would… Superman and the Eradicator readying for the climactic battle… they got the “go home” from the ref, and it’s time to start hitting finishers.
That having been said, there was a lot of great action here. I enjoyed seeing Lois get all “batted up” and taking it to the Eradicator for a bit. Jon getting a bit of time to trash-talk was a fun bit as well. I’m still kinda confused about the spirits being inside the Eradicator… and now how they’ve gotten into Superman, guess it’s just one of those things that happens and I probably shouldn’t think too hard on it. It’s far easier to follow than last issue, that much is certain.
Doug Mahnke on art is always a treat. I’ve enjoyed his take on Superman ever since his runs on Superman: The Man of Steel and JLA around the turn of the century. He really brings it here, and is a welcome addition to the super-team. I definitely want to mention the colorist Wil Quintana… this book looks lush. Amazing color work here!
Overall… enjoyed it with the caveat that… it’s, well, a modern-day comic book… not really written to be read on its own, sadly. While it only took a few minutes to read it, I’ll say I enjoyed those few minutes. That, and I’m (still) hoping we eventually get some solo Superman stories sometime soon. I don’t think we’ve had one a single one yet.