ACW #640 – Superman

Action Comics Weekly #640 (Superman)
“Where There’s Smoke…”
Writer – Roger Stern
Pencils – Curt Swan
Inks – Murphy Anderson
Letters – Bill Oakley
Colors – Tom Ziuko
Editor – Mike Carlin
Special Thanks – Tom Peyer

Can ya… can ya believe it?  We’re about to look at, and I’m having trouble wrapping my mind around it… the penultimate installment of Superman!  Certainly not the first “penultimate” chapter we’ve looked at during this Action Comics Daily journey… but, this one… the feature we’ve looked at (for better or worse) for the past forty weeks, coming to a close… really signifies that this project is actually about to end.

Wild stuff… come this time next week, we’ll never have to look at a Superman two-pager again!

We open with Clark Kent walking down a Metropolis street.  He laments the fact that he’d been tied up in California (with the Fellowship and the Consortium) for the past little while, otherwise he might’ve been able to do something about the Quraci conflict… So, I guess, California… and all the stuff he was still able to do in the other skatey-eight books he manages to appear in every month, if what kept him from addressing Qurac.

Anyhoo, he begins to smell fire, and so… he decides to supe up and check it out.  He comes across that Quraci Restaurant… which we saw get lit up last week.  He puts out the flames and rescues the Proprietor.  He learns that two nogoodniks started the fire… and, the Restaurant Owner seems more offended by the fact that they said he wasn’t American than anything!

Superman is on the case… and it doesn’t take him look to find the pyromaniacs.

As good a “middle chapter” as we’re likely to get given the premise.  Not half bad… but, certainly not as powerful as last week’s outing.

Really, my lone takeaway from this bit was the fact that the Restaurateur was more upset at the idea that the pyros referred to him as not being American.  It’s almost as though torching his place was secondary.  There’s a certain poignancy to that… something that really tugs at ya.

It’s weird how, in just two parts (four-pages) we have already gotten deeper characterization and more interesting conflict than we had gotten in the entirety of the first thirty-eight!

Tomorrow: Invading Spaces with Phantom Lady

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