[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers.]
Words & Pencils: Phil Jimenez
Inks: Matt Santorelli
Colors: Jeromy Cox
There have been a few different versions of a “Superwoman” character in the past. It’s no surprise that DC would want to utilize as many Superman characters as possible as the publisher forges ahead in the Rebirth era with a refresh on their line. Whatever you may think Superwoman is going to be, I guarantee that you have a couple surprises in store with this issue.
In Metropolis, post-Doomsday attack which is being chronicled in current issues of Action Comics, Lex Luthor is unveiling a new aircraft carrier that he intends to use as a method of ensuring the safety of Metropolis. Intertwined with this story in the present are scenes of Lois Lane and Lana Lang in Kansas at the Kent farm. We get to see that Lois has come to Lana for guidance in the use of her super powers. Lana did the same for Clark and she wants the same tutelage.
In Metropolis, things go south as something shuts down Luthor’s Super-armor and attacks the aircraft carrier, tipping it on its side. Lana is covering the story for the Daily Star and Lois zips in as Superwoman to save the day. She manages to make some classic super-saves, but realizes she can’t do it all on her own and call to Lana for help. Up to this point, Lana has been Oracle to Lois’s Black Canary, talking her through the incident with helpful suggestions based on her knowledge of Superman’s powers that Lois has obtained. Lana assists Lois in righting the carrier and preventing it from crashing into a bridge. Lana and Lois have to go into the carrier to save the surviving crew. They encounter something unexpected and come face to face with what appears to be a Bizarro Superwoman. But the finale is completely unexpected.
The relationship between Lana and Lois is incredibly intriguing. Essentially, you have two women who were in a love triangle with a now deceased man. Clark loved Lois and Lana loved Clark. That said, they both had immense respect for Clark. However, with Clark now gone, they come together as uneasy friends. Lois finds Lana to be both knowledgeable and the person that grounded Clark as he grew up. Lois, having received Superman’s powers, needs that same guidance. This pairing provides immense possibilities to be explored. This situation would have even a greater impact if there were not another Superman ready to take his place in the world. The existence of the pre-Flashpoint Superman actually takes away some of the importance of this book, despite the quality of the stories being told about that Superman. Lastly, the surprises in the second half of the book are enough to keep the reader coming back.
“I’ve got you.”
“Who’s got you?”
Any Superman: The Movie reference should tickle that nostalgia.
Another nod to another medium is the appearance of the Catco Worldwide Media logo from the Supergirl TV Show. There’s a lot in this issue with both plot and substance.
This is a compelling issue and story wise leaves little to be desired. The characters are complex and provide limitless possibilities. Is this going to be a buddy type story? Will it echo Birds of Prey? Or something else? Unfortunately, the one thing that stood out to me was the inking. It did not do justice to Jimenez’s pencils. It was so disturbing I had to look back at who was drawing the book. Jimenez can draw a beautiful book, but in this case he needs someone to do his pencils justice on the finishes.
The surprises in the second half of this issue are worth the price of the book, ten-fold. I recommend jumping on early, it seems likely once this book deals with all the initial questions it will become a casualty. Right now, issue one is a winner and if handled correctly, could be a phenomenal title.