Action Comics #1007 kicks off a brand new storyarc in the form of ‘Leviathan Rising’. This issue sees legendary artist Steve Epting take over art duties from Ryan Sook. Steve Epting is no stranger to taking on iconic figure head characters, as the artist worked on one of the most influential Captain America storyarcs in the history. Not to mention he is also the co-creator of the infamous Winter Soldier. I’m so excited for this issue but before we dive in lets take a look at the covers.
Interior artist Steve Epting has created an explosive cover featuring one of comics most iconic poses – in the form of Superman revealing his classic emblem from under his shirt. I love the use of this pose, it really is classic and quintessential, perfect for an issue embarking on a new arc. Personally I feel that its important to revisit classic elements when embarking on something new, and this cover gets that spot on.
As for the variant cover, veteran Superman artist Patrick Gleason has created a truly unique and original cover. The clouds up above along with an in-flight Superman make up the American Flag, an integral piece of Superman iconography. I love these creative covers that create visuals using elements of the environment. Patrick Gleason often used this method for his own run on the character, prior to Bendis era of Superman.
Action Comics #1007 opens with Jimmy Olsen well and truly out of his depth, as he finds himself amidst one of the DC Universe’ most notorious cults – Kobra. Before long Jimmy faces the full force of Kobra worshiper’s as he starts to do what he does best – get the action shots! The situation takes a turn for the worst as a cataclysmic event occurs. Now I love a good old fashioned Jimmy Olsen adventure, but this whole sequence of events feels as though the reader is jumping in halfway through a story line. That’s not to say this is a bad thing. The use of Jimmy Olsen makes it all the better, as the character is an integral part of the Superman mythos who hasn’t necessarily been used in a while. Jimmy eventually finds refuge at the Daily Planet, specifically the office of Perry White. An irate Perry White at that. The banter is quintessential Perry and even though Jimmy is receiving the full force of Perry’ anger, you can just tell its more bark than bite.
The issue progresses with Lois and her estranged father having a heart to heart, with Lois ultimately revealing a secret to her father that she believes is long overdue. This whole conversation just feels strained, tense and awkward from start to finish. Exactly how it should feel between these two personalities that are all to similar. Lois really does put her heart on the line during this exchange, though of course it falls on deaf ears as General Sam Lane. Who is completely set in his ways shuts himself off from his daughter completely. His single word replies and in some cases, deafening silence really reiterate how closed off this man is to the thought of Lois and her family.
This whole conversation is very upsetting for Lois, and you just feel this conversation will have implications down the road. The secret revealed by Lois will have the fan community talking – especially her handling of the situation. The Lois that has been cultivated and nurtured over the last few years, specifically from the ‘Rebirth’ era has definitely been portrayed as a family orientated, motherly figure, and equal partner in a loving relationship. Her actions recently up to and including this issue has really gone against that in my opinion. However some would say that this is the independent, go-getter ace reporter, Lois Lane simply resurfacing.
The final sequence of this issue consists of the Man of Steel himself on patrol when a call for help alerts him to danger, specifically the head of Task Force X, Amanda Waller falling to her demise. Naturally Superman arrives in time to save the day, only to witness the same cataclysmic event that Jimmy witnessed at the beginning of the issue. Not only that but the disappearance of Amanda Waller. This issue is extremely fasted paced and a really quick read. It most definitely has a prelude feel to it containing that all important ‘insighting incident’.
Superman himself was hardly in this issue. He featured as Clark momentarily early on and again more prolific right at the end. For me this was okay as other characters from the Superman mythos took centre stage. Steve Epting’ artwork was superb, and had a real world sensibility about it. The artist is absolutely incredible at drawing destruction and debris. Like the environment, Epting got the look of the characters spot on, from surly Sam Lane to the iconic waist coat of Perry White, and Classic Bow tie and shirt combo of Jimmy Olsen. Very quintessential and a nice touch for avid Superman fans.
Bendis has certainly been writing a unique interpretation of Lois that is all his own. The character certainly exhibits familiar traits, but has often tackled situations perhaps more akin to someone not familiar to the workings of someone in a committed relationship. But that’s just my opinion. One constant throughout all of Bendis tenure on Superman is the Man of Steel himself. Bendis really has got the nature of Superman spot on especially when the character greets school children and ask how their day has been in this issue. It’s so sweet and endearing. When reading Superman or Action Comics I find it easy to place a Henry Cavill or Dean Cain into my head as the voice of Superman.
Action Comics #1007 sets the stage for a brand new story arc, and it has definitely got me wanting to learn more about these “not so random” cataclysmic events. And just how does Amanda Waller fit in to it all. Only time will tell.