As Superman fans we have been treated to some truly spectacular clashes in recent memory. Superman vs Rogol Zaar and most recently Superman vs Mongul. These battles have been so epic and impressive because both combatants have equal power sets, or as close as can be. The same can most certainly be said for Parasite who steps up to The Man of Steel in this very issue.
The clash between Parasite and Superman takes centre stage on the cover created by Rafa Sandoval, Jordi Tarragona and Tomeu Morey. Parasite is certainly given his due by the art team as he looks totally imposing. Superman reaffirms this thanks to his facial expression which looks to depict our hero certainly feeling the pain. This cover is truly magnificent. Metropolis making up the background only raises the stakes and heightens the risk. If Kansas made Superman, then Metropolis certainly made Parasite. I love the Dichotomy of it all.
This issue is a real knock-down, drag-out fight. With that said there is so much heart to go with all that brawn. Parasite is one of my favourite Superman villains. The reason being is due to his tragic origin. The freak accident which turned mild mannered Janitor Rudy Jones into the monstrous looking Parasite also gave birth to perhaps his most horrifying trait of all – an unquenchable hunger for energy. This issue sees that hunger bring Parasite into direct conflict with Superman.
First off, the combat in this issue between Parasite and Superman is epic. The combat is intense and hard-hitting. I love to see both Superman and Parasite unchained and giving it their all. This epic encounter engulfs all of Metropolis and even a location that took me right back to a certain Superman movie. Artist Paul Pelletier has truly created the most breathtaking interior pages concerning this fight. This encounter looks and feels like a Hollywood blockbuster. The eclectic panels and page layouts in this issue are staggering. It’s almost like watching a movie. Parasite has honestly never looked better.
Throughout this brutal encounter, Superman never loses heart or hope regarding Parasite. I love how he never writes an enemy off. He truly believes there is good in all of us, however far one might stray from the righteous path. During the quiet moments in between this brawl we see Superman display his greatest power of all. The power to inspire. The power to instill hope and to inspire people to be the very best version of themselves they can be. To love and care for one another. These scenes honesty brought a tear to my eye. To view Superman through the eyes of the citizens of Metropolis specifically the children is a beautiful thing.
Superman and Parasite aren’t the only ones who shine in this issue. Lois, Jimmy and Perry all get their moment to shine and then some. Lois and Jimmy are such a wonderful duo. Their back and forth banter is second to none. These moments are full of levity and really help with the flow and momentum of the issue. As for Perry, well a big thank you needs to be sent in the direction of writer Robert Venditti. Venditti totally captures the voice of Perry, totally exasperated and irate but in that ‘not to be taken to seriously’ kind of way.
This is perhaps one of my favourite Superman issues to date. It is a fantastic read full of action, heart and perhaps most importantly hope. A truly multifaceted issue. Robert Venditti really understands these characters and gives you exactly what you need. Parasite in this issue is a guided missile. He has one goal in mind and his dialogue truly reflects that tunnel vision. Having a writer who understands the core fundamentals of these characters certainly does makes for very exciting times.
Haven’t read the issue yet? You can read it digitally via the Read DC website.