Superman: Lost #2, “Kansas”, begins the first leg of Clark’s journey back to Earth. The space odyssey kicks into full swing this issue but also shows the toll the journey’s had on Clark. The ride is only beginning and it looks like it’s going to be a bumpy one.
The standard cover by Carlo Pagulayan, Jason Paz, and Elmer Santos gives us our first close-up of Superman’s new suit. Flying like a beacon of light through an apocalyptic ruined city is a great visual metaphor for Superman. Using white empty space on the dreary blue background makes his new look stand out for a very eye-catching cover.
Lee Weeks and Elizabeth Breitweiser’s variant suggests the title of the series isn’t just about Superman being lost in space but possibly a loss of self. The trauma of his quest home has definitely left some mental and emotional scars that even Clark’s invulnerability can’t protect him from. Even the strongest of us all needs help and support from time-to-time.
The incentive cover by Howard Porter and Hi-Fi has Superman appearing to be abducted by aliens. In actuality this could be a panel from the interior story as these particular beings end up unwittingly helping Clark. Obviously passed out from exhaustion and limited oxygen supply the aliens drag him into their ship by his cape, which is also something that plays out in the interior encounter.
Penciller Carlo Pagulayan, Inker Jason Paz, and Colorist Jeromy Cox continue their elegant interior art duties. There’s nothing extremely fantastical about this issue as the story takes on a more classical science-fiction identity, but that doesn’t mean the visuals are any less impeccable. From the body language to the extraterrestrial locales this art team does an outstanding job bouncing us through three different timelines without any confusion on our end.
Writers Christopher Priest and Carlo Pagulayan, lettered by Willie Schubert, weave a cautionary tale in Superman: Lost #2. Nine days have past since Superman’s return and he’s adjusting slowly to the safety of his own home. The trauma of the entire ordeal has left him feeling isolated causing distance in his relationship with Lois. Obviously still caring for her husband, Lois is also struggling coming to terms with the effects of Clark’s experiences.
We then segue nicely to him floating in space being obtained by space salvagers. More interested in his red cape, the salvagers listen to his story and we get more insight as to what brought him to the far fringes of space. The salvagers take it upon themselves to return Clark to the planet they think he’s from but with his inability to pay, they dump him out the airlock. From there Priest & Pagulayan shift into a classical sense of sci-fi storytelling. An Earth-like planet where similar struggles have resulted in extreme ways of life acting as a cautionary tale of our real world’s insecurities. Sympathetic to Clark’s misadventure, the leader of this planet grants him a few provisions to continue home which includes the official debut of the all white suit.
One of the major take-aways is Clark’s post-traumatic stress of the entire situation. His behavior adds a powerful weight to the story being told and the toll it took on him. Superman didn’t survive this completely unscathed and it adds a relatable aspect for anyone suffering through difficult events in their life.
Although it may be fictional in nature, Superman: Lost #2 hails as a reminder that we are not alone in our strife. Superman: Lost is quickly shaping up to be an epic Superman story unlike we’ve experienced before, but more importantly it’s shaping up to be one of the more meaningful as well.