Superboy: The Man of Tomorrow #2 has Conner figuring out the messy situation he’s stumbled upon last issue. Faced with a group of super powered beings willing to kill, Conner is facing a similar situation as Clark back in Action Comics #775 against The Elite. Facing the problem head on in true Superboy fashion, he does his best to lead by example with action packed results.
Jahnoy Lindsay’s standard cover has Conner pinned by the size altering Pira. The look of confusion on his face sums up his assessment perfectly and the image is great symbolism for his entire situation. Thrusting himself into a conflict he knows nothing about makes it difficult for Superboy to decipher friend from foe.
The variant by Simone De Meo is full of Conner’s 90’s attitude and charm. Defacing a billboard of Superman to better represent himself, Conner shoots us a look knowing there’s nothing anyone can do about it. Superboy has always envisioned himself as a bit of a “bad boy” and this cover captures that in a very fun way.
Jason Howard’s variant plays with the anniversaries of Superman’s death and Superboy’s birth. Seemingly defeating Doomsday without breaking a sweat, Conner stands triumphant over the beast that killed Superman. Having the added ability of Tactile Telekinesis along with his Kryptonian heritage poses the interesting question of Superboy’s power level versus Superman’s. Had he been created prior to the battle that essentially birthed him, would Conner be able to defeat Doomsday easier than Clark? Howard’s cover suggests he would!
Jahnoy Lindsay handles both art and colors for the interior pages. There’s a very fluid Japanese style feel to his art that really adds a layer of the fantastic to the story. The fight scenes have a great sense of motion that lets you almost feel the power each punch has. It’s no easy feat delivering on every aspect of interior art, but Lindsay makes it seem that way.
Kenny Porter, lettered by Lucas Gattoni, delves deeper into the conflict Superboy finds himself in. Once the dust settles from the initial battle from last issue, Superboy is given the origin story of The Cosmoteers. Being genetically altered creations, Conner can’t help but feel a kinship with this spacefaring group but takes issue with their methods.
Having been bred to be weapons, The Cosmoteers feel little remorse in killing others like them to further disrupt their creator’s plans. During a rescue attempt of cloned refugees, Conner decides the best way to lead is by example and affectively shows how a battle can be won without killing. Showing their resolve on the matter, Conner is able to get them to let their attackers live only to end up surrounded by an enemy fleet. The issue ends with Conner devising a plan to punch their way out which will surely lead to some great visuals next issue.
Porter does an incredible job of utilizing the brashness and impulsiveness of Conner’s personality while tempering it with the heroic idealism of The House of El. This is what’s always made Conner stand apart from Clark but still makes him worthy of wearing the S shield. Two issues in and it’s already been a fun fueled ride befitting an adventure of Superboy!