Superman #5 continues an exciting story arc that not only reintroduces classic Superman characters, but reinvents them. I am having a blast so far with this series, it’s a near perfect Superman story and I can’t wait to see where it goes from here.
But before we get into the issue itself, let’s take a look at the covers. The main cover is by interior artist Jamal Campbell and I adore it. The positioning of Superman amidst the scream of the Silver Banshee is so clever and creative. To see Superman’s classic red, blue and yellow colours streak through the middle of the black and white swirls is just so eye catching.
Lee Bermejo’s variant is just incredible. I have been a huge fan of his for many years now and this cover just reminds me why. The detail is stellar and you can feel the pain and rage that Superman is feeling at that very moment because of it. The green glow on the chest shows how powerful the radiation of the Kryptonite is and the subtle glow of the rocks surrounding him is just so realistic. This is a stunning cover.
Hayden Sherman’s cover is striking. The harsh red tones gives the reader a sense of danger and the concept behind it “The Villain Inside” has been executed perfectly as we see the light shining silhouette of Superman’s facial profile against the darkly shaded one of Lex Luthor. It seems like a simple concept, but it’s one I adore.
There are also other variants available by John Cassaday, Mikel Janín, Jorge Fornés and Scott Forbes.
Superman #5 opens out with a really fun and sweet telling of Jimmy & Silver Banshee’s relationship from the moment they met, up until this point. What I love about this sequence is that whilst parts of this story arc and issue are genuinely haunting, Joshua Williamson, lettered by Ariana Maher manages to mix the perfect blend of lightness and darkness to make it digestable and enjoyable.
This leads to Superman and Jimmy teaming up to save his loved one, I love the use of Jimmy in this issue, whilst Superman so often saves him from turmoil, it’s Jimmy who does the heavy lifting in taking down Silver Banshee in a safe way. It’s thanks to that save, that they get closer in their investigation on taking down Graph and Pharm, but not without setbacks as Superman temporarily loses one of his most valuable powers. This loss of power offered Clark a rare experience, truly allowing him to switch off and spend valuable time with his friends and loved ones whilst giving them his full attention.
Whilst Graph and Pharm’s overarching plans are still a mystery, it sees their reasoning behind the attacks come down to Luthor, which quite rightly causes Superman and Lois to debate whether or not he is worth a second chance after hiding yet more information. This also gives us yet another great Superman moment as he explains to Lois that everyone is worth a second chance. The connection to Luthor may be the cause for the rather brutal and harrowing situation he’s put in at the end of the issue, and it seems that whoever the culprit was took full advantage of Superman’s temporary drawback and the effects will be devastating.
The artwork in Superman #5 by Jahnoy Lindsay is great, he continues to be a perfect fit for this extremely layered book. The panel positioning during the opening sequence was perfect, it really took me back to the ‘Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen’ days. Not to mention the artwork displaying Silver Banshee’s upgraded power set. Every page and moment in this book is a delight to look at, the mix of realism and classic comic book art is brilliant and really brings this story to life.