Whoa-is that what I think it is? If I’m reading this solicitation text correctly, we made it to issue #12! Mazel tov! Party time! If you see Matt and Steve at the next convention, go buy them a drink because I have no idea how we made it this far! No, wait, I do-it’s all thanks to you guys! In this final issue, with the Daily Planet on the ropes, Jimmy learns something about it that’ll change everything forever.
(W) Matt Fraction (A/CA) Steve Lieber In Shops: Jun 24, 2020 SRP: $3.99
Hey, look-it’s issue 11 of a 12-issue series, so it’s the perfect jumping-on point for new readers! Mysteries get solved, criminals are revealed, and a secret ally emerges from the shadows. Want more? There are robots, aliens, and The Daily Planet faces a threat to its existence at the same moment the actual planet faces the same! Now’s the time to get on board, guys!
(W) Matt Fraction (A/CA) Steve Lieber In Shops: May 20, 2020 SRP: $3.99
Jimmy continues his world tour, risking his life for more of your sweet retweets, likes, and faves! Plus, the mastermind behind Jimmy’s assassination is revealed… and the insidious secret he’s willing to kill for will upend everything everywhere forever, assuming by “everything” you mean “everything in the pages of just this comic.” Also…you’ve heard of Arm-Fall-Off-Boy? Get ready to meet the entire Fall-Off-Family. What connection do they have to all this nonsense? Probably not much, but hey, you never know.
Written by CHRISTOPHER HASTINGS Art by RYAN BROWNE Colors by RUTH REDMOND Letters by HASSAN OTSMANE-ELHAOU Cover A by DAVID NAKAYAMA Cover B by CASPAR WIJNGAARD Cover C by WILL ROBSON Pre-Order Edition Cover by STEVE LIEBER Cover E 1/20 “Extra Virgin” Variant by DAVID NAKAYAMA On sale MARCH 25 | 32 pages, full color | $3.99 US | T+
Quantum & Woody are back in high school – this time to solve a murder! But are their combined powers a match for the haunts that await them?
(W) Matt Fraction (A/CA) Steve Lieber In Shops: Mar 18, 2020 SRP: $3.99
Jimmy and Jix are on the run, pursued by an intergalactic death force that wants to break up their marriage by any means necessary. If they succeed in offing Jimmy, their prince regent plans to marry Jix and unite their warring empires…but Jimmy Olsen’s still busy trying to solve his own murder! (Or rather, his decoy corpse’s murder.) It’s a typical day for Superman’s pal…
(W) Brian Michael Bendis, Matt Fraction, Greg Rucka, Jody Houser (A) Steve Lieber, Mike Perkins, Eduardo Pansica (A/CA) Bryan Hitch In Shops: Mar 04, 2020 SRP: $5.99
The Man of Steel’s greatest villains react to the biggest news to ever rock the DC Universe. Lex Luthor, Mongul, Toyman, The Joker, and more of the world’s greatest villains must come to grips with how the world changes now that the truth has been revealed by Superman. Some of comics’ most unique and creative voices unite to tell a story that changes all the rules.
(W) Matt Fraction (A/CA) Steve Lieber In Shops: Feb 19, 2020 SRP: $3.99
Ooh ooh, aah, aah-Jimmy see, Jimmy do! Jix and Jimmy go back to Gorilla City, where they had a one-night marriage-stand. (Don’t believe it? Go reread Superman: Leviathan Rising #1!) Jimmy’s sister Janie and Doc Mantel get to Gorilla City to warn Jimmy about what Doc saw in the future, only to find it’s the attack of the 50-foot Jimmy!
I’m totally okay with Brian Michael Bendis finally allowing Superman to reveal his secret identity as Clark Kent. It seems like a sales gimmick or one that will be walked back in a couple years. It’s remarkably in-character and makes up for the half-assed “mystery” that was Event Leviathan. Superman: Heroes #1 shows the reactions to the big reveal. It does so from a variety of perspectives from Lois Lane to the Justice League. Drawn by the fantastic Kevin Maguire! to Clark Kent’s high school chemistry teacher in a sweet story by Matt Fraction and Scott Godlewski. Fraction also pens Jimmy Olsen’s reaction to his “pal” losing the secret identity. That features slick, emotive art from his Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen collaborator Steve Lieber.
And wait, that not’s all. After being terse in the Maguire 12 panel grid sequences, Batman gets to open up to Wonder Woman about his true feelings in regards to Superman’s reveal. It’s a powerful story written by Greg Rucka and drawn in atmospheric shadows by Mike Perkins. However, there’s room for comedy too. Booster Gold finally gets to shout that Superman is Clark Kent after keeping it in for so long because he’s from the future. This comic is a true marriage of different tones. Art and writing styles from Bendis and Maguire set up a running Plastic man gag to Batman coming up with legit, devil’s advocate style arguments for why Superman revealing his secret identity to the world is a terrible idea.
Bendis, Fraction, Rucka, Maguire, Perkins, Lieber, Mike Norton, and Godlewski use Superman: Heroes to show how important Superman is to the both the community of heroes in the DC Universe and the superhero genre as a whole. They also show his roots in Smallville, connections to Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen, and the consequences of his actions. The best parts of this comic are connected to Smallville. The opening scene features a great conversation between Ma and Pa Kent and young Clark about feeling different or weird and having a greater responsibility to the world because of his abilities.
The Fraction/Godlewski Superman and his chemistry teacher scene is really Eisner-worthy. From Godlewski’s clean line and the vivid colors to the underlying theme that it’s been Clark’s work ethic and moral compass that made him a great hero and man and not his superpowers. I also love how he draws Superman’s smile. Even if this means he got a C- in molecular chemistry. Clark Kent is the kid at the end of the bench who hustles for every loose ball, or the student that stays up late and goes to extra tutoring sessions that just happens to have the power of a god. Matt Fraction demonstrates his understanding of Superman’s moral character that pervades the “Truth” storyline as well as his, Rucka, and Bendis’ take on the Metropolis side of the DC Universe.
As evidenced by the “King Superman” plotline brewing over in Superman, Bendis isn’t afraid to look at the negative consequences of Superman revealing his secret identity. That extends to the moral dilemma he’s in as the Daily Planet is owned by Marisol Leone. However, that will be covered in later stories. Maybe Action Comics once the “Year of the Villain” shenanigans are over.
As I’ve mentioned a few times, Rucka and Perkins dig into it immediately in the form of the other 2/3 of the Trinity have a spirited conversation where neither Bruce or Diana is in the right. I really love the panels at the end of scene where Perkins’ heavy shadows lighten, and Diana tells Bruce that maybe he’s jealous that Superman can live his life out in the open and whole. The specters of Tom King’s botched Bat-marriage hang in the shadows of this one. Rucka’s dialogue gets to the core of Batman’s identity issues that have pervaded his best stories. He can’t retire or be a public-facing, but must strike fear into criminals as an archetype of fear.
Superman: Heroes #1 is a high note for Brian Michael Bendis’ current run on the Superman titles. It also features insightful writing from Matt Fraction as well as Greg Rucka reminding readers that he’s one of the greatest Batman and Wonder Woman writers. On the visual side, Mike Perkins shows a conversation can have just as much power as a good fight scene. Kevin Maguire is still the master of the superhero group shot. Steve Lieber’s comedic timing and use of beats works for friends being open and vulnerable together. Even if you aren’t current on Bendis’ Superman comics, Superman: Heroes #1 is worth picking up and dropping $5.99 on. It’s an intelligent and heartwarming take on the first superhero.
Story: Brian Michael Bendis, Matt Fraction, Greg Rucka Art: Kevin Maguire, Mike Perkins, Steve Lieber Art: Mike Norton, Scott GodlewskiColors:Paul Mounts, Gabe Eltaeb Colors: Andy Troy, Nathan Fairbairn Letters: Clayton Cowles, Troy Peteri, Simon Bowland Story: 9.5 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.8 Recommendation: Buy
(W) Brian Michael Bendis, Matt Fraction, Jody Houser, Greg Rucka (A) Kevin Maguire, Steve Lieber, Mike Perkins, Others (CA) Bryan Hitch In Shops: Feb 12, 2020 SRP: $5.99
Lois Lane, Jimmy Olsen, the staff of the Daily Planet, even the Justice League-their lives all changed when Superman revealed his secret identity to the world! This unique Superman experience explores what the identity of Clark Kent meant to those close to him-and what their relationship to Superman will be in the future. All the rules are about to change-and it all starts here.
The dream team of writers Brian Michael Bendis, Matt Fraction, Greg Rucka, and Jody Houser team up for this amazing special, with art anchored by DC legend Kevin Maguire, plus sequences focusing on each corner of the Superman universe by artists Steve Lieber (Superman’s Pal, Jimmy Olsen) and Mike Perkins (Lois Lane). ONE-SHOT
Written by Brian Michael Bendis, Matt Fraction, Greg Rucka, Jody Houser Art by Steve Lieber, Mike Perkins, Bryan Hitch, Eduardo Pansica Cover by Bryan Hitch ONE-SHOT In Shops: Feb 26, 2020 SRP: $5.99
The Man of Steel’s greatest villains react to the biggest news to ever rock the DC Universe! Mongul, Toyman, The Joker, and more of the world’s greatest villains must come to grips with how the world changes now that the truth has been revealed by Superman.
But how will Lex Luthor handle the reveal of Superman’s secret identity? The team behind Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen, Matt Fraction, Steve Lieber and Nathan Fairbairn, give us a hint in this sneak peek into Superman: Villains #1.
Fraction, Lieber, Fairbairn, and some of comics’ most unique and creative voices unite to tell a story that changes all the rules!