A low-level criminal by the name of Yogurt is dropped from the sky over Metropolis. His boss is ambushed by a superhero, but the boss is killed and the hero badly injured. Reporter Clark Kent investigates the death of “Yogurt,” but new Daily Planet reporter, Goode, believes it to be an act of Superman. Meanwhile, Cat Grant returns to Metropolis and the Daily Planet for a visit.
Action Comics #1002 is definitely the most Brian Michael Bendis DC comic to have been printed so far. The recap and credits page is plastered with in-jokes, meta references, and name-drops of other DC talent. There is an extended joke about, “Look, up in the sky,” and how it’s a sign of Metropolis tourists. We also now have a lead on two relatively obscure DC superheroes which Bendis will likely pull into future stories.
This isn’t an inherently good or bad thing. One of the qualities of Bendis’s Superman tenure thus far that has been a boon for his work is Bendis’s relative restraint in making Man of Steel, Superman, and Action Comics Bendisian (I’m going to make that term a thing) titles.
That said, this is a funny comic. There are some more genuine and serious moments, especially when Superman expresses his frustration with the cause behind Metropolis’s fires. There’s also a half-funny, half-sad scene in a dive bar when Clark is investigating Yogurt’s death.
Patrick Gleason’s artwork here is ideal for the somewhat dissonant tones of this comic. Gleason can play to both the more serious and more humorous moments in Action Comics with ease. It’s an aesthetic that looks great too. Of course, that Superman regality is preserved well too. Alejandro Sanchez gives well-contrasted and almost gleaming color art, and the comic benefits from this powerhouse team of artists.
Action Comics #1002 is a bit of a weird one. It’s very Bendis, and it’s a little slow compared to the previous issue. The tone can get especially wonky in parts. That said, it tells in an interesting story, is often quite funny, and has a strong artistic team behind it. In the end, I can recommend it pretty easily. As such, you should feel free to check it out.
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