Action Comics #5
Grant Morrison - Writer
Andy Kubert - Pencils
Issue #5 of Actions Comics goes back to the beginning, with Andy Kubert taking the reigns on the penciling side. On Krypton. Again. And this time, Jor-El purposely sends his son to a planet where he will be a god! This minor detail marks a HUGE change in Clark Kent's history, a rare chance to reinterpret not only Superman's look and demeanor, but also his moral character and ethical mission. Before, Kal-El has always arrived on Earth by mistake, making his actions benevolent for a planet that could have been any planet, really. Maybe this detail has been used in past reinterpretations, but in the new 52, it makes a lot of sense. Superman's overall attitude has undergone a drastic shift away from general politeness and sincerity towards a snarky sarcasm and big ego. It's a change I've liked so far and am curious to know how it will play into future stories as well as crossovers and Justice League arcs.
Anyway, most of the issue is dedicated to showing Krypton esplodin'. That's about it. So unless you've enjoyed reading the scientific jargon and every Kryptonian ever saying "Oh, Jor-El, you silly coot!" every other time Superman's origins have been retold, you can mostly skip about 26 of the pages of the entire issue. The parts about the Kents are necessary and respectably done. Unfortunately, the same can't be said about the back-up story about the history of Jonathan and Martha Kent, one that goes the extra distance to make their relationship hinge all the more on some 'miracle' that come in the form of a space baby. Why can't the Kents be simple? Why does their life have to include various hints at some biblical connection to something greater? Ugh. It's exhausting.
Issue Grade: C+
Art Grade: A
I'm a huge fan of the Kubert brothers, so anything they draw is automatically given a 'kudos' from this journalist.