Comic Review: Man Of Steel #5 (DC Comics)

Superman is being comforted on the cover of the fifth issue of this new DC weekly title: The Man of Steel. His cape is torn asunder, and we wonder what […]

Superman is being comforted on the cover of the fifth issue of this new DC weekly title: The Man of Steel. His cape is torn asunder, and we wonder what will become of this man of steel?

To bring ourselves up to date on the story, and since this comic is published weekly, the story changes quickly… anyway: Superman is being targeted by Rogol Zaar, a bad and powerful alien dude. Rogol has decided that all Kryptonians are bad, and must be expunged. Not just scoffed at or scorned, they must be wiped away, genocide-like. And any planet where they lived must be cleansed.

A tough order for Superman, who is slowly getting the picture: Rogol is not a simple bad guy; he is enormously powerful and resourceful. Plus, he has ignored council statements that told him to stand down; Rogol is not taking ‘no’ for an answer.

In chapter 5 of this developing intergalactic wipedown, it’s all about Superman getting his butt handed to him on a plate. And as writer Brian Michael Bendis has been showing us, week by week, there are other dramas being played out, in the time before the butt kicking: Jorel, Superman’s ‘Dad’ wants to take Superman’s boy on a trip across the universe. Show him the sights, spend some quality time with him. But Superman’s not a fan.

Oh, there is lots more going on, and the picture keeps shifting from scene to scene. Bendis writes a very good plot, but there is dialogue that occurs during Superman’s recuperation that I found to be ludicrous. Individuals were acting out of character. Childishly, perhaps for a cheap laugh. And perhaps this type of silliness is amusing to some readers, but I found it jarring, distracting.

Artist Adam Hughes is more than capable of handling his portion of the book, with nicely rendered characters and striking panel layouts, but there is some transition confusion as we move from Hughes’ pages to those of artist Jason Fabok partway through the issue. It’s to be understood, of course, that one artist can’t possibly pencil, ink and colour a full comic book every week, so we ignore those handoffs…

The stage is set, the scope is wide. The effects are enormous and the visual effects budget is big. It’s intergalactic war, with local domestic drama mixed in for some spice. And for those who want their Superman story served up hot every Wednesday, this is the way to do it!
Next issue: the end of this six-issue miniseries.

DC Comics, The Man of Steel #5 (of 6) $3.99 for 24 pages of content, Rated Teen

Alan Spinney

About Alan Spinney

After a career of graphic design, art direction and copywriting, I still have a passion for words and pictures. I love it when a comic book comes together; the story is tight, and the drawings lead me forward. Art with words... the toughest storytelling technique to get right. Was this comic book worth your money? Let's see!!