Issue one of Dark Crisis, Worlds Without A Justice League: Superman shows us a domestic Superman. The concerned father, who is dealing with an impulsive teenage son.
Tom King writes the voices, captures them. The teen voice, the exasperated dad, the distracted mom. The voices that keep the reader grounded as the rest of the story climbs to the sky. It’s a sky-bound, ‘outward bound’ coming-of-age tale, then. Aptly and eccentrically (I will explain) illustrated by Chris Burnham (colours by Adriano Lucas), the story is about home and the ‘out-of-home experience’.
As superson Jon gets more and more restless (AND reckless), his hormones flaring wildly, his temptations and internal voices guiding his decisions above and beyond any words of wisdom or solace from Superman, the story gets more and more compelling.
It’s drawn in an unusual style; this is not the glossy and plastic Superman Family, this one has ripples of wrinkles, scratchy faces, and textured exaggerated features. It’s as if they have become ‘real’ in the sense that they are thwarted, flawed, frustrated. The colours are primary and blunt, the conversations frank and forthright.
This is a good book. Full of full-frontal confrontation, full conversations in the worst of times, the full blast from a teen who needs to find his way.
The 10-page backup story is written by Brandon Thomas, with artist Fico Ossio, colour by Sebastian Cheng. It’s an Aquaman boffo party with an explosive pile of characters, happiness, and toasts to all who survive the sabotage. Glossy, fully saturated with chaos, drama, and conflict.
DC Comics, Dark Crisis: World Without A Justice League: Superman #1, $4.99 for 30 pages of content