Superman 22, co-written by Peter J. Tomasi and Patrick Gleason, takes place shortly after the previous issue. The story arc began with Batman going missing at night after what seemed like a perfectly normal get together between Superman and Batman’s family. Well, as normal as you can get with these two families. That night, Damien Wayne and Jon Kent went searching for him, and they each ran into trouble themselves. This issue focuses mostly on Lois Lane, who decides to start searching for Batman herself. This is where everything goes completely insane.
Without spoilers, there is something incredibly off with the small town they live by, and its occupants. The situation goes downhill fast, and Lois Lane needs to rely on her own resilience to save herself from an increasingly insane situation. It’s great to see Lois Lane get in on the action from time to time, showing that she’s not helpless in any way. There’s some great action toward the end and a slightly disturbing cliffhanger ending. There’s not much else I can say, besides that this issue is the perfect mix of creepy and fun.
Doug Mahnke’s art is fantastic. Everything is smooth and well-detailed, from the opening in the kitchen where Lois looks over some images on her phone from the previous day’s battle, to the reveal of the burning tree in the field. Lois’s facial expressions perfectly convey not only her increasingly worried emotions, but her determination. The action flows well and makes great use of debris flying around. As the comic goes on a lot of story details are revealed through the art, so I can’t comment on it too much further, but it’s all brilliantly detailed and it fits the mood perfectly. Wil Quintana’s colouring perfectly captures the creepy atmosphere with darker colours, while still being well-varied and making great use of shadows and glowing lights.
This is my favourite comic of the week. It’s just so unpredictable the first time you read it through, and I still have no idea where this story is going as a whole. Normally this series is a dramatic take on the superhero genre, focusing on Superman’s family. This story arc still does in the sense that each issue focuses on a different character, but wow is it getting intense. This series is an easy recommendation for Superman fans, and this story arc is also worth checking out for Batman fans, even if he’s missing at the moment.