Since I only picked up 3 new comics this week, I’m going straight to my reviews. However, I also picked up Superman 25 this week, which is when my local shop got it. Two weeks late. This sort of incompetence from the shipping company isn’t unusual. Anyway, Superman 25 was pretty good, but I’m not going to bother reviewing a 2 week old comic.
Superman 26, written by guest writer Michael Moreci, takes place after the previous story arc and before the upcoming Road Trip arc. It’s a bit of a one shot story, and a nice break from an intense story arc involving Manchester Black. This issue is almost entirely about Superman and Superboy learning from each other, while also giving us a few flashbacks into Clark Kent’s own childhood. It’s a great issue exploring how, while Clark is a good father, he’s still learning a lot about how to teach his son. His overbearing methods are starting to increase tensions between them.
Instead of trying to get Jon to do everything his way while they’re superheroing together, he lets Jon take charge for a day. Jon uses his brain more than he usually does, but he also makes a couple mistakes and even loses confidence for a moment. Superman’s encouragement helps Jon refocus, leading to a quick yet glorious finish to a supervillain threat. The flashbacks show a similar moment between Clark and Pa Kent, where Jonathan put Clark in charge of the farm for a day, but wasn’t allowed to use his powers. Clark disobeyed and ended up destroying some of the crops he was supposed to harvest. These two moments work very well together, and show how special both father/son relationships really are. Lois gets a few good lines as well, helping Clark realize his own mistake and giving him a new direction, but the main focus is on Superman and Superboy.
The art by Scott Godlewski is great. Everything looks clean and smooth, but with a fair amount of detail. For example, there’s a brief fight pitting Superman and Superboy against a bunch of robots, and the robot faces are screen domes that show a very detailed look at space when they’re up close. During one fight, there’s a knocked down mailbox with letters scattered on the road, and those kinds of details continue throughout the comic. Facial expression are great at showing emotion, like young Clark’s scowl after he’s told not to use his powers, Jon’s proud grin when he’s told he’ll be in charge for a day and Clark’s look of “oh crap” when Jon starts bragging about it. Hi-Fi’s colouring brings the art to life, with plenty of great lighting and shadow work, vibrant colours and a fantastic sunset to close off the issue.
This is a great comic that could just as easily be a one-shot or an annual, but it’s perfectly fine as a normal issue as well. It highlights how special of a relationship Superman has with his son, and how he’s still got some learning to do himself. It’s true to life how real parents learn along with their kids – at least the good ones. If that sounds interesting to you, then you really should pick this comic up.
I’m kind of torn between this and All-New Wolverine 22 as my favourite comic of the week, but for entirely different reasons. Admitidally three comics doesn’t give much room for competition, but these are probably the two comics I look forward to the most every month either way.