If one year ago you told me that DC Comics would take Superman back to his roots in the 1930′s and it would turn out to be the most modern and relevant take on the character, I would have called you crazy. But that is exactly what Grant Morrison has done to the character of Superman, and this comic is refreshing, exciting, and meaningful.
Action Comics #2 begins shortly after the end of last issue. The government has captured the being known as Superman, and under a task force led by Lex Luthor, they are experimenting and testing his powers. This is a Superman that can bleed; he is not the all-powerful god that he will become later. Superman breaks free, holds Luthor in a choke hold, and gets to meet Lois Lane for the first time.
Each and every beat of this book has a joy and energy that a Superman story hasn’t had in a long time. The issue ends with the readers discovering the true being that Luthor is working for. (Hint: It’s a classic Superman villain that has teamed with Luthor before.)
Part of the reason that this book works is the pure essence of motion instilled into every panel by Rags Morales. Last issue, his art came off as rushed. Well, Mr. Morales must have had a chance to catch up, because the art on this issue is fantastic. His Superman is always moving, has a smile on his face, and shows power in every shot.
His Lex Luthor is exactly the opposite. Morales’s Luthor looks like a pudgy accountant, but his Superman looks so great that I can forgive him that one character. I would love to see Rags Morales be given a Superman graphic novel to draw. Give him the time to perfect his characters, and I know he would knock it out of the park. But the New 52 is all about deadlines as it has been announced that Brent Anderson will be drawing more and more of the book as the months go by. Which is a shame as Rags Morales was meant to draw Superman.
Action Comics #2 truly lives up to its name. Superman is a dynamic action character again. He still has the same core values that make him the Superman we all know and love, but his focus has been shifted to represent the little man again. At a time, when people are protesting corporations and greed at financial districts all around the world, it’s a good thing to know that Superman is looking out for us again. Comics have always been used as a mirror for modern society. Action Comics was the first superhero comic, and now it just might be the most relevant and important.
Action Comics #2 Grade: A+