Superman Unchained #1 Review

Superman Unchained #1 Review
By: Jay 
Look up in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No,
it’s Superman Unchained #1! The much hyped Scott Snyder and Jim Lee
book is finally here on Superman Day! Does this book live up to its hype? Can
Scott Snyder do for Superman what he has done for Batman? Is Jim Lee’s art
super? Find out in my review of Superman Unchained #1.

Someone or something has knocked eight objects out of orbit,
including satellites and a space station. Superman looks into whom or what is
doing this, even questioning Lex Luthor, but his biggest lead comes from Lois
Here it is, the book that Superman fans have been waiting
for for months. I wasn’t so sure about Scott Snyder being the writer for this
series to be perfectly honest. I am a HUGE Superman fan and as great of a
writer as Snyder is I didn’t think he could tell a great Superman story. He is
great with the darkness of the Batman side of the DCU and
delivers a chilling tale in The Wake, but Superman isn’t dark. He
isn’t something to be frightened of. So I wasn’t really sure what to expect.
With that said, I am surprisingly pleased.
Snyder weaved a terrific Superman story. This wasn’t a
Batman story with Superman as the main character, or Superman in a horror
story, but an outright proper Superman story. There have been only a few
instances where Superman has really felt true to the character to me in the New
52, and this issue can now join that club. Snyder doesn’t just capture the
voice of Superman, but the very premise of the character. The major difference
between Batman and Superman is that in his head Bruce Wayne thinks of himself
as Batman, whereas Superman thinks of himself as Clark Kent.
That is something I think most writers have forgotten since the New 52, but
Snyder uses that in his internal monologue. When Superman is thinking of a way
to shut down the space station’s engine he refers to himself as Clark.
Snyder’s story is told on a blockbuster scale. There is
intrigue from the opening pages where we are in Nagasaki August 9, 1945, and something
emerges from a dropping bomb. That intrigue is coupled with action when we see
Superman trying to stop a space station from falling to Earth. But this issue
has more than action and intrigue, it has well written characters. Lois
Lane is in true form here. She playfully
tells Clark that he made a big mistake in his
article while setting up the layout for the latest edition of the Daily Planet,
and never misses a beat. Perry White is worried about how the paper looks and
selling add space, and the flow of conversation between him and Lois is
classic. Then you have the antagonistic relationship between Superman and Lex
and the friendship between Clark and Jim Olsen, both showcasing different
aspects of Superman. He’s more direct and blunt
with Lex like a cop with a perp, while Jim brings out that nurturing big
brother farmboy side of him.
Jim Lee’s art is really good, but not great to me. This
isn’t anything against him, or to say he doesn’t have talent, because the man
does. Personally I am not a fan of his work because he tends to add these lines
to things. For instance on the splash page where the bomb is dropping from the
plane; a small child is looking up at it with binoculars. His face has so many
lines on it that he looks older. He tends to do this where simple shading is
normally placed.
Now the thing I always really liked about Lee’s work on
Superman is in this book. He makes Superman/Clark Kent look just a little bit
different than the average person. He still looks like he could have fallen off
of a turnip truck from Smallville, but he also has this alien quality to him
that makes him visually unique and interesting.
This is a first issue, and I’m on board. Snyder and Lee have
sold me on this book, and have me interested enough to want to grab not just
the next issue, but at least the first arc to see where they are going with
this “weapon” that the U.S. has
had for the last 75 years. With a great story and solid art, I highly recommend
you pick Superman Unchained #1 up.
That is what I think about this book. Let us know what you
think about Superman Unchained in the comments. Don’t
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