Continuing on from out last review of Superman: What Price Tomorrow? we see a definite improvement in the Superman New 52 franchise. Superman: Secrets and Lies advances the world of Metropolis and it’s almost prime-time television drama. The artwork and stories are better but is Superman better?
The very first improvement you see when you pick up this volume is the artwork. Immediately the cover screams SUPERMAN. It looks like what a new modern Superman should be. The back of the cover also screams epic Superman…ness. Though not as sweet as the front cover. So great job to Kenneth Rocafort fort rocking my world on the cover.
The inside of the book however, is a slightly different story. While the artwork is great throughout the first few stories, you can’t help but feel the stories are sorta, monster of the week type of plots. Which is fine in all since you get to see first hand the drama of Metropolis. Which is the real pull of the book. That and Dan Jurgens artwork!
Lois Lane has refused to reveal the secret identity of Superman, whom a nosy blogger by the name of Vic Barnes claims to have have found. Barnes then goes to Morgan Edge who then releases the information on one of his other lesser known news agencies.
Too bad the guy Barnes outed as Superman isn’t Superman! That is one such issue that the Man of Steel has to deal with besides the monster of the week. So yes, you get your action but you do get the story to go with it.
I also like how Superman has to deal with modern social media and the humans that are addicted to it like zombies. Everywhere he goes now, the people he is trying to save don’t run for cover. They’re too busy recording it with their phone so they can put it on Facebook or Twitter!
So Superman has to deal with mankind’s zombie smart phone virus that has turned human beings into disconnected social media geared dorks. It’s comical at first, but also humbling that the world’s most powerful protector has to put up with our crap.
The main villain is a bro named Hellspont, which was one of the main bad guys in the Wild C.A.T.S. universe (Image Comics) along with Team One, Gen 13, and Backlash. He feels very very out of place here in the DC Universe and I found myself wishing he stayed retired.
A new villain comes knocking over a few banks for some locket. Anquish, a barely dressed hottie with severe daddy issues. Really. She has really bad dad issues. Look you just have to read it, I’m not kidding. She has issues with her Poppy.
So while Superman has to deal with Hellspont’s bullcrap and Anquish’s daddy issues (she has them), guess what pops on the super busy downtown Jumbotron while Supes is tearing up the city of smart phone zombies? That’s right, the wrong guy being identified as Superman!
About there is where the real story begins to pick up. You get to see more action and also a possible love interest with someone…not Lois Lane. Which is great! Also eventually comes along with it my greatest problem with the book.
The artwork takes a big hit as a very different artist gives us his take on Superman. Which was a skinny geek in a blue nano-tech jumpsuit. Hellspont also gets a strange makeover and you find yourself wondering if you crossed over into some strange Bizzario type DC crossover.
Unfortunately that’s not the case.
Still however, the book is a good read. By no means great but good. The best thing about this book is the absence of Perez. Dan Jurgens really steps up the artwork in a great way and you kinda feel like you’re reading an older comic from Death of Superman.
The C E Scoresheet (1-5)
Artwork & Color: 3
Cover Art: 4
C E Meta-score: 3 (Worth the afternoon!)