Review: Action Comics #1004

Action Comics #1004 doesn’t have a whole lot of action in it and I’m okay with that.  The book’s establishing shot is of Lois Lane’s cluttered and interesting work space.  Chocolate, Fresca Cola and a large cup of coffee (black) occupy one side.  That same side of the desk contains a notepad with questions about Superman; Man Of Steel Byrne or Bendis, Super Physiology – Star Labs?  On the other side of the desk is a half eaten sandwich and her phone telling her she has five texts from Snapper Carr.  Additionally she has three sticky notes up on her computer.  The first asks about the Leviathan Civil War.  The second note shows most of Lex Luthor’s phone number (sorry no prank calls to Luthor).  The final sticky note raises the most questions with one simple remark; Should I tell Clark that I’m back?  What is going on here?

The book then takes us immediately to the offices of The Daily Planet where Clark Kent is discussing the Red Cloud with Perry White.  Perry, ever the cynical editor, asks Clark if he hasn’t confused Red Cloud with Red Tornado and even Clark must admit he isn’t sure what is going on in his city.  A city he usually has so much mastery over as his alter ego, Superman.  As Clark works with his fellow reporters he is called into White’s office and is confronted by the new gossip columnist, Trish Q.  Trish ambushes Clark with pictures of Lois and Lex Luthor in Chicago. Perry White ushers her unceremoniously out of his office as she badgers Kent for answers to plaster on the gossip pages of The Daily Planet.  Clark takes that opportunity to vanish from Perry’s office and flashes back to his reunion with his wife the night before.  What follows is a series of tender moments as the two lovers reunite.  Their romance is rekindled and is only interrupted for a few minutes as Superman zooms away to deal with some pesky criminals in the same time one might take for a bathroom break.  As I stated previously, there is not a lot of action in this issue but the time spent in character with Clark Kent (mild-mannered reporter) and Lois Lane/Superman (reunited lovers) is beautiful, classic and timeless.  It transported me back in time to the early Superman movies of the seventies and the incredible chemistry between Margot Kidder and Christopher Reeve.  This is everything Superman can be even when he is not performing superhuman feats unmatched by most, if not all, of the other heroes in the DC universe.

Clark is shaken from his reverie by the cries of the new gossip columnist.  Copperhead, angry at lies printed about her in The Daily Planet, presumably by Trish Q, has cornered Trish and is holding her hostage with a gun.  In a comedic scene, Copperhead is left scratching her head in confusion as she suddenly finds herself in a completely different location.  In the blink of an eye,  Superman returns, lifts Ms. Q up off the floor and gives her the boy scout treatment we know and love.

Everything about this issue of Action Comics rings true to form and Brian Michael Bendis has presented Superman as he is meant to be in this unfolding story arc which is “The Invisible Mafia”.  This issue was a joy to read and had almost no “Super” action in it.  That should tell you quite a bit.  I highly recommend this book.

Writing 5 of 5 Stars
Art 4.5 of 5 Stars
Overall 4.75 of 5 Stars

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Writer – Brian Michael Bendis
Pencils – Ryan Sook
Inks – Wade Von Grawbadger
Color – Brad Anderson
Letters – Josh Reed