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Mild Mannered Reviews - Regular Superman Comics

Superman #703 Superman #703

Superman #703

Scheduled to arrive in stores: October 13, 2010

Cover date: November 2010

"Grounded" - Part Three

Writer: J. Michael Straczynski
Penciller: Eddy Barrows
Inker: J.P. Mayer
Cover: John Cassaday & David Baron
Variant Cover: Lee Bermejo

Reviewed by: Adam Dechanel

Click to enlarge

Superman is a bit out of control, his excessive, aggressive methods are worrying even new Batman, Dick Grayson.

Case in point, we join Superman holding a man by his boot high in the Cincinnati sky for stalking a waitress.

Batman warns Superman that this is not the way to reconnect with the people he disowned, that perhaps he's having some kind of breakdown.

Why, knowing the plethora of villains ready to decimate a major Metropolitan city just because Superman lives there would he put the people he says he loves in danger so publicly - because he wants to feel human again? Once you're a costumed hero - you can't be 'normal' again...

Batman's warning falls on deaf ears and Superman continues his walk.

Perry is flailing around the Daily Planet with Lois meandering through the newsrooms paperwork for an article, one that reads:

"Debris From New Krypton Reaches Earth"

At that moment in Danville, Ohio, Miss Jennings, a high school teacher, is examining a Sunstone crystal some of her young students had unearthed nearby.

Peering through it Lisa sees Superman just as he is passing by and an evil force seems to have taken her over.

Superman it seems has tracked the crash site of the sunstone and notices too late that its been retrieved but with heat signatures as a trail to its possible whereabouts.

Willy Trask is the local big mouth boozing creep, all threats and no action, but today, Lisa Jennings walks into the bar he's mouthing off in. A simple touch gives him Kryptonian powers and Lisa offers him a chance to put his money where his mouth is - by taking on Superman.

There follows much banging, crashing and walloping, and a city crushed literally to dust just as Jennings' gift of powers fades away and Willy is back to his mouthy self.

Superman looks around at the devastation HE caused, with HIS fight and the terrified and sad faces of the people he has let down, realizing too late that Batman had been right.

We see news reports, as Superman repairs the bricks and mortar to better than new. Sadly people point out, their photos, possessions and such like were things lost thanks to Superman. Others point out the fear he instilled in them. The police were on Superman's side but Jennings wasn't going to let this go and obliterates Superman's image as a cursed man that has lost two worlds already and is on the verge of destroying ours.

Batman, pensive, watches the report silently...

2Story - 2: What can I say? Delays due to writer illness? Hmm... once upon a time people read comics for the characters - not the celebrity writer that delays a book by three weeks and deliver stuff like this...

Was the wait worth it? No. A big fat no. Superman is acting completely out of control. Threats, put downs, ignorance, irresponsibility, thoughtless violence... all things I'd associate with the 90's Hawkman, Hulk & Punisher but not Superman. Dick's theory coming true was just predictable bad... poorly executed story elements borrowed from the great Apokolips themed LEGEND stories. Not to mention when the media has its backlash against Superman, what does he do? Try damage limitation? Apologize? No, he goes on to the next city! I thought DC brought Straczynski in to FIX what Geoff Johns has broken? So far Grounded is doing the opposite.

3Art - 3: The artwork when Superman is not in action is pretty awesome stuff - but the anatomy flies out the window suddenly during fight scenes, impossible twists, double jointed socket popping moves, worthy of Plastic Man and Baby Plas. It still looks lushly and lovingly presented but someone needs to really look at what the human body can actually do without, y'know, snapping in half.

2Cover Art - 2: Woo LOTS of stereotypes in the crowd, and aww Superman has heart shaped boots on, presumably to show his love for the common man... I'm all warm and fuzzy now!

5Cover Art (Alternate Cover) - 5: Now THAT is a Superman cover with bite!

Why can't they offer stuff like THIS as posters? This is a Superman that means business!

Was getting sick and tired of the variants but this pulled me back!

Mild Mannered Reviews


Note: Month dates are from the issue covers, not the actual date when the comic went on sale.

January 2010

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