Mild Mannered Reviews – Action Comics #1063

Action Comics #1063

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Action Comics #1063

Scheduled to arrive in stores: March 12, 2024
Cover date: May 2024

“I, Bizarro” – Part Three: “Mind of Steel”

Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: John Timms
Cover: John Timms
Variant Covers: Jorge Jimenez, Paulo Rivera, Tom Reilly, R. Kikuo Johnson

Reviewed by: Marc Lax

Superman scours the city looking for Bizarro. Of course the city he’s scouring is in his head. And, oh yes, he’s being helped by the Joker! Finally Bizarro shows himself… But just a tiny version the size of a splinter. He can still take on the Man of Steel. In reality Superman is being coached by Joker using a device to get inside his mind. Superman must keep his defenses up because the weaker his mind gets the stronger Bizarro becomes. They continue waging war in Superman’s mind. He tries to reason with him but Bizarro is having none of it. They continue fighting back and forth. We finally get to the point where Bizarro “kills” Superman over and over in his mind. But Superman keeps fighting and fighting. Just as Bizarro starts to take over Joker keeps talking and talking about his life, his regrets. Speaking the truth. This version of the Joker has a powerful effect on Bizarro. He can take no more and finally Superman takes full control. Superman reverses the spell and everyone, including the Joker, goes back to normal. As Metropolis rebuilds and Superman reflects on the events, there is no sign of Bizarro. Superman feels that burried deep inside him some piece of Bizarro remains. As long as Superman keeps up the good fight hopefully Bizarro will stay buried for a long time.

3Story – 3: I did enjoy this story but felt it missed its mark. As entertaining as it was I wasn’t thrilled with the way Aaron tackled Superman and on a lesser scale Bizarro. This was certainly an interesting take on the villain casting spells, attacking Superman in his mind, but we still have no clue what happened to him. When he disintegrated in Part One he entered Superman’s mind and now he is still inside Superman? For me this wasn’t made very clear. Yes, we get the impression at the end he’s buried within Superman’s mind, but does that mean there’s no physical Bizarro? Considering he’s going to be teaming up with Dreamer in SUICIDE SQUAD: DREAM TEAM that doesn’t seem quite right. But I guess we’ll let that other book deal with it even though it should be dealt with in this story.

Anyway, while Superman’s portrayal was fine I just don’t think Aaron had a great handle on him. I understand the stakes but Superman just seemed defeated through most of this story. To the point that he’d go to the Joker (albeit a “good” version of Joker) for help. It’s an interesting idea but I feel Superman could have come up with a better plan to get inside his own head. Use S.T.A.R. Labs equipment, maybe something in the Fortress of Solitude… I did enjoy the battle waged inside Superman’s head but I still have some problems on how that spell was reversed. It just seems we’re missing some information.

In a nutshell I felt there could have been more to this story but it wasn’t a washout either.

4Art – 4: Timms’ art was the shining beacon of this story. I did like his rendition of Bizarro. In fact most of the characters looked great. Hopefully he will continue with the Man of Steel in some capacity.

3Cover Art – 3: While it’s certainly action packed I actually find it a bit dull. The colors are nice though.

4Variant Cover Art – 4: Jorge Jimenez brings us a wonderful split screen of a timid Clark and a confident Superman. Terrific.

4Variant Cover Art – 4: I love this image of Superman looking into his reflection and seeing Bizarro. It echoes some of the story points in this issue.

5Variant Cover Art – 5: Paolo Rivera gives a stunning retro view of our two main characters. A Silver Age Bizarro and Superman. It’s like it was ripped right out of an issue from the sixties.

5Variant Cover Art – 5: An absolutely dazzling portrait of Superman by Tom Reilly. I want this as a poster! Just beautiful!

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