Mild Mannered Reviews – Superman #18

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Superman #18

Scheduled to arrive in stores: March 1, 2017

Cover date: May 2017

“Superman: Reborn” – Part 1

Writer: Peter J. Tomasi & Patrick Gleason
Penciller: Patrick Gleason
Inker: Mick Gray
Cover: Patrick Gleason & John Kalisz
Variant Cover: Gary Frank & Brad Anderson

Reviewed by: Adam Dechanel

Click to enlarge

Doomsday, Prophecy & Red Robin laugh at their captor from within their prisons.

Mr Oz is shocked and angry to hear that one of those prisoners has escaped. A blue light engulfs the sky as the hooded man investigates Red Robin’s mocking claim and discovers it to be true. Within the huge prison cell is graffiti carved into the walls related to Superman.

Over in Hamilton County, Clark and his family are still enjoying their evening when the doorbell rings. Jon goes to investigate and finds a family album on the doorstep and sees Other Clark standing in the shadows. Krypto goes to investigate and reacts angrily to Other Clark. Lois and Superman race to help but Other Clark has vanished.

They flip through the family album and see their life play out exactly as they remember it. Suddenly their farm is ablaze, not with fire but a strange white fire disintegrating everything in its path, including Jon.

Superman flies through the farmhouse and discovers Jon fading in and out of existence.

He pulls Jon out of the house and he and Lois are heartbroken to see Jon disappear for good. The album content has also been erased as Lois and Clark break down in tears. Superman finds one final photo – of Metropolis and swears to make Other Clark return their son to them… or else.

To Be Continued…

5Story – 5: Other Clark is unhinged and his revenge plot is a cruel one.

I’m not seeing it from his side at all, he feels Clark has stolen his life, his wife and family but he never had it, right?

As the story escalates I’m starting to wonder more than ever who Other Clark really is.

The threads leading up to this have been neatly building; the creation of two Superwomen, the birth of New Super-Man and Lex taking on the mantle too, all spinning out of New 52 and the death of Superman on this Earth. Of course Convergence altered several events and then added to the mix the events of Multiplicity, and the meeting with Swamp Thing all add more to the mystery. We know from spoiler news sites what the outcome will be but WHO it will be is a mystery and I am looking forward to seeing how this all plays out.

The race to save Jon was incredibly sad as both Jon and his parents new he was about to be erased. The mystery still outweighs the story but it builds fantastic anticipation in the reader. I can’t wait to see what happens when the two Clark Kents finally face off and motives are revealed.

5Art – 5: As the realization kicks in that everything they hold dear is being wiped out, Gleason and Gray do a stellar job squeezing every emotion out of you. In fact the rush of emotions really was like a rollercoaster. The team did a great job with the layouts and, considering the ghost story last issue, getting back to the regular team was a welcome return.

4Cover Art – 4: A tad on the cheesy side but considering the outcome of the issue it makes everything far more emotional than I would ever have thought. I would have preferred a more immersive background compared to a flat gradient.

5Variant Cover Art – 5: A beautiful yet heartbreaking variant with Clark racing to save his family before it is lost to him forever. I really hope Lois and Jon make it through to see Superman Reborn to fruition.

I like the atmospheric feel.

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Kal L
Member

I loved this issue! I said this before, the mystery behind all the goings on reminds me of the feeling I got during “the Reign of the Supermen”… Cant wait until next issue!

MattComics
Member

I agree that the panels of Superman pursuing Jon were good but the figure and face drawing style was kind of a put off. There’s a panel where Jon looks like a girl with a pixie haircut and black lipstick.

I guess it’s reasonably certain Jon will be ok but there was still a part of me going “Don’t you do it DC!” I’ve been more willing than I have in years to dip my toe in the water thanks to Rebirth but the trust DC spent years slaughtering hasn’t been earned back just yet.

Nate1986
Member

Maybe Doppel-Clark is New 52 Superman. And at the end, the two Supermen merge, and that’s how Clark White will return to the Daily Planet and Metropolis as Clark Kent. That’s what lois has done already. Back to basics.

s-shield
Member

I honestly hope they don’t fuse. That would be some 90’s Hawkman stuff right there, lol. I hope Rebirth Clark just follows Lois’s example and steps into the life of New 52 Clark, which fake Clark has not only kept warm, but helped establish Clark and Superman are not the same person. He and Lois get “married” again and “adopt” Jon, all is well.

Nate1986
Member

That too.

Superman555
Member

But why would he be jealous of Supes and Lois. His main relationship was with Diana.

Nate1986
Member
You got a point there, somewhat. If you remember, Supes in Perez’ run of Superman had feelings for Lois, and was crushed when she was with someone else. Only then did he go with Diana in the pages of JL. If this is New 52 Superman in this Clark, then he sees his guy who has taken over (in his mind) the life he left when he died. “There’s that copy, who is with Lois that I loved before Diana, with a kid that had crossed my mind personally of having; he has taken over my life, taken it from… Read more »
fab-el
Member
It was already confirmed that Other Clark is not New 52 Clark/Superman. In the next Superwoman, as seen in the previews, we will see Lana having fuzzy memories (from her pre-New 52 existence, perharps?) and facing New 52 Superman and Lois and Lana says to them “I am angry and I am scared, and I am asking you a fair question. What is it about you two? What makes you so special? Why do universes live and die because of YOU?”. And they promised that in this issue we will finally know the true nature of New 52 Superman and… Read more »
Nate1986
Member

Because I have not read nor plan to read, given advice, Superwoman, I would not have known this.

That preview sounds interesting though…

Nate1986
Member

The Other Clark….
Didn’t see that coming at all…

manofsteel
Member

Krypto growling at Other Clark leads me to believe this isn’t another Clark at all. But who knows? Rebirth is my favorite Superman run in YEARS.

Superman555
Member

Rebirth has been great hasn’t it.

s-shield
Member

Even though I KNOW there’s a comic series called SuperSons co-starring young Jon, I couldn’t help but hold my breath this whole issue. That’s quality writing!

Superman555
Member

Exactly.

MattComics
Member
While I agree with you on that s-shield, part of my holding breath was knowing that for a long time now DC has been willing to maim or kill off any character (and often in a gruesome on-camera fashion) for a multitude of stupid reasons. This is still more or less the same regime that had Blue Beetles brains get blown out. This is part of that trust issue for me. I don’t put anything past them and not in a suspense driven “oh no what’s going to happen next?” way but in a “Ugh what are they gonna do… Read more »
borikua
Member

My money is on “Other Clark” being Superboy/Superman Prime. The obsession on being loved. His jealousy of Superman. His obsession with Superman. His feeling that lifer isnt fair. Plus we know Mr. Oz has been plucking characters from different time lines. And it wouldnt be the first time Prime has been locked up AND escaped.

svillar13
Member

But that doesn’t explain this Clark. The one who escaped is someone who wanted Superman to save them, and dopple clark has been around since the beginning of Rebirth. (Before Tim Drake got taken)

At one point I thought that the person that escaped was a pre-flashpoint Lana Lang, but it looks like shes not dead yet. I could have sworn she died in the last Superwoman issue. Also the person who was trapped was huge enough to write all over the walls…. OOOhhhh maybe it’s Titano!

borikua
Member

Superman Prime wasn’t always evil. Hes unstable. Emotionally stunted. but not necessarily evil. If he was trapped, by an unknown force, outside of time, I think he would WANT Superman to save him. Just a theory of course. And he grew up seeing Superman outside of time and space after the first Crisis. So that would explain how he knows of this superman. Again, its all a theory on my behalf.

fab-el
Member

There’s something that everybody seems to have forgotten: when Clark, Lois and baby Jon left in Convergence to stop the Crisis, they weren’t alone in the quest. Hal Jordan Parallax was with them. Hasn’t anybody stop to think what his role is going to be here? As far as I remember, he is capable of wiping timelines in a sort of white vacuum, and he always resented the lost of Coast City and with it, his whole life.

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