Scheduled to arrive in stores: December 19, 2023
Cover date: February 2024
Chapter Nine: “Aftermath”
Writer: Joshua Williamson
Artists: Bruno Redondo
Cover: Jamal Campbell
Variant Covers: Lee Bermejo and Bruno Redondo
1:25: Michael Walsh
1:50: Nathan Szerdy
Santa Variant: Mikel Janín
Aquaman And The Lost Kingdom Variant: Mike Deodata Jr. & Jão Canola
Reviewed by: Adam Dechanel
Superman has been mortally wounded by kryptonite after defeating The Chained. Lois is by his side as his body is bathed in solar radiation reading him thank you letters in the hopes of his recovery.
Perry, meanwhile, is announcing to the press that he is putting his mayoral campaign on hold while the city shows gratitude for Superman’s selflessness and prays for his return.
Lillian Luthor visits Lex in Strykers Island and tells him that his daughter Lena has decided to stay in Metropolis and use her superior intellect to work at Supercorp. She is supervising the containment of The Chained until he can be put in a more permanent cell. Lena is very inquisitive and her curious nature activates LL-01, the AI hologram Lex made to resemble him as a Kryptonian. LL-01 offers to answer any of Lena’s questions…
At the Daily Planet, a panicked Jimmy calls Lois and is stunned when she deputises him as Editor-in-Chief while ‘she and Clark spend some time at the beach’. Clark wakes up mocking his wife for her white lies being almost as bad as his.
Mercy enters and warns Lois and Clark to remember to cover up the fact she’s been at Superman’s bedside before others connect the dots. Clark is determined to hunt down Pharm and Graft despite the pleas of the two women to allow more time to heal from the poisoning.
Superman asks Mercy to modify Luthor’s power suit so he can get back in action faster and seek out Marilyn Moonlight.
Later that night Graft has already tracked her down and Superman arrives to stop Marilyn getting hurt. Graft is not unprepared and transforms the wheelchair into a spider bot with kryptonite legs. Superman makes short work of the vehicle dodging the kryptonite claw and spider legs but is horrified to realize it was a trick so Graft could hit Marilyn with a beam of gold kryptonite.
The overload of energy teleports Superman and Marilyn away leaving Graft triumphant and Mercy and Lex perplexed with what has just happened.
In the 1800s onboard a steam train are a young Pharm, Graft, their silver haired mother and two vigilante protectors, Nighthawk & Cinnamon.
The train journey is hijacked by a familiar face using heat vision rather than pistols… The Man of Yesterday…
To Be Continued…
Story – 3: A decent follow up to “The Chained,” filled with character moments. Lillian and Lex, Lois and Clark, Perry, Lena, Jimmy, Mercy and even Pharm and Graft. The mystery of the two villains seems to be gaining pace to some conclusion, but to be honest, the dramatic moments with the character scenes were this issue’s strength as the main plot didn’t really move along until the final few pages. This is not a bad thing, as many writers rarely give supporting cast much thought. It’s nice to see everyone getting a little love on the page.
Art – 5: Love the art this issue! The poses are dynamic and visually draw you to individual panels. The bold colors from Adriano Lucas really allow Redondo’s art to pack a punch.
Cover Art – 5: ALWAYS great to see Superman in action. I love that we finally see that weasley Graft take a beating after hiding in the shadows for over a year. I love the design of Superman’s power suit. It definitely gives “Superman Adventures” vibes!
Variant Cover (Lee Bermejo) – 5: Superman looks fantastic here. Love the spark effect and the fact Superman is really determined to beat these androids. I’d love to know the techniques used to make this piece of art.
Variant Cover (Bruno Redondo) – 5: A great twist on Superman saving the Daily Planet globe. Simultaneously showing Superman’s strength and his pureness of heart, saving a teddy bear for a little girl. There are very few heroes that could emulate this, and even if they do, never with this impact. Thank you Bruno, this really made my week.
Variant Cover (Michael Walsh) – 4: They are really pushing the boat out with these iconic images in the variant covers. This is no exception. The bold colors and Superman enveloped in light really makes for an optimistic image.
Variant Cover (Nathan Szerdy) – 4: Remember that spectacular Livewire variant earlier in the year? Now it’s Silver Banshee’s turn and wow, looks like Gotham isn’t the only city with super powered sirens. Jimmy’s new girlfriend looks sultry here and equally still eerie and supernatural.
Variant Cover (Mikel Janín) – 5: Who doesn’t love an homage cover? Who doesn’t love Mikel Janín covers? I’d love this as my holiday card because it does not miss!
Variant Cover (Mike Deodato Jr. & Jão Canola) – 3: I understand corporate synergy and the cover itself is a really nice rendition of Black Manta but I feel like it would have been nicer to see Superman on the cover WITH Manta or Arthur. Still a nice piece of art, but feels forcibly added to the book.
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