Mild Mannered Reviews – Superman: Son of Kal-El #4

Superman: Son of Kal-El #4

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Superman: Son of Kal-El #4


Scheduled to arrive in stores: October 19, 2021
Cover date: December 2021

 

“Proportional Response”

Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Daniele Di Nicuolo
Cover: John Timms
Variant Cover: Inhyuk Lee

Reviewed by: Adam Dechanel



Clark has left earth for a space bound peace-keeping mission. Martha and Jonathan Kent are doing their best to keep the calm and keep the conversation flowing with the two teenage boys.

Time slows to a crawl as the Kent Farm explodes but Jon reacts at super speed. He makes a shocking discovery about Jay but has no time to mull it over as he speeds out of the explosion with his grandparents.

The Justice League arrive and find the young terrified Fault Line. Jon leaps in to protect her and calms everyone down for the young girl to explain that she was forced to be a gravity bomb after being kidnapped. The Flash commends Jon’s conflict resolution and also reviews his secret identity. He explains that he is in the same position, as he has taken over as The Flash from Barry and that if Jon needs a friend he’ll always be there.

Jay arrives and Jon confronts him about having super powers, but worse still is the loss of the Kent Farm, his ‘fortress’. Jon comes to the same realization Clark did many years ago about loved ones becoming targets. Jay distracts Jon with another secret a network of Post-Humans.

Returning to Metropolis, Jon and Jay meet Aerie and Wink, two post-humans researching the super powered teens popping up in America. They conclude the attack on the Kents was by Bendix in retaliation to Jon’s social justice stance.

Jon is horrified by the data they present of the experimentation on children and takes it to his mother. Lois is cautious, pointing out that this isn’t a supervillian but a president, with very good PR. Jon heads to Gamorra to speak face to face with president Bendix. Bendix stands coldly and issues an instruction over a transmitter that leads to a terrifying scream.

Jon races to find a prison cell holding the teenager from the forest that was setting things on fire. The cell along with the boy’s energy begins to overload Jon but as he escapes skyward Jon’s powers begin overloading, whatever Bendix has done, could mean disaster if Superman’s powers grow out of control like the others!

To be continued…

5Story – 5: A lot to unpack here in so few pages, but perhaps the best issue to date. It delves far deeper into Jon’s personality and his relationships with other heroes and even his closest family.

Not much is said about Jay and his revelations, though it does tie in very nicely with the overall story arc. Jon is very likeable and though a little more reactionary than Clark has things coming from a good place just like his father.

One thing I thought was odd was that The Kent Farm is meant to be cloaked, not just ‘under protection’ not a big deal but when it’s explicitly stated as such getting around it should really be explained.

I also hope that the scene between Wally and Jon is explored further. I’d never have made the connection but it’s absolutely true and it’s nice that Jon isn’t alone in his situation as a torchbearer for another’s moniker.

The explosion scene in slow motion was brilliantly written – more please.


3Art – 3: The art is bursting with fluid and fast strokes, the detail is to a minimum but the action is obviously this artist’s focus. I’m on the fence as there were dramatic beats that deserved just as much attention.


5Cover Art – 5: The bug bear that it couldn’t/shouldn’t have happened aside. This was a great cover to open with leaving the readers with a multitude of questions! I am not a fan of the dead space but on this occasion it works to show the enormity of the blast.


5Variant Cover Art – 5: I LOVE IT! Usually glowing eyes stuff is an overdone trope but given the story, this teenager is literally all fired up and ready to kick ass! This is the absolute best variant I’ve seen so far. I want a poster DC!


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2 Comments
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New Roosterman
New Roosterman(@new-roosterman)
October 21, 2021 4:27 am

Sorry but Jon Kent is not Superman. They should have given him another hero name for mine as it just looks cheap. Has nothing to do with recent developments in the character’s private life, to me Kal-El=Clark Kent=Superman.

neal bailey
Admin
neal bailey(@neal-bailey)
October 24, 2021 12:33 pm
Reply to  New Roosterman

Thank you for making it explicitly clear that it’s not about the private life thing. This is a prime example of what we mean as admins lately when we’re saying “You’re free to disagree with the story direction, just don’t be bigoted in your speech.” A lot of people have been unable to see why such clarification or care is needed, but it is, because if you just say “This isn’t MY Superman!” there exists a whole ton of hidden dogwhistles and baggage, generally all with the implication that Jon shouldn’t be Superman because he’s bi in almost every case.… Read more »