On the Panel

Jun 11, 2014 | Posted by in Comics

Action Comics (2011) #32

Doomed rages on and the momentum just doesn’t stop. Before I started reading this arc I had no idea what the plan was for it but was pumped for another potentially epic Doomsday story. I am happy to say that so far this story has surpassed my expectations of what the story would be.

In this installment, Superman is further succumbing to the effects of inhaling the spores following his battle with Doomsday. He’s finding it more and more difficult to maintain control and is fully aware of how much of a threat he is to the entire planet. His friends are trying to find some way to help him but Lex Luthor has seized the opportunity to convince the government that Superman is too dangerous to be left alive and uses this as an excuse to attack his old foe. This culminates in a suicide mission involving Metallo and a lot of Kryptonite.

Superman is portrayed really well in this particular issue, his affliction has forced him to completely isolate himself in the most lifeless area on Earth that he can find. Sadly that’s not quite lifeless enough as he is lethal to any life that surrounds him at this point. The pain Superman feels at all the death he is causing by simply existing is exceptionally well written. I don’t recall ever seeing the character portrayed in this way before, to my knowledge there’s never been a Superman story that involves him becoming everything that he fights against -not while he’s willful of the change at any rate- which adds some real depth to the character. Despite the urges he’s feeling I like that he still goes out of his way to save Metallo which unfortunately sacrifices what self control is left in him and leaves him as seemingly completely transformed into Doomsday. It’s a very tragic result for the character and it’ll be interesting to see what comes next.

There were other great moments in this issue as well. I really liked Steel’s uncompromising desire to help his friend and Lana Lang’s interaction with Wonder Woman over the phone was great. Really clever of Superman to rig his phone number so that everyone he trusts can reach each other when he’s unable to be around. It’s also interesting to see how few people Superman truly trusts.

Overall, this issue was great. I really liked the obvious internal struggle going on within Superman as he slowly sinks further into becoming more like Doomsday, I liked the idea that it doesn’t take much for humanity to turn on him when he’s not outwardly benefiting them and I thought the supporting cast were used excellently here. I do find the ending to be a bit abrupt and I would like to have spent more time on Superman battling against his dark urges but that’s a minor niggle.