Mild Mannered Reviews - Regular Superman Comics

Adventures of Superman #595

Adventures of Superman #595

Scheduled to arrive in stores: August 1, 2001

Cover date: October 2001

2001 Shield No. 39

Writer: Joe Casey
Penciller: Mike Wieringo
Inker: Jose Marzan, Jr.


Reviewed by: Neal Bailey (

Tens of thousands of crazed, angered parademons descend upon Earth, tearing apart the defense forces and bringing about the wrath of an angered Darkseid. Earth has accidentally, through Lexcorp's main tower, fired upon Apokolips. The machinations of Brainiac 13 are evident. Inside the White House, Luthor screams for better technology, a better army. Things are exploding all over. Luthor storms off looking for Lena as Lois sits, catatonic at the prospect of Superman dying, which he evidently just did, last issue, in order to destroy Imperiex Prime with Strange Visitor.

Back on Apokolips, Darkseid and Grayven debate the Earth's strategy. Darkseid believes that the Earth would be smart enough to strike first. Grayven questions this. Superman bursts in. Grayven remarks on Superman's talent to return from the dead, insinuating that a death caused by Grayven is permanent. Superman offers that Grayven should take his best shot. Superman pummels him through the throne room and off into parts unknown. Darkseid, the smarter, asks how he survived. Superman recalls having nobly sacrificed his life with Kismet... who in return, as a favor, grants him life again, and seemingly, more strength. Superman's been granted a look at the nature of the Universe, and Darkseid seemed small in comparison to the master plan. Darkseid disagrees, and lets loose his Omega beams. They fight, as equals in strength.

Lena laughs at Luthor, telling him that he's been played for a fool, with regards to the technology he's been given, the way he's handled the war straight into Brainiac's hands, and most importantly, been stupid enough to trust his own daughter (heh heh). She dematerializes.

Superman and darkseid battle further, when Brainiac 13 unleashes a blast from Warworld onto Apokolips. Young Justice, next to the fallen Lobo, look on. Grayven returns, and Darkseid and Superman call an armistice to regard what's happening.

Luthor confers in private with Ignition. Ignition offers the services of Zod and his army to help defeat Warworld. Luthor ensures Zod a place as a world power, Zod gives his men. Luthor agrees. They strategize that the way in is Lena...

Darkseid and Grayven debate... Grayven swears loyalty to Brainiac. Darkseid punts him through a boom tube back home with his Omega beams, calling him a child. Superman and Darkseid are morose... Superman reveals that he feels, he knows, that he must kill Brainiac.

4Story - 4: Very nice, very well paced. I had a good time reading this one. There are little things that bother me, like how Superman came back from the dead without much of an explanation... but that's happened before, and it hasn't resonated in my mind permanently as too bad of a deal (e.g. Superman Forever). In fact, it did Supes a lot of good to look at his mortality again. It seems he's thinking coherently, which is nice. A Superman grievous and out of control is fun... but this Superman I prefer. I like Grayven getting smacked around. That was funny, and much needed. Darkseid... he's Darkseid. Who's Grayven? SMACK! No one. Funny. I also like that someone finally looked around and realized that people were dying! Amazing! Lois shows a little shock at seeing her husband die! NICE! This is commonly overlooked. Luthor being upstaged by his own daughter! Predictable... but priceless. Absolutely priceless. How could he not see that coming? But hey, it's showing what we're seeing more and more of lately... megalomaniac, atheist, killer, and evil, evil man or not, Luthor has a heart. Heh heh heh. He's just as dupable as you or I. I love seeing villains that seem untouchable, like Boba Fett, Lex Luthor, Vader, Magneto, and The Agent (Matrix) screw up. They're great moments, and few and far between, so they mean more. Also improving in this issue is that Superman is fighting AFTER words. I missed that for a few weeks there. It's good to see it back. Superman is Supes. He avoids fights. He tries to be an idealist. That means you try to talk someone out of their superweapon before destroying it and killing all the Stormtroopers. Or parademons. ;)

5Art - 5: This was top-notch. There were a lot of larger pieces of art that could be questioned in necessity in terms of scope, but you'd have to be really picky to do that... which I am... but in this case, the fight and action made the story flow so well that you didn't notice it except in hindsight. My one critique is pages after pages of loose, short dialogue, then a long extrapolation of the Kismet situation which was explained last issue. But it passes, because suppose you hadn't read last issue? It bogged it down, but it was necessary for those of us who can't afford comics every week.

2Cover Art - 2: This I didn't like. It doesn't represent anything that happens in the book save Superman fighting Grayven, and it's another case of THE GIANT HAND IS LOOMING OVER "X", where X is your hero of choice fighting insurmountable odds. We've seen it before, and it's old. Also, where did we see what I'm assuming is Metropolis (in the background) this issue? We didn't. The poses are odd, and the characters look awkward (go figure, they're fighting... still). And where was Brainiac this issue? He wasn't, save as a reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeel small dot on Warworld we never really saw (a joke). A bit too red, as well. I still say, controversially, that a cover should accurately depict what is in an issue, or it's false advertising. I abhor false advertising. It's a great thing that in this case the book was so good, or I'd be further up in arms.

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Note: Month dates are from the issue covers, not the actual date when the comic was on sale.

January 2001

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