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Mild Mannered Reviews - Regular Superman Comics

Superman: The Man of Steel #129

Superman: The Man of Steel #129

Scheduled to arrive in stores: August 21, 2002

Cover date: October 2002

Writer: Chuck Austen
Penciller: Pascal Alixe
Inker: Pascal Alixe

"You Can't Be Everywhere At Once"

Reviewed by: Nick Newman (

A lone officer crouches behind a crate and fires three times. Each bullet bounces off of the armor of a horribly disfigured man as he advances forward. Holding up his hand, Bloodsport triggers his implanted teleporter and a gun appears out of nowhere. Firing at the officer, the projectiles bury themselves into the wall behind the officer and hold him down with the cord stretched between them. Bloodsport levels another weapon at the mans head. Just as he fires, Superman dives through the roof, deflecting the shots and knocking Bloodsport back.

Outside, Superman hurls Bloodsport into a police wagon. His cries of defiance continue until the officer slams the soundproof door. Turning to Superman, Superman asks if he is alright. The officer brushes his concern aside. Suddenly from outside of the police line, a yell catches Superman's attention. He turns and finds a group of three people. The trio yell that he needs to start doing something to stop them permanently. Otherwise they just get out and kill again. Superman tells them that he doesn't work that way. One yells back that he might as well kill them himself then. Starring at the departing crowd, Superman can think of nothing to say. Noticing the problem, the office jumps in front of Superman and invites him to grab a cup of coffee, and then tells him he has to come, to make up for arriving so late.

Inside a local diner, the officer introduces himself as Wit Saunders. He tells Superman that he can't let people like those at the crime scene bother him. Superman tells him that he is fine; he's heard it many times before. Wit tells him that its important to remember to follow your beliefs, and then tells him that he is only human. Suddenly Superman jerks up and excuses himself for a moment. Soaring out of the diner, he leaves Wit sitting at the table alone. The two workers ask if that was really Superman. As Wit asks for a coffee to go, Superman suddenly appears in the door again, with a daisy in his hair. Sitting back down he explains that the girl he saved from the fire escape gave it to him as a thank you. The two talk long into the night, laughing and sharing stories. Wit finds himself liking the man.

The next day, Wit argues with a mother about arresting her boy. As he looks up he sees Supeman flying over. The two wave to each other. Not believing him, Wit's fellow officer tells him that there was no way that Superman was waving at him.

Another evening, the two meet again in the small diner. Superman tells a story about a man he once fought. After defeating the man, he stripped off his armored suit and began jumping up and down on it, complaining how much it cost and how expensive it was. Wit then tells of two guys he once found stealing a big prjection TV one night. The two were so shocked when they were caught that they both dropped the TV, knocking one out and breaking the other's feet. Superman laughs so hard he spits his coffee. Just then, one of the diner's employees approaches nervously and asks if he can take their picture. The two men move in together and the camera flashes. As the two men depart, one of the workers tells another that he can't wait to tell his friends. The other tells him that he can't, because if the word gets out then everyone will come and Superman will stop coming.

The next day, Wit and a fellow officer question witnesses after a metahuman brawl in their apartment. No one really saw anything, and all they do know is that someone arrived to stop the rogue meta. As the police walk away, one makes a comment about just being a cleaning crew for the Spandex Brigade. Wit snaps at him, telling him that they need the superheroes. Wit turns and storms towards the cop car, telling him that he doesn't have a problem, but he likes the Spandex Brigade.

Another night, Wit pulls up to the diner to find it lit up and completely full of people. His name is called from the alleyway and Wit runs over to find Superman in the shadows. Superman says that they are just going to have to find another place. Wit holds out his hand as says it was fun while it lasted. Superman smiles and takes his hand. Turning towards the crowd, Superman says that he is going to go in. Everyone came looking for him, and he isn't going to disappoint.

Over the next few days, Wit spends a lot of time thinking about the Man Of Steel. He's not sure why, but he liked him. And that makes him miss him.

Outside of an apartment, Wit and two other officers arrive to settle a domestic dispute. However, there is one small problem. The husband may be a metahuman. As they call in for the SCU to help, Wit heads up the stairs. They can't wait for help to get the kids to safety. Moving through the open door, Wit yells at the man to hit the floor, and tells him that they don't have to do this in front of the kids. The meta says that he'll get rid of them then. As he begins to glow with energy, ready to fire a bolt at his kids, the three officers fire. As he falls, his energy rips through the ceiling and brings the roof down. Without thinking, Wit lunges forward to cover the woman and her children from the falling debirs. He lies there for a moment before Superman rips though the floor and unburies his friend. Wit greets him with a tired "Long time, no see."

Later, at Wit's funeral, Superman stands reading from the journal Wit had kept of his time with Superman. Kal then says that he read their story to show everyone how deeply Wit affected him. He was very valuable to him, so valuable that Superman was even questioning if the lives he saved in Indonesia were worth Wit's. But he also knows that Wit would have told him that you can't be everywhere at once. The important thing to remember is that wherever you happen to be at the moment, its always important to the people that you are with.

3Story - 3: This story struck me as nothing but average. We saw the meet a new character and have him die the same issue two months ago in Action, and we have seen the lose someone because you were helping someone else time and time again. It was kind of a cliché issue that we've seen before. I enjoyed it, and it was a good read, but it wasn't anything new. I was glad that Bloodsport didn't come back to kill Wit, to verify the words of the people in the beginning, because that would have been too much for me. I also didn't like the metahuman appearances. DC really overused metas about ten years ago, and I don't want them to fall into the habit again. Overall, an average issue that really didn't accomplish anything, but it could have been a lot worse.

2Art - 2: There were two types of art in this issue: Superman, and then everyone else. Everyone else looked fine. Wit looked good. The other characters looked good as well. Even the metahuman looked cool. They get a four. However, then Superman looked absolutely horrible. I don't know how to describe how bad Kal looked. I couldn't stand it. Superman would get a one, maybe even less. Therefore, I'll give it a two.

3Cover Art - 3: I like that the supid S in the logo is placed over Superman's chest and the part of Superman I can see looks good. I actually kind of like that his face isn't on the cover because it keeps the focus on Wit. However, Wit doesn't look much like he does inside. The cover did have a background, even if it is a nondescript cityscape. An average cover at best.

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

January 2002

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