Updated on December 10, 2021
Action Comics #7
Written by: Grant Morrison (main story); Sholly Fisch (backup)
Art by: Rags Morales (main story); Brad Walker (backup)
This issue sees a much-welcomed development. Of course, I’m talking about Superman finally disposing of his stupid-looking “Lil’ Abner” costume and getting the “real” one (“real” in quotes, as the DCNU version isn’t the real, familiar one everyone recognizes, but at least doesn’t look as awful as his “first” costume). This comes during the course of his attempt to save the people of Metropolis, which has been shrunk and stolen by Brainiac alongside other cities of the galaxy (including Krypton’s Kandor, of course). Meanwhile, Lois, Jimmy, and Lex seek shelter from spider-like Brainiac robots run amok.
An OK story, with a nice opening line by Superman about how “nothing’s impossible.” (Less nice: referring to his telescopic vision as “zoom vision”… huh?!) Some nods to previous continuities are seen here: Superman wearing an air mask to survive in space (per the Byrne reboot); Brainiac’s classic Silver Age modus operandi (shrinking cities); Metropolis’ Manhattan-like main downtown area being named “New Troy” (mentioned a lot in 90s Superman books). Lois, Jimmy and Lex don’t get to do much, however, besides running and hiding from the Brainiac robots.
The backup story was enjoyable: Steel tries to help the citizens of what’s left of Metropolis while dealing with half the city being abducted by Brainiac. Unlike the Silver Age story introducing Brainiac (where Metropolis’ abduction didn’t seem to have much of a negative consequence on its suburbs, etc.), here we see what happens when a good chunk of Manhattan-sized real estate’s gone: flooding, power lines being down, etc. Hopefully Steel won’t be thrown back into secondary-character-limbo once this storyline ends, especially with DC axing two of its books starring his fellow African-American male heroes (Static, Mr. Terrific).