Superman versus the Chained concludes!
One of the biggest battles Metropolis has ever witnessed comes down to Superman doing the unthinkable and sacrificing his powers to stop the Chained.
How does that impact Lex Luthor’s plans… or is Lex too busy dealing with the shocking return of his mother in Superman #850?!
ComicBook.comSuperman is truly in a new golden age, and no where is that more apparent than Superman #8. New story threads abound throughout the issue, and Joshua Williamson pulls at just the right ones with expert precision, revealing new layers to what's happening now and teasing important elements for what is to come. The Chained's backstory brings several long disparate elements together in a meaningful and streamlined way, but also maintains focus on the current main story at hand. The team of Gleb Melnikov, Norm Rapmund, David Baldeon, Jamal Campbell, Alejandro Sanchez, and Dave Sharpe deliver a true team effort, with their various styles shinning through without feeling choppy or breaking the reader's immersion in the story. Between The Chained, Lex's history, Pharm and Graft's backstory and future plans, and Superman's status quo, there's plenty to be excited for in Superman, and that isn't changing anytime soon.
Geek DadWhere this issue is most fascinating is in its exploration of Metropolis’ forgotten history. The era Luthor is calling back to is from long before Superman came to the city, and both he and Perry White have knowledge of how Stryker got his powers and how he fell from grace. He has such great control of his powers that he’s able to quickly manhandle the Super-family—which leads Luthor and Superman to take on a desperate last-ditch weapon created by Luthor years ago. There’s only one problem—it’s powered by Kryptonite, and with every minute Superman wears it, it’s killing him. It feels a little too on-the-nose for Luthor to have designed this with supposedly no ill intentions, but it sets up an interesting dynamic where a recovering Superman might wind up even more enmeshed with Luthor’s interests going forward. Williamson has done a lot of great DC book over the years, but this might be the best yet.
Henchman-4-HireThis issue is smack dab in the middle of a big, fun superhero brawl, and both action and character scenes are a lot of fun to read.
The Super Powered FancastThe Story: Williamson delivers an action packed story filled with great suspense and tension. I continue to enjoy this new look at Metropolis and its history through the eyes of Lex and the people connected to him. It gives a great insight into the city before Superman’s arrival. The story also ends with some great thrills as well and makes me excited to see what happens next. The Art: All of the artists deliver fantastic visuals throughout the issue. I love Baldeon’s art and could pick out those moments right away, but all of the art flows together brilliantly to create an awesome visual experience.
AIPTIt’s a delight to bask in that sun in between less light-hearted Amazon slayings and mutant devastation that might be on your pull list, standing with books like Shazam! as the brightest parts of this Dawn of DC.
Comic WatchJust when I thought I was growing bored with Joshua’s Superman, he pumps out a killer issue like this, and brings me right back in. Plus Gleb’s art really improved with this issue, which really helped with my enjoyment of the issue. While I know Lex’s turn to the light will never last forever, it’s a nice change of pace. What do these guys have up next for the Man of Steel? Don’t know, but I can’t wait.
Lyles Movie FilesThe story continues to be engaging, but the art lacked its normal level of high quality. Still, this storyline is proving very engaging and maintains the momentum of this new Superman run.
Supergirl Comic Box CommentaryWriter Joshua Williamson does a good job here of building up the threat of The Chained, tying the villain into Lex's history and Conner's history. The threat feels real. As this is a Lex villain more than a Superman villiain, this battle leans into the new dynamic between Luthor and Superman, forcing a bit of a team-up. And we get quick peeks at the newer members of the book - Lena Luthor, the Countess, Dr. Pharma and Mr. Graft. Still, the ending of the fight with the Chained is a bit of a stretch on a couple of levels. The art is a bit all over the place with Gleb Melnikov, Norm Rapmund, David Balteon, and Jamal Campbell all listed as being on art. I really like Melnikov's grungy, energetic art on the Chained battles. There are nice, bigger panels highlighting some of the action. The cover by Campbell conveys the threat of The Chained, Superman weighed down.
The Comicbook DispatchSuperman #8 delivers a destructive conclusion to Superman’s battle with the Chained and sets things up for the next story arc. While the Chained and the fight with him doesn’t do anything too exciting, and we’re just now learning more about him in the very issue he’s defeated, the art makes him a destructive and functional villain. While the comic was still fun, the ending does have weird timing with what’s going on with Superman in Action Comics. We’ll see how this series tackles the concept as it moves on to the next story arc for Superman.
Fortress of Solitude
Weird Science DC ComicsAping classic Superman aesthetics and a bright tone, issue 8 nonetheless develops a tragic villain by rooting him to the mythology.
Superman HomepageThe main plot was a disappointing end to "The Chained" but the character moments propelled it beyond expectation. Lena despising her father (and still bearing Brainiac's tri scar) was interesting. Was she the reason for his turning a new leaf? Also the prologue with Sammy and the revelations and implications for Conner Kent were brilliant. I love Conner getting a bit of development. I hope it's explored further! Disappointing that Kara, Kenan and Natasha were relegated to 'cleaning crew' with Kenan and Natasha not even appearing.