This Week’s List
- Action Comics #12
- Avengers Academy #34
This week, I’ll cover the highlights and art of two comics I picked up today.
1. Action Comics
Superman does have a weaknesses beyond a dose of toxic kryptonite – even then man of steel has to stop and think about his actions. Adam Blake is one of five “Neo-Sapiens”: special people with extreme intelligence and psychic powers. He attacks Superman telepathically, his mind unprotected, forcing him into different fantasies and dulling his reactions to dangers. Namely, an angry mob that Adam Blake is forcing to attack him. Superman defeats Blake without thinking – he literally acts on instinct, relying on his action alone to attack Blake. The man wasn’t a villain, but has a clear “I’ll get you next time!” moment, as he transport himself far away from Superman’s reach.
There are several panels where Superman or Blake toss around cars parked on the Metropolis Street. The act of lifting a car is a key image from Superman’s history: the cover of Action Comics #1 has Superman throwing down a car. As if to show Blake’s dominance of Superman, he throws several cars at once into a weakened Superman, and each car comes in at a different angle.
2. Avengers Academy
A new story arc has begun in Avengers Academy. It has the ominous title of “Final Exam”. Despite the fact that the comic book has not been canceled, it does sound final. I think it is more likely a change is approaching for the Avengers Academy, once the current event, Avengers Vs X-men, comes to an end. A change similar to the recently announced “Uncanny Avengers”. Several plot threads built on earlier in the Avengers Academy run are brought to light here, mainly involving a young man named Jeremy Briggs.
He appears to be a capable businessman, philanthropist, and super powered: he can reassemble objects at the molecular level, transforming the object into something else like an alchemist. His motivation: remove the “Heroes vs Villains” idea completely from the Marvel universe. His argument is strong: why would super humans with incredible, life changing powers even chose to wear costumes and fight on the street when they could be changing the world? There is a huge discussion on this topic. It’s called the “Reed Richards is useless” argument, among other names. Basically, heroes with the power to cure a disease or save a country could, but won’t. The idea came up in an earlier post about what the Justice League could be capable of, but isn’t at the moment. Christos Gage, the series writer, discussed that Briggs might appear to have good intentions in making this argument against the Avengers, but appearances are not what they seem.
This opening panel had a great pose by Hazmat and Mettle. They could not look more out of place or awkward. Tom Grummett’s pencils, Cory Hamsher’s inks, and Chris Sotomayor’s combine to make several strong, vibrant images with these two characters.