The Crime Syndicate Returns In Superman #9

by Tony Thornley

The Man of Steel has many enemies that are basically his evil twin. One of his most terrifying though is Ultraman, his Earth-3 counterpart, and in Superman #9, Jon Kent finds himself face to face with his father’s doppelganger.

Brian Michael Bendis, Ivan Reis, Brandon Peterson, Joe Prado, Oclair Albert, Alex Sinclair, and Josh Reed continue the Unity Saga, as Jon Kent finds himself in over his head.

Superboy continues his story of his lost years, picking up where last issue left off- face to face with the Crime Syndicate. Ultraman snatches him away from the others, leaving him trapped in the middle of a volcano. However, that won’t stop the kid of steel…

Bendis crafts a tense story with Jon here, showing how much he’s learned from both of his parents. His determination comes directly from Clark, but his smarts and deductive skills are straight from Lois. It’s a smart move that does a lot to establish the character’s competence, even despite his age.

That’s not all that happens this issue though. Bendis opens the issue with a callback to issue #5, showing the House of El peacefully coming face to face with the House of Zod, this time from Superman’s point of view. It’s a smart callback, even if the scenes aren’t identical, as it hints that there’s something more to the vision from the earlier issue.

The art team continues to be stellar. Reis, Prado and Albert’s scenes with Clark, Lois and Jon are full of detail and emotion. They’re able to subtly tell the story of what the trio are going through in just a series of silent panels.

Peterson’s work has been been getting each issue. He’s got a great grasp of Jon as a character, and is able to show his emotional journey over the course of the issue. The best element though his depiction of Ultraman, showing off his insecurity wonderfully.

This arc is clearly setting up big things to come for the Man of Steel and his family. I’m excited to see where it goes from here.

Superman #9 is available now from DC Comics.

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