The Summer Of Super Begins In Adventures Of The Super Sons #1

by James Ferguson

The Super Sons are back and I could not be happier. School’s out for Superboy and Robin and they’ve got some crime to stop. Set before the current Superman series where Jon is cavorting around space with his mom and grandfather, Adventures of the Super Sons is a lost tale where our heroes encounter some very intriguing, although short villains.

This first issue opens with a bang. It has the same levels of fun and excitement that series had. The first few pages have Robin and Superboy fighting the bronze Superman statue in Metropolis. It’s the one that went up after he died. This is the kind of quirky adventures these two kids get into. On the one hand, the statue is being controlled by a nearby villain, but on the other, Jon has to fight a big soulless version of his own father. That’s probably something he’ll bring up in therapy later on in life.
I particularly like the very first few panels where Jon is looking directly at the reader and says “I’m back. Sorry that took so long.” He’s talking to Robin, but it serves as meta-commentary. It’s pitch perfect and instantly brought a smile to my face. Writer Peter J. Tomasi doesn’t miss a beat. You’d think this came out immediately after the last issue of Super Sons.

Artist Carlo Barberi does a phenomenal job with this sequence – and the entire book, honestly. He strikes just the right balance between action and comedy. For example, an early double-page spread has Robin fleeing awkwardly from the Superman statue with a look of anger mixed with fear. He’s in this crazy position as the statue attacks in such a way as to avoid losing the big eagle perched on its arm.
Barberi captures the pure unbridled joy that flows through Jon Kent. This kid loves his life and it shows. He has a near constant smile on his face as he prepares for the “Summer of Super” and all the fun he’s going to have fighting bad guys on his time off from school. Remember how excited you were when school let out for the summer? That’s exactly what Jon is feeling.

Adventures of the Super Sons is a bright and vibrantly colored book. Colorist Protobunker makes every single page pop. It’s clear this is more of a Metropolis setting than a Gotham setting from the look and feel. The sun is always shining and there’s an unmistakable sense of hope.
Robin and Superboy encounter a group of young villains called the Gang included kid versions of Lex Luthor, the Joker, Deadshot, and more. The biggest of the bunch, Shaggy Boy, talks in this gruff voice. Letterer Rob Leigh uses this rougher font for him that stands out and makes him appear more monstrous than he is.

Adventures of the Super Sons is the kind of comic that works for all ages, but will especially resonate with kids. They can see themselves in these pint-sized heroes and that makes all the difference. It also works for anyone that’s ever been a kid. It takes you back to that time in your life when anything and everything was possible and that’s a beautiful feeling. It doesn’t hurt that the book is beautifully illustrated and packed with quippy dialogue.
Adventures of the Super Sons #1 from DC Comics is currently available at your local comic shop and digitally through ComiXology and Amazon Kindle.

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