Review: A Journey Comes To A Bittersweet End In ‘Superman’ #28

by Tony Thornley


An epic run comes to a quiet (and lovely) conclusion


We’ve known this conclusion was coming for some time. Now, in Superman #28, one journey draws to a close.

It’s the last issue of this creative team’s epic run, and it’s a mixed bag that still ends strong. It’s created by Brian Michael Bendis, Ivan Reis, Danny Miki, Alex Sinclair, and Dave Sharpe.

Superman is trapped as a prisoner of Synmar, the brutal alien race whose champion nearly defeated him on Earth. However, he quickly learns that not all of the Synmar are allied with the warrior who attacked Superman. And with that knowledge, he can do what he does best: inspire hope.

I have enjoyed Bendis’ take on Superman and this story illustrates why. As far as superheroic action, it’s solid. He gets the idea of Superman, and what he can inspire and build. He understands why the Man of Steel is in the station that he is, and it informs the story he tells. 

However, what elevates the story is the epilogue. Where Bendis writes a solid Superman, he turns around and writes probably the best Clark Kent of at least the past twenty years. His interpretation of Clark, as well as Lois Lane, was reason enough to return to the character month after month. These closing pages of the issue are enough to make me sad we won’t see more of it, but incredibly happy that as a Superman fan, we’ve gotten this take on him for the last three years.

Reis and Miki continue to show why they are perhaps the best art team in DC’s arsenal. Their Superman is grand and inspiring. They bring him onto the page with fury as the panel erupts around him (with brilliant color work by Sinclair). But they also lay out the action so it drives the story ahead, and leads the reader through the fight. Then when they reach the quiet ending, they pull back, and take their time with the characters, showing us what they’re feeling, getting it across more than Bendis’s dialogue alone.

It’s a lovely issue and a fantastic conclusion to this great run. I hope many creators in the future refer to it as the inspiration for how Clark Kent, the man, thinks, feels and acts. It’s truly what makes him a Superman.

Superman #28 is available now from DC Comics.

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