With threats coming from all sides as well as within, Superman must make a drastic decision to save his beloved city. Your Major Spoilers review of Future State: Superman of Metropolis #1, awaits!
FUTURE STATE: SUPERMAN OF METROPOLIS #1
Writers: Sean Lewis & Brandon Easton
Artists: John Timms, Valentine de Landro, Cully Hamner, & Michael Avon Oeming
Colorists: Gabe Eltaeb, Marissa Louise, & Laura Martin
Editors: Jamie S. Rich & Brittany Holzherr
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $5.99
Release Date: January 5th, 2021
Previously in Future State: Superman of Metropolis: Jonathan Kent, son of Clark Kent and Lois Lane, now holds the title of Superman and he and his cousin Supergirl have been protecting Metropolis. A company called Trojan has moved in though and has gained control of some of the population via cybernetics.
A BIG OL’ COMIC BOOK
Superman of Metropolis #1 opens with a standoff between the military and a group of zealots under the control of the AI system “Brain Cells”. With people caught in the crossfire, Superman appears and seals off the military. He then goes to confront Brain Cells. Realizing the conflict between the military and Brain Cells and its followers will be dangerous for Metropolis, Jonathan utilizes old Kryptonian technology to shrink Metropolis down and put it into a bottle to keep it safe until he can figure out how to handle Brain Cells. This move garners the attention and ire of the military as well as his cousin, Supergirl.
In the first of two backup stories, a new Mister Miracle is patrolling Metropolis trying to get to the bottom of a strange new barrier that has encased the city, when a group of robots attack. He manages to fight them off for a while before his Mother Box loses power and he’s left defenseless.
In the second of the backup stories, The Guardian has been contacted by Jimmy Olson to try and be a positive image for the people of Metropolis who have been suffering for months waiting for Superman to release them. But a woman named Mary has been stoking the anger among the population.
WE NOW JOIN THE PROGRAM ALREADY IN PROGRESS
The first thing that is abundantly clear is that this is not the sort of story that is designed to give you the entire backstory or fill the reader in on a lot of information that would help this issue make a bit more sense. Now, in some ways this is an effective narrative style as it lets the setting and character actions fill in some gaps. But, at a certain point it does feel like this is an issue from much further along in a series rather than a number 1, which made me wonder if there were some issues with important information I needed to have read. But other than that, I thought this was a good Superman story. Some of the best Superman stories are ones that question Superman’s role in society; is he a savior? A protector? A god? And here we get a Superman making a unilateral determination on the lives of everyone in Metropolis and it should be exciting to see how those consequences play out.
BACKUP STORIES HELP THE ART SHINE
To be clear, all the art in this issue is good. Yet, it’s the backup stories that feature the most interesting artwork. Valentine De Landro and Marissa Louise come together to give a Mister Miracle story a street level feel that isn’t always common in DC’s lineup. While the duo of Cully Hamner and Michael Avon Deming come together on The Guardian’s story and give it a unique look that bounces between cartoonish, abstract, and classic in a surprisingly coherent manner.
THE BOTTOM LINE: A FLAWED MAIN STORY BUOYED BY DECENT BACKUPS
While the main Superman story is intriguing and sets the stage for something that could be very compelling, it unfortunately feels a bit too impenetrable and missing just a little too much information to allow the reader to feel comfortable with the story. On the other hand, the two backup stories both are clean action stories, with nice artwork, that feel accessible while showing some of the consequences of the main story events. 4 out of 5 stars.
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Future State: Superman of Metropolis #1
Future State: Superman of Metropolis is a dense book with a lot going on that doesn’t hold the readers’ hands at all. At times this is nice and helps the story, at other times though it makes the reading a somewhat confusing ordeal.