Friday, April 6, 2012

Action Comics #8

There's a lot to like about this issue of Action Comics - but I find it didn't really work for me.

It's the first misstep for writer Grant Morrison, who's been pretty flawless up to this point.

The issue begins with Superman facing off against Brainiac, the alien creature that has captured the city of Metropolis (he shrank it down and placed it in a bottle of sorts).

Superman must also fight a human who has become a cyborg and a slave to Brainiac (not to be confused with Cyborg, a member of the Justice League).

I've been praising the artwork by Rags Morales on this series, and he has some nice work on display here - but he falls down in one important part of the book: the fight scenes.

There's a real art to making a fight sequence flow naturally, so the reader gets the impact of the struggle, but the story keep moving forward (Kirby was the master of this). Here, we see lots of punches throw, bodies flying around, objects smashed - but we don't get a sense of how the pieces fit together.

Did we ever get a good look at Brainiac? Was he a snake-like creature, a many-headed hydra or something else? How did the cyborg fit in? You get the idea.

There are some nice bits of business here, some great artwork and some clever resolutions - but when the action sequence is the key event in the issue, it's vital that it carry its weight.

Morrison has set up numerous stories to keep this book percolating far into the future - but this one was a bit of a stumble.

Grade: B-


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