Sunday, May 9, 2010

Comic Book Review: Action Comics #889

Book Information
Written by Greg Rucka & Eric Trautmann
Penciled by Pere Perez
Colored by Javier Mena
Inked by Bit
Lettered by Rob Leigh
Cover by Alex Garner

My All-Inspiring Opinion
Action Comics is predominantly a Superman book but has never been limited by that fact.  Many other DC characters have taking a starring role in the title if Superman was busy doing something else, but we always knew he would return next month.  I do believe this has been the longest stretch of time where Action Comics has gone without the Man of Steel.  And while the majority of Superman fans find the last year of Action Comics to be boring and stupid, I’ve rather enjoyed the reintroduction of Flamebird and Nightwing.

When it comes to dual writer team-ups, I’m never sure who the creative genius is and who is the right-hand man.  I want to say Greg Rucka is at the forefront of this project but Trautmann has done some spectacular solo work in the past.  The only conclusion I can come to is that both men are equally involved in the writing of this story.  The awesome finality of Nightwing joining in the battle was interesting as Chris seemed to become a whole new person while keeping some of those character traits we’ve become accustom too.  And having the JSA apart of this concluding chapter was a nice touch as well.

Since most of the mystery behind Flamebird and Nightwing was wrapped up in #888, there wasn’t much left to do except finish off the Rao clone and put an end to Jax-Ur’s reign of terror.  But I felt this arc ended rather timidly.  Yes, Rao fell to the ground, yes there was a fiery arena of chaos all around, and yes the entire issue was filled with non-stop action that would have completely obliterated the whole world in real life, but at the snap of a finger, Rao was finish along with Jax-Ur.  Maybe I was just expecting so much of a big booming ending that my mind just decided this wasn’t epic enough to satisfy me.  It just felt way to sudden and abrupt, especially with how much Rucka and Trautmann had built up the story from beginning to end. 

Did Pere Perez give up?  The art in this issue does NOT match up with the previous issues.  Last issue was filled with incredibly detailed and paint-like images that put Perez in the running for the top ten best artists of 2010.  Now he gives us visuals that are less artistic and dull.  It’s as if #888 was too much of a workout for him.  I would compare the art in this issue to that of a driver setting his car on cruise control, shutting his eyes, hitting the gas and hope that everything works out.  I really am disappointed with the quality of work by Perez in this comic.  On a lighter, more positive note however, Alex Garner produced the BEST cover of 2010 thus far.  I find myself picking this issue up over and over again just to gaze on the gorgeous artwork.

My Profoundly Climactic Conclusion
For the most part, this is an entertaining read despite the less than satisfactory conclusion.  I’m debating on whether or not this entire run of Action Comics should be considered for best story arc of 2010.  Only time will tell.

Writing: 7.5
Themes: 6
Art: 3
Overall: 5.50 

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