By Andy Frisk
March 13, 2009 - 00:00
Here we go. Action Comics #875 is the first issue of about a year's worth of issues of Action Comics without Superman. Nightwing and Flamebird, two Kryptonian youngsters who escaped the Phantom Zone some time ago, take over as the lead heroes of the book for now. Immediately they plunge fist first into action. It appears that General Zod has sleeper Kryptonian agents on Earth masquerading as humans with sinister propagandistic motives. Nightwing and Flamebird have taken on the mission of exposing and imprisoning, in what appears to be a type of Phantom Zone like prison, these sleeper agents.
Our heroes themselves, though, have to hide their true identities as Kryptonians since the United Nations Resolution banning all Kryptonians from Earth, except Superman, was passed. Nightwing and Flamebird manage to capture one Tor-An, who is posing as the chief editor of Empire Communications Network, an Australian news organization. Tor-An is looking to hire Cat Grant away from The Daily Planet to write a series of “exposes” about the dangers Kryptonians pose towards humans, “especially Superman.” Later in the issue we catch a glimpse of Lois Lane watching a news feed of the aftermath of Nightwing, Flamebird and Tor-An’s battle with a raised eyebrow, obviously the award winning reporter is coming to some conclusions that these developments will need further investigating. At the end of the issue we witness the effects the time delay nature of The Phantom Zone can have on its inhabitants and one of our young heroes might not be remaining a youngster for long.
Overall, the art remains strong. Particularly impressive is the two page full depiction of Nightwing slamming Tor-An downward through several floors of his office building. We also get an interesting use of panel layout that captures the aerial battle between the three Kryptonians, drawing our attention to the havoc Kryptonians, when they bash each other, wreak on their outfits.
I miss Superman not appearing in his flagship title, and the cover proclaiming World Without (insert Superman shield here) seems too familiar, especially to us readers who, back in the early to mid 1990’s had the World Without a Superman storyline following his death. Is DC trying to recapture some of the magic of those high selling days of Superman comics past? Absolutely. Honestly, if the current storytelling holds up, they just might.
Rating: 9.5 /10