Title: Superman: The Last Son.
Writer(s): Goeff Johns & Richard Donner.
Artist(s): Adam Kubert, Eric Powell, Arthur Adams, Eric Wight, Joe Kubert, Phil Jimenez, Andy Lanning, Rags Morales, Mark Farmer, Tony S. Daniel, Gary Frank, Jonathan Sibal & Stéphane Roux.
Colourist(s): Dave Stewart, Edgar Delgado, Alex Sinclair, Lee Loughridge, Joe Kubert, Pete Carlsson, Jeromy Cox, Brad Anderson & Karine Boccanfuso.
Letterer(s): Rob Leigh, Nick J. Napolitano, Travis Lanham, Phil Balsman & Joe Kubert.
Publisher: DC Comics.
Format: Hardcover – Deluxe edition.
Release Date: March 9th 2021.
Genre(s): Comics, Science-Fiction.
My Overall Rating:
It’s truly agonizing to find yourself in a foreign environment where you’re often reminded that you don’t belong. Despite doing your best to fit in, to convince the people around you that you only wish for their well-being, you sometimes just can’t help feeling alone deep down. For one superhero, his arrival to Earth allowed him to be with people who looked like him but remained internally segregated by his unbelievable powers that humans could only dream of. However, when he finally meets someone like him, he can’t help but feel appeased that he might not be the last of his kind in the universe, that he might not be the last son of Krypton. In a never-before-seen team-up, writer Geoff Johns (Flashpoint, Blackest Night) joins forces with famed film director Richard Donner (Superman: The Movie, Lethal Weapon) to write a Man of Steel story alongside artists Adam Kubert (Wolverine, X-Men) and Eric Powell (The Goon).
What is Superman: The Last Son about? Believing to be the sole survivor of his native planet Krypton, Clark Kent went on to live his life as an outstanding yet klutz investigative journalist and, when trouble arises, as the Man of Steel for the citizens of Earth. It is the sudden descent of a rocket crash-landing into the middle of the streets of Metropolis that he and his wife Lois Lane discover a little boy who speaks Krpytonese. Compelled to protect him at all cost, they both decide to raise him as their own but his arrival also comes with a new set of problems, a problem that takes the form of General Zod and his renegade followers who have escaped the Phantom Zone looking to seize the child and rule Earth to create New Krypton. Unfortunately for Superman, this won’t be the only issue he’ll be running into as he later must go after Luthor’s monstrosity known as Bizarro who happens to have kidnapped Clark Kent’s father to bring him to his own twisted planet.
This special deluxe edition collects for the first time ever every celebrated collaboration within the Action Comics series between Geoff Johns and Richard Donner, that is Action Comics #844-846, #851, and #855-857, and Action Comics Annual #10-11. It also includes an introduction by actor Marc McClure (known for his portrayal of Jimmy Olsen in the 1980s Superman movies) as well as a special and short sketchbook section from Adam Kubert.
“And the hope we had for our future can be shared with the people of Earth by you… the last son of Krypton.”— Geoff Johns & Richard Donner
There is plenty to appreciate from this story arc that introduces fans to a new character that will quickly enamour Superman on an intimate level. Through him, he sees a lot of himself and will feel an urge to protect him from those who wish to weaponize him before he could even grow up to make his own decisions in life. This connection to someone who apparently has Kryptonian origins is key to understanding Superman’s own predicament on Earth as an alien living among humans. Unfortunately, the story doesn’t delve much deeper into the emotional tie between these characters as it introduces Zod and his minions, steering the narrative towards a grand spectacle with chaotic repercussions. This then shifts the story towards action rather than psychological exploration, especially once Lex Luthor enters the picture and introduces his own team of lunatics. The impact of the finale, unfortunately, suffers from this formula and ends flatly rather than intensely but at least wraps up neatly enough to move on to other things.
If the introduction of this new kid in the block isn’t enough, fans will also learn the details regarding the various Kryptonite colours and their effect on Kryptonians throughout this volume. On top of that, the additional story included in this volume focuses on Bizarro with an original adventure that perfectly fits with his character’s odd nature. As off-the-wall as it is, not necessarily a flaw in itself, it remains quite zany, especially if you are familiar with Bizarro’s twisted mind. And let me tell you that Bizarro’s World, filled with funhouse-mirror versions of Superman’s allies, foes, and world, is even more twisted than you could imagine. Luckily, Adam Kubert and Eric Powell’s artwork make for an entertaining style that vividly captures these adventures and impressively brings to life these characters. Remaining conceptually loyal to the story-telling elements, their artwork rhymes wonderfully with writer Geoff John and Richard Donner’s stories without adding any more hiccups to this volume (one could argue that the additional stories at the end are quite forgettable but could be seen as bonuses to avid readers more than anything).
Superman: The Last Son is an amusing yet familiar story expanding on the Man of Steel’s sense of belonging and triumphant lore.