I review Action Comics #27 by Greg Pak, with artwork from Aaron Kuder, R.B. Silva and Mike Hawthorne and published by DC Comics as part of the New 52.
In a week of stellar releases for comics Greg Pak continues to excel with his run on Action Comics. Along with Snyder on Superman Unchained and Soule on Superman/Wonder Woman, Pak and company are establishing the Man of Steel as a premier figurehead in the New 52 once again after a rocky start with inconsistent quality plaguing the early books focused on Clark Kent. All we need now is a writer on Superman that will make the book great, and we’ll have a full house (Not including Superboy and Supergirl) of excellent Superman books, because that’s exactly the sort of attention that DC’s most famous Superhero should receive. But regardless, Action Comics #27 is another strong issue from Pak, with some equally good artwork by Aaron Kuder. Now three issues into their run and no sign of losing ground in terms of quality, this book very well could start to end up high up the list of favourite DC books soon. It’s not quite at the level of Superman Unchained or Superman/Wonder Woman however, but Action Comics comes very close.
Greg Pak handles a strong portrayal of Superman and pulls him off very well. We open with a flashback, like the recent Superman Unchained #5, and this time it focuses on Clark taking his first steps with his new powers. he’s a seven year old who has discovered that nothing on the planet can hurt him, when he starts to hear everything across the planet, including his parents conversation about him – who unintentionally tell Clark that for the first time, he’s not human, and soon after, they give him his Superman suit. We then cut to the present, where following the aftermath of last issue, Baka, the captured alien, is now transformed into a smaller little animal, much less threatening than the monster who he encountered with Lana last issue. It’s a change of pace and Pak pulls it off with so little struggle that I wouldn’t mind if we had a whole issue featuring Baka and Superman in the Fortress of Solitude. However, of course nothing’s going to be that easy and that’s where things start to get a bit more action packed. Lana investigates on her own – and is being perused by the mysterious Ghost Soldier.
There are three different artists on this book, and Silva opens with a flashback story. Hawthorne has five pages and the rest of the art belongs to the awesome Aaron Kuder, but for me I wouldn’t have minded if Kuder was just covering the whole issue – even if it does make sense to have a different artist to cover the flashback sequences, much like with Sueperman Unchained #5 last week. However, the artwork for the most part across all three parts is strong – and the switch isn’t too jarring.
I can recommend this book – Action Comics #27 is certainly another strong entry in what has been an awesome week in comics. Pak and Kuder are injecting the series with the sort of fun that came with Fraction’s Hawkeye and despite this making the book feel distinctivley Superman. I may prefer Unchained and Superman/Wonder Woman over this title but one thing’s for sure, it’s a close call – and I’ll be around for more issues on this book for certain.