Writer: Phillip Kennedy Johnson
Art: Mikel Janín, Dave Sharpe, and Jordie Bellaire
Publisher: DC COMICS
Release Date: February 16th, 2021
The MAN OF STEEL is still trapped in the basins of Warworld fighting through Mongul’s multitudes and laboring his way towards the big guy himself. However, since it’s SUPERMAN, there must be more to this strategy than meets the eye, right? Let’s dive into FUTURE STATE: SUPERMAN: WORLDS OF WAR #2 by Phillip Kennedy Johnson to see if SUPERMAN’S plan is beginning to take shape or if he’ll be stuck in the pits of Warworld forever.
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Let me begin by stating that the focus of my review will solely be on the Superman story alone. Why? Well, not only is the issue named rightly that, but there is simply so much to discuss in this aspect of the issue that the review would be too long and tiresome otherwise. So, if you’re interested in Shilo Norman as MISTER MIRACLE or MIDNIGHTER, give it a look and let me know what you think, especially with Shilo’s tale coming this May. Click HERE for the DC Comics May 2021 Solicits.
Now, as for our SUPERMAN story, I’m going to begin by informing the readers that Phillip Kennedy Johnson is the perfect man for the job as the next SUPERMAN writer. The passion he has for the character leaps of the page and punches you in the gut. This issue was percolating with emotion and sentiment for the MAN OF STEEL. Johnson answers who SUPERMAN is and what he means to the people that read him. Johnson gets the hope he brings forth in comics as well as our daily lives. Frankly, I haven’t seen this side of SUPERMAN in years. And, if this is any hint as to Johnson’s direction for ACTION COMICS and SUPERMAN moving forward, all I can say is “take my money now!”
IT WAS ALWAYS CLARK KENT
Two (possibly three) parallel stories are happening simultaneously throughout this issue. SUPERMAN is battling on Warworld while two kids are reading an old article by Clark Kent. And yes, everyone is STILL aware that Clark Kent is SUPERMAN. Thanks, Bendis. Nevertheless, Johnson uses that article as a way to explain the truth behind what SUPERMAN stands for, his motivation, his driving purpose, and the true spirit that burns deep down that clearly runs who he is as a living being. The huge point Johnson plows through this issue of FUTURE STATE: SUPERMAN: WORLDS OF WAR is that Clark Kent is what makes him so super. It’s his spirit that makes him so powerful. Even without any superhuman abilities, Clark Kent would still fight for what’s right. He’d still put himself in harm’s way and stand up for the little guy just like Edgar Watters did in the story and a dozen other unnamed souls throughout the history of our civilization.
BACK TO HIS ROOTS
Clark’s always been different. Call it nature. Call it nurture. Or, call it a little of both. No one can deny that this old, noble soul will always do what’s right when faced with adversity AND while always find a way even in the darkest of times. He’s resolute, firm, and level-headed even while fighting for his life on Warworld. The girl in the story knew what true blue fans know, and it appears as though Johnson’s going to hang his hat on that fact as well. The genius of this story, as well as the character of SUPERMAN, is that it’s an alien from another planet that shows us all how to truly be human. Is that ultimately what’s always drove Lex insane the most? Who knows? However, I do know that this issue will cause readers to think and believe in SUPERMAN once again. And that my friends is worth the heavy cover price alone without the other stories.
Mikel Janín’s illustrations are always so outstanding. Many may question Tom King’s run on BATMAN but no one will question the artwork Janín put worth each issue. The same holds in FUTURE STATE: SUPERMAN: WORLDS OF WAR. His illustrations are always so clear and detailed. The expression and pain in SUPERMAN’S face on Warworld simply cried out from each page. The panel progression and layout helped each action sequence seem fluid and powerful alongside Jordie Bellaire’s color choices between Warworld and Earth. Readers, Janín and Bellaire provide artistic features that many comics overlook such as sweat flying off of SUPERMAN throughout every swing of a weapon and blood seeping from open wounds. The story was magnificent. However, it’s Janín and Bellaire that push this story over the edge making it pretty $&@$ close to a masterpiece.
This is a MUST READ for any SUPERMAN fan and I highly recommend giving it a shot. Johnson, alongside his amazing art team, shows fans what’s been missing from SUPERMAN for quite some time. He takes a character steeped in history and lore and manages to beautifully provide fans with an analogy to the human spirit. SUPERMAN is and has always been, the best in all of us. His identity is what draws us to the character. His hope, determination, and will to do what’s right are the foundational values that every human in their core wishes could adhere to… but can’t. I admire the approach Johnson uses throughout this issue and I simply can’t want to see what he has in store after FUTURE STATE. Sign. Me. Up! Let me know what you think, have a great week, and God bless!
If you’d like to get your hands on FUTURE STATE: SUPERMAN: WORLDS OF WAR #2, click HERE to grab a copy! Maybe you’re loving these new FUTURE STATE titles? If so, click HERE for related issues and trades. Also, if you’re interested in ACTION COMICS or SUPERMAN by Bendis, click HERE to get some great deals on related issues and trades. And finally, if you’re looking for something else to read, check out my Amazon Online Comic Shop by clicking HERE. Thank you all for the read and continued support. Stay safe and stay healthy.
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