Action Comics #992
The true measure of an epic arc is how it changes the hero once it’s done. For Action Comics, The Oz Effect should have a lasting impact on Superman and issue #992 starts breaking down the emotional toll showing Big Blue in a light we rarely see.
Working off Dan Jurgens’ plot, scripter Rob Williams examines the fallout from Superman’s encounter with Mr. Oz. I really liked the sense that Superman was in Clark Kent, investigative reporter mode as he attempted to find answers to some lingering questions.
It doesn’t hurt that Will Conrad is on board this issue to provide the art. Conrad is one of DC’s not so well-hidden secrets thanks to his highly emotive character and layouts. If the regular artist gig is up for grabs, DC couldn’t find many better options than Conrad. Thanks to the nature of the story, this also serves as a decent Justice League audition. Conrad gives the now familiar sight of Superman hanging with Batman and Green Lantern a fresh sense of wonder and importance. Conrad’s pencils showcase both the power of Superman and his humanity as well with outstanding posing that really conveys Superman is still a man.
The issue also serves as a final appetizer and lead in to The Doomsday Clock as Superman and his allies confirm there’s been some major adjustments throughout history and time.
Action Comics has long earned its must-read status and even with the hype of Doomsday Clock, this issue provided one of the best Superman issues all month. And that’s even before the shocking return of a fan-favorite character on the final page.
Rating: 10 out of 10