Action Comics #1005
It’s pretty amazing how much more Brian Michael Bendis’ Action Comics is compared to his Superman run. Bendis really gets how to make Clark Kent, Daily Planet reporter, who’s also the world’s greatest hero a fun read. There’s intrigue, characters with strong personalities and two big mysteries to solve. Who’s The Red Cloud and who is causing the arson incidents throughout Metropolis? This issue provides the answer to one of those questions.
Bendis pulls the Hush card where the mysterious new villain is the recently thrown in member of the supporting cast. At least in this case, Bendis was smart enough to add in a few new characters to increase the suspect list.
Clark is in the middle of an investigation into the arsons. It’s nice to see reporter Clark Kent doing something. This is the one area where Bendis has improved upon his Rebirth era Superman predecessors. It’s come at the expense of some other things, but at least Bendis is making Clark’s day job more entertaining.
Ryan Sook stays on as artist, which is excellent as Action Comics is a good fit for his style. Sook’s art lends itself to more conversational driven stories that ironically in this case aren’t so action focused. I really like this Bendis/Sook pairing and hope they will continue to collaborate here.
The issue’s big payoff falls a little flat as the Red Cloud’s identity lacked the shock factor it needed, but the strong character interactions and artwork still make this another solid issue.
Rating: 8.5 out of 10