Updated: Jan 24
ACTION COMICS #1005
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Ryan Sook
Colorist: Brad Anderson
Publisher: DC Comics
Over the past few months Bendis has breathed an exciting, and sorely needed, newfound life into the city of Metropolis. His intricate web of crime and fresh faces have been the true stars of this run. Once again Bendis has outdone himself, after a fantastic issue last month he continues to dazzle us with the revelation of Red Cloud's identity and the long awaited return of Vic Sage, The Question.
The issue opens up with a member of the Invisible Mafia, Gummy, trying to acquire an H-Dial, which lets its user transform into a superhero. It is in this scene that Sook and Andersons art is expertly displayed. Anderson's use of purples and blacks set the mood perfectly. Sook masterfully showed every little nuance and subtle expression of each character, this is without a doubt the best work of his career. This is where The Question makes his return, as he looks for clues to the whereabouts of Red Cloud. While you don't see him at first, he singlehandedly takes down everyone in the club, until the full page reveal. This was the page that made me yearn for Bendis and Sook to work on a Question solo book. The way that entire scene played out, building the tension with the action taking place out of the "camera" to the final reveal of Question, perfection.
Later on in the story we see Clark and Robinson Goode discussing journalism and the definition of truth. While Clark believes you should write based on facts, Goode would rather write stories that get peoples attention, regardless of having all the facts. Bendis has consistently had this conversation of journalism throughout his run, I'm interested to see if he's going somewhere with this, Bendis doesn't do anything without reason.
Clark gets a call from Melody Moore, the deputy chief of the fire department. She tells him that Superman suggested that they meet. It's here that she gives him information that leads him to investigate the fires that have been popping up in Metropolis, by checking in on the Mayor.
While checking in on the Mayor, Superman is attacked by Red Cloud. Red Cloud fills his lungs, suffocating him. He barely gets away, but by flying at superspeed Red Cloud wasn't able to keep up. Not many villains can say that they went toe-to-toe with the Man of Steel and got away. It's on the final page that Bendis reveals that Red Cloud is...…. Robinson Goode. While not exactly jaw dropping, it was unexpected. It will be interesting to see how this revelation develops in subsequent issues.
This issue really sets the stage for big things coming up. Bendis has already teased that he and Ryan Sook have a secret project they're working on, fingers crossed that it's The Question. This is an exciting time to be a Superman fan, and I can't think of a better person suited to steer the ship than Brian Michael Bendis.