Several months ago, Lois Lane exposed Superman’s secret identity as Clark Kent, just before Superman died a hero’s death saving the world. Now, Lois Lane has disappeared mysteriously, a new Superman from another timeline has emerged, and Clark Kent has reappeared in Metropolis, claiming that the original Superman had told him to go into hiding so that he could take Clark’s place to protect him from the corrupt company that Clark had been investigating.
It’s a story that nobody believes. Not Lex Luthor, who has claimed the name of Superman for himself. Not the mysterious new Superwoman, who has her own reasons for believing that Clark Kent is really and truly dead. And certainly not the new Superman—strange visitor from another timeline, who only recently revealed himself to the world after spending the better part of a decade in hiding with his wife (the Lois Lane of his reality) and their son, Jonathan.
Now, as Clark Kent finds himself endangered on multiple fronts, the heroes of Metropolis must do their best to save him even as they investigate two mysteries. Who is Clark Kent, really? And what has happened to Lois Lane?
Welcome To The Planet—the second volume of Action Comics set in the reality of DC Rebirth—continues the trend started in vol. 1, Path of Doom. As the first volume established the status quo for the various Superman titles, this second volume begins to explore the connections between the many characters and the complex relationships that come into play as Superman and Lois Lane learn who the new Superwoman is and Lois begins to explore the secret life of her alternate universe counterpart.
Under a lesser writer, this might be tedious, but legendary Superman author Dan Jurgens does a masterful job of keeping things fresh, despite there not being much in the way of action for a story told in the pages of Action Comics. Jurgens’ love for these characters, as well as his knowledge of how they think and feel and act, is apparent. Of particular note in all of this is the story which opens the volume, in which Lex Luthor recalls the events that inspired him to heroism and, more recently, to take up Superman’s name and symbol as his own.
The artwork for this volume matches the writing in quality. Four individual artists—Patrick Zircher, Stephen Segovia, Art Thibert, and Tom Grummett—each take a turn at the art duties in individual chapters. While their styles are all unique and visually distinct, the way their contributions are balanced prevent any aesthetic disharmony as the story progresses.
This volume is rated 12+ for teenage audiences and I believe that rating to be a fair one. This is a wholesome, old-fashioned comic as one would expect with anything baring the Superman name. There is no adult content apart from the occasional profanity. Even then, the curse words don’t get much stronger then the very occasional “damn.” There is a fair amount of super-heroic action but nothing gory or at all bloody.
Superman: Action Comics, vol. 2: Welcome To The Planet
by Dan Jurgens
Art by Patrick Zircher, Stephen Segovia, Art Thibert, and Tom Grummett
DC Comics, 2017
Publisher Age Rating: 12+