“Gone, but Not Forgotten” (Superman Special #1: Escape from Dinosaur Island! Comic Review)

Superman Special #1

Written by: Peter J. Tomasi, Patrick Gleason, Mark Russell, Ian Flynn.
Art by: Scott Godlewski, Bryan Hitch, Kaare Andrews
Cover by: Jorge Jimenez

 

“Back, back, back it up” (the story so far)

The villainous Manchester Black transports Superman and Jon to a mysteriously prehistoric strange land known only as “Dinosaur Island.” They learn they are not the only inhabitants on the island when they run into Captain Storm, the last known survivor of the Golden Age World War II military platoon known as The Losers. Capt. Storm helps Supes and Jon make their escape back home to Metropolis after wresting Black’s transportation device from an ivory cyborg gorilla who controls all the monsters on the island. As they activate the transportation device, Storm stays behind and single-handedly holds off hordes of raging dinosaurs to ensure their safe return. Just before their great escape, the Man of Steel promises to one day return to rescue Capt. Storm.

The run-down

Haunted by visions of his time on Dinosaur Island where they left Capt. Storm behind, Jon has trouble sleeping. He convinces Clark to reverse-engineer the transportation device to go back and rescue Capt. Storm. They arrive just in time to save Storm from the hungry hordes of dinosaurs and a “who’s who” pantheon of classic Saturday night movie monsters—giant flying insects, humongous gorillas, ancient serpents—with a zombie twist. But the Captain also seems to be hiding a little secret of his own. Whatever he is hiding at the foot of his base is sure to send chills down readers spines. Will Clark and Jon make it back to Metropolis with the same soldier they once knew? Or will he return home, a changed man?

The plot of the Panels

Scott Godlewski has a lot to offer readers in this issue. His colorful background images, fluid action sequences, along with an awesome splash page of Capt. Storm, Superman, and Superboy staving off a swarm of giant flying zombie-insect creatures make the Dinosaur Island scenes stand out. Peter J. Tomasi and Patrick Gleason offer both new readers and classic fans an easily accessible story about the significance of keeping promises. Instead of preaching from the Gospel of El, Tomasi and Gleason bring readers along on Jon’s hero journey where they discover what it means to be a hero through the eyes of a child. Jon’s desire to fulfill his promise to rescue Capt. Storm leads him to discover his “super-why”—purpose for becoming a hero. It’s about more than simply following orders. Jon discovers that it’s about his ability to recognize and respond to the needs of others, to fill in the gaps for those who cannot protect themselves, and to heal the wounds of those who have sacrificed important portions of themselves in the fight for what’s right.

Share to

What do you think? Take a second to support Damon Cagnolatti on Patreon!
Damon Cagnolatti

Damon Cagnolatti

An avid comic-book reader and super-rap nerd, he draws on the transformative traditions of Hip Hop and comics culture to bridge the gap of cognitive dissonance to a funky rhythm kicked with "pen, coin, and voice". On the weekends, he enjoys growing fresh fruits and veggies; a real low-key farmer in his backyard.
Summary
Tomasi’s farewell special is an excellent capstone to an engaging run that retrofitted Superman’s character as a hero, husband, and father. Tomasi’s final tale makes good on DC’s promise to fans with the launch of Rebirth to bring back character-driven stories, hero legacy, and a sense of excitement to comics. This special also features two back-up stories that reinforce Superman’s classic hero ethos: that no task is too big or small for Superman to address, whether it be returning a giant Atlantean sea-bug to its home, rescuing dog from a collapsing building, or giving a reformed villain the benefit of the doubt.
Good
  • Classic self-contained storytelling
  • Detailed artwork and imagery
  • Clean panel lay-outs
  • Great tribute/final farewell issue
Bad
  • Dialogue heavy
9.5
Amazing
Art - 10
Character Development - 10
Accessibility for New Readers - 10
Plot - 8
Written by
An avid comic-book reader and super-rap nerd, he draws on the transformative traditions of Hip Hop and comics culture to bridge the gap of cognitive dissonance to a funky rhythm kicked with "pen, coin, and voice". On the weekends, he enjoys growing fresh fruits and veggies; a real low-key farmer in his backyard.

Have your say!

0 0

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>