blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Superman ’78 (2021) #6

Superman '78 #6

I read this comic twice because I’m going to make many negative comments about it, and I wanted to see if I was missing something. The only thing it appears I missed—outside the Goonies cameo, which is something or other—is writer Robert Venditti really wanted to get in a last-minute dig about how science is dumb.

But all my other observations stand. Venditti managed to write the worst “Christopher Reeve Superman” story ever. And I learned how to dislike screenwriters by name, thanks to the Superman IV guys. Venditti is worse. Though at least he doesn’t draw attention to how much better IV’s writing is than Superman ’78’s writing. He does, however, kind of ape the finale of Superman III and show how much better written that ending is compared to this one.s

The comic starts with Superman fighting Brainiac while Metropolis levitates in the air, waiting to be shrunk into a bottle. It’s a terrible fight scene. Unfortunately, Wilfredo Torres doesn’t really have a knack for fight scenes. I think six issues of bad fight scenes is enough to call it. I mean Venditti’s writing of the fight scene—which has Superman and Brainiac bickering about the planet Earth and Superman saying “my daddy says” like he’s in a Christopher Nolan movie—Venditti’s writing is atrocious. And would be the worst thing in the comic if it weren’t for the somehow even worse Lois Lane scene, followed by the somehow even worse last page. But Torres never cracks the fight scene.

After that fight scene, there’s still the Metropolis dangling in the atmosphere problem, and it turns into Superman Returns and its nonsensical disaster conclusion. Only with The Goonies and Streaky the Wonder Cat and a Watchmen reference (maybe). Technically, Torres is worse at the disaster movie stuff because he loses track of the action between panels, but the fight scene’s still worse. Superman’s not soapboxing during the disaster scene.

Then the end goes from bad to worse to worse.

I don’t think Superman ’78 is worthless, per se. I mean, the colors are fine; Torres has some moments. But it certainly doesn’t have any value. Not with Venditti’s writing.

Whatever. It’s over. I hope they don’t make another one; I’m sorry I read this one and sorrier they made it.

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