Action Comics returns to its original numbering, post-Rebirth. Writer Dan Jurgens returns to the series but it's not Superman that's going to be the savior of Metropolis. It's Lex Luthor. We talked to Jurgens about the upcoming series, what we can expect, and why the series is going back to its original numbering.
COMIC VINE: How does it feel to be working again on Action Comics?
DAN JURGENS: Working on Action Comics is a great feeling. When I was a kid, I always thought that series with high numbers indicated it must be good. Kind of like, “Wow! Issue 400! It must be awesome to be around that long!” So being able to work on Action, which started it all for Superman, and picking up the old numbering system is really a great feeling.
Why has Lex Luthor returned to Metropolis and why is he trying to take Superman's place?
By now, you’ve seen Justice League #50, in which Lex essentially had Apokolips placed at his feet. When you see Justice League #52, you’ll find the exact thing that brought Lex back to earth. It’s a fairly powerful enticement. Though it doesn’t ship for a couple of weeks, the events in that issue actually take place before the events of Action #957.
How do the residents of Metropolis feel about Lex's return?
They would seem to be okay with it. But that gets a bit complicated when Superman’s arrival overshadows him a bit.
How skeptical are those closest to Superman (Jimmy and Lois) feel about Lex becoming the new savior of Metropolis?
Jimmy would probably be more accepting of it than Superman and Lois. The only yardstick they can really apply to Luthor is the one by which they measured the one on their world. In other words, they’ll never really be able to trust him. The relationship between Luthor and Superman will be a core part of this book. Obviously, it will be different from what Superman experienced before, and Lois will get very involved with trying to figure it out as well.
What role will Lex play with Apokolips from here on out?
Stay tuned! That’s going to unfold a bit more slowly.
Aside from Lex Luthor, what other characters will be making their way into the first arc and what role do they play?
Maggie Sawyer is back! As is Doomsday. But I think the biggest character debut that will intrigue fans most is Clark Kent’s. It’s an inexplicable development, and one that will really challenge the notion people developed regarding Clark and Superman.
As a writer of Superman, how do you feel about Lex Luthor wearing the iconic "S" emblem and the red cape?
That’s an incredibly tough thing for Superman to accept. It will seem wrong to him in every way possible.
Luthor was his most hated enemy, yet there he is, proclaiming himself Superman?
Shows how different this world is, really.
Can you give us any hints as to how Superman AND Clark Kent are involved in this story?
Not really! Suffice it to say, the mystery of Clark’s presence is one that will play out over time. It’ll perplex Superman and Lois in a big way and will become something Superman has to delve into.
How important, to you and other Superman fans, is the original Action Comics numbering?
I alluded to this earlier, but I think it’s incredibly important. There are many things that serve as a testament to Superman’s greatness, and that lofty numbering level is one of the biggest. 956 issues so far? Building to 1,000? That’s incredible. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again—Action Comics #1,000 is the Super Bowl of comics.
What do artist Patrick Zircher and Tomeu Morey bring to the book?
I’m fortunate to have three great artists working on Action. Patrick Zircher, Tyler Kirkham and Stephen Segovia. Each of them are able to bring their own unique styles to the book so they can make it “their” Superman. At the same time, the stories are connected so they’re part of a larger tapestry.
Patrick and I worked together on Future’s End and I always enjoyed his storytelling and sense of power. Tomeu has taken his art and elevated it to the next level with a sense that is perfect for Action.
As a matter of fact, I just got the printed copies of #957 a bit ago and as I paged through it I said, “By god, that’s SUPERMAN.”
Thanks to Dan Jurgens for answering our questions and make sure to check out Action Comics #957 when it goes on sale on June 8.