Comic Vine Review


Superman #3 - A Cold Day in Hell


Some more gaps in Superman's history are filled as he fights another creature with ties to the mysterious bigger threat. You'll be left wanting more, but not necessarily in a good way.

Metropolis is under attack...again. It's up to Superman to save the city. Is he the savior of the city or the blame for all the attacks?

The Good

I enjoy a good discussion on the dilemma of whether or not superheroes are good or bad for the safety of the city. It's the old, 'which came first, the chicken or the egg' question. When Metropolis is attacked, Superman is there to give 100% of his effort in order to save innocent lives. The question comes up if the attacks are geared towards him and the city is being placed in danger because of his presence.

Superman is faced with another mysterious attack. We've seen countless battles but because Superman is still somewhat new to the hero biz, he doesn't simply swoop in and defeat the enemy in a couple panels. We get to see some of the struggle and thought process he has to go through. He has to take the innocents into consideration and knows he can't just dive in pummel the threat.

There is also some background given on Superman. We're seeing his earlier days in ACTON COMICS but aren't fully aware what has happened in between those periods. It's addressed here (as it was in the supplemental pages of ACTION COMICS #2) why Superman was so sad in the opening of issue #1. There is acknowledgement to the death of Ma and Pa (which would have made more sense if those deaths occurred after the story in ACTION COMICS to explain his change in personality some more).

Now that Lois is in a different position with the Daily Planet and as a reporter, it's nice to see some time spent on the supporting cast. The way they report things are different from the days Lois would run out into the streets hoping to get a story. It's a refreshing change and brings the feel of the book up to modern times.

Nicola Scott's art is great.

The Bad

Superman's fighting an unknown threat...again. It's clear that all these attacks are tying into a bigger unseen enemy but it's hard to get excited or care when we're seeing attack after attack from bland foes with no connection to past villains. Superman has some cool enemies and perhaps the idea is to hold back on using them until this 'New 52' universe is established. It's hard to see that these average villain-of-the-month will keep new or old readers interested. Yes, there is a mystery behind the attacks. We need some payoff over this soon.

The Verdict

Superman's been a tough sell for comic readers ever since they started leaning towards the darker and edgier or even funnier superheroes. SUPERMAN has the potential to be a great comic for readers but there's something missing. We're only three issues in and it could be said that we need to give the story a chance but the idea of a big overall threat is wearing thin. We're just getting small attacks by nameless threats. Where are all the major Superman villains?

This issue does serve to give a little backstory on Superman and why he's a changed character compared to his ACTION COMICS portrayal. Lois is adjusting to her new position and it's interesting to see how this change will affect her character. She now has the chance to be portrayed even smarter than before instead of running straight into danger in the hopes that Superman will be there to save her.

Something big is headed Superman's way. Hopefully we'll start getting some answers sooner rather than later. SUPERMAN should be a fun comic with big adventures but I'm still waiting for that to happen.