Comic Vine Review


Superman Unchained #1 - The Leap


Scott Snyder and Jim Lee team up to deliver a new Superman series that will bring a smile to your face.

The Good

We've been waiting some time now for this series to debut. We've been wondering how it will begin and what Scott Snyder and Jim Lee will give us. It's safe to say this comic doesn't start out the way you would think it would. Snyder has mentioned in interviews that he is bringing in a new character and the big questions are how will this character fit in and what will they mean for Superman?

The opening pages immediately show us that Snyder and Lee aren't going for a typical Superman story. The scenario brings about a great sense of mystery and you'll find yourself closely looking over every last detail on each page to try to get an idea what this could all mean. It's a secret from the past - from a time before Superman even arrived on Earth. It could be something he's not prepared to deal with.

Jim Lee's action explodes off the page. He delivers a great variety in tone and feel, based on the different aspects of Snyder's script. You might have seen the released images of the giant fold out pages. It's a great way to really give perspective to the situation. Some might say Superman is overpowered but seeing him out in space shows there are some things bigger than even Superman.

In this scene and in Superman's return to Earth, Snyder provides some narration through Superman's thoughts. This is always a tricky move as trying to capture Superman, or any characters,' inner thoughts has to be done carefully. The way a person thinks to themselves isn't always indicative of the way they speak aloud. How many Superman-action scenes have we read? 'Seeing' how Superman feels and the description of everything as he returns to Earth is something I never really thought of. Too often we just take Superman for granted. He has amazing powers and can pretty much always save the day and come out on top. By giving him an inner voice, Snyder makes Superman a little more human. This is something many writers have struggled with in the past.

It's not just Superman that Snyder gets to write here. We also see glimpses of Lex, Jimmy, Lois and even Perry White. Snyder makes all the interactions and conversations feel natural. It's like we're taking a peak into a private world and you'll immediately get the itch to want to explore more.

I can never get enough Jim Lee art. I've already touched on the massive action scenes. Lee also does an amazing job with Clark sitting in front of a computer or Lois holding a cup of coffee while on the phone. I'm not sure if I admired the big massive space scene more or the way Lois' hand looked as she held the coffee. Lee's attention to detail in even Jimmy's camera or a simple bagel is breathtaking.

Lee's art is complemented by Scott Williams' inks (as usual) and Alex Sinclair's gorgeous colors. Everything just pops off the page and gets sucked into your eye sockets.

If you want a nice juicy mystery and cliffhanger, you'll get a beauty of one as well.

Let's not forget the epilogue by Snyder and Dustin Nguyen.

The Bad

I am completely sold. This is an all-star creative team. It would have been nice to get some more Dustin Nguyen pages as well.

The Verdict

Is it any surprise this book is a home run? DC went all out when it came time to set up the creative team for this book. Scott Snyder has already won us over with his writing on BATMAN. Superman is a completely different character. The fact that we get a detailed view of his inner thoughts immediately gives the book a different feel. Jim Lee, Scott Williams and Alex Sinclair make this an extremely gorgeous book. This isn't an issue you'll want to zip through. You will want to carefully look over each page and panel to take in all the art as well as carefully digest the mystery pouring over the pages. The addition of an epilogue by Snyder and Dustin Nguyen is like getting dessert after a great meal. This is what I want from a Superman comic. The only problem I had with book this is I want more.