Since Action Comics #1 is set in Superman's past, Superman #1 represents our first look at the character's new status quo. Parents say that the first time they lay eyes on their newborn children, they instantly love them. Hopefully writer George Perez and artist Jesus Marino feel that way about their little labor of love. Cause to the rest of us, this is just an ugly, unimportant mess that I wish was actually covered in afterbirth, so I'd have an excuse to not read it.
I wish I could say this was a basic Superman story. Clark pines for Lois, there's a couple scenes at the Daily Planet, Superman fights a big monster, etc. I mean, all that stuff is there, and if that's all this comic was, it'd merely be bland instead of horrible. Ah, the new DC, where bland would be a pleasant surprise. But I suppose horrible is pretty much pre-destined when you take a comic where an artist (Perez) handles the script and an inker (Merino) pencils the damn thing. What does DC have against letting people do the jobs they're good at? DC comics was a hospital, they'd have doctors waxing the floors and janitors giving gynecological exams. Hmmm...note to self, get DC Comics to buy a hospital, apply for job as janitor.
Anyways, Perez sucks as a writer. He uses flashbacks and voiceover narration to tell a story about how the Daily Planet was bought out by a media company. This is the first frigging issue, why not just start the story there? But Perez's writing sins are not forgiven just yet. He uses an article about Clark Kent as a framing device for the issue. Clark's supposed to be a pretty good writer, what with the winning prizes, working for a major paper and having a novel published. So why is Clark busting out prose like "Superman assumed that the thieves were not from Metropolis. No local criminals would dare do this. Not in Metrpolis. Not on Superman's turf." Jesus. It's like Superman doesn't even give a shit about pretending that he's not Clark Kent. He might as well have typed "Hey, Superman's well-hung and handsome and he's me."
The art side of things isn't quite as bad. Merino used to ink an artist named Carlos Pacheco, who is legit awesome. When he signed with Marvel comics, someone at DC (presumably someone with macular degeneration) decided that Merino was ready to fly solo. Merino's art is super-wrinkled looking, like everything on the page is in need of a good ironing board. He also draws Superman looking like Harry Potter. Which I, as a Potter fan, am all about. But presumably there are people out there that don't want Clark Kent to look like the Boy Who Lived.
Buy Again: Yeah, as long as they replace all the talent, concepts, and editors involved, I'm in.
New Reader Friendly: No, Perez's weird techniques made this comic not at all new reader friendly.