Comics – Superman: For Tomorrow Vol 2

19 03 2007

Superman: For Tomorrow Vol 2
Originally uploaded by swftoys.

There were several weeks after buying Superman: For Tomorrow Vol 1 that I was unable to find Vol 2. And it was a pretty long wait before I spot it in numbers again in the local shop. After such a long wait, I picked up Vol 2 without a second thought. The anticipation for the continuation of the For Tomorrow storyline was simply overpowering!

I really enjoyed For Tomorrow Vol 1 which saw the collaboration of Brian Azzarello and Jim Lee. Not only were the pencils great, the story had a lot of potential. It had the makings of a mystery set in mood which had a brooding Superman. Notably absent in Vol 1 was Clark and… Lois.

Well, with Vol 2, both these characters are back. That’s some good news for Vol 2 readers but it turned out not to be the case. In fact, I found myself lost midway through the story. That is not a good thing for a Superman story!

While I did get the point about Superman trying to live up to his father’s legacy, the whole Metropia thing with Zod appearing on the scene, followed by a powerhouse fight seem strayed from the focus of Vol 1. If Vol 1 kept everyone in suspense even until the last page, Vol 2 gave up those secrets within first one-third of this trade paperback.

The fight with Zod and the explanation of how Zod came to be in Metropia seemed meant to beef up the pages instead of taking the story to new heights. Lots of big swings but they were off-target with respect to the promising tune Vol 1 carried. And it was ‘chop chop’ showing how Zod stumble upon the Vanishing device just to help readers follow how Zod qualifies as the top contender for a bout with Superman here.

When the paradise falls short of being perfect, the story wasted no time to bring down the fire and brimstone to devastate it at a scale of a war. I can’t help but feel that the reader is supposed to be painted the picture that it is time for those to vanish to vanish once more. And with a zap, the mysterious vanishing thread is wrapped up together with the millions involved.

Father Leone was crafted to be like a confidante of Superman in Vol 1. With a certain bond created between them from their private sharings, it’s just very comic-like to pit them against each other at some point. And how they qualified the priest to be a contender in the ring with Superman is really… *plegh*. Sounds familiar with Zod?

While the art is great, the unravelling of the Vanishing story was rather disappointing. I can’t help but find Superman reeked of an overdose of introspection. Too much Me, Myself and Kar-El. Or I-am-so-powerful-it-gives-me-the-right-to-decide-what’s-right. To hint at creating life and being God-like is also not where I want to see Superman heading to. Afterall, everyone knows how invincible the Man of Steel is but there is still a draw to him. There’s got to be a better angle.

However, there are still some great moments in For Tomorrow Vol 2. The run-ins with Batman and Wonder Woman were some good highlights in the story. And if you have read Vol 1, it is really unavoidable to want to read Vol 2. However, pick it up if there is an annual big discount at the local store is the best advice to stretching your comic dollar!




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