Tag Archives: Superman: Calvin Ellis

Action Comics #9 Review

Featuring characters from parallel Earths, including PRESIDENT SUPERMAN!

Introducing new villain SUPERDOOM!

Guest artist GENE HA joins GRANT MORRISON for this tale of not one, not two, but THREE Earths!

And in the backup story, President Superman must stop a nuclear attack – but he can’t leave the White House!

Summary

Superman of Earth 23 battles Lex Luthor and discovers a machine that can lead to other dimensions. An alternate Louis, Clarke and Jimmy pop out the latter two in critical condition. Louis quickly tells Superman of the creature they created who has been tracking them across time to destroy them. The creature arrives on this earth and Superman working with Lex Luthor manages to defeat it just as the JL arrive.

Later he destroys the nuclear research of Qurac with Nubia‘s help and strong arms the nation’s leader into joining the UN.

The Good

Action-Copious explosions and flying fist action junkies should be very pleased.

President Superman- Awe inspiring and with a new coat of ethnic paint but is it any good? Damn sure it is!  First off we learn how he actually manages to balance both his time as Superman and president. Use of robotic decoys with specified skill tasks thanks to Brainiac, he leads the JLA; this JLA includes Vixen, Nubia, A young black GL, Steel and Batman. Really cool world and concept I’m interested to see where Grant goes with this.

Accessibility- His origin takes up a two page spread which makes him instantly accessible to new readers who may have never seen him back during Final Crisis.

Grant Morisson- Give me a second while I reminisce on my love story with this bald white man (lol) First there was his excellent JLA with DC Comics; which is arguably the best written Justice League in history; which he followed up with Marvel Comics New X-men; which reignited my interest in X-men after Chris Claremont initiated this “revolution” revamp garbage which killed Gen-X, X-force, X-man and made X-men and Uncanny a snooze fest;  after departing marvel he did a touching take on Superman and later an even more stellar take on Batman; I won’t even go into how much I liked that except we should all be thankful he gave us Batwing. To say I’m a fan is a huge understatement and to say he’s much more suited to the larger than life characters is also an understatement. Since 2009 he’s promised to spotlight President Superman and here he delivers big time! I would actually shell out money for this every month if it was offered….on another note I would love to see him render a story where his Wonderwoman/Nubia was the titular character.  

Cover- Both covers look cool with our president paying homage to the superman of earth prime.

Art- Not usually the kind of art I give praise but it managed to move things along with minimal hitch. The fight looked good though it didn’t flow very well.

Morality- Even before the last story wraps and Nubia questions if what Cal is doing is within moral and legal parameters I realized the similarities between what he was doing to his world and what Harvey Dent/Superman did in his. Calvin is on a very slippery slope, sure he has good intentions with uniting the world but he’s literally forcing the world to conform to his whim and his worldview. In a normal world sure superman is powerful and symbolic but he also has the governments of the UN to keep him and other superheroes powers in check. Here Superman not only controls his typical vast powers but commands the Justice League. What’s even scarier is his presidency of the United States. Whether you’re American or not you don’t even need to be “pro” America but let’s not kid ourselves they are the preeminent superpowers in the world they can do pretty much whatever they want and to whomever. This superman can police the world in and out of costume and his conduct while doing “the greater good” is extremely questionable…..is this the slippery slope?  I do think so!

Another moral dilemma is brought up with Calvin’s access to lazarous pits……so he not just decides who does what he also chooses who lives and dies as collateral in his battles? Very slippery slope with this one!

The Bad

Obama- Not to sound negative but he’s already the president of the United States does he need to look like Obama too? This could really be seen as a political statement…….not necessarily good with the president in question still in office.

Secret Identity- I don’t know if I missed it but he has no disguise…..Clarke has the glasses and comb over this guy has none of that he just changes his clothes to switch identity. Um….no one notices superman and the president are the same person? That is a hard pill to swallow. lol

The Ugly

A morally ambiguous tale from Grant Morrison with nice action and art 4/5

stars- 4


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