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Superman: Earth One

Superman: Earth One - Shane Davis, J. Michael Straczynski Don't listen to the reviews on this one. It's not terrible. From what I'd gathered, Straczynski and crew presented some emo-modernistic version of Superman with anger problems. There's nothing of the sort. Deep down there's not much different about our beloved Man of Steel. The changes to character and the origin story itself is very minor, with one significant change, which I enjoyed to tell the truth.

Clark Kent is newly arrived in Metropolis and looking for a job - a means to strike it out on his own. Through a series of flashbacks we learn the usual story, crash-landed from a dying planet, discovered by Jonathan and Martha Kent, humble farmers from the mid-west, discovery that he's not the same as other kids and the search for a place in the world. Clark is on the verge of self-discovery. There's still a bit of teen in him that yearns for fame and fortune, but at his core, he's still the Clark we know and love - his desire for fortune merely a front to fulfill a promise to his dying father to provide and protect his mother. Especially well done are scenes between Martha and Clark that lead to his eventual acceptance of his rightful place in the world. This self-realization is provoked by the invasion of a race of powerful beings known as Dheronians. There's a pretty epic slug-fest between their leader, Tyrell and Clark that reveals Superman's power balanced with ingenuity. One difference between canon Clark and Earth One Clark: this younger Clark is not seasoned. He gets angry sometimes and doesn't sit back spouting platitudes about responsibility and goodness and yada, yada, yada while he beats on the baddies. It's refreshing and realistic.

The action is balanced by solid narration and dialogue that results in a competent re-telling of the origin story for a new generation. As devoted and traditional as I am when it comes to my favorite superhero, I have to say that I was not only accepting of the changes, but happy with them; particularly a bit about the destruction of Krypton that I think has enormous potential down the line if they keep this series going.