Writer Brian Michael Bendis is assaulting the secret powers of the DCU with LEVIATHAN RISING. Leviathan struck out first at Amanda Waller and Kobra. Superman is caught on his back foot, but Jimmy Olsen may have some key information. There’s also the wild card for Sam Lane, mainly that he now knows Clark’s secret. What does that mean, what will happen to him as a result? ACTION COMICS #1008 has some of those answers.

Attacks Continue in ACTION COMICS #1008

ACTION COMICS #1008 starts off with Director Bones and the DEO headquarters. Bones introduces his newest recruit to the DEO, Adam Strange. Adam Strange is there to replace Supergirl, who is off in space. He’s not the only new figure, a mysterious hulking blue figure stands behind everyone. Soon after, the mystery man detonates, but Adam Strange is able to save Director Bones and a handful of others. The scene then shifts to a nondescript woman walking into a movie theater. It’s Amanda Waller in disguise, and she is meeting up with General Sam Lane.

General Lane has recently faced a lot of revelations, mainly that Superman is his son-in-law. There’s no time to dwell on that though. The two figured out that it was a setup, and it may have to do with the A.R.G.U.S., the government organization they run. As they realized this and tried to evacuate the area, a figure was wreathed in blue energy strikes.

Lois Lane Comes Back

While Sam is dealing with literal and figurative bombs being dropped on him, Lois Lane is not done blowing things up. Lois returns to the Daily Planet and the corner office that’s been sitting vacant. Lois reinstates herself at the Planet, congratulates Robinson Goode on getting to her old desk, and then gets down to business. The business is a young man underneath Lois’ desk. James Olsen.

ACTION COMICS #1008
ACTION COMICS #1008 Page 2. Courtesy of DC Entertainment.

Jimmy is reluctant to talk due to paranoia. Lois convinces him she’s the real deal, and she and Clark ask him what he saw. Jimmy recounts what happened to the Kobra cult and the blue blob of light. Clark recognizes that description from the incident with Waller and is starting to connect the dots. The two decided to take Jimmy back to their place to rest and figure out their next move.

Sam Lane and Amanda Waller dug themselves out, apparently having been heavily shielded from the blast by secret A.R.G.U.S. tech. Waller reached peak paranoia, fleeing from the scene and shooting Sam in the process. General Lane starts to fade as he sees a hulking figure, similar to the one at the DEO, and passes out thinking about his daughter. ACTION COMICS #1008 ends with an explosive revelation that I would rather not share, and if you want to find out what that revelation is, pick up ACTION COMICS #1008!

Bendis Picks Up the Pace

While Sam is dealing with literal and figurative bombs being dropped on him, Lois Lane is not done blowing things up. Lois returns to the Daily Planet and the corner office that’s been sitting vacant. Lois reinstates herself at the Planet, congratulates Robinson Goode on getting to her old desk, and then gets down to business. The business is a young man underneath Lois’ desk. James Olsen.

ACTION COMICS #1008
ACTION COMICS #1008 Page 5. Courtesy of DC Entertainment.

Then we get Lois’ return, which may not be as literally explosive, but is just as impactful. Lois has been away from the Planet for at least a year, and her coming back is like Michael Jordan coming out of retirement to play basketball again (it was a big deal in 1995, but if you weren’t alive for that, just trust me). Jimmy tells his story, which then helps Clark connect some dots. The book finishes with Waller betraying Sam, then Sam being caught, and then the explosive ending. Bendis’s twenty-two pages of comics zip through with the impactful and meaningful scenes. There’s nary a wasted panel or scene, and the reader is drawn in. Bendis is a master.

Epting Makes ACTION COMICS #1008 Gorgeous

Artist Steve Epting is one of the best in the business, and he proved it here in ACTION COMICS #1008. Epting handles every scene with great attention to detail. Epting’s faces are a particular highlight, everyone looks distinct and recognizable. I love his Clark Kent, it’s very classic, and yet you would not think that guy in the glasses is Superman.

Epting does great in the talking scenes, but his work shines in the action. The detail he puts into the background and the rubble is impressive. That’s not where the attention to detail ends, though. From facial wrinkles to scuffs on coats, Epting’s eye for detail can be seen in each and every page of this book, and the fact that this is a monthly series is all the more impressive. Steve Epting is a master of his craft, as Bendis is of his. ACTION COMICS is arguably DC’s best solo title, and it is definitely one of the best Superman runs of the 21st century.

Putting the Action Back in ACTION COMICS

The first eight issues of Brian Michael Bendis’ run have been focused on small stories and little moments, which are his strong point. With LEVIATHAN RISING, Bendis puts the pedal to the medal and makes ACTION COMICS live up to its name. I have ACTION COMICS every month since March of 1997, I am hard pressed to think of a time when this book was any better than it is now. Bendis is on a roll with this book, and I am personally glad to be on this ride with him.

ACTION COMICS #1008 by Brian Michael Bendis, Steve Epting and Chris Anderson
Art
Characterization
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Summary
Writer Brian Michael Bendis delivers an excellent issue with ACTION COMICS #1008! Pacing, storytelling, character... everything is spot on. To match that, artist Steve Epting gives us tremendous, detailed artwork. Terrific issue!
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Leviathan Strikes!

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