This week we see DC releasing one of the most anticipated of their new titles New Super-Man 01 – starring a Chinese Man of Steel.
Written by Gene Luen Yang and art by Viktor Bogdanovic, this is a comic that on the face of it had a very hokey premise. Thankfully, the actual execution is much better than what it was promising.
When we first meet Kenan Kong, his character is very similar to Billy Batson/Shazam from the New 52 comics, but this kid is more compelling. He is a jerk, he is a bully, he knows right from wrong, he has a father who loves him in a very “Asian”-way (it is okay, I am Asian, so am allowed to say it, you white people aren’t! haha), and all these things culminate in a very different character from what we would expect someone holding the name of “Superman” to be. Gene Luen Yang (shortening it to GLY to make it easier to write), whose Superman comics I didn’t get around to reading, has a good handle on who this character is and how to provide a very superhero comic-book situation, a serious-type of goofiness that lets you vacillate between laughing and then being on the edge of your seat as the scene unfolds. All in all, am pretty sold with what GLY is putting out.
I wish I could say I enjoyed the art more of Vikto Bogdanovic’s, it’s a bit too loose for my tastes, making the characters feel off-model with every panel, even though they aren’t. He seems to be a completely competent artist, but not someone who wows me or whose art I am enjoying at the moment, maybe he will pull something off that will get me sold with his style. I do like red palette that they are using for the series, it gives that Chinese/Communism vibe, which helps to establish that finally a comic is not taking place in America.
Overall score is an optimistic 8 out of 10