Tony Black reviews Action Comics #960…
“PATH TO DOOM” Chapter Four: Wonder Woman joins the fight, but even her added might can’t slow down Doomsday’s rampage! As Superman comes face-to-face with the woman who once loved him, the Man of Tomorrow must also wrestle with the reappearance of Clark Kent.
SEE ALSO: Check out a preview of Action Comics #960
An epic four-part story, ‘Path of Doom’, reaches both a conclusion this issue in Action Comics but equally spirals off into, effectively, an immediate sequel by the end as Superman’s desperate battle against monstrous nemesis Doomsday across Metropolis takes a surprising turn when he gets an unlikely ally: Wonder Woman. Well not too unlikely, I guess, but it’s proof writer Dan Jurgens hasn’t forgotten the Justice League have been keeping tabs on the continuing mystery of Superman’s rebirth, and the appearance of a non-powerful Clark Kent running around in tandem. Jurgens, alongside artist Tyler Kirkham who provides some fantastic visuals, crafts another great issue which continues the fight while continuing to add strong character depth to the melee of players involved in the mix.
Throwing in Wonder Woman, for a start, allows Superman to add some important backstory about Doomsday some people may not be aware of, and it certainly continues the underlying characterisation of Lex Luthor – he may be playing hero but his clear admiration for the horrific circumstances Superman describes about how Doomsday was created proves the real bad guy still lies buried underneath. We get some really touching moments as Superman unites with Lois & an excitable Jon, who inadvertently once again uses his powers in a less than ideal way, and only serves to start changing the parameters of the desperate battle. Jurgens is managing to skilfully maintain the mystery of the green hooded figure watching events, not to mention the mystery of other Clark, alongside plenty of exciting action storytelling and well written character moments, which is no mean feat. Admittedly if he doesn’t start pulling the trigger on answers soon it could get a little repetitive, but for now the pacing works.
A very well crafted issue of Action Comics, knee deep in the midst of a storyline while managing to blast us further into the next phase of the plot, which balances strong writing with some really gorgeous artwork – especially when Wonder Woman & Superman are working together, both being terrifically rendered as they battle one of DC’s biggest foes. The narrative needs to soon start evolving into a new area, but for now it remains a thrilling arc using some major players really well. Next up, ‘The Doomsday Protocol’, which doesn’t sound at all ominous!
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