Greg Rucka, writer
Mike Perkins, pencils & inks
Paul Mounts, colors
This issue begins, Jonathan has lunch with his mother, Lois Lane, after an awkward encounter in the bathroom. The intimate conversation covers Jonathan’s decision to join the Legion of Super-heroes, her ongoing challenges as a mother and journalist, and their collective missing of Superman. The issue transitions to another conversation between Renee Montoya, the current Question, and Vic “Charlie” Sage, the original Question. They struggle with the idea that Charlie was supposedly dead. From there, the issue transitions to a cryptic scene which pictures a woman infected with something and in a burning apartment building. A fireman is not able to save her. This issue ends with Lois Lane and Jonathan conversing prior to him leaving to travel through time and space and ends with a conversation between Lois and Renee about the weightiness of truth in journalistic reporting.
The most interesting part of this story is the conversation between Lois and Jonathan. It stirred up reminders of my own daughter leaving for college and the questions parents ask themselves about whether they’ve done enough to prepare their children for the world. The heart-warming part comes when Jonathan tells Lois that she is his super hero which is a nice reminder that you don’t need superpowers to have a big impact on others
The mystery surrounding the infected woman drives the ongoing story and connects it to the larger plot. It leaves the reader with numerous questions: who is she? What does the game of chess and the history lesson in her expressions have to do with the story? Is time travel involved? Despite how confusing this was to read, I welcomed the mystery as a way to keep me interested in the big reveal that is sure to come in future issues.
The art is dark and shadowing almost like a Sean Phillips crime noir aesthetic mixed with a Chris Samnee vibe. The dark, print-like quality of the images increased the intrigue for me. Faces with large black outlines still showed great detail in the emotions expressed. I especially liked the way the printed page matched the ambiguity created by the story; specifically, Lois saying goodbye to her son, for now. And, scenes showing a character coming back from the dead are filled with mystery with more questions than answers.
I loved this issue! Rucka does an amazing job connecting the human element of each character and appeals to the heart throughout. The story is strong and intriguing, specifically, surrounding the virus that appears to be impacting the citizenry. I’m excited to see how Lois and Renee unpack this mystery and save the people of Metropolis.