SUPERMAN ’78 #1/ Script by ROBERT VENDITTI/ Art by WILFREDO TORRES/ Colors by JORDIE BELLAIRE/ Letters by DAVE LANPHEAR OF A LARGER WORLD/ Published by DC COMICS
For many superhero fans of my age, Superman: The Movie is the quintessential superhero movie. It was the only superhero movie of note for over a decade and is still widely regarded as one of the best in terms of plotting and pacing. Indeed, Marvel Studios’ head honcho Kevin Feige admitted that he made everyone involved in the production of their movies watch Superman: The Movie to put them in the right mindset of bringing the magic of comic books to life on the big screen.
With director Richard Donner having passed away earlier this year, it seems fitting that DC Comics should pay tribute to his vision with this new mini-series, Superman ’78, which will depict many of the ideas Donner had hoped to explore in future films but never had the chance. In this case, this first issue introduces the classic villain Brainiac into the world of the Donner’s Superman movies.
The script by Robert Venditti does a fantastic job of capturing the humor and pace of Donner’s films, as well as the unique voices of the characters. The artwork by Wilfredo Torres likewise captures the likenesses of the original actors quite well, while still adopting an animated, streamlined look that fits the action. The colors by Jordie Bellaire are suitably eye-catching and the letters by Dave Lanphear are easy on the eyes, with subtle bolding to punctuate the exclamations.
I could practically hear the familiar John Williams’ score as I read Superman ’78 #1 and I imagine many other superhero fans who grew up believing that a man could fly will find the same enjoyment in this book that I did. I just hope this book proves successful enough for a sequel and that we might see Robin Williams as Mr. Mxyzptlk; one of many “what might have been?” possibilities for the unmade Superman sequels.