Adventure Comics #12


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Adventure Comics #12


  • Words: Paul Levitz
  • Art: Kevin Sharpe
  • Inks: Marlo Alquiza, Marc Deering
  • Colors: Blond
  • Story Title: Playing Hooky: A Tale of Superboy & The Legion of Super-heroes
  • Publisher: DC Comics
  • Price: $3.99
  • Release Date: Jun 3, 2010

Adventure Comics #12 is a fun story about a visit to the future during Superman’s past, back when he was growing up in Smallville.  Writer Paul Levitz writes a very straight-forward and heartwarming story that is sure to remind readers of the days when superhero comics were just for kids.  The child-like sense of wonder that Levitz’s Superboy is full of is really the reason the character exists in the first place. 

If you don’t already know the story, as a child, Clark Kent was a bit of a loner and was often picked on by the kids in his class.  Like the typical young comic book geek, he dreams of a place where he can be himself and have fun with people who share the same interests (in this case, super-heroics).  In this issue, he gets his wish when Brainiac 5 takes him on a trip to see the Legion of Super-Heroes, a group of young heroes in the future that he himself inspired.  Thanks to the Legion, Clark can finally stop hiding who he is and start doing things that he couldn’t normally do with normal kids his age.  

Having never read the original Adventure Comics, I can’t speak to how historically accurate this issue is, but what I can say is that this issue does a great job of capturing the spirit of a young superhero.  Superboy displays a strong balance between taking pride in doing good and the insecurity of living up to everyone else’s expectations.  This comic humanizes the powerful and legendary Superman by showing the reader that despite all of his abilities, at one time he faced the same challenges and difficulties as everyone else did, and felt the same way about it.

Kevin Sharpe’s artwork, for the most part, is great.  A reader couldn’t ask for better storytelling style and pace, and the body language and facial expressions on each character really make the story come alive.  There are a few panels where the line-work is a bit off, but Sharpe delivers immaculate figures in the key scenes, where it matters.  The art style is simple, but vibrant, which is perfectly suited for this story. 

Finally, if you’ve been following Adventure Comics lately, you’ll know that it’s been a bit inconsistent.  With Blackest Night and War of the Supermen, it’s been hard to keep track of what Superboy and the Legion have been up to.  It looks like next month sees the first part of a series retelling the origin of the Legion.  While this issue may seem like a stand-alone story, there are short segments involving Brainiac 5 and R.J. Brande that look like they may relate to the upcoming story.  Although nothing truly essential happens in this story, it is definitely a fun read and might be worth picking up for a complete sense of what’s going on in the next few months.  


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