Superman: American Alien is a mini series from writer Max Landis ( Chronicle, American Ultra) that shows us a new hero. Superman has always been the man who can never do wrong, a hero that always seems like it was easy from the start. That is one of the reasons I never really cared for the character in an entire lifetime of reading comics. He was never like Bruce Wayne who had such a great loss and who had to work at becoming Batman. Max Landis has given us moments that slowly show Superman not just as the Man of Steel from Krypton. He is that young kid from a farm in Kansas.
Superman: American Alien has a different story per issue.They all have some small connection through each one as the series progresses. This review is not to give you an issue by issue take and ruin the whole thing, go and read the series. In issue #3 we meet Oliver Queen on one of Bruce Wayne’s many yacht party’s. He seems like the ultimate ass well before he is stranded on his island. Jumping ahead some years into #4 we meet Oliver again. This time he is yearning for something more in his life, to be a better man then he used to be. Max Landis does an amazing job dropping little things like that through out the series. The main thing in American Alien is the overall development of Clark Kent as he journeys to be something more.
Through the seven issues you see Clark Kent slowly becoming that confident Man of Steel. In the first few pages of issue #1 we meet a young boy who is scared at what he is becoming. By the end of the series we see someone who knows that this will be something that only he can do. It becomes that moment he is destined to be this hero for the world. Sadly we don’t get that much development of other DC characters since this is specially just a Superman thing. Max Landis may come across as some kind of jackass that shouldn’t be writing this. That is not the case with this series, he brings his love of the character into the pages for all of us to enjoy.
Each issue of American Alien has a different artist that brings Superman to live. I do not need to explain the art of each issue when I can just list the artists that worked on this project.
- Nick Dragotta
- Joelle Jones
- Jae Lee
- Frances Manapul
- Tommy Lee Edwards
- Jonathan Case
I never thought I would follow or even enjoy some of Max’s work when he first announced Superman: American Alien. I knew I just had to try it when I saw the first issue. From that first moment I was genuinely hooked on this version of the Max Landisverse. I honestly home DC gives him something else to work with in the future. Perhaps his own Action Comics style story telling for all of the different characters in the DC Universe. The best moment to me in the whole series is seeing a drunk Clark Kent flicking Deathstroke out of the yacht and into the ocean. It wasn’t the fact he was drunk that was amusing, the complete lack of understanding at how strong he could be was what made me laugh for days after reading it.