Review: “Superman: The Four Seasons”, sense and sensibility

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highly recommended

An emotional story of the early years of Superman, full of charm and very talented

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There are countless series, miniseries and works, both in comics and in other media, that have been dedicated to explaining and narrating the first years of Superman’s life. And with as much quantity as there is, it is striking that most of them are works of great quality and of very good artistic and literary values. DC takes its characters (at least the main ones) very seriously and tries to ensure that the repetition of a story does not undermine its quality when it comes to telling it.

It is something that always surprises me and, on this occasion, it has happened again after reading this Superman: The Four Seasons, by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale. The authors of such acclaimed works as The Long Halloween also owed a tall story to the other icon of the company… and boy did they give it to him. In this work we are presented with a Superman / Clark Kent full of nuances and in which his most striking feature is his «humanity», which is not biological, but rather taking the term as a figurative and quality adjective.

The comic in question is a true work of art. Without palliatives or detours. Wide and luminous vignettes where color plays with the exaggerated figures of Tim Sale’s pencils, which is recreated in impressive full-page drawings where light, color and figures create beautiful compositions. And we have started praising the visual section because the work stands out a lot in that plane. Undoubtedly the work of the three colorists involved (Bjarne Hansen, José Villarrubia and Mark Chiarello) enhance Sale’s art and finish making this kind of succession of postcards.

The literary plane is defended by Jeph Loeb from sobriety and restraint. It is not about telling the story of a superhero or his adventures, but his way of fitting in with the world around him.. Sometimes recreated in that familiar environment that is Smallville, with his friends who dream of leaving and building a future far from the rural environment… or his adoptive parents, overwhelmed by the responsibility of raising such a special being but with no option to give up. , for the love they feel for him. And, sometimes, recreated in that cold and detached world that is Metropolis. With the rush of the big city and its omnipresent Lex Luthor.

The authors make sure that we strongly notice these differences and how they affect a young Superman, who doesn’t quite fit in anywhere but works hard to do so. That sensitivity that we were talking about transmits the drawing, so does his literature and his dialogues. The narrative ends up trapping you and the least of it ends up being Superman.

Divided into four parts, because of the title, each one of them is told in the first person by an important character in the life of Clark/Superman. It can be Lois Lane or it can be Lex Luthor. Each one of them gives us their vision of the icon and tells in their own voice what they see in it and what it means for them.

1650504821 292 Review Superman The Four Seasons sense and sensibility

This is a work that has been published on several occasions and that ECC Ediciones does now in a deluxe format. The comic is worth it. After reading it carefully and enjoying it as the marvel it is, we realize that it is not usually in those typical lists of “the best Superman stories”. But without any doubt deserves the gap between Morrison’s All Star Superman and Alan Moore’s For the Man Who Has Everything (to name just two).

Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale are a guarantee and the good work shown in the play should not be surprising. However, they have hit the right key to tell a great story of a character as difficult as Superman.. The Four Seasons is an essential comic that transcends the superhero genre and shows that outstanding works can continue to be done within the same. In all her artistic facets she is simply superb.

1650504821 2 Review Superman The Four Seasons sense and sensibility

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Review: “Superman: The Four Seasons”, sense and sensibility


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