Superman: the Unity Saga Vol. 1 is the first run written by Brian Michael Bendis away from Marvel Comics. If you have ever wanted to get into reading comic books but the giant wall of backstory and previous issues makes jumping in to a run seem daunting? Fear not! Brian Michael Bendis is here to save the day! All you need to know to enjoy this run is Rogol Zaar is a bad guy who doesn’t like Kryptonians, Supermans son Jon and wife Lois Lane are away on an intergalactic field trip, and the Phantom Zone is a space prison for space bad guys. That is it! All you need to know to enjoy this book.
If anyone has read anything from Bendis before this run (if you haven’t read anything from Bendis, you should, he’s great!) you should know that he is known for his compelling and well-written dialogue and this book is no exception. Every character has a distinct voice and the witty dialogue doesn’t stop from page one to the cliffhanger ending.
Power and responsibility are the themes that Bendis plays with in this story. Is Superman doing enough with the powers that he has or is he wasting his potential on extinguishing fires and saving cats from trees? Bendis expertly weaves this question throughout the story, putting Superman in more and more compromising positions and making Superman confront his place in the world.
Ivan Reis does fantastic penciling as always, he really gets to shine in the full page splash panels later on in the action set pieces. Ivan also does a fantastic job of capturing the look and feel of a Superman comic.
I also never knew how much I would love seeing Superman as a father either but Bendis does a fantastic job writing the scenes with Clark and his son. Some of the best writing in the entire volume is in those scenes where Clark is teaching lessons to his son that Superman learned from his father.