Title: All-Star Superman.
Writer(s): Grant Morrison.
Illustrator(s): Frank Quitely.
Colourist(s): Jamie Grant.
Publisher: DC Black Label.
Release Date: December 4th 2018 (first published January 2006).
Genre(s): Comics, Science-Fiction.
My Overall Rating: ★★★★☆.
To add to DC’s prestigious new imprint of standalone graphic novels, Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely’s masterpiece known as All-Star Superman finds itself reprinted for fans to visit—or revisit—and discover the zany universe fully-expanded by this legendary creative team. Collecting the complete twelve-issue comic book series, All-Star Superman was the second series to be launched under DC’s All-Star imprint after the controversial All-Star Batman & Robin, the Boy Wonder by Frank Miller and Jim Lee. With the purpose to have “superstar” writers and illustrators tell a superheroes’ story without being restrained by the DC Universe continuity, Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely took their chance on a Superman story that drew upon all of his greatest traits and lore to produce a timeless piece that would capture the heart of Clark Kent and Superman, but also the one of all his fans.
All-Star Superman is the apotheosis of Superman’s legacy delivered in what would feel like twelve different self-contained stories that are actually connected through one crucial premise regarding Superman’s destiny fully-plotted out by his arch-foe Lex Luthor. As time becomes luxury, Superman looks to tie-up loose ends, give the people he love and the whole world everything his mind and body can offer as well as overcome the biggest challenge he has ever had to confront. The tasks that he has yet to achieve however culminate quickly and puts Superman on a fast track towards self-achievement and complete understanding of himself and others. It is finding out if he has it in him to still follow his deeply-rooted virtuous beliefs that brings All-Star Superman to be a poignant, bizarre and emotional ride for everyone.
I’ve come to expect Grant Morrison to not only embrace a character’s full history in each of his story arcs, but to also deliver unconventional and quirky elements that would normally pass as overzealous and ambitious, but in fact turn outs to be a tribute to a character that is beloved by millions. It is no exception in All-Star Superman as he bravely brings out some of the most outlandish elements in Superman’s science-fiction lore and builds relevant and powerful stories that highlight Superman’s greatest qualities and everything he represents. Superman and Clark Kent both show what they do for a living and why in the best of ways, especially when you wrap it around their perceptions of life and their emotions facing it. From the Underverse ruled by Bizarros to Jimmy Olsen being a superhero, there isn’t a single panel that won’t shock and awe its readers while still conveying authenticity in Superman’s character and universe.
To further accentuate the nostalgic factor that lies dormant underneath the plot for readers to discover along the way, Frank Quitely’s Golden-Age artwork style brings out a unique and peculiar tone to the plot as it successfully captures the scope of Superman’s presence and powers, but also the subtle details in his emotions and his movements. In fact, it is amazing at times how dedicated Superman can be while facing some of the worse in people and still believing that there is good in everyone even if they barely show a hint of it. The power with which Grant Morrison conveys Superman’s traits is astonishing, especially under the more eccentric direction most of the story takes. However, it is how he successfully does it through these bizarre stories that really brings me to have so much respect for his creative talents.
All-Star Superman is a quirky and enthusiastic celebration of Superman’s character as he faces his biggest trial yet.
Thank you to Penguin Random House Canada and DC Comics for sending me a copy for review!
Released in 2011, this was the 10th DC Universe Animated Original Movie based on the comic book of the same name!