THIS WEEK: Action Comics #1064 kicks off the House of Brainiac storyline across the Superman Family of titles.

Note: the review below contains spoilers. If you want a quick, spoiler-free buy/pass recommendation on the comics in question, check out the bottom of the article for our final verdict.

Action Comics #1064

Action Comics #1064

Writer: Joshua Williamson
Artist: Rafa Sandoval
Colorist: Alejandro Sánchez
Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Cover Artists: Rafa Sandoval & Alejandro Sánchez

I’m a sucker for a good self-contained event. You know, the ones that stay within one or two editorial groups? They’ve got such a tight focus on one specific group of characters, rather than expanding out to the whole line, and it leads to this great cozy feeling for me and my wallet. These don’t always work (see the recently concluded Gotham War), but when it hits, it hits, and so far: this hits. 

The issue starts with a classic roundup of our main characters milling about going about their days. It’s a common way to ease readers into an event, but I always wind up wanting to read a separate comic that maintains that low-key feeling. But when the action starts, it starts, with an explosion of Czarnians and Brainiac bots raining from the sky. Rafa Sandoval and Alejandro Sánchez are a dynamite duo, with lush layouts of Metropolis and its citizens. Pages are incredibly clean, with well paced action across spreads. The book is bright in a way that captures the essence of Metropolis, with places that feel lived in, but still shiny/happy. Dave Sharpe‘s letters are lively, and feel as though they dance around the page. 

Lex Luthor has been making his way back to toward some sort of anti-hero status (I think) and this feels like the culmination of all of that growth. With the return of Lena and the seemingly genuine urge to do good, it’s an interesting pivot back to the characterization of the early Rebirth days, and one I think will be tested with the return of Brainiac.

Speaking of, Joshua Williamson has been setting up this story over in Superman and it feels good to see the dominos finally fall. Brainiac has been teased as a huge deal for the past few years, and its so satisfying to finally find out what he’s been scheming. The last page reveal of at least part of what’s going on is intriguing as all get out, and I’m interested to see how high the stakes can get. 

All of the meandering up-top is to say that it looks like House of Brainiac is going to hit that sweet spot. With minimal tie-ins and a straightforward story, this was a great opener for this quick three month event. Of course, if Absolute Power teasers are to be believed, it looks like this will have far greater consequences for more than just the Superman Family, but for now, its nice to sit down and enjoy the Metropolis monofocus. 

Verdict: BUY


  • Now, I am incredibly behind on the rest of this series so I cannot speak to the main story at all, but the Guy Gardner-centric House of Brainiac backup in Green Lantern #10 is a real hoot of a time that channels classic JLI stories (and features the work of Kevin Maguire to boot!). It’s a very quick romp from Maguire, Jeremy Adams, Rosemary Cheetham, and Dave Sharpe that does a great job of seeding Guy’s role in the event and raising a few questions as to what’s happened to Lobo. The main story is by Adams, Xermánico, Amancay Nahuelpan, Romulo Fajardo Jr., and Sharpe.

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