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This Just Happened: The Loss of a Loved One

This Just Happened: The Loss of a Loved One

By Tim Beedle Friday, March 3rd, 2017

SPOILER ALERT: The below feature contains major spoilers from this week’s issue of Superman. Don’t scroll any lower if you still haven’t read it!

The truth hurts. That’s what they say, at least, and after reading this week’s startling SUPERMAN #18, we definitely believe it.

Written by Peter J. Tomasi and Patrick Gleason and drawn by Gleason with assists from Mick Gray and John Kalisz, Superman #18 officially kicks off “Superman: Reborn,” the four-part crossover storyline that promises to finally reveal the secrets surrounding Rebirth’s Man of Steel.

Of course, the only thing that’s surrounding Superman at the start of this first chapter is happiness and joy as he celebrates his anniversary alongside his wife, Lois Lane, and their son Jon. It’s a tender, fun moment as Jon gives them both gifts and helps his father blow out their cake’s candles. But the sweet times, unfortunately, were not to last.

Yes, the mysterious and as-yet-unexplained Clark Kent who emerged in Metropolis at the start of Rebirth made an unannounced—and unwanted—visit. Not trusting the increasingly sinister doppelganger (who possesses all of the same memories as Kal-El minus the Kryptonian super hero stuff), Superman pursues him. However, the human Kent makes a quick exit, even managing to get by Krypto. But what was that he left at the door?

Turns out it was an old photo book…

But Clark and Lois don’t have a chance to ponder how the other Kent wound up with the book and why he gave it to them. No sooner do they flip through it than their house erupts in a strange sort of flame. The “fire” isn’t hot and it’s not burning anything. Rather, it’s as if everything it touches is being erased—including young Jonathan Kent!

Disappearing and then quickly reappearing, young Jon’s very existence seems to be in danger. Superman quickly wraps his son up in his cape and flies him out of the house and away from the bizarre flames, but it isn’t enough. Jon’s brought the fire outside with him, and as the flames engulf him, his parents can do little but watch helplessly as…well, as this happens…

Look, guys, we don’t know where Jonathan Kent, the house and all of those photos went. We’re not sure if their disappearance has anything to do with Mr. Oz, who showed up at the very start of the issue. (We didn’t even go into that—it’s a whole other mystery to be solved!) However, as Superman makes clear, one person who DOES have something to do with it is Clark Kent. Which means there’s no one whose shoes we’d less like to be in right now.

Find out what happens to the ersatz Clark Kent (and his shoes) when “Superman: Reborn” continues next week in ACTION COMICS #975. Now excuse us as we make sure our family photo albums are all safely put away…