Action Comics #854 3-2-1 Action Part 3: ‘Pal’

3-2-1 Action is a 3 part story spanning Action Comics 852 – 854. Kurt Busiek has maintained a pretty steady flow of good dialogue and interesting plots during his run on Action Comics, and he continues to maintain a good level of quality even during a tie-in with DC’s worst comic, Countdown.

I’ve stated a few times in the past that I really have no interest in Jimmy Olsen’s sudden onset of powers, and I really don’t. I don’t have a whole lot of interest in the fact that he has recently discovered Superman’s identity either. None of this is going to last. By the end of Countdown Jimmy Olsen will either be dead or undergo some type of mind wipe. Or perhaps he’ll be replaced with an alternate version of himself. Regardless of the final outcome, Action Man will be no more and Jimmy will have no knowledge of Superman’s alternate identity.

Over all the these issues have been somewhat entertaining from the standpoint of them being rather retro. 3-2-1 Action was reminiscent of the Silver Age of comics. Krypto is all over this issue (even the title, ‘Pal’, reefer’s to Krypto’s new secret identity), so that’s kinda cool. Clark Kent’s reaction to Jimmy discovering that he’s really Superman is pretty classic too. I also enjoyed watching Krypto attack a giant radioactive monkey (even though he was actually a gorilla at that point).

As for the art… well, it’s nothing to write home about. Brad Walker is not a spectacular choice for a an artist on a Superman book. He’s somewhat inconsistent. For instance, Clark Kent looks like a normal guy most of the time, while Superman looks like he’s mentally retarded. Sometimes Jimmy looks a little on the slow side himself (although I’m convinced he really is). On the other hand Krypto looks pretty cool throughout the issue (what’s with America’s fear of anatomically correct artwork though?).

Overall I suppose 3-2-1 Action was rather entertaining even though it was a dreaded tie-in and the art was pretty loose. If I seem hesitant to give this thing a good review, it’s because I am. I really hate tie-ins. They’re nothing but money grabbers. However, as tie-ins go, this was at the higher end of the scale, but please don’t take that as a recommendation.

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