Superman Learns the Hard Knocks of Parenting in Superman #26
DC’s Superman up to this point and moving forward has dealt with Superman as a father to his son, Jon. Issue 26 is no different.
The story begins in the past in Smallville with Pa Kent trying to teach young Clark a lesson by making him do farm work without his powers.
In the present, Superman cannot get Jon to listen to him. His son ignores his father in battle and thinks he knows best, which most children do. Clark tries to teach Jon the same lesson Pa taught him by allowing Jon to lead for the day. Both Jon and young Clark set out to prove that their way is better than their fathers.
The plan doesn’t work and we find the analogous story of Clark in Smallville also failed. The story ends with both Superman and Pa Kent acknowledging that their sons, respectively, are different and will find their own way of doing things, and Jon and young Clark acknowledge that they still have a lot to learn from their fathers.
Superman #26 is a pretty simple story and ends in Superman fashion, with kindness and understanding. The story is self-contained and isn’t part of a larger plot.
The art is amazing. The coloring and illustration frame the farm and cityscapes perfectly. The art gives you the warmth you would expect from a Superman comic. Some of the faces aren’t drawn the best, but they accomplish the expressions they need to make.
I’ve enjoyed watching Superman be a father. An obvious contrast from Batman’s parenting and is refreshing to see characters age and have families in comics. One of my favorite issues of this run was when Clark, Lois, and Jon attend the Hamilton Fair back in issue #7. They’re not the most compelling issues, but their simplicity is a good change once in awhile.
Superman #26 is a family friendly book with a great message for parents and children to share.