Lois Lane #3 manages a much smaller-scaled issue than even it’s first two issues. With the focus firmly being on Lois’ personal life and marriage to Clark, this gives Greg Rucka and Mike Perkins a chance to delve into Lois as a person. This is something I noted with Lois Lane #2 and it continues to great effect here in Lois Lane #3. But that isn’t the issues greatest strength, at least to me.
The Lois & Clark Dynamic
The building sub-plot that I have applauded in my previous reviews of this series is the public perception of Lois and Superman. Lois is married to Clark Kent, but the public doesn’t know that Clark is in fact also Superman. So when Lois very publicly kissed Superman, they deemed her to be having an affair with the Man of Steel. People treat her horribly as a result, but not Superman. It’s because society views Lois differently because she is a woman.
This sub-plot is wonderfully well done and has been chock full of social commentary on gender bias, norms, and misogyny in general. This subplot takes a step forward this issue and is used to both further Clark and Lois as characters, deepen their marriage, and attack a particularly problematic gender norm.
After Lois and Renee are attacked when meeting a source, Superman comes to investigate the crime scene. Render beautifully by Mike Perkins with superspeed lines running through every panel and Lois’ changing expression showing she knows her husband is there while everyone else is oblivious.
Superman then unveils himself to the gathering masses, including the media, before flying away faster than a speeding bullet. This was a warning. He uses the troubling notion of the Lois and Superman affair to his advantage, telling everyone that if they attack Lois, they also attack him.
Rightfully, Lois calls Clark out on this frankly stupid and rash decision. She has been a journalist for many years, she can handle being attacked. This isn’t her first rodeo and Clark knows that. He acted as any husband would, he went to protect his wife. It was a well-intentioned move that wasn’t fully thought out. As Lois says, she doesn’t need to be protected, in this case, she was trying to protect Clark. The weaving of this continuing sub-plot into the main plot is proving quite interesting and is allowing Rucka to do what he does best.
Character-driven fiction that has an underlying point it’s trying to get across. In this case, the gender stereotype of the overprotective husband.
The Two Questions
This issue made me tear up. It wasn’t a heartbreaking moment, it wasn’t a tragic event, it wasn’t a dramatic twist that shocked me. There was one panel on one page that managed to convey so much love and reverence for the history of two characters that have long been neglected by the larger DC universe. Vic Sage is alive and well.
Not only that, but his best friend — Renee Montoya — remembers him in this slightly rebooted but not quite New 52 universe we have as a result of Rebirth. She remembers the events of the original 52, in which Vic tragically died of lung cancer. And now the man that pulled her out of her pit of depression and alcoholism, the man that taught her everything he knew, the man that became her closest friend, is back from the dead.
Starting out rather ominously, Vic and Renee start fighting. But as their moves begin to mirror and match each other, Renee begins to realize something is up. This is where Mike Perkins shines as he portrays martial arts with style, showing how they match and mirror. Vic, though Renee and the audience at the time, is clearly enjoying this little mind game, and he always did have a good sense of humour. It mirrors the way he and Lady Shiva met for the second time.
Renee then stops the fight and the page and panel I mentioned above happens. It’s rare for a comic to deliver the one thing I always wanted. Usually, I’m left with something different but still good. Lois Lane #3 delivered the one thing I have wanted for over a decade since 52 was first published. Vic Sage and Renee Montoya paling around as two Questions and best friends.
Lois Lane #3 Is A Crowd-Pleasing Issue
Lois Lane #3 was a delight to read. This is no surprise considering the fantastic creative team in this book. From the very real and poignant scenes between Lois and Clark to the fan-pleasing moment of joy between Vic and Renee, this issue delivers. Thank you to the entire creative team on this series! Lois Lane #3 made a disgruntled Vic Sage and Renee Montoya fan very, very happy.