The Adventures of Superman #3 brings both good news and bad news to fans of the man of steel. The bad news is that this particular issues does not offer as much value and is not as good as the previous issues. The good news is that it is still very good, just not as good. This issue features only one story, titled “Faster Than a Speeding Bullet,” the main theme of which is Superman’s speed. It follows Superman performing a number of heroic deeds before he has to go to work as Clark Kent, all at an amazingly impossible speed. Before his alarm clock even goes off, he has heard all the cries for help and has prioritized them in order of urgency. In the time before Clark Kent must walk to work with Lois Lane, he assists a Green Lantern, escapes a trap set by his nemesis Darkseid, helps prevent a war on an alien planet, and even foils an attempted murder on Earth at the last second. While this is happening, Lois has a conversation with Lex Luthor who is hoping to run for president, which seems to set up plot points for a future issue which is odd for a series that is supposed to be episodic.
The entire issue consists of narration by both Superman and Lois Lane. Superman lives a fundamentally different life than a regular person, and this issue presents a rare glimpse inside Superman’s head and his perspective of himself and other. He talks about the dream of flying that most people have and the fact that he never dreams about it because it comes naturally to him. It becomes easy to forget that the entire story is happening at blinding speed which really emphasizes just how fast the boy in blue really moves. Even despite all his speed he admits that even he can’t do everything, so while it emphasizes how different he is, it also emphasizes how human he is as well. It paints him as just a man who tries his best and doubts himself just like anyone else.
The art in this issue is quite possibly the best of any of the stories featured thus far. While the narration is contemplative, the issue is still action packed, so people who want to see Superman be super will not be disappointed. It is colorful and detailed and truly captures the power of Superman.
The only major downside to this issue is that the storytelling can be a bit disjointed and confusing as it is constantly switching between Lois and Superman. It is definitely not a standard single issue and such a deviation may not be for every reader. The writers were trying to do something different and, for the most part, it was a success. These slight imperfections are the only thing keeping this issue from a perfect score. It is still worth picking up and a must read for Superman fans everywhere. If this issue doesn’t shine, it is likely due to us being spoiled by the stellar first two issues.