By Greg Rucka, Mike Perkins, Paul Mounts
Lois Lane #3 feels like a day in the life of Lois Lane, there’s not much in the way of plot heavy momentum or grand reveals and everything feels like a slowed down, character-centric issue where the pages primarily feature interaction between Lois and people who she encounters on her day, especially people like Superman, as people begin to clock onto the relationship that Lois shares with Clark Kent and Superman. Not knowing that they’re the same person rumours begin to swirl that Lois is cheating on Clark, and gossip follows her everywhere she goes.
Keeping things close and personal allows Rucka room to allow the characters to breathe and shine in their element. The book sees Lois questioned by the police following the death of Mr. Agger, and we get to see Clark in action as Superman but in such a way that doesn’t detract the main focus of the book from Lois. It reminds the audience that Lois is the star of this book and Clark is merely a guest. This book feels more like a link-up between a larger narrative, a stop gap if you will that may be resolved a tad too quickly but freshens out the tension between Clark and Lois that’s under the surface. There’s also more of a role for Renee Montoya which is always a good sign, as she’s one of the strongest supporting characters in DC’s arsenal, showing just how wide and varied Lois’ corner of the universe can be and reminding audiences that there’s more to it than just her connection to Superman.
Mike Perkins continues to ace the noir feel of Lois Lane #3 and the scandal that comes with Clark and Superman being viewed as two different people feels very much at home in the genre. The book is set mostly at night too which adds to the atmosphere, and few scenes take place during the day. Paul Mounts’ colours are effective and really add depth to key scenes, with a highlight being the striking pose of Superman early on in the book where he’s being photographed by the public and asked plenty of questions about his private life. Seeing him outside of Metropolis feels odd to the people of Chicago, and it allows Perkins to draw Clark in new territory which he brings his A-Game to the table for.
The pace itself is slow and whilst that’s not a bad thing in itself it almost feels too slow in this issue, and whilst the cliffhanger sets up an interesting reunion it does feel appropriately awkward, almost jarring with the tone of what we’ve had so far in the series. The book itself feels reminiscent of Brian Michael Bendis’ Jessica Jones and crafts its own distinctive corner in the DC Universe, and despite its flaws it still manages to capture the essence of Lois’ character and what makes her tick as a journalist. The plot may not be the most forward moving but what’s there is good, and even with that ending cliffhanger being a bit hit/miss it introduces a character that could lead to a welcome return for a character.