Warning: Spoilers ahead for Superman: Lois and Clark #1, on sale today.
Today sees the release of Superman: Lois and Clark from writer Dan Jurgens and artists Lee Weeks, Scott Hanna and Brad Anderson.
It features the first appearance in the post-Flashpoint DC Universe of Superman and Lois Lane from the pre-Flashpoint DC Universe, where the pair were married, and of their son Jonathan, who was born on Telos during the fighting in Convergence.
It also features, as the headline above implies, a somewhat less pleasant, but equally familiar, face: Hank Henshaw.
Introduced in 1990's Adventures of Superman #465, Henshaw was the head of a crew of astronauts on a scientific mission. As they returned, they were bombarded by radiation and each mutated in some way. Eventually, all of them died, but Henshaw -- whose consciousness could now be transferred between machines -- later returned as the Cyborg Superman, impersonating the Man of Steel following his death at the hands of Doomsday. In that guise, he destroyed Coast City and killed millions in retaliation for Superman's failure to save his beloved wife, who was one of the other astronauts on board the Excalibur, Henshaw's shuttle.
For years, he battled both Superman and Green Lantern, but when the post-Flashpoint reboot happened, Henshaw was fully human and working with Caitlin Fairchild for the Advanced Prosthetic Research Centre. A Cyborg Superman has been introduced to the mythology as a Supergirl villain, but Henshaw is not connected to him.
In Lois and Clark, though, it seems as though that iteration of Henshaw will either be ignored, or will be retconned into another character. In the new issue, out today, the more traditional Henshaw is introduced; he's on board the Excalibur and has been on a ten-year scientific mission...only to lose communication with the Earth months ago. As he returns home, Superman is determined to prevent this Henshaw from meeting the same fate -- or unleashing the same evil -- that his pre-Flashpoint counterpart did.
But by the time Superman meets his craft, it's been struck by something in space and Henshaw is the only responsive member of the crew as the shuttle is brought down.0comments
Given the fact that The Eradicator, a Kryptonian artifact then fairly recently introduced into Superman's mythology, was responsible at least in part for the sunspot which struck the Excalibur in the pre-Flashpoint universe, what exactly caused it this time is a mystery. Equally, there could be some very interesting story to tell here since Henshaw will be a series regular (played by David Harewood) on this fall's Supergirl TV series.
Check back soon for some thoughts from writer Dan Jurgens about just what Henshaw's arrival in the post-Flashpoint DC Universe could mean.