Lois Lane (1986) #2
writer: Mindy Newell
art: Gray Morrow
Letters: Agustin Mas
colors: Joe Orlando
editor: Robert Greenberger
This just isn't my kind of comic, so it isn't fair for me to grade it. It's not the genre (though I'll admit it's not a genre I generally read -- or can even label appropriately), but more that this Lois just isn't my kind of character. I seriously flipped to the end to see if this independent yet overly sensitive/vulnerable Lois ever attains any kind of new-found sense of strength/purpose, and she really doesn't. This isn't that kind of story, and Newell isn't that kind of writer. So I won't grade this badly; I'll just say it isn't for me.
So...does Byrne really owe his characterization of Lois to Mindy Newell? As much as Helfer claims they planned and discussed together, these feel like two entirely different Lois' to me, and I like Byrne's better.
Continuity wise, it becomes more obvious than ever that this is set in the pre-Crisis continuity. There's a long history of conflict revealed between Lois and Lana (apparently, the problem with the Middle East interview was that Lana scooped her, and this is again referred to as if it was actually portrayed in some pre-Crisis Superman story), and we see in this issue that Jimmy Olsen and Lucy Lane have been dating for years now. Clearly, this is not intended to be part of Byrne's rebooted continuity.
To be honest, I didn't bother to read most of this issue. Once it became clear that this was a pre-Crisis story and that Lois wasn't going to undergo any major evolution in characterization that might serve as some inspiration or template for Byrne, I decided not to waste more of my time. Perhaps, one day I'll pull this one out to read if I'm in the right mindset and more receptive to the kind of character and story Newell was trying to write. Again, I'm not sure she did it poorly. I think it's just so far out in left field from the kind of story I'm looking for when I delve into my Superman short boxes.