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Mild Mannered Reviews - Superman/Batman

Superman/Batman #64

Superman/Batman #64

Scheduled to arrive in stores: September 23, 2009

Cover date: November 2009

"Prelude to the Big Noise"

Writer: Joe Casey
Penciller: Scott Kolins
Inker: Scott Kolins

Michael Bailey Reviewed by: Michael Bailey

Click to enlarge

Several millennia ago a battle wages in space between a Kryptonian battleship and another Kryptonian craft, the Grand Majesty. The Grand Majesty has been hi-jacked by aliens and the two ships are on a collision course until the aliens activate the Neo-Recombinant Drive, which causes them to disappear, though the question is not where they went but when due to the properties of the drive.

In the present Batman discovers the ship in space and travels there to investigate. He stumbles across some Kryptonian battle robots which live up to their name and attack. Superman arrives and after discovering the origin of the craft utters a code word that deactivates the robots. The two continue to investigate the ship and Superman discovers the bodies of the crew, which hits him hard. He reveals that the ship is from an era long before his father and the two men come to the conclusion that the ship was boarded by aliens which assumed command. A single escape pod was jettisoned though it doesn't look like a member of the crew was the one to activate it.

Superman explains that while he has seen a fair number of artifacts from his home world this ship is different. Seeing their fate and his inability to do anything about it has upset him greatly. Batman and Superman, left with more questions than answers, wonder where the pod escaped to.

3Story - 3: This wasn't a bad story at all, which surprised me because I am not the biggest fan of Joe Casey's previous work on Superman. I did not care for his run on Adventures of Superman from 2002 on, so I wasn't looking forward to reviewing this issue. While it wasn't my favorite issue thus far I thought it was a nice set-up to an upcoming story, though the fact that this story is apparently three months off is a tad annoying.

The opening scene reminded me of the Star Wars comics I have read set in the time period thousands of years before Episodes I thru IV. It was a grand space battle and while I found it a bit jarring it was still an exciting way to kick off the story. I was less than thrilled with Batman in space later because I am of the opinion that unless the threat is cosmic Batman works much better on Earth. When he goes into space, even with a sweet ride and some neat armor, it just doesn't work for me. The strength of this issue was Superman's reaction to the Grand Majesty being Kryptonian. I am a little curious why this ship and its fate hit him a little harder than the artifacts he has come across that come from his own time period, but I understand the emotional beat Casey was going for and it worked. I felt for Superman in that sequence and the sadness and loss he felt came through.

All in all a nice little issue and a solid read, though I am still mildly annoyed that we aren't going to see the rest of this for three months.

4Art - 4: Kolins art was epic in this issue. I was very impressed and that is coming from someone who was a fan before seeing this comic. While the opening space battle was a little too Star Wars like (an opinion that might be influenced by the fact that RETURN OF THE JEDI is playing on my DVD player as I write this) it was still some great artwork. While I am not a fan of Batman in space the armor and ship did look good and I was taken with the emotion Kolins packed into that second to last page as Superman explains why he is so upset.

4Cover Art - 4: Like the interior art I was impressed with the cover. It had a nice composition and Superman looks really good. No complaints here.

Mild Mannered Reviews


Note: Month dates are from the issue covers, not the actual date when the comic went on sale.

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