Mild Mannered Reviews - Regular Superman Comics
Adventure Comics #11[Original Numbering: #514]
Scheduled to arrive in stores: May 12, 2010
Cover date: July 2010
"The Epilogue is the Future"
Writer: Sterling Gates
Penciller: Travis Moore
Inker: Julio Ferreira
"Man of Valor: Finale"
Writer: James Robinson
Penciller: Bernard Chang
Inker: Bernard Chang
Reviewed by: Michael Bailey
"The Epilogue is the Future"
The Legion of Super-Heroes concludes their mission in the past by returning the various bottled cities stolen by Brainiac to their new homeworlds. Meanwhile Brainiac 5 is transporting his ancestor to Colu. The original Brainiac breaks free and the two go a few rounds before Vril Dox, Brainiac 2, shows himself and helps to restrain the elder Brainiac. Brainiac 5 turns over custody of the prisoner to Vril and returns to the future.
"Man of Valor: Finale"
Mon-El assists the Legion in finding new homes for the bottled cities stolen by Brainiac. His final task is to convince Jemm, Son of Saturn to allow the Lanothians, a telepathic race, to make a new home on the moon of Titan. At first the two exchange blows but finally Mon-El is successful and suddenly Jemm has a city full of new subjects.
Mon-El returns to Earth and after a short talk with Jimmy Olsen he rescues the female Daxamite held by Doc Calomar and flies to the Fortress of Solitude where he is joined by Superboy. They put the girl into a rocket ship and send her back to Daxam. Mon-El is ready to resign himself to death when Chameleon Boy appears and tells him there is a chance to save himself. If Mon enters the new Phantom Zone there is a chance that one day they can save him. At first Mon-El is resistant but he enters the Zone anyway and after a thousand years Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes pull him out of the Zone and welcome him to the 30th Century.
Story - 3: Instead of doing a review for each of these stories I decided that it would be easier to lump them into one big review because frankly I pretty much feel the same way about both "Epilogue" and "Valor".
I'd like to start by saying that I didn't think that either story was bad. Both were well written and had some heart to them. If I had to pick one of the two as my "favorite" it would be "Epilogue" but I'll get into my one big problem with "Valor" a little farther down this page.
So here we go.
Problem With "Epilogue" or Why Did This Have to Turn Into a Legion Story?
I remember back when the whole "New Krypton" storyline was just starting up and we were promised an exciting story full of intrigue in addition to showing us what it would be like for Superman to suddenly not be the last son of Krypton. More to the point it was supposed to be an epic story about Superman. Sure Geoff Johns was tearing it up for a good deal of 2008 but before that it was a mixture of confusion and delays with issues and stories getting held up for one reason or another. Suddenly here was the chance for Superman to shine and for the readers to have some consistency to latch on to.
So why in the world did they have to shoe horn the Legion of Super-Heroes into that?
Don't get me wrong. I like the Legion. They are an institution at DC Comics right up there with the Justice Society, the Justice League and the Teen Titans. I feel bad that the Crisis on Infinite Earths left them floundering for twenty years and that the attempts to revamp the team just didn't work out. That doesn't mean I want them as a part of the big, huge, epic, awesome Superman story that started to meander there at the end anyway.
I think I know why they had the Legion become part of this story. DC editorial has been making a concerted effort over the past six years to ignore or undo the past twenty years of continuity in favor of having an iconic line of heroes that also have a supposedly mature edge to them. Back before the Crisis the Legion mythos was intertwined with the Superman mythos and when I read those back issues I like seeing the connection between the two despite being "raised" on the Post Crisis DCU. Just because I like them, however, doesn't mean I want to see them in this story and it felt more like a stunt than an intriguing turn of events.
So to me having the Legion be a part of this story is DC's way of saying, "The Legion and Superman? Oh they are like peas and carrots, yo. Dig it!"
It's not the worst thing that has ever happened but I still don't like it.
The Problem With "Valor" or Really? That's How You Are Going To End Mon-El's Arc?
To be honest I wasn't a big fan of Mon-El's end of "New Krypton". I thought it was the most boring aspect of the story. I understood that Robinson was playing with the themes of a man finding his place in the world and the nature of being a hero and living every day as if it could be your last, but to go through all of that and have Mon-El make this noble sacrifice only panels be all fine and dandy, dandy and fine in the future a few panels later makes the whole journey seem a bit useless. I felt like my time has been wasted.
Some people might see it as a happy ending. I'm not one of them.
So yeah, not the biggest fan of this issue but I can't in good conscience give it a low rating because I have certainly read worse. It's just kind of disappointing but then again I was disappointed with the majority of "Last Stand on New Krypton".
Art - 4: Travis Moore's art was pretty solid. I actually liked it quite a bit and made me enjoy the story more than I thought I would. The group shot of the Legion at the end was very cool and I liked the battle of the Brainiacs quite a bit. No real complaints here.
"Man of Valor"
Art - 3: I liked the art in this story less so. It had some real punch to it (no pun intended) and was very serviceable, but it was a little too stylized for my taste. The group shot at the end looked kind of goofy instead of epic. I didn't hate the art but I wasn't a big fan of Bernard Chang's work in this story.
Cover Art - 2: I didn't really like this cover. It was just a tad too stylized for my liking. It has echoes of Keith Giffen to it but not enough to get me to like it.
Variant Cover Art - 2: This cover wasn't much better. The characters look kind of goofy, especially Jemm who looks like he's eaten too much cheese or something. Both of the covers were very disappointing.
Mild Mannered Reviews
2010Note: Month dates are from the issue covers, not the actual date when the comic went on sale.
- Superman: Secret Origin #3
- Superman: World of New Krypton #9
- Action Comics #883
- Superman #694
- Supergirl #47
- Superman/Batman #66
- Adventure Comics #4
- World's Finest #2
- Justice League of America #39
- Justice League: Cry For Justice #5
- Super Friends #21
- Superman: World of New Krypton #10
- Action Comics #884
- Superman #695
- Supergirl #48
- Superman/Batman #67
- Adventure Comics #5
- World's Finest #3
- Justice League of America #40
- Super Friends #22
- Superman: Secret Origin #4
- Superman: World of New Krypton #11
- Action Comics #885
- Superman #696
- Supergirl #49
- Superman/Batman #68
- Adventure Comics #6
- World's Finest #4
- Justice League of America #41
- Justice League: Cry For Justice #6
- Super Friends #23
- Superman: World of New Krypton #12
- Action Comics #886
- Superman #697
- Supergirl #50
- Superman/Batman #69
- Adventure Comics #7
- Justice League of America #42
- Justice League: Cry For Justice #7
- Super Friends #24
- Superman: Secret Origin #5
- Superman: Last Stand of New Krypton #1
- Action Comics #887
- Superman #698
- Superman 80-Page Giant #1
- Supergirl #51
- Superman/Batman #70
- Justice League of America #43
- Adventure Comics #8
- Adventure Comics #9
- Super Friends #25
- Superman: Last Stand of New Krypton #2
- Superman: Last Stand of New Krypton #3
- Action Comics #888
- Action Comics #889
- Superman #699
- Adventure Comics #10
- Supergirl #52
- Superman: War of the Supermen #0
- Superman/Batman #71
- Justice League of America #44
- Super Friends #26
- Superman: War of the Supermen #1
- Superman: War of the Supermen #2
- Superman: War of the Supermen #3
- Superman: War of the Supermen #4
- Adventure Comics #11
- Superman/Batman #72
- Justice League of America #45
- Super Friends #27
- Superman #700
- Action Comics #890
- Supergirl #53
- Adventure Comics #12
- Superman/Batman Annual #4
- Superman/Batman #73
- Justice League of America #46
- Super Friends #28
- Superman #701
- Action Comics #891
- Supergirl #54
- Superman/Batman #74
- Adventure Comics #516
- Justice League of America #47
- Time Masters: Vanishing Point #1
- Super Friends #29
- Superman: Secret Origin #6
- Superman #702
- Action Comics #892
- Supergirl #55
- Superman/Batman #75
- Superman: Last Family of Krypton #1
- Justice League of America #48
- Time Masters: Vanishing Point #2
- Superman #703
- Action Comics #893
- Supergirl #56
- Superman/Batman #76
- Adventure Comics #518
- Superman: Last Family of Krypton #2
- Justice League of America #49
- Time Masters: Vanishing Point #3
- Superman #704
- Action Comics #894
- Adventure Comics #519
- Supergirl #57
- Supergirl Annual #2
- Superman/Batman #77
- Superman: Last Family of Krypton #3
- Justice League of America #50
- JLA/The 99 #1
- Time Masters: Vanishing Point #4
- Superman: Earth One
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Check out the Comic Index Lists for the complete list of Superman-related comics published in 2010.