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Supergirl #37 [Review]

Who is Superwoman?

Writer: Sterling Gates
Penciller: Jamal Igle
Inker: Keith Champagne
Colorist: Nei Ruffino
Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher
Assistant Editor: Wil Moss
Editor: Matt Idelson
Cover: Joshua Middleton
Publisher: DC Comics

This issue has a large focus on Superwoman…whether that’s specifically for this being a Faces of Evil tie-in or not, I’m not sure…though I suppose it works in that it builds on the “mystery” of who this character actually is.

The issue opens from Superwoman’s point of view–though we conveniently are not shown her face without the mask. We then transition to a conflicted Supergirl who is attempting to adjust to recent changes in life. Supergirl is given a new mission by her mother–to return to Earth–and it seems that Superwoman has her own mission that conflicts with Supergirl’s.

The art for the issue is solid…nothing new to say there that I haven’t said on other recent issues.

The story is decent–it definitely feels like a continuation of the numbered New Krypton story. We get setup here for upcoming issues, though it almost seems a bit forced–that Supergirl had to be taken away from Earth for a plot element of that story, and yet here has to now be sent BACK for status quo elements set up in the first issue of Gates’ run.

I’m not really engaged with the “mystery” of Superwoman’s identity–we’ve not seen enough of her for me to care, and we’ve been given too much for me to really sympathize with whoever she is.

I recall really liking the first issue of this run, as it showed a lot of promise and potential. That was immediately interrupted by several issues participating in the New Krypton story–which started off as an awesome story but fizzled at the end. Now this feels a bit lukewarm–I’m interested in where things are going, but am not particularly engaged.

All in all, still much stronger than most issues I’d read of this series prior to this run, and worth getting if you’re following the series.

Story: 7/10
Art: 7/10
Whole: 7/10

Supergirl #36 [Review]

New Krypton part eight: Death in the House of El

Writer: Sterling Gates
Penciller: Jamal Igle
Inker: Keith Champagne
Colorist: Tom Chu
Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher
Asst. Editor: Wil Moss
Editor: Matt Idelson
Cover: Joshua Middleton (variant by Chris Sprouse, Karl Story & Laura Martin)
Publisher: DC Comics

After a brief reunion with parents she already thought were dead, Supergirl finds herself facing the death of her father, assassinated during an attach on the Kryptonians by Reactron and Metallo. While the loss is mourned, other more sinister elements build toward fruition, and Supergirl meets a Kryptonian calling herself Superwoman and wearing a mask.

This issue plays nicely within the overarching New Krypton story, while having plenty of space to do its own thing, focusing on its primary character. Given the recent “fixing” of the problems with her earlier appearances half a decade ago, this issue gives us a chance to move forward after those and give some development to Supergirl’s character as she faces the loss of her father–something her cousin is also dealing with in his own life…perhaps a point that’ll help bond the two in whatever’s to come.

The art is a mixed bag for me. Perhaps a personal thing, but something just gets me about the way characters’ ears are drawn that puts me off. Other than that, the art is quite good, and fits the story quite well.

On the whole, this is a solid issue. While Zor’s death could have just been an action point in the overall story, this issue allows for that to be dealt with in greater detail–a strength I’m seeing in this story as elements that most impact someone are dealt with by a creative team that will be playing with them the most. Whether you’re falling just this title, or the New Krypton story, this one’s well worth picking up.

Story: 8/10
Art: 8/10
Whole: 8/10

Supergirl #35 [Review]

New Krypton part five

Writer: Sterling Gates
Penciller: Jamal Igle
Inker: Keith Champagne
Colorist: Nel Ruffino
Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher
Asst. Editor: Wil Moss
Editor: Matt Idelson
Cover: Alex Ross (variant by Stephane Roux)
Publisher: DC Comics

This issue largely focuses on Kara and the fact that she suddenly has a family–her parents–back in her life. They want her to give up her human life (including “Linda Lang”), while she argues for her independence, that she’s just begun to make a new life for herself on earth, amidst the humans. During their conversing, Zor-El realizes something horrible about his daughter which explains her mood swings and other issues…Kryptonite Poisoning. While this is being dealt with, Kara regains some memories, and through flashbacks we, the readers, are filled in on her past as well. Sprinkled throughout we also see General Lane and Codename: Assassin reacting to the Kryptonians’ presence, and even a bit of Reactron and his possible future role. The cliffhanger promises more challenge for Kara and begins to raise a question about the place she and her cousin might have in this “New Krypton” world.

The story in this issue is quite believable. It’s a nice touch seeing a sort of “typical” parents/daughter dynamic–it humanizes Zor and Alura, and shows a further range of feelings with their daughter–going beyond simple joy at her being alive & reunited with them. We also get to see that there’s been growth on Kara’s side as well–she has actually invested herself in earth, and we get a feel for that conflict in her as these two parts of her life clash.

Igle’s art comes across a lot better to me this issue than the previous–I get the feeling my enjoyment of the visuals for this series will increase as he gets more familiar with the characters and gets to cut loose. While there is a noticeable difference in style from the Action Comics issue to this, the characters remain visually consistent enough that I have no real issue–artists are not clones with 100% identical styles; as such, there will be that difference in stle.

On the whole, I enjoyed this issue. I did not feel we got much forward advancement on the main New Krypton aspect of the story, but we did get a peek into Kara’s past, and a rather plausible explanation that deals with her personality the last few years since her introduction and a bit of slate-wiping that clears the way for future stories to come.

Well worth getting if you’re following New Kryptong, and if you’re only following this series, you really only need to know that there is an entire city of Kryptonians on Earth right now and go from there.

Story: 7.5/10
Art: 7.5/10
Whole: 7.5/10

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