Thursday, May 15, 2014

Comic Book Reviews: Superman: Doomed, Action Comics #31 and Superman/Wonder Woman #8

This is why I don't like crossover events.

Unless all the writers have a cohesive plan in place for what they're going to do and a specific thing to focus on, the story starts to ramble and it feels like that Powerpuff Girls episode where all three are trying to describe the events of a fight (except without the comedy).

(NOTE: I did not read all three prequel issues, only the Action issue. But a crossover is supposed to be good regardless of if you've read the 'preludes,' so I'm judging these issues solely based on what was in the books, and what they hinted to in editor's notes (which was pretty much nothing, so yeah, just what was in the books).

Superman: Doomed is not a terrible failed crossover, but it's a minimal pass of a crossover.

I gave the three parts the following scores (Video review is below as well):

Superman: Doomed - 6.2/10
Action Comics #31 - 7.8/10
Superman/Wonder Woman #8 - 6.3/10

Remember, 7/10 is an arc I could call objectively good. Only one of the three issues released made it over that threshold and I can't say I'm confident the final issue will reach the 7.7 or so necessary to give this story a thumbs-up.

What I call these issues are 'passable.' They're good enough that I don't feel like I wasted money, but I do feel cheated given the price tag. This is especially true when it comes to a tease like Superman vs. Doomsday.

The 'Doomed' issue covered the fight, which I could barely see thanks to the pages having WAY too many panels and art that was too small to garner the details.

Action and Supes/WW covered the fallout where Superman was infected and turning into Doomsday. (Yeah, it is as contrived as it sounds.)

Action was the only one that was paced reasonably well and actually tried to have character development. Wondy was kind of cool in her book, but that was neutralized by the absurdity of the conflict and the somehow even worse execution of the resolution.

SPOILER ALERT: Don't expect any grand moment where Supes fights out of his transformation. Wondy literally just says "You can fight this if you want to," and I guess that never occurred to Clark before because he screams and is fine on the very next panel.

You don't even see him transform back he just... is. DC knows that Superman doesn't have to be brain dead in order to make him likable, right?

These stories managed the goals they wanted, but really tripped over themselves to get there. I can honestly say I wouldn't recommend these books.

Get Action Comics if you're a completist of the title or really love to read Greg Pak's Lana Lang. (That'll be my reason to look back at that issue.)

The other two issues are really a 'take them or leave them' kind of deal. The art is good enough, and there are some nice scenes, but for their price tag, I expect far better.

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