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Mild Mannered Reviews - Supergirl Comics

Supergirl #8

Supergirl #8

Scheduled to arrive in stores: July 26, 2006

Cover date: September 2006

Writer: Joe Kelly
Penciller: Ron Adrian
Inker: Rob Lea & Norm Rapmund

"Candor" - Part Three

Reviewed by: Jeffrey Bridges

Click to enlarge

The book opens with Power Girl on display in public, chained to a wall and being spit on by the citizens of Kandor as propaganda lies about her are broadcast over loudspeakers. Kara is watching this on a video screen while having servants dress her like an anime cosplayer as she talks to Saturn Queen, who she has taken to calling "Mother". Kara laments that Power Girl couldn't be "saved", and worries that there is a part of herself that isn't deserving of "Kal-El's" love.

Saturn Queen then shows up to torment Power Girl some, and reveals that she's been semi-controlling Kara's mind. We cut to Ultraman being bathed by yellow sunlight generators, which are the way he's retained his powers while in Kandor. Kara arrives and they speak of their impending wedding. He invites her into the sunlight so that he doesn't "break her" on their wedding night, and this seems to trigger visions of her killing Ultraman and a voice telling her she must "destroy Kal-El" and that it is "her destiny".

Just as she's about to try to kill Ultraman, Saturn Queen invades her mind and shows her images of how Ultraman came to be in Kandor as a result of Infinite Crisis, so that Kara will know he's not the real Kal-El and the one she thinks she has to kill. Saturn Queen arrives to comfort the overwhelmed Kara, and in her mind SQ morphs into Kara's actual mother who tells her that she must listen to her father and that together, they can "save the universe" and "end the curse of El". Kara sees a vision of blood on her hands and flips out, socking SQ in the nose and sending her flying.

Kara finally snaps out of it and sees what Saturn Queen has been doing to her, at which point SQ goes into Ultraman's mind and tells him that Kara is trying to hurt his mother. Kara lays into Ultraman who flies through the wall, several buildings and goes all the way to bounce off of the very the barrier wall of Kandor.

Power Girl sees this and taunts her executioner, who moves to kill her. And then Kara lands on him and shoves his head through the ground with her feet. She frees Power Girl and they put aside their differences to put a beating on Ultraman, who has returned.

As they fight him, the citizens of Kandor seem to break out of a stupor and begin fighting the guards who were subjugating them.

Kara finally beats Ultraman and is about to kill him, the voices in her head urging her on, when Saturn Queen pleads for his life and offers information about Argo City in exchange for Kara sparing him.

SQ dumps some information into Kara's mind which seems to shock her. She leaves Ultraman beaten on the ground and flies off with a confused Power Girl trailing her, asking what happened.

4Story - 4: Hey, the cover date on this book jumped from June (for the issue that came out three weeks ago) to September. Maybe they can actually stay on track now.

For the first time since the inception of this book, I feel like we're finally getting somewhere. This issue still doesn't hold up against issue 6, which I think was still the best single issue of the series so far. But issue 8 isn't far behind.

Many of the problems I had with issue 7, by the way, were cleared up by this issue. Kara in love with Kal-El? Saturn Queen's doing, as she tries to breed a super race to reshape and mold Kandor to her liking. And not only do we get more of the internal conflict with Kara over killing Kal, but the absent Argo City gets a mention and thus is still Kara's main motivation, so everything still jives with what came before.

A part of me can't help longing to see how Rucka's version of this story would have gone. Rucka still got a story credit for issue 7, but in this one he only gets a "special thanks" which makes me think the story is now more Joe Kelly than Greg Rucka.

And you know, after the tumult of switching writers mid-story, that's fine. Now that it's kind of ironed out, I'm interested and intrigued with what Kelly might have in store. I just also wonder about what might have been.

Regardless, at least for now, the book is on track and there's character depth. Kara's still just worrying about the voices in her head, however, and I'd like to see her decide to do something about them and I'd like some clarification about what she was really sent to earth for. But that's hopefully some of what we'll get with this story down the line, and now I look forward to it.

4Art - 4: It's not Churchill, which is a bonus for me, but in some of the panels there was still a bit of the "everyone-kind-of-has-the-same-face" problem that Churchill probably has twelve different patents on. But it wasn't all the time, just once in a while, so it was only mildly distracting. Overall it wasn't spectacular, but I didn't dislike it either. Certainly decent....

...except for Kara's dress. What the heck was up with that? It looks like a Barbie doll and a She-Ra doll got together and exploded all over her.

2Cover Art - 2: Are you kidding me with this, guys?

No background at all? Boo.

Words that imply Supergirl and Power Girl will fight each other for the freedom of Kandor, which never remotely happens in the issue? Much less with giant glass shards (?!?). Boo!

Kara in a pose that looks like someone snapped her spine in half at the waist and then glued her torso back on sideways and skewed at a 45-degree angle resulting in a position that no living being could ever possibly actually be in? BOO!

But hey, Power Girl's chest sure is big, hey? Apparently that's all we need.


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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