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Mild Mannered Reviews - Superman/Batman

Superman/Batman #69

Superman/Batman #69

Scheduled to arrive in stores: February 17, 2010

Cover date: April 2010

"The Big Noise" - Part 2: "Benediction Redux"

Writer: Joe Casey
Penciller: Ardian Syaf
Inker: Vicente Cifuentes

Michael Bailey Reviewed by: Michael Bailey

Click to enlarge

Bruce Wayne is driven by Alfred to a fundraiser in Gotham City as Superman battles NRG-X in Metropolis. NRG had been hired 12 hours before to kill Clark Kent and unleashes a massive explosion to get Superman out of his way. Meanwhile Bruce meets Anderson Gaines at the fundraiser and gets a funny vibe off the man.

Later Superman and Batman meet at the JLA Watchtower and compare notes on their encounters. At the same time Gaines returns home and muses on how Superman and he are the last of their races and perhaps fated to end their ancient conflict. He adds that even though the reasons for the war are lost to time he has his mandate. Batman and Superman come to a similar conclusion as they realize that Gaines is the alien they are looking for. While Superman initially wants to take the problem on in a more direct manner Batman convinces him to fight dirty. Either way Superman feels that if "Gaines" wants to restart a war he will be happy to finish it.

3Story - 3: This is not by any means a bad story. I am even enjoying it on a certain level. There was some good action with the Superman/NRG-X fight and some good intrigue with the scene between Gaines and Bruce but at the same time it's a pretty average story with a lot of flash and very little substance. There isn't a whole lot of excitement to what is going on and the excitement that's there, like the attack on the Daily Planet, is swept away quickly. It's a very personal story, especially regarding Superman, and I appreciate what Casey is doing but I am not feeling it like I want to.

One of the problems comes from the fact that this is supposed to be tied to Our Worlds at War and it really isn't. Sure there are a few mentions, but when I read the words, "Our Worlds at War Aftermath," I want something more than Batman saying, in effect, "I didn't really do all that much." A lot happened to Clark during that story, which Casey of all people should know since he was one of the architects of that event. Where are the scenes of Clark dealing with his sense of loss and Bruce telling him that he needs to get over it already? It's kind of disappointing really. Having written that there are some aspects of the story I like. The bit at the end with Gaines going all Durlan was kind of cool and Superman putting his game face on was neat as well. It is hard to have Superman "talk tough" but Casey rode that line well.

Still the problems almost outweigh the good. This is a very average story so far and I have a feeling that the conclusion is going to be a lot of punchy, punchy, run, run and very light on actual characterization and plot.

We shall see.

3Art - 3: Like the writing the art in this issue was good but not great. There were some definite highlights, such as the Gaines going all Durlan thing and both Superman and Batman looked good but the art was a bit too scratchy for me. No real complaints but not a whole lot to praise either.

4Cover Art - 4: This was a solid cover. Batman and Superman look good as does NRG-X and while I still feel that the connection to Our Worlds at War is very, very tenuous it was kind of cool to see that trade dress yet again.

Then again I liked Our Worlds at War. I may be the only one too.

Mild Mannered Reviews


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

January 2010

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