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Mild Mannered Reviews - "Batman/Superman" Comics

Batman/Superman #20 Batman/Superman #20

Batman/Superman #20

Scheduled to arrive in stores: March 18, 2015

Cover date: May 2015

"Family Matters"

Writer: Greg Pak
Penciller: Ardian Syaf
Inker: Vicente Cifuentes and Mark Morales
Cover: Ardian Syaf, Sandra Hope, Ulises Arreola

Reviewed by: Alisa Lea Gossage

Click to enlarge

Batman/Superman #20 Batman/Superman #20 The Phantom King exerts revenge on Superman by breaking the Man of Steel's heart.

In the bottled city of Kandor, Superman's relatives have been brainwashed by Phantom King's Living Death. They, and thus all the citizens of Kandor, see Kal-El as their enemy.

Superman, Kara, and Batman try to reason with his Grandmother and Aunt, but Xa-Du's Living Death has too strong a hold on them. Thus, Superman and Supergirl are forced to physically fight their own relatives.

As the fight escalates, Batman is killed. With him out of the way, the Kandorian citizens fight on the side of Xa-Du. Just as it looks like Superman and Supergirl are going to loose, Batman, who obviously isn't dead, whips out his super-duper-Red-Sun-generator-thing-a-ma-bob. Instantly, all the Kandorian's lose their powers.

That Batman! He thinks of everything! And apparently, he can carry ANYTHING in that utility belt of his.

Meanwhile, Lois and Ray Palmer are making plans at The Ant Farm. Together they devise a way to put Xa-Du back into the Phantom Zone. After Xa-Du is returned to the Phantom Zone, most Kandorians are freed from the power of the Living Death. They are no longer under its influence, and thus no longer a danger to Superman nor his friends.

Look's like all's well that ends well, right?

Unfortunately not.

The El family has been so affected by the Living Death, that they cannot break out of its influence. They still hate Kal-El and Kara. The battle may have been won, but at what cost?

5Story - 5: The Good: This whole arc was a breath of fresh air. Superman faced a new kind of enemy. Everything was so much more personal. And thus, the stakes were so much higher for him. He was forced to make very difficult choices. I like that he is humble enough to turn to Batman for help. Superman is all heart, but he is also smart enough to know when he needs help.

As the story progresses, I felt Superman's frustration, anger, anguish and in the end, sadness.

Also, I like the 'surprise' ending. The fact that Superman's family members are still in a state of rage brought on by the Living Death was so sad, but the 'surprise' ending gives us, the readers, hope. That's as it should be in a Superman comic.

The Bad: Did anyone REALLY think that Batman was dead?

Conclusion: A somber, but hopeful, ending to a great story.

5Art - 5: Oh my gosh! I wish I could give this book a '10' rating! The art is so good. The art flows so well with the storyline. Facial expressions are spot on. And the colors are so brilliant! It's such a pleasure to turn the virtual pages in this book.

4Cover Art - 4: I like the green Superman-shield-diamond design. Superman and Batman bursting from the Superman Shield is creative. However, the cover is a bit busy, and it took me a second to take in the image. But once I understood what the artists were doing, I was impressed by the whole idea. It's a great cover that gets the reader ready for all the great action that is inside.

Mild Mannered Reviews


Note: Except for digital first releases, the month dates are from the issue covers, not the actual date when the comic went on sale.

January 2015

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