Scheduled to arrive in stores: November 24, 2020
Cover date: January 2021
“Planet Brainiac” – Part Three
Writer: Joshua Williamson
Penciller: Max Raynor
Inker: Max Raynor
Cover: David Marquez
Variant Cover: Bryan Hitch
Reviewed by: Keith Samra
Batman Steel and Batwoman battle a legion of robots on the moon, Steel manages to stop them with his built in EMP. Superman takes on the Composite Robot on Earth, saving Metropolis from his destruction, finding the most least destructive way to stop him.
Story – 3: Not the best story arc by Williamson, and I felt it to be a rather lacklustre finish, possibly due to the fact that this arc didn’t really directly tie in to the main books, as they have in the past, and seemed like a side adventure as a filler.
It did have a couple of good moments. However that being said, Williamson continues to deliver really good issues, even if the premise is a bit lacking.
I’ve stated in past reviews that I am not a fan of Batwoman, and I found that Williamson tried to make her too bad @$$, just because… I did love that we got to see Steel once again, and that trick he pulled with the EMP was awesome, but one question, why didn’t he use it before? Sadly Steel couldn’t be the saving grace of this issue and arc for me.
Superman talking Composite Superman/Batman into a paradox was a great bit of writing, I love when writers emphasize his intelligence as well as his powers. And the last page gave me a little chuckle, as they leave Batman to clean up the mess.
I miss the intensity of the first couple of arcs for this title, and hope that Williamson brings back that form of storytelling. I like Williamson’s writing very much, but sadly this issue and arc were not as strong and as engaging as some of the previous ones.
Art – 5: Max Raynor’s art really felt like it improved over the last three issues, and I have enjoyed his visuals, however he did go for the “cool” visuals, over using the chance to really illustrate the script. One being the splash of Batwoman standing atop a pile of defeated robots, I find it hard to believe that she was able to accomplish this, when Superman and Batman were being held captive for the last two issues by them.
I felt that the fight scenes could have been a little better choreographed, instead of the “brawl for all”, it made the stakes feel low, overwhelming yes, but low enough for the heroes to know that they will succeed. Also I was maybe expecting a bigger battle between Superman and the composite robot.
Raynor has a bright future, and hope to see him tackle Superman again sometime soon.
And as always, the coloring was fantastic, and bought so much more depth to the line art, a great enhancement. Colorists are the unsung heroes of the comic world.
Cover Art – 4: Close up image of composite robot’s face, making him look rather cool. Sadly it doesn’t save the issue much. Great composition though.
Variant Cover Art – 3: I love Bryan Hitch’s art, but this cover doesn’t really correlate to what happens in the issue sadly.
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