Mild Mannered Reviews – Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #14

Batman/Superman: World's Finest #14

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Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #14

Scheduled to arrive in stores: April 18, 2023
Cover date: June 2023


“Elementary”: Chapter Two – “Manhunt”

Writer: Mark Waid
Artist: Dan Mora
Cover: Dan Mora
Variant Covers: Serg Acuna, Hayden Sherman, Nikola Cizmesija and Simone Di Meo

Reviewed by: Tony Parker

In Los Angeles, a raging, vengeful Metamorpho is done taking prisoners, and attacks one of his rogues gallery members, Doc Dread, with the intent to finish him once and for all…

Meanwhile, at their respective hideouts, Clark and Bruce discuss the false accusation directed at Wayne. Bruce berates Clark for writing the article with Jimmy Olsen, but Clark reminds him he couldn’t explain without revealing their identities, not to mention the lack of evidence. Bruce is angry at first but Clark gets him to calm down with the reminder that they can still get the killer. The two agree they need to locate Metamorpho (though not necessarily on rather they should clear him or not), with Robin helping Superman out in detecting.

Upstairs in Wayne Manor, Bruce gets a video call from Oliver Queen/Green Arrow and his attorneys. Bruce points it out but Ollie reassures him that he doesn’t exactly believe in the law’s capabilities at justice. Actually, Ollie is there to talk about a deal with WayneTech Red he’s not interested in, as he wants to know more about an A.I development Bruce is working on. A shocked Bruce questions this, but the usually technophobic Ollie is interested in purchasing. A very suspicious Bruce returns to the cave.

While riding Superman as he flies, Robin reveals that Sapphire says that Rex has been “Hella angry” about the framing, and that he probably believes Batman had hired one of his rogues to kill Stagg. With reports of Doc Dread and Stringaree being beaten and arrested, Robin and Superman agree to fly east of Venezuela, where Metamopho is fighting El Matanazas and his robot army.

Superman and Robin join the fight (since El Matanazas is a horrible dictator as it is), but the oppressor reveals that the controls of his robots malfunctioned. While Robin correctly guesses everything that will happen, Superman gets rid of the robots while Metamorpho saves the civilians, only to then attack El Matanazas.

Superman stops Metamorpho from attacking, Mason saying he was only gonna scare him. Superman manages to convince him to stop for now, at least to be there for Sapphire, what with Stagg’s funeral tomorrow.

The next day, Bruce calls Ted Kord/Blue Beetle II, Loren Jupiter, Steve Dayton/Mento, before contacting Clark, who’s in the middle of writing the article for Stagg’s funeral, which had slim attendance (really only Sapphire, Rex, Java and Clark). Bruce informs Clark that he’s contacted the aforementioned, Ollie, and a dozen billionaires, and none of them are acting or sounding like they usually do. He asks Clark to do a quick X-Ray vision check of Stagg’s body, and Clark agrees about Bruce’s suspicions with extra evidence. Stagg’s body isn’t reacting the way it should do, and his brain isn’t human. The corpse is an android. Which means Stagg is probably still alive somewhere.

On the Daily Planet building, Superman, Batman, Robin and Metamorpho deduce that someone is kidnapping billionaires and replacing them with puppets, and that someone, whose offshore account is being financed by all those people, is Professor Antony Ivo, the creator of Amazo. Superman and Robin follow the money trail, while Batman and Metamorpho decide to track down Doctor Will Magnus. Creator of the Metal Men.

At Allegheny Mountains, Superman and Robin find Ivo’s android cellar, with a half finished Bruce Wayne that was abandoned after he became a murder suspect. Ivo confesses, but he tries to intimidate Robin to get Superman to lose.

Meanwhile, in Upstate New York, Batman and Metamorpho reach Magnus’ lab. Batman doesn’t apologize for suspecting Metamorpho, and tension still reigns between them. At the lab, there are signs of a struggle, but no Magnus, and the Metal Men seem to be melting in vats.

And back with Ivo, he reveals his master plan, utilizing the Metal Men’s powers to create an android that can replicate every element on the periodic table and beyond, including Kryptonite…

To Be Continued…

4Story – 4: I was really looking forward to this second part, and it was extremely enjoyable and gripping! I’m honestly surprised by how much happened in this issue, as we left off with ‘Bruce Wayne accused’ and now we know the bad guy (Ivo), his plan (to make the ultimate elemental android) and that the victim might not even be dead!

This was an issue of moments for sure: Robin showing his chemistry knowledge, Clark’s faith in everyone being shown and joked about, Android Oliver, the creep factor of Ivo’s hideout, the graphic melting of the Metal Men, Metamorpho’s rage. It wasn’t the best issue I’ve ever read, but it was enjoyable, a great example that even an issue lacking in emotional weight or character changes can be vital to an arc.

I think the best example I can give is that this felt like an episode of Superman the animated series (one of the more action packed ones). It’s a real blast, from top to bottom, and I highly recommend it, like the rest of this run, which I REALLY hope will go on and on, as it goes from strength to strength.

Also, a special mention again for this book’s usage of different characters for the supporting cast. Seeing Metamorpho, Ivo and the Metal Men is a serious joy for DC fans who have more interest in the company than just the A list.

5Art – 5: The action scenes at Venezuela popped, and the scenes at Ivo’s lab and Magnus’ lab were unnerving and tense in the best way! Mora really showed off his creepy side, and I am running out of words for this guy!

3Cover Art – 3: It’s maybe a little silly (the puzzle piece aesthetic doesn’t come across as cool or mysterious or creepy thanks to the colors chosen) but it’s a nice, unique CLEAR=”all”>

1Variant Cover Art – 1: I just don’t vibe with this one. It feels like a gross trading card, or a mad magazine joke without a punchline.

4Variant Cover Art – 4: Excellent lighting, seeing the Legion and The Outsiders is always a pleasure!

2Variant Cover Art – 2: A split face cover is a dime a dozen these days, but the anime aesthetic helps a little.

5Variant Cover Art – 5: A far more anime esque cover that shows Superman’s classic powers (faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, able to leap tall buildings in a single bound). BEAUTIFUL.

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