Sunday, July 13, 2014

Batman-Superman by Greg Pak issue #3

Okay, yes. The issues are getting better at least while the artwork remains remarkably superb. I think this third issue entitled Split Screen is the one I had fun with the most. We finally get the overdue explanation of the villain's motives and some action sequences in between. We get all the Batmen and Supermen in the same pages (whose interplay provided me with some amusing moments) and I think I can't remain too objective much longer because my shipper heart approves of anything BatSups together.

I honestly just bought and started reading this title because of that so please allow me this irrational fangirl moment at least before we get serious again. HOW CUTE IS NEW 52 SUPERMAN ACTING LIKE SOME SURROGATE SON TO HIS OWN OLDER COUNTERPART IN EARTH 2? Why does this make my insides gooey all of a sudden? Also, WHY DID MY SHIPPER HEART JUST SKIP A BEAT WITH THAT PANEL WHEN EARTH-2 BATS AND SUPS WERE REACHING OUT TO EACH OTHER AND WERE JUST ABOUT TO TOUCH HANDS BUT THEN THEIR NEW 52 SELVES WERE LIKE "BRO, DON'T TRUST HIM!" (Seriously, they shouted it in unison and Earth-2 BatSups just looked at them, dumbfounded, if not slightly annoyed, that their bromantic moment was interrupted).

That said, I'll try to contain myself lest this review becomes a saccharine indulgence of how much I "wuv Bats and Sups togther". There is an interesting shift in artwork here too that I thought was the most fantastic aspect of the issue. Drawn by artist Yildiray Cinar, Superman of Earth-2 had a flashback sequence pertaining to the first time they met. 

It was the sweetest thing in the world, really. Alfred drove to Smallville with young Bruce (for some unexplained and unimportant reason, OKAY?) and their vehicle broke down so he was working on fixing the engine when young Clark spots Bruce in the car and asks him to play baseball with him (because, in his words, "I have never seen a car so big and a kid so...sad" SHUDDUP CLARK YOU ADORKABLE THING!). And then Jonathan Kent steps in when he saw the kids not getting along that much but Alfred tells him that it's going to be okay. Everything about that flashback might as well be a fanservice to anyone who adores Bats and Sups together as much as I do (if not blatantly SHIP THE FUCK OUT OF THEM as much as I do). I don't want to give too much of this flashback away but I will say that I love the idea that in this parallel world, Clark and Bruce are childhood besties and are therefore supportive of each other as the World's Finest heroes. 

This, understandably, confounds the shit out of their New 52 counterparts who are still annoyed and distrustful towards each other. I think it is disturbing for them to see their counterparts have so much faith in one another. Given that these versions of Bats and Sups have found each other at a young age and have been inseparable since, it's probably the reason why both of them have a well-adjusted and harmonious relationship as superheroes. 

Meanwhile, our New 52 Batman and Superman have grown fearful and angry of their own shadows. Both lost their parents tragically (yes, Clark's parents for the new continuity got killed in a car crash he was unable to prevent, if I'm recalling correctly). Instead of helping each other heal, they are antagonistic against one another. But I think seeing their counterparts as better men in every way is also making them question and re-think about their own relationship (or the lack thereof).

Anyway, I need to stop talking about my DC OTP because I don't want you rolling your eyes at my obsessive fixation on them. Not everyone enjoys Bats and Sups together since most fans of either heroes have some sort of competition going on with who's better and whatnot. I will say that this issue ends with a revelation as to why the villain felt the need to make these four superheroes meet each other under such dire circumstances--and it's a pretty good one, I think. I won't spoil here. I might just in the next one, though.


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