Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Superman: World of new Krypton #2 Review

Written by James Robinson and Greg Rucka
Art by Pete Woods

Where the first issue grabbed me with its simplicity and excellent reveal twist of having Superman join the military guild, Superman: World of New Krypton #2 felt a lot like a world building issue. It simply spent too much time introducing people, such as Superman's new squad and subordinates, or trying to beat us over the head with the different culture inherent in the Kryptonian way of life. It's never outright bad and there are some good moments here, but it never actually thrills me or delivers on the unique promise of the first issue's reveal.

As I said, we're introduced to Kal's new squad that Zod has put him in charge of. I didn't recognize any names nor am I going to bother looking them up. The only thing you need to know is it's more of a 'police squad' than an actual military division, most likely designed to keep Clark out of Zod's hair.

One of the oddest things from the issue was the inclusion of the new 'red sunlight' guns. I'm not sure what the purpose of these really is. With so few Kryptonians left alive, wouldn't it be in their best interests to have non-lethal means of stopping potential criminals or dissidents without murdering a large percentage of their relatively few numbers? If they're meant as offensive military weaponry, why the red sunlight secondary fire? Why guns in the first place? They're an army of Supermen, just use heat vision or punch stuff!

In fact, I think the only reason the guns were included was to set up the main event of this issue - the labor guild gets a hold of a few guns and takes some people hostage. This would be more effective of a plot if the hostages couldn't move at the speed of light (or faster since Superman can obviously travel from planet to planet at faster than light speeds) and escape with relative ease. Hell, as Zod pointed out earlier in the issue, he can hear anything Superman says on New Krypton thanks to his powers. How the hell does no one notice an entire guild setting up something like this? In all honesty, this labor guild rebellion felt forced and unnecessary. We've seen maybe two panels of mild dissatisfaction about their current status over the past two issues and there's absolutely nothing to substantiate the conflict nor make us care about its outcome with so many contrived events building up to it.

Verdict - Check It. I'm still intrigued with Superman's life in the military guild, but there's only so much suspension of disbelief in regards to the forced labor guild hostage plot that makes up the latter half of this issue and its cliffhanger.

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