Monday, 16 May 2016

Superman: Post-Crisis Punch-up #5

It's that time again folks. We're back for another exciting installment of Post-Crisis Punch-up, for those of you keeping track this is week 5 of our Post-Crisis Superman coverage. All of the issues we'll be gassing about this time around came out in the May 1987. Let's get down to business.

 Adventures Of Superman #428:
Despite last week's victory charge Adventures Of Superman slips back to the bottom of the pile this time around. Things were going so well for Wolfman and Ordway too - they have a bunch of interesting subplots on the go, they've got yummy mummy Cat Grant - then they go and say those three little words: Jerry Frickin' White! Gah! Okay, okay, I'm being a little unfair here. The moral dilemma Perry White is confronted with in this story is really compelling - maintain his journalistic integrity or save the life of his son? Sweet! Jerry's reaction after his rescue when he learns that Perry struggled with that decision is equally understandable and compelling. It's fantastic character work from Wolfman. Sadly I just can't get past the fact that Jerry White is a horrible, obnoxious little snot. Reading a story where I'm supposed to hope that he doesn't get killed is just too tall an order. I'm going give Marv and Jerry (Ordway not White) a pass here though because 'Superman versus goons with guns' stories are hard to pull off, they need to have a ton of heart - and this one's got that in spades. A good job guys - chalk this ranking up to nothing but Jerry the Weasel.
Action Comics #588:
This is a great issue. This and the Superman v2 issue were neck and neck for the top spot. Despite being the concluding part of a larger story (the rest of which I haven't read) I not only followed it but enjoyed the hell out of it! I mean what's not to enjoy. It's got Supes in space. It's got the Hawks. It's got a Thanagarian invasion fleet. It's got a trussed up loud mouth villain sassing our heroes throughout - it's a riot! This issue is chock full of great moments. From Supes flying a disobedient spaceship from the inside through the power of sheer Kryptonian muscle; to him and him taking on the invasion fleet with his bare fists, to Hawkgirl brutally kicking the shit out of all the bad guys single handed; it's all gravy. The resolution wasn't the greatest being that this was the end of a multi-part epic depicting intergalactic war. Essentially the Hawks turn on a doohickey built into the Thanagarian ships (Operation MacGuffin I believe it was called) and *poof* the invasion is teleported across the universe lickety split! Earth is saved - job's a good 'un! However even that dodgy setup is given a few scoops of pathos by the possibility that the same thing that banishes the invasion fleet may boot our heroes so far off into the universe that it would take more than a lifetime to get back. Thankfully when the dust settles the Hawks are still in our solar system but Superman - he's floating out in space unconscious, hurt...or worse Dun!Dun! Dun! Them's good comics folks - hats off to Mr Byrne.

Superman v2 #5:
So the winner from this week's kryptonian crop is Superman v2. However the reasons why this one pipped Supes & The Hawks Excellent Adventures are entirely subjective....some might say irrational! First up, it would seem I'm just thoroughly tickled  by the concept of Superman versus a giant Mummy (even if the mummy turns out to be a big, tubby robot with eye lasers and rocket boots)! Then of course there's super-stubble! That's right the perennial YouAreComic favorite super-fashion-statement puts in appearance contrasting nicely with Clark's bright lemon shirt. This time however super-stubble is used as a plot point ! When Clark needs to tackle the angry robo-mummy he can't change to Superman as Lois might spot their matching five o'clock shadow and realize Supes and Clark are one and the same! Honestly though I don't think he should've worried so much - I mean if up to now she hasn't noticed the fact that the two of them look exactly-the-frickin'-same except for a pair of's probably all good. Speaking of Lois she single-handedly scores this issue a load of extra points this month by dressing up as that chick from George of the Jungle:
Watch Out For That Tree

If I'm being honest I'm not the biggest fan of Byrne's visual take on Lois. The short hair, snark and power suit get-up is not the Lois of my dreams, but I gotta say there's something about Safari Lois that I kinda like. One thing I didn't like was that Byrne pulled the whole 'Oh No Superman\Clark is Dead' cliffhanger fake-out this month in both Superman issue and in the Adventures issue! What's up with that? That aside, I liked Supes in civvies mummy-fighting , I liked the use of the classic 'inquisitive archaeologists unleashe ancient evil' set-up, I liked the 'Holy Crap it's really that big white dude from Big Hero Six' last page reveal. I just straight up liked this issue and named it the winner because it's my blog and I decide - so there!
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