Patrick: I likes me a good anti-hero. There’s nothing quite like cheering for a character’s success and failure at the same time. Let’s take Walter White as a perfect example of this in modern fiction. He is a terrible husband and father, and an even worse friend, who makes dangerous decisions in the name of greed, power and desperation. And yet, I cheer every single one of his personal victories, no matter how immoral they might be. So much of Breaking Bad is about that character finding a way to feel powerful in the face of illness and poverty, and about how that need to feel powerful never goes away. The ride is exhilarating because there’s nothing more satisfying than a character with agency. Say what you will about Walter White — he has goals and he takes the steps necessary to achieve those goals. Supergirl has no such agency. She spends the majority of issue 17, fighting Wonder Woman just because, and then stops fighting her for equally arbitrary reasons. Neither a hero, nor an anti-hero, Supergirl ends up the clueless victim of her own series.
Drew: Supergirl really drew the short straw on this crossover event. She very quickly aligned herself with a villainous cipher whose motives and methods have yet to be fully explained, which makes her gullible at best, downright stupid at worst — traits we generally don’t associate with heroic figures. We could excuse some of this based on her desire to return to Krypton, but each moment she spends with H’el without asking for just a little more information strains credulity that much further. Supergirl 16 does well, then, to give Kara time away from H’el, reasserting that this character — and this series — might just have some agency after all. Continue reading →
Today, Shelby and (guest writer) Pete Peterson are discussing Superman 0, originally released September 27th, 2012. Superman 0 is part of the line-wide Zero Month.
Shelby: What more is there to know about the origin of Superman? Krypton blows up, baby Kal-El is loaded into an escape pod, crashes to Earth as the only survivor of Krypton (except for his cousin Supergirl, but that’s a different story), and becomes Superman because science. I have never stopped to think more about Superman’s story; turns out, there are a lot of details I’ve been glossing over. For example, what exactly caused an entire planet to blow up in the first place? Scott Lobdell gives us a clue to the destruction of Krypton, and decides the best place to start the origin of Superman is with his father.