52 – Week 35 – Rain of the Supermen

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reviewbubble.jpg5235picon.jpgWhy are you standing around? Get inside!

What better way to greet the new year than by watching hundreds of people plummet to their death? What? That isn’t how you ring in the good times? Whatever…

And “Whatever” is kind of how I feel about this week’s installment of 52.

When you see people falling from the sky, and I mean A LOT of people, my first inclination isn’t to stand around gawking like some looky-loo at a car accident, but rather to seek shelter. Perhaps it is the shear magnitude of what they are seeing that stop the citizens of Metropolis in their tracks, but as Lex is keen to do; they should be smart enough to step out of the way.

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Gotta love the look Lex is giving the reader in that last panel.

01.jpgThe panic that ensues is enough to bring Supernova to the scene to confront Lex about the incident, which indicates Supernova may not be a very good superhero. Like the pedestrians who should be getting out of the way, Supernova should be flying to the rescue instead of chatting away.

When he does finally arrive on the scene, he uses his teleportation powers to send thousands of citizens to the outskirts of Metropolis. We know teleportation is a clue to who Supernova is, and according some babbling by Michael Siglain at Newsarama, “The staffs of the Starmen, Luthor’s Kryptonite gauntlet, Shadow Thief’s Dimensiometer and more. Can’t you make something out of them?” Sounds more like dialogue we’ve heard from a certain Starman seen in the pages of JSA #1.

At first I thought these panels might be a major clue into the identity of Supernova, especially in the way they are laid out.

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But then later when John shows up at Saint Camillus Hospital wearing a brown overcoat, I figured we were getting a one panel reaction of John racing out of the Steelworks to make sure Natasha was okay. Besides, Steel being Supernova just doesn’t make any sense. But the quip by Siglain is another clue into the identity of Supernova. We now know these powers are not meta in nature, but rather technology based. It makes you wonder what other person has been using “stolen” technology based gadgets to become a superhero?

The scene at the hospital does have one cool moment where Plastic Man comes looking for his son, now calling himself Offspring. Yet another Kingdom Come character brought into the mainstream DCU.

In the aftermath of New Year’s Eve, Luthor has gathered Infinity, Inc. to tell them some good news and bad news. First the good news; there are no problems with their powers. The bad news? Lex needs them to help rebuild his image. It’s amazing to me how every member of the team isn’t putting two and two together at this moment, but at least Natasha has woken up to the realization that the Everyman project isn’t all it is cracked up to be.

Speaking of Everyman, we haven’t seen him lately, except for an occasional off screen reference. We know he has shape shifted into other members of the team, so could he have also shifted into Lex Luthor? While I have no doubt the real Lex Luthor is behind the turning off of the powers, could Everyman be the patsy who will take the blame for this tragedy? We’ve already seen Lex Luthor clear his name by telling the press Alex Luthor had been impersonating him; why not repeat the ploy with the shape shifter?

While Jake and Natasha agree to find some dirt on Luthor, it would be a good time to see how the new year is treating those in deep space.

My biggest question about the heroes in space is, “how the heck are they breathing without protective suits? Animal Man explains he has taken the space dolphin’s powers, but what about Adam Strange? And how the heck is he walking around when he doesn’t have eyes? Maybe I missed something really important in one of those boring moments in 52, but the only time I remember Adam commenting on his sight was when he was directly connected to the ship. Are his eyes growing back and we haven’t been told?

As the Emerald Head of Ekron has been saying all along, the heroes shouldn’t trust Lobo. In his own demented way, his vow of non-violence is actually going to pay off with a plan to turn the trio over to Lady Styx. While it may not be a brilliant one, Lobo figures it is easier to fight from the inside out, than to battle through the entire Stygian army. Good plan if it works. Buddy, Starfire and Lobo shouldn’t have much of a problem, but bringing a blind man to an ass-kicking contest? Next week should be interesting.

The Good

  • It’s raining men (and women)
  • The direct reference to Reign of the Supermen from the 90s
  • Time to gang up on Luthor

The Bad

  • Why did it take so long for everyone to fall?
  • Where is Everyman?

When everything is said and done, the big question remains, “Did anything monumental occur this week to help move the story along?” Besides Natasha coming to her senses the core characters we’ve come to know didn’t do much. Sure there was the whole Rain of the Supermen thing, but really, we all knew Luthor was going to pull a stunt like this at some point when we saw him turn of Trajectory’s powers in Week 21. Overall I will have to give this installment of 52 2 Stars. A nice showing, but it left me a little under whelmed.

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Parting Shot
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