Superwoman Revealed


Kara Zor-El has been plagued by the mystery of Superwoman’s identity for four issues now.  For those that have been following closely, the clues to her identity are there, you just need to know where to look.

supergirl40cover2.jpgHere’s a question for those who pay closer attention to these things than I do, “Was Superwoman’s mask made of lead?”  I ask because it seems if you want to discover the identity of a masked vigilante or hero, and you just so happen to have x-ray vision, you’d use your abilities to figure out who this troubling person is right away.  My guess is it was, as had Kara not used one of her basic abilities, she’d come off as a really lame character.
Fortunately, Kara has been taught by a variety of heroes, including the Amazons, Batman, and a form of martial arts from her home planet.  All of this training comes in handy when Kara is set up by Superwoman and Reactron, where she uses her wits and natural abilities to fight the gold Kryptonite powered villain.

Editor’s Note:  For those not familiar with Gold Kryptonite, the modern version of the rock has the ability to remove a Kryptonian’s powers for 15 seconds at a time.  That’s long enough for Reactron to kill Kara’s father in Action Comics #872.

Oh, yes, there are Editor’s Notes in this issue too, and I’m glad they are making their way back into comics as it serves as a great resource for those obsessed with continuity. (T-shirt anyone?)

Reactron escapes, but not before Kara pulls the classic Defeat Metallo Gambit by yanking the gold rock from his star suit.  Once he’s out of the way, Kara is able to put two and two together and realize she’s been set up by the one person who told her where to find Superwoman.

When Superwoman’s identity is revealed, it’s about as big a surprise as General Lane running Project 7734.  With Lucy outed as the cape, Lois is probably considered the black sheep of her family. First her husband runs off to New Krypton, now her father and sister turn out to be bad guys?  I sense a huge therapy bill in the mail soon…

There’s a weird side story involving Cat Grant, Jimmy Olsen, and Lana Lang, where Lana suddenly begins bleeding out as the trio leave a party together.  I’m not sure what is up with Lana’s ailment, but I’m sure it will play a much larger role in the big story before all is said and done.  Of course someone could have decided it is time to kill another member of Superman’s boyhood adventures, but that wouldn’t happen… would it?

I like the cover by Joshua Middleton, not because there is a really tight muscular female butt looking you in the face, but because of the nice lines and shading of Supergirl as she is framed by her foe in the foreground.  The interior art by Jamal Igle continues to deliver solid images to propel the story, although I would like to see Igle tweak his art style a bit so the characters were reflective of their actual ages instead of everyone looking to be 20 somethings.  Kara is supposed to be a teenager, while Cat and Lana look nowhere near a day over 22.

I’m really glad DC didn’t make the executive decision to drag this mystery out for two more issues.  Now that the cat is out of the bag (cat being metaphorical, and no way a reference to the bag Cat Grant, who also appears in this issue), Supergirl and the rest of the heroes can get down to solving the mystery of how Lucy got her powers, and what Project 7734’s ultimate end game really is.

This is the second Superman Family title out from DC the past two weeks that is full of the punching, and the fighting, and the flavin’! and while I appreciate lots of action in my comics, I have a feeling readers are in for a couple of issues of standing around talking real soon so as to fill out the story.  But I like those stories that can pack a lot of action into a few pages, and still have time for a big reveal ending that makes readers wonder what is next.  Supergirl #40 delivered on the promise of revealing the identity of Superwoman, and is good enough to earn 3.5 out of 5 Stars.



About Author

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment. You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...


  1. You’re a wise man, Jerado. Have you seen that final reveal page? It turns out Major Lane was Superwoman while also being Plastic Man.

    Additionally…despite the good job that this creative team has attempted, despite the New Krypton tie-in, despite that Justice League upcoming…I sorely miss Peter David’s Supergirl. She might have been an Angel-cum-pink-alien-blob, but she had a strong character and was written with great intelligence and didn’t do things like preaching about love to parents of cancerous children while dressed in an outfit that would make the most vapid of cheerleaders retch uncontrollably for hours.

    Comeback, Linda Danvers…all is forgiven…come back…

  2. I thought the sickeness of Lana Lang was supposed to mean that she was the one inside the Superwoman suit and that it was killing her, it was a nice twist that both stories were not related. I find it interesting that the current tv plotline (Lana with Clarks power thanks to a suit) is being used at the same time in the comic, I’m probably wrong but I think it’s the first time the comic borrows a storyline from the tv show.

  3. ~wyntermute~ on

    Lana’s nosebleed had me flipping backwards in the book to see if she had been drinking anything at the “party”-thing. My first thought on that was, “poison? Hmmmm… who slipped her what, when?” and then I started my rewind-flipping. I will also ‘fess up and say I had not picked the Other Lane as being any more involved in things than was previously established (a.k.a., on the edges of plot, simply a minor annoyance).

  4. @Wyntermute: Lana’s cought and nosebleed started in Supergirl 38 (Origins and Omens story), so we can assume the condition pre-dates the party.

    @Stephen: “Was Superwoman’s mask made of lead?” , yes it’s made of lead, the issue is addressed on panel in Supergirl 36.

    Supergirl: “But who are you really? And why can’t I see through your mask? Is that lead?”
    Superwoman: “Well, we all have secrets to keep and people to protect, don’t we?”

  5. brainypirate on

    How come we don’t get front-cover butt-shot close-ups of Green Lantern or Nightwing or Jay Garrick or — well, you get the idea….. :/

  6. Because the vast majority of comic book readers are guys, and guys would feel uncomfortable buying books with close-ups of toned male bums on the cover. :/

  7. Heh heh. Vapid? Do you mean a cheerleader who is dull, or self obsessed? I think people often assume it means something akin to skanky (although you didn’t say that).

    Still, I gotta say I like the look of Superwoman’s rags in this case. She’s sleeker, and her outfit looks more like something an olympics competitor (minus logo) might wear. Compare this version of Supergirl to the one Kotobukiya came out with for their statue. Better?

    Actually why not have “front-cover butt-shot close ups” of BOTH male and female characters? They do “Variant” covers out the you-know-what already.

    Would women really buy more? Is their disinterest -truly- because of the banality of some titles, or do “they” even care? What do the numbers say?

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