Batman Beyond and the DCAU have created an interesting pocket of DC mythos. Find out what a number of parts of this pocket are up to after the jump…

BATMAN BEYOND UNLIMITED #4
Cover Artist: Dustin Nguyen
Publisher: DC Comics
Price: $3.99

JUSTICE LEAGUE BEYOND
Writers: Derek Fridolfs & Dustin Nguyen
Artist: Dustin Nguyen
Inks: Derek Fridolfs
Color: Randy Mayor
Letters: Saida Temofonte
Editor: Ben Abernathy

Previously in Justice League Beyond: Kobra had kidnapped Amanda Waller and brainwashed Micron to be able to summon a dragon/snake/god that they are using to attack New Genesis and Apokolips. Only one man on earth still has access to a Mother Box, the problem is convincing Bruce Wayne to use it.

EXPOSITION

This story opens with Terry and Superman convincing Bruce to let them use the Mother Box to get to New Genesis and take on Kobra before they become a direct threat to Earth. Bruce mostly complains about the idea of Batman not being in Gotham before relenting. He’s also awesomely curmudgeon-y to Superman, only addressing him as Kent and being straight up antagonistic about it. Of course, Bruce is surly with Terry as well, berating him for damaging the Batsuit that will take time to repair. As such Terry gets an older version, complete with a cape that looks pretty awesome really.

After the convincing, the team heads to New Genesis only to find out there are too late. Greeted by Orion, he recounts how a magic serpent destroyed most of the land, forcing Highfather ask Darkseid for help, even giving up the Anti-Life Equation. Obviously even Darkseid’s forces did not help enough. The heroes are then led to Apokolips where the remaining survivors are and we get an awesome reveal that should be figured out right beforehand.

This piece is about 90% exposition without feeling forced. There is some action in the retelling of New Genesis fall, but not much. Still, the exposition is natural in the situation and as such does not hurt the story. We do get some good character moments, and everything looks good, though occasionally faces are a bit longer than should naturally fit, all in all it works a step to the next chapter.

BEYOND ORIGINS
Writers: Derek Fridolfs & Dustin Nguyen
Artist: Eric Nguyen
Letters: Saida Temofonte
Editor: Ben Abernathy

NEW IN THE OLD

This is a new section for the book giving us a look at the origin story for specific members of the Justice League. First off is Warhawk, whose story is partially known for fans of the Justice League Unlimited cartoon. Here we get the same; he is the son of Green Lantern John Stewart and Hawkgirl. They split up after a Thanagarian invasion and last we knew John was with Vixen. Here is where the new starts, on the night John was going to propose, Shadow Thief kills Vixen as John pops the question. Now, Shayera (Hawkgirl) is going to help John track him down with the aid of another hero appearing in the last panel.

Finding out how John and Shayera have a son is a good idea, but this also seems like a way to sneak a JLU story into the regular books. The story is good, the art looks great, though a bit more stylized than the rest of the issue, and my only complaint is seeing the old Static Shock from when John was sent to the future and meets his son, simply because we haven’t seen Static elsewhere in the Beyond comics. Honestly though, probably my favorite story in the book.

BATMAN BEYOND
Writer: Adam Beechen
Artist: Norm Breyfogle
Color: Andrew Elder
Letters Saida Temofonte
Editor Jim Chadwick

Previously in Batman Beyond: Mad Stan’s dog Boom Boom has been taken by Russian Mobsters. If Stan doesn’t get him back he is threatening to blow up most to all of Gotham.

PUPPY LOVE

This turns out to be a sweet tale, reuniting a man with his little lost dog. Of course there are some good action moments and a funny reveal that Stan is not as dumb as he seems when he speaks Russian to the mobsters trying to hide info from him by speaking Russian (you’d think by that point in the future people wouldn’t be dumb enough to try that anymore, oh well). Terry manages to fix the situation, taking everyone into custody and we get another semi-touching moment as Stan’s court appointed lawyer brings Boom Boom in for a visit and Stan sheds a tear.

This was a quick segment that did a good job of finishing off Stan and Boom Boom’s story. Nothing spectacular happened, we got some good one-liners, and everything looked decent. Simply put, it was a solid end to the piece.

SUPERMAN BEYOND
Writer: JT Krul
Artist: Howard Porter
Inks: John Livesay
Color: Randy Mayor
Letters: Saida Temofonte
Editor: Kwanza Johnson

Previously in Superman Beyond: The deceased Lex Luthor revealed himself to an estranged daughter while Superman met the new Supercops on Metropolis’s police force.

EXPOSITION, AGAIN

The hologram of Lex explains to his daughter, whose name isn’t mentioned in the issue, why he hates Superman and how she will now be able to defeat him due to the arrival of more real Kryptonite. Meanwhile, Superman is lamenting how time changes the way things work, feeling more like the grandpa saying “back in my day” than the world’s greatest hero. The only worthwhile exposition we get is mostly background noise as news reports keep speaking of the Supercop program and where it is heading. A couple pieces of directional information are revealed as well, but it didn’t add much to the story.
Artistically, this piece was my favorite. The Lex hologram is a great swirl of green and purple, the flashback panels have a kind of digital gritty/grainy quality to them, and the city looks great. I’m just disappointed that it had to be used for such a dull issue, we all know Lex’s story and reasons; just get to the crux of the matter. Superman is getting some perspective, but it doesn’t seem to fit.

BOTTOM LINE: STILL GOOD

Despite a lackluster finish, the rest of the book still holds together well. We get a good setup for the Justice League story, we get a good finisher for the Mad Stan one, and we get a cool new feature giving us even more insight into the universe being built. All in all, even with the poor execution of Superman, Batman Beyond Unlimited gets 4 out of 5 stars, for showing off what a compilation book can be.

Rating: ★★★★☆

The Author

Rob Rasmussen

Rob Rasmussen

I'm Rob. Gamer, geek, student, friend. I'm Trebor Srarcinth, Blazankar Mristari, and Bor, Immortal. You know one, but do you know the rest?

Previous post

REVIEW: The Ravagers #1

Next post

Critical Hit #150: The Spring Queen

No Comment

You know you have something to say, say it in the comment section