Thursday, January 24, 2013

Brief Review: Ame Comi Girls Featuring Power Girl #4

Much like with Smallville, I am behind the times with 'digital first' releases, waiting until the print copy comes out. I wasn't planning on getting Ame-Comi Girls but after some high praise by Saranga of the Pai blog, I picked up the first three issues.

I will say up front, the costumes are insane, almost idiotic. But once you get past the slips of cloth and navel windows, the story has been a lot of fun. I especially love how in this world women are the only supers - whether it be hero or villain.

Ame-Comi Girls #4, featuring Power Girl, deserved a mention here from me for a couple of reasons. One, it was interesting to see a world where Power Girl exists in the Superman role. Next, it includes the Ame-Comi Supergirl. And lastly, I have to say I wanted to see Jimmy Palmiotti write Power Girl again. I loved the Palmiotti/Conner PG title. And I wanted to see how Palmiotti would handle any Supergirl again. I loved his Wednesday Comics Supergirl but didn't like the party girl from last volumes Supergirl #12.

The art here is done by Mike Bowden and is a highly stylized, thick lined romp. The style completely befits the fun tone of this book. And, I suppose, his Power Girl is ... ahem ... well-rounded enough to be worthy of the Ame-Comi book.

This will be a brief sort of review.

This is a great panel showcasing Bowden's art style. Power Girl is quite buxom here. And people's feet seem pretty chunky. But it has a sort of wild animated feel to it that works here.

And since we can't have a Superman/Lois romance on this Earth, we get a Power Girl/Jimmy Olsen romance. I thought that was a nice touch here. He has a signal watch to get her attention. Lucky for him she is around to save him from some pirates.

Later, just as Karen Starr is about to showcase her clean energy corporate headquarters, she is attacked by a crew of Silver Banshees and a giant robot which sounds like Lex Luthor. Since male heroes/villains aren't the norm here I am guessing. We never actually see whoever is driving the giant green and purple Lexbot.

But what I liked here is Power Girl talking about humanity to these villain.

"I love humanity for all of their ingenuity, their capacity for kindness, and their ability to love". Yes there is a pizza joke in there making it a Power Girl line. But that first part is pure classic Superman. And we haven't seen the current Superman say anything like that.

It is clear that Palmiotti has an affinity for Power Girl. But I love that he sort of ratcheted her up a notch into that Superman level of authority on this world.

And the citizens love her and trust her. Imagine that. When the Lex-bot blasts her into the moon, the citizens of Metropolis rush to her defense, throwing debris at it.

But listen to them: "Power Girl loves out World! Se has done nothing but make our lives better!"

I don't know. I want to see that sort of relationship between hero and city in the Superman books. I have to look for it in Smallville and Ame-Comi Girls.

Power Girl ends up coming back, mopping up the Lex-bot and sending it into the Phantom Zone.

But the issue doesn't slow down there.

A rocket crash lands on the Kent's farm. And inside is Supergirl.

One thing I like here is that Power Girl here truly embodies the Superman story. She was the rocket that crash landed on the Kent farm years ago and was raised by them. So why would another Kryptonian rocket also land there? Hmmm ...

That is a pretty ridiculous costume.

Power Girl is Kara Jor-El. Supergirl is Kara Zor-El. And, unfortunately, the whole 'Supergirl is older' origin is trotted out here too. Couldn't I get Argo City here? Nope, Kara Zor-El looked after infant Kara Jor-El.

At least they didn't attack each other.

But before all the origin details can be hashed out, female Manhunters show up to fight the cousins.

Alas, Supergirl doesn't do to well, being bottled up in some energy bubble early on. I suppose with a whole issue devoted to her next month, Supergirl will have plenty of time to shine. This is Power Girl's time for the spotlight.

And the big bad is finally revealed. Here comes Brainiac. I love the last line by Power Girl, talking about how this the worst day of her life.

With no worries about continuity, with a lot of action and snappy dialogue, and a great take on the 'Power Girl as Superman' switch, I have to say I enjoyed this issue a lot. It was pure simple comic fun. The series as a whole has been more up than down. The Wonder Woman issue was very good. The Batgirl and Duela Dent issues were okay. And now this fun issue. Next issue, we get Supergirl.

So if you are looking for a unique take on the DCU that is funny and action packed and can overlook the absolutely ridiculous costumes, I would give this title a try.


Saranga said...

Glad you liked it!
The costumes are ridiculous, but despite that, the series is fabulous.

valerie21601 said...

I have to say I really, really enjoy the Easter Eggs in this series as well as the new twists and turns with the male and female switch around.

When you think about it in the golden age of comic books the hero's and villains were almost exclusively men with a rare heroine thrown often as a token.

Thankfully this series has men who are intelligent and able to hold their own with the Ame Comi super-heroines

Anonymous said...

I have read the Power Girl and Supergirl issues of Ame-Comi Girls and the ones that dealt with Brainiac, and I must say that the stories are interesting but, disappointed that Supergirl gets the short shrift after fighting Brainiac.