Monday, August 23, 2021

Review: Superman Red And Blue #6

Superman Red and Blue #6 came out this week and was a great send off for this mini-series. I have to say, each issue of this thing seemed to get better and better. I am glad DC gave Superman this chance to shine.

This issue finally gave us some Supergirl, albeit in a Streaky story. But the fact that we got a Streaky story made this worth the money. 

Outside that we get a story about the difficulties of being Clark Kent, unable to cover his own exploits as Superman. We get a story about the mainstay of Smallville and how she has witnessed Clark's life  through the years, impacting him more than our hero knew. We get some farm life wisdom seeping into big city life. And we get to see how Superman's revealing of his identity inspires a young man. 

There wasn't much action in this issue. But I don't mind. Many of my favorite stories are about Superman being an inspiration. Or how his Smallville life formed his morality. Or about Supergirl and her super cat. For me, this was the perfect last issue. 

I'd be remiss if I didn't mention this Doc Shaner cover. This should be a t-shirt, a poster, and a mug. This should be everywhere. I love how we get Supergirl, Power Girl, and Krypto right there. Heck, Comet and Streaky are there too. Doc Shaner can do no wrong. 

The first story was 'Hissy Fit', written and drawn by Sophie Campbell.

This is a Streaky the Super-Cat story. Kal and Kara are moving from an Arctic Fortress to an Antarctic Fortress, packing up everything for the trip. 

But Streaky doesn't want to get into the cat carrier and in a pique of feline fury flies off causing some damage.

Eventually it all works out.

Hey, I always knew Campbell would draw a killer Supergirl. I have been a fan of her work for a while, especially the beloved Jem and the Holograms. As someone who has owned cats who recognizes just what a task it is to get one into the carrier, I empathized. And the ending, where Streaky returns was also recognizable.

I can't ask for more than this!

But the riches continued.

"The Scoop" was written and drawn by Matt Wagner and just visually leaned into a Fleischer Studio style story. This is an early Superman, fighting giant robots.

But while Lois scoops the flashy superheroics, Clark is investigating the reason why the crime happened. Lois knows the story behind the story is important but what sells?

How can Clark report on himself?

Wonderful story. I just love Wagner so glad to see him and this aesthetic here.

"The Special" was written by Tom King with art by Paolo Rivera.

In this story, we follow a diner waitress named Annie from her first day on the job dropping coffee to the present. But she has been ever-present in Clark's life as so much of the big moments in his life happen in this diner. From Ma and Pa learning to be parents to his telling Lana he is leaving to a private moment mourning Pa's death to Lois working up the courage to meet her future in-laws. 

This page where she talks about Pa was very touching.

And I love that when Annie has a low point, Clark points out how important she has been in his life, even just in the background.

"Son of Farmers" was written by Darcie Little Badger with art by Steve Pugh.

Folks here should know I love Pa Kent wisdom. Here it was more Kent Farm wisdom, how the family lessons on the farm have helped him be Superman. It also enforced the belief that no one should die in his arms.

Here, as Clark, he performs CPR on a man who collapses until the ambulance comes. Luckily the man survives.

While I love the sentiment and the dizzying panel layout showing Clark's frenzied concern, I do wonder if that dying man would have been better served with Superman flying him to an ER rather than doing CPR for minutes waiting for the team. 

Great art!

The last story was "Ally", written by Rex Ogle with art by Mike Norton.

I can't imagine anyone being surprised by the ending of this story. But I did like how Superman announcing his truth to the world that he is Clark Kent inspired this young man to announce his truth to his family. And good use of the full array of colors (not just red and blue) at the end.

In particular, I liked that this used an in continuity plot point, Clark's reveal, to be the impetus.

Overall, I have to admit that I very much liked this mini-series. I think it gained momentum as it progressed. And I liked that many stories seemed to be more how Superman has impacted people rather than Superman himself. As someone who has been influenced by Superman, I liked those stories. 

Plus Sophie Campbell drawing Supergirl and Streaky!

Overall grade: A


Martin Gray said...

Thanks for the great review, it’s a pretty good issue indeed. I agree, that cover is gorgeous. I’d love a poster, but full colour please!

Bostondreams said...

I loved the 'shorts' look for Kara in this!

Anonymous said...

I bought this for the Streaky story, and for the cover. Campbell draws an interesting Supergirl - a bit chunky and with a unique costume. (And Martin's review taught me a new term - "council house facelift hairdo.")

I was proud of how many characters I could identify on the cover, but there are quite a few I don't know. Who am I missing?

On the left, the ones I recognize are Conner, Jimmy, Supergirl, the super pets, Power Girl, and I guess Superman Red. I don't know who anyone else is - which means around 10 that are large enough that someone might know who they are, and around 11 that I think are too small for anyone to know.

On the right, I see Superman Blue, Jon and Lois, President Superman, Bizarro, the version of Superman who was wore a blue T-Shirt, pants and shoes, Steel, Natasha Irons, and Kingdom Come Superman.That leaves another handful I don't recognize.

Maybe the one in red in front of Power Girl is Mon-El, or maybe he's the one in red and blue between Natasha and John Henry.

If anyone knows more of them - chime in!


Anj said...

Thanks for great comments.

And yes, love Campbell's take on Supergirl. The 'up in a scrunchy' hairdo is perfect for moving day. No fuss.

Martin Gray said...

I reckon the red and white chap in front of Peege is Electric Superman Red, with Electric Superman Blue between Superman’s left arm and Jon.

The chap in white in front of Kon is Apollo. Who else do you need?

Anonymous said...

Ah yes, Apollo! I'm even seeing a fair amount of him in the Authority book, and in the Midnighter shorts.

I did recognize the Red and Blue electric Supes.

On the left, there are two orange ones (maybe the bigger of the two is Captain Carrot). Then, ignoring the two tiny ones, there are three at the top by Apollo's right arm, an all-red one in front of PG, and two in front of Krypto (one of whom has white boots).

Ah ha! I just convinced myself the very small between Conner and Supergirl is 1940-ish Superman, during the brief time he had black around his S. He looks to me exactly like Joe Shuster's Superman.

There's also a fist coming from off-screen just above Conner - too generic to be identified, I think.

There are twelve tiny ones I think we can ignore.

On the right, one between the Steels, one between Steel's arm and hammer, and someone's fist at Steel's right boot (who might be knowable if someone recognized the color and shape of his sleeve cuff - pale blue with some red).

There are two directly above President Superman, and the highest one on the right above T-Shirt Superman.

There is also part of the back of a shadowy figure on the far right, and a very large pale blue figure in the background, whose chin is partly covered by Bizarro's cape.

It's quite the cover!


H said...

Anyone who includes Beppo in a Super Family group shot can do no wrong in my book.

Anonymous said...

I bought this only to read the Supergirl+Streaky story.


Never read the rest of the stories as I'm not really interested in DC anymore, but the Streaky story alone carries this comic to glory.

It was a long time ago since DC made me laugh, but this comic did it.