Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Review: Batman/Superman #15

Batman/Superman has been an interesting title to follow over this last year.

The title spun out of the Hell Arisen mini-series, drowning in the Batman Who Laughs, and initially didn't grab me. It all seemed like a side story to a crossover I wasn't collecting.

But when the first arc ended, Joshua Williamson devoted the series to smaller stories that really focused on Batman and Superman's friendship. Since that pivot, I have found the series very entertaining. Add to that a nice mix of excellent artists and this title has really become a consistent winner.

Batman/Superman #15 is another winner, a done-in-one story that again shows how these two heroes lean on each other's friendship and heroism. There is one big plot point that makes little sense but Williamson hangs a lantern on it and that made it way more palatable. 

The story has a bit of a Justice League Dark feel to it. Andrei Bressan's art has a thick lined eeriness that works well for the plot. I don't think I have seen his art before.

On to the story.

We start with a plot maguffin.

In the bowels of Arkham Asylum, Solomon Grundy is exuding a hard radiation. If his condition continues, he'll explode and take out half the USA. Batman asks Superman for some help.

Sounds like a slam dunk for Superman. The Man of Steel says he'll fly Grundy off planet.

Not so fast.

Batman also called in old friend Poison Ivy. With Grundy's loose connection to the Green, Ivy does a quick scan.

Grundy needs to head back to Slaughter Swamp.

I forgot about this history of Grundy resurrecting into something new. Was this a Brad Metzler thing? Wasn't Grundy really smart in his JLA run? 

I like the old school angry zombie. I don't need this wrinkle.

On top of that, the Secret Society of Super-Villains wants to grab Grundy and use him as a weapon. Why not utilize a super-bomb like this? 

To make matters worse, Grundy is too unstable to withstand a superspeed flight. The World's Finest need to get him to Slaughter Swamp safely and calmly. So Grundy is out in the Bat Plane and Superman flies escort. The SSV can't get hold of him. 

En route, Superman talks about how the winter weather is perfect for snowball fights.

I like simple moments like these that again define the differences in our heroes' lives.

Of course, the plane gets attacked by the SSV. But to be honest, I didn't recognize one of the villains swarming around things.

At one point the Bat Plane takes on such damage that Batman has to eject using Grundy as a life raft to cushion the landing on the snow.

Remember when Superman was told that any jarring movements might blow up Grundy? And Batman dropped him from a plane?? Yeah, that made little sense to me. It made little sense to Superman as well. At least Williamson calls out his own plot gaffe.

I love how Superman and Batman contrast each other. Here, since he can't fly him to the swamp, Superman comes and tries to walk him home. There is something lovely about this, like walking a child home from the bus stop.
I love when I see Superman being helpful like this.

And then Grundy's real 'friend' arrives. Swamp Thing shows up to lead Grundy into the waters for his next resurrection.

With the threat over, Batman sinks a bit explaining how he is exhausted. Superman explains how everyone needs to lean on someone else at some point.

Nothing left to do but ...

... chuck a snowball at Batman.


If anyone needs a snowball fight, it's Batman.

Batman smiles and returns fire!

These two realize that while they might not always need each other to win a mission, they do like to call on each other. They always answer yes.

Great little story. 

Josh Williamson's time on this book is over. I tip my hat to him. Thanks for giving me a World's Finest book again!

Overall grade: A

1 comment:

Steve said...

I don't know if Meltzer started the change up thing with Grundy. He may have used Grundy being written wildly different and explained it though. He was the genius evil mastermind of the Tornado's Path arc...