Monday, July 24, 2023

Review: World's Finest #17

Batman/Superman World's Finest #17 came out last week, ending the Newmazo 'who killed Simon Stagg' storyline.

Mark Waid and Dan Mora have been hitting home runs for the last year and a half with this book. For me, far and away, it has been the most entertaining book being put out during that time. I have loved it. 

No one bats a thousand. 

This issue is still a very good issue. Mora's art continues to sing. Waid continues to dig deep into the DCU. Seriously, the cast of heroes and villains in this issue is immense. In the end, I think Waid tried to bite off more than he could chew with this storyline. In five issues we have gone from murder mystery to worldwide threat. Multiple plot twists and new plot threads cropped up. I almost feel like it could have been split into two arcs. And as we sprint to the end, the villain's defeat seemed a little too quick, a little too pat.

If anything, I think this book suffered mostly by being compared to itself. This still was a blast. Just not as brilliant as the issues which came before.

On to some of the book's best moments.

Newmazo is about to kill Batman when the duo of Supergirl and Martian Manhunter fly in. 

Seriously, Waid knows how to write Supergirl. And Mora knows how to draw her. I love how fierce she looks as she rushes to Batman's defense. I love the confidence as he dares her to fight someone more of a match.

Can I get a Waid written Supergirl at some point?

Of course Newmazo absorbs the powers of Kara and J'onn making him near unstoppable. Even T.O. Morrow thinks it is a no-win situation.

I love this panel by Mora showing how a super-speed attack by someone as powerful as Newmazo can take out even Superman and Wonder Woman.

You get the sense that Newmazo is a serious threat.

Last issue Batman fired Newmazo's satellites into the sky. Here we learn why. He was able to send Dr. Magnus' free will programming to the AI constructs Newmazo had taken over. So we see an interesting mix of heroes (Robotman, Red Tornado for example) and villains (Chemo and Shaggy Man for instance) teaming up to fight Newmazo. 

There is a great two page spread of them all trying to take out Newmazo that again shows how fantastic Mora is.

And then a bit of a quick ending. 

Amazo shows up to fight Newmazo.

And somehow they get into some 'duplicating each other' feedback loop which makes them both explode.

It's just a little bit too easy. And it is crazy that we got here from the Stagg murder in under 5 issues.

Well, almost too easy. Newmazo still is barely alive. 

Given how all this started, Batman lets Metamorpho strike the killing blow.

I'll never stop liking an 'alas poor Yorick' pose in a comic book. 

And that's it.

Nothing left but the round up, including Batman telling Jimmy that even though he messed up accusing Bruce Wayne of murder it's okay because that's what the information seemed to say. 

I suppose this is a kinder and gentler Batman in this book. You'd think that someone messing up guilt/innocence might be scrutinized more harshly by Batman. 

Look, I got to see Supergirl kick some butt. I got to see Chemo and Shaggy Man. I got a Metamorpho subplot. This was fun. It shows how great the prior issues have been that this one is a little paler in contrast.

Overall grade: B-


Anonymous said...

Hhhmmm...isn't Kal the one who said to back down and let Metamorpho do the last blow?
It's the page at the bottom B 4 the 'the last days of Lex' page?

Anj said...

Oops ... looks like you're right!

Anonymous said...

Wrapped up way too quickly, but even when Mark Waid is in a hurry he is still pretty good...and at least Supergirl wasn't Newmazo's hostage or some cringeworthy thing like that. Looks like Kara got her "Bell Rung" twice in this issue, but she climbed up off the matt every time like that Champ She Is...