Supergirl battles a bunch of villains we don’t care about, gets a new status quo, and then goes to Mongolia to have a trilingual adventure.
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Graham: Supergirl’s powers surge out of control as she faces the Fatal Five as we look at Supergirl: The Girl of No Tomorrow, straight ahead.
Announcer: Welcome to the Classy Comics podcast where we search for the best comics in the universe. From Boise Idaho, here is your host Adam Graham.
Graham: This is the third volume of Supergirl stories under the D.C. Rebirth label and this has some callbacks to the previous volumes. Volume 2 ended on a cliffhanger with her seeming to be shot by Katherine Grant. However, she wasn’t actually shot by Kat Grant. As Volume 3 starts, we found out that Kat was giving a speech elsewhere. The person who shot her and was pretending to be Miss Grant was none other than the sorceress Selena. However, what she did shoot Supergirl with, has caused her powers to rage out of control. Something that has not been uncommon in the D.C. Universe. If you’ll recall our review of Flash Volume 5, negative the Flash also got hit with something, in this case the negative speed force, which caused his powers to rage out of control. So, there’s a lot of that going around in the D.C. Universe.
However, the main focus of this story is on the battle between Supergirl and the so called Fatal Five, which is led by the Emerald Empress along with the aforementioned Selena, Indigo, Solomon Grundy and Magog. And at first glance this really does appear to be a bit of a motley crew. They’re trying to stop Supergirl from doing major damage in the future. Why this is something Solomon Grundy would care about? I really don’t know. I guess Grundy can just be relied upon to create menace, you know, doesn’t really care much what the reason is and I think he and Magog, for that matter, kind of serve the same purpose in this. While the Emerald Empress, Indigo and Selena tend to monologue quite a bit in explaining their motives, in having conversations with Kat Grant. Some of it, I think particularly Indigo, comes off as just a bit sanctimonious. Emerald Empress has at least a believable motive for why she’s doing what she’s doing as she believes that Supergirl’s going to cause the death of her father but their methods really make it hard to sympathize much with them.
Also as part of their plan. in order to undermine the public’s trust in Supergirl, Indigo manages to have it exposed that the Cyborg Superman who she fought back in volume 1 was actually her father and that she and the D.E.O., the Department of Extra Normal Operations. are keeping him alive in a tank after all the mess that he created. She tries to explain that she’s just showing him the same sort of compassion that people on earth had shown her and I think that’s very true to her character. That’s very true to who Supergirl is but it’s not received well by folks in National City who feel lied to because she didn’t reveal her relationship to the Cyborg Superman and I should say there are some one of two Cyborg Superman’s. This should not be confused with the Cyborg Superman who was Hank Henshaw in a previous episode on Superman. That’s another cyborg Superman. So yeah, D.C. continuity.
The story becomes really a pretty big melee with a lot of fighting and action. That’s decent enough maybe a bit repetitive. It doesn’t go on forever but for quite a while. In the course of it, Supergirl is able to have some surgery performed on her which stops her from literally exploding, which is what the massive increase in her powers was going to do at the start of the plot but she still doesn’t have it under control and also Jeremiah and Eliza her adoptive parents get into the act and really have some good moments in the story and I had missed them in the previous volume so it was nice to see them back in there. Also later on a sort of werewolf creature from the Phantom Zone who Kara helped out back in Volume 2, also appears to lend a hand or a paw I guess against the Fatal Five.
The results of the book lead to a bit of a shakeup in Supergirl status quo and you can argue about whether you really needed that 14 issues in. I would lean towards no but you do end up with a shakeup with Jeremiah and Eliza leaving the D.E.O and other people leaving as well and director Bones coming in to charge of the organization. I guess we’ll talk about him more in a story where he is featured more prominently. Oz makes an appearance and he’s going to be featured prominently in a Superman issue we’re going to review in coming weeks but that’s it for the regular issues in the book
And then we get to the annual story which is also collected Supergirl Annual #1: From Heaven to Earth and essentially, Supergirl is trying to deal with how she controls her greatly enhanced powers and this leads her to the new Superman character who is actually a Chinese national named Kenan and he takes her to his teacher I-Ching who tries to teach her to regain control over powers through focus and mental discipline. It’s actually I think a pretty interesting idea. Certainly, something that’s better than the sort of haphazard approach that was taken in the Flash. However, as she’s trying to learn they’re interrupted by a crash where some citizens have shot down an armored Russian Guy known as Red Rocket and Supergirl and the new Superman fly out to Mongolia to try to calm things down where Red Rocket is really just making things worse and upset that he would be suspected and shot down, even though the people in Mongolia had no reason to know who he was. It’s an interesting story. It can be a little bit hard to follow because in order to be realistic they decided that everybody wasn’t speaking the same language and it’s not like one of those things where there are two languages being spoken. They actually had four languages being spoken and each had their own different text color so be like OK well this character said this but they didn’t understand that because this was actually in Mongolian while the other character speaking Russian but this other character only speaks Mandarin. That does get a little confusing at times but it does serve the point of the story and I think it really is one of those stories whose ending embodies who Supergirl is and what she stands for.
One more thing I will comment on is the varied covers that they include in the book and there are three of them and they are absolutely gorgeous. Just some great art some superb drawings of Supergirl. Just very nicely done. Overall the book as some issues. I think that the main story really does, for a lot of it, just read up, throw a bunch of random supervillains in to wreak havoc and fight and cause problems but I think that the character Supergirl shines through as does the supporting cast and I really do like the annual story despite the bit of confusion over all the languages being used so I’m going to give this book. A rating of somewhat classy. It’s definitely worth a read if you’re a fan of Supergirl.
Alright that’s all for now. If you do have a comment, send it to me firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure and follow us on Twitter at classycomicsguy and check out the website classycomicsguy.com. From Boise Idaho, this is your host Adam Graham signing off.