Rating: 4.5/5 – What if Supergirl Had Clark Kent’s Origin?
by ComicSpectrum EiC Bob Bretall
Supergirl: Being Super is definitely not in DC’s standard super-hero continuity, and I think that’s a good thing. Writer Mariko Tamaki is weaving a standalone tale here that tells of a Supergirl who is not much different from various versions of the Clark Kent/Superboy origin. Her Kryptonian ship crash landed on Earth, she was adopted by a kindly couple (in this case the Danvers family in Midvale instead of the Kents in Smallville). She has powers but has been schooled by her parents in hiding them. She is attending the local High School where she has good friends she hangs around with. The basic template of the Superboy legend, but tweaked, gender-swapped, and fast-forwarded 60 years from the 1950s into 2017.
Tamaki’s story is a good one, if a bit slow. It’s long on setting the scene with characterization and interpersonal relationships between Kara and her friends Dolly and Jen, but very short on action. This is not a comic to hand to someone who needs to have heavy action in their super-hero stories lest they cry “boring!” For me, it was just fine because I’m less interested in people in tight pummeling one another these days and far more interested in the kinds of dialogue and character interaction that come across so wonderfully here. What really sells the story for me is the art by Joelle Jones and Sandu Florea. The lines are clean, the panel-to-panel storytelling captivating, and the characters wonderfully expressive. This double-sized squarebound issue flew by, I was captivated by the art from beginning to end.
Supergirl: Being Super is the perfect comic to hand to a young girl to get her interested in comics as an art form (as long as she is from a tolerant/progressive family, since there is a diversity of characters that certain conservatives may not approve of). This first issue is mostly teen drama and story setup, but there is the promise of some action (and maybe even a costume) coming up in part two. I suspect this will be collected into a single volume, that may be the preferable way of getting this into the hands of young readers. For people who have been around comics for a while, especially if you like series like Giant Days or Jonesy, don’t let this one pass you by.
Reviewed by: Bob Bretall
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