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Superman #681

Posted: Thursday, October 30, 2008
By: Erik Norris

James Robinson
Renato Guedes, Wilson Magalhaes (i), David Curiel (c)
DC Comics
“New Krypton" (part 2)

I’m one step closer to being completely sold on New Krypton. Don’t get me wrong, the concept is amazing. I’m just very hesitant when storylines crossover among multiple books with multiple writers / artists digging into the buffet. I felt that the varying point-of-views for Batman’s recent crossover, “The Resurrection of Ra’s Al Ghul,” was the killing blow to that story as the pacing was all over the place. Somehow editorial faltered big time with relaying information between the creative teams, killing a lot of the tension for cliffhangers (I’m looking at you Robin).

However, I can take comfort in the teams working on “New Krypton” because they’re such close friends and writing partners. It seems this story was a pretty personal affair for everyone involved and because of it, everyone is firing on all cylinders to make a Superman story that is both epic and close to the heart for the character.

So that brings us to Superman #681, part 2 of “New Krypton,” where James Robinson and Renato Guedes pick up the various plot threads introduced in the New Krypton Special. And although part 2 feels almost like a second introductory issue, it still has some dynamite character moments that make the issue completely worth the purchase.

I feel like these quite moments are Robinson’s greatest strength. His ability to tap into characters mindsets and motivations instead of just inserting them into a plot is what makes him such a great writer. I also feel his “train of thought” monologue boxes are a visual manifestation of tapping into what makes these characters tick for readers to follow.

One of the first things I was waiting for when this event kicked off is if Robinson, Johns, and Gates would incorporate the rest of the DCU for such an event. It makes sense that they would get involved and that mystery was answered for me by issue #2. Yes, they do. It’s a great moment where Superman does his best sales pitch to some of his colleagues in the JLA/ JSA as to why these Kryptonians are nothing but good for Earth’s protection. However, I do feel Supes will be eating his own words once all this is said and done.

With a smooth transition from the New Krypton Special, Superman #681 has delivered exactly what I was looking for: epic scope, character exploration, and a great cliffhanger, that is completely unexpected, to make me begin drooling for the next installment. I might even go as far to say this issue was better than the Special the preceded it and the best thing Robinson has done with Superman thus far.



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