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Batman/Superman #4

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By Greg Pak & Jae Lee

The first story arc for this new title reaches its close. The NSA engages both versions of Batman and Superman as they argue over what to do with the giant magical crystal. Wonder Woman, meanwhile, is facing off with Kaiyo the Trickster. Everything ends up being resolved, but Kaiyo reveals there will be consequences for what transpired.

This has been a very strong story arc worthy of DC’s two prized properties. Unfortunately, this conclusion lost the intensity that was present in the previous issue by bringing Darkseid into the equation. Older Superman facing off against the NSA didn’t feel like a dire situation, even when his life was in actual jeopardy. Kaiyo’s fight with Diana didn’t resolve, she was just killing time to see which Batman/Superman team would be triumphant. In truth, it was a waste of panel space. Even the repercussions that are to come in future stories didn’t have  the sense of urgency and magnitude that they should. Now, seeing young Clark and Bruce start to work together and slowly see their friendship form was a treat. Greg Pak’s take on these characters feels spot on and keeps the reader excited to see how the relationship develops for the two heroes.

Jae Lee continued his alluring artwork in #4. He makes this title stand out, but, sadly, couldn’t save this issue. Being that this is a Batman and Superman book, one would think there would be some climactic panels or pages in the arc’s conclusion. Well, there wasn’t; not one single full-page shot in the entire book. There was only a single half-page panel of Wonder Woman tussling with the Trickster, that was it! Perhaps there was a lot of material that needed to be covered in the issue so Lee wasn’t so extravagant with his panel layouts, but considering how outstanding his work has been on the last three issues, it is still disappointing.

The ending is well constructed and executed, but it was the weakest book in this storyline. Greg Pak’s work has been strong, so I’ll definitely check out what journey he has in store next.

batmansuperman4-cover

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