Friday, June 4, 2010

Superman: Mon-El HC

My problem with James Robinson's Mon El stories is that I just don't feel it. This collection is full of deep moments as Mon El learns about Earth, responsibility, himself, and the DCU, but I just can't buy in. The action moments are fine for what they are, and I actually really like how Robinson has set up some of the supporting characters. But Mon El himself just seems kind of boring to me. I'm not invested in him enough to care about his purple prose narration.

I think Robinson does his best work with Guardian. He's got a complicated backstory, so it is important to ground him in other ways, and Robinson does it well. Guardian leading the special squad of Metropolis police and to having him serve as a mentor for Mon El are both good ideas. It's fun seeing Guardian have to bail out someone as powerful as a Daxamite. The coolest thing about the new Guardian is that he's a single Dad. I loved the scene where he takes his daughter to the park to have a play date with Dr. Light and her kids. I'd love to see those two heroes spending more time together. Knowing Robinson, I predict Guardians kid will be dead in the next trade.

The relationship between Atlas and John Henry Irons is fascinating too. John Henry is awfully quick to trust Atlas, but I love that about him. Atlas seems like a simple guy and Irons doesn't seem to have a lot of friends, so the whole relationship building (and breaking) seemed real. Very nicely done.

Renato Guedes really ramps up the photo-reference here, sometimes a lot of the faces look very similar. He really delivers on the action pieces though, the Mon El vs. Rampage fight was very cool. There's a slew of other artists pitching in on pieces, and they keep things solid enough.


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