Tag Archives: superboy

DC vs. Marvel (comic)

Have you ever wondered what would happen if the greatest, most powerful heroes and villains from the DC and Marvel Universes met? How awesome would that be? Well, it already happened in 1996, so you missed out. But you can relive the past and pick up DC vs. Marvel and see the two worlds collide.

There is actually a pretty coherent storyline. Writers Ron Marz and Peter David are able brings some of the biggest characters from two rival companies together in a comprehensive way. So back in the day, these two brothers/entities were controlling their own separate universes, until they learned of each other’s existence. One brother is the DC Universe, and the other represents the Marvel Universe. They decide to have a battle between their top superheroes to determine which universe will be destroyed.

Each separate universe starts to be aware that something weird is happening when heroes and villains start vanishing in a flash of light, and new, different masks start showing up. A young man named Axel Asher finds himself inexplicably drawn to an alley where a crazy homeless guy is trying desperately to keep an inter-dimensional gateway contained in a cardboard box. Axel is the Access, and he just might be the key to solving the crisis if he ever accepts his destiny.

6 Marvel characters are chosen to fight 6 DC characters in one-on-one battles to determine the mightier universe. There are some really obvious fights between similarly powered characters like Aquaman vs. Namor, Wolverine vs. Lobo, and Flash vs. Quicksilver. There are also weird, random fights like Robin vs. Jubilee and Superboy vs. Spider-man. Elektra fights Catwoman, the Green Lantern and Silver Surfer duke it out in space, Wonder Woman somehow loses to Storm, Batman and Captain America are pretty evenly matched, and Superman barely beats the Hulk into submission.

Instead of one universe getting destroyed, the Spectre and the Living Tribunal are able to temporarily merge the two universes together. This buys them some time, and has the awesome bonus of creating hybrid superheroes like Dark Claw (a mixture of Batman and Wolverine) and Super-Soldier (Superman and Captain America’s lovechild).

Access finally gets his shit together and it able to separate the merged universe back to the two separate ones. He gets a little assistance from Batman and Captain America to end the Space Brothers’ hissy fit. And now the two universes can co-exist and life is good.

Yeah, there’s a lot of nonsense about two brother universes using magic humans to end a cosmic dispute, but once you get past that you can appreciate the story. What if the superhero you depended on was powerless to stop the end of the world? What if that superhero vanished and was replaced by a stranger in tights? What if you are a superhero and you can’t simply punch your way to victory?

The art is awesome. The panels spill over into each other, they overlap, it feels very fluid. Dan Jurgens and Claudio Castellini’s drawings are bold and powerful. And it’s pretty cool to see the Hulk and Superman exchanging blows in the desert.

There are a lot of characters to keep track of, but it doesn’t slow down the momentum of the story. If you like DC, it’s worth checking out. If you like Marvel, it’s worth checking out. If you like comics, then you should have read this already. You’re slacking.

Critically Rated at 13/17

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The Return of Superman

Doomsday killed Superman, and the world needs a savior. Four mysterious men show up claiming to be Superman. One is a teenager, one is a cyborg, one has a spiffy looking visor, and one is plated with custom armor. Who is good? Who is evil? Who is pretending? Will the real Superman please stand up?

The emergence of each new Superman fills the void for a Metropolis still grieving for their fallen hero. The Superguys eventually gain their own followers and supporters, each believing their Superman to be the real Superman. Lois Lane has the sneaking suspicion that none of them are actually the real deal. She has some history with Superman, so she is the expert I guess.

The teenaged Superman is really more of a Superboy. He doesn’t like to be called that, but fuck him. He is clone of Superman. He’s an arrogant, cocky, reckless hero, who eventually settles down a bit. The cyborg Superman, also known as the Man of Tomorrow, looks like half Superman and half a Terminator. He is made from Kryptonian technology of course. Spiffy Visor Superman looks the most like Superman, he even has some of his memories, but he is cold, calculating, and ruthless, and that’s not Clark Kent. The armored Superman is the only one who blatantly tells people that he is not the reincarnation of Superman. He is big black guy so I don’t think they would believe him anyway. He is called the Man of Steel or Steel, and his real name is John Henry Irons. One or more of these Superdudes might just have a sinister agenda; you’ll just have to read it to find out.

It’s a long story, much more so than the Death of Superman. It’s pretty easy to follow for as lengthy as it is. There are lots of subplots and a cool twist. I like it more than the Death of Superman; it is more complex of a story with better artwork. You realize that the world needs a Superman, and just because a guy is rocking a cape with an S insignia doesn’t make him a savior.

Critically Rated at 14/17

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