Comics / Comic Reviews / DC Comics

Superman #691


By Andy Frisk
August 27, 2009 - 21:09

Superman races to stop Ral-Dar from attacking and possibly killing the President of The United States. Ral-Dar, the “escaped” Kryptonian cohort of General Lane’s, and attempted assassin of General Zod, who’s acting on false information planted by Lane, is stopped by Superman just before completing his misguided task. Mon-El is bested by Mirabai, Metallo, and Reactron, while Supergirl, Nightwing, and Flamebird are framed as Kryptonian saboteurs. To top it all off, General Lane emerges from hiding, revealing himself to the world to be alive, and worse yet, the “savior” of the President, and by default, the Earth. Now with the world united under the fear mongering, truth manipulating, xenophobic, and hateful machinations of General Lane as their leader and “protector” against the “Kryptonian threat,” rarely has there been a darker day for Superman…

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Ever since the bottle city of Kandor returned to normal after Brainiac was defeated, was relocated to the Antarctic, and then New Krypton, there has been tension between humans and Kryptonians. Both races being imperfect, as humans and humanoids are, there have been mistakes on both sides in the realms of diplomacy and action. No one on either side has behaved more diabolically than General Sam Lane though. No doubt, General Zod is a diabolical man himself, but Lane has resorted to tactics even lower than Zod’s recently, including murder. What makes Lane’s actions so much more evil is that they are driven by a xenophobia that borders on mania. Yes, Lane has seen the destruction that aliens have caused the Earth before, namely in Our Worlds at War, but he has extended his hatred and fear of other races not of his own, namely the human race, to all beings extra-terrestrial.

 

Robinson continues to give us a masterfully crafted allegorical look into the dangers of real world xenophobia, fear, mass media manipulation, and the programming of the uniformed and misinformed masses by right-wing extremists. Fictional extremist talk show host Morgan Edge, whom Lane is relying upon to spread the fear, thus convincing the people to surrender power, and freedom, to the demagogue-like, fear mongering leader, Lane, is Robinson’s example and reflection of real world extremists and how dangerous they are. A society must always be vigilant against an outside extremist group or leader, but a free society must be wary of falling victim to the extremist within their own borders, government, homes, and in Lois Lane’s case, family. Robinson has a message here that he’s crafting along with the team of Superman writers currently working on the superhero’s books, and it’s a relevant one.

 

It’s hard to heap much more praise on the Superman Family books’ writing team’s compatriot artists, namely Guedes. His versions of Superman, Supergirl, Ral-Dar, and others is just as strong as his version of Mon-El has been over the past several months. His greatest strength still remains his incredible eye for detail in architecture and cityscapes. He creates varying landscapes from foreign cities, to Metropolis, to exotic magical worlds with amazing detail. His work is a joy to behold visually, and is totally engaging.

 

The Superman Family of books are still the best on the market right now as far as mainstream superhero tales go. They’ve shown little sign of slowing down, and are building to a feverish climax. They’re packed with intelligent commentary and thought provoking ideas, all of which are worth the read.

Rating: 10 /10


Last Updated: December 31, 2019 - 20:28

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