Review: New-Superman #8
By Andy Frisk
February 15, 2017 - 15:48
Writer(s): Gene Luen Yang
Penciller(s): Billy Tan
Letterer(s): Dave Sharpe
Cover Artist(s): Viktor Bogdanovic and Mike Spicer
The best single issue of New Super-Man yet finds Kenan/New Super-Man discovering more about himself and his superpowers, as well as his destiny, than ever before while the Bat-Man of China encounters a new, and surprising, foe.
Of course, Baixi wins his battle against his rival for the title of Bat-Man of China, but in the process Wonder Woman of China discovers that the battle was rigged against him by a surprising foe. Meanwhile, Kenan learns some valuable lessons from Master I-Ching, his new tutor, about the symbol on his chest and the path his destiny will be taking him on.
Gene Luen-Yang goes light on the action this issue, aside from the final moments of Kenan and Master I-Ching's battle and Baixi's battle with his rival for the cowl, but advances both characters dynamically and poignantly during the rest of the issues' more quiet moments. Kenan does some honest to goodness superheroing and Baixi faces an honest to goodness emotional challenge, both of which are overcome with some help from their new, and old, friends and masters. Yang balances the continuation of the two coming of age tales of these young heroes well by relating them side by side and juxtaposing them against one another. While Kenan's is hopeful, Baixi's is more challenging, and it looks like each of them is getting the necessary guidance and experiencing the maturation needed to be a support to one another once the team is reunited.
Billy Tan continues to handle the artistic duties this issue and even though it appears that Victor Bogdanovic is on a hiatus from the book, at least for a little while, the book is in great hands with Tan. Thus far New Super-Man has had only two artists working on it, and that's been to the betterment of the series overall.
Just when it looks like New Super-Man can't get any better, an issue like this comes along and it does. Kudos to DC Comics for taking a chance on a book that I myself thought wouldn't last but a few issues and be no where near as interesting and engaging as it has turned out to be.
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