Super-Sons #14 – Peter J. Tomasi, Writer; Carlo Barbieri, Penciller; Art Thibert, Inker; Hi-Fi, Colorist
Ray – 7.5/10
Corrina: Hey! They’re Acting Like Friends
WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW
Ray: I’m all for creative liberty when it comes to cover, but the cover of Super-Sons #14 really should have some resemblance to the content of the series on some level – there’s nothing in the issue involving Damian and Talia standing over Jon’s body and celebrating his apparent death. Instead, this issue pits the Super-Sons up against their fiercest challenges yet – their moms. The last issue revealed that Talia – who showed up to try to get Damian back on board as she tries to get her assassin career back up and running following the collapse of Leviathan – is targeting Lois Lane as her first target, which sends Jon and Damian on a collision course with her. I liked how Lois was used here – although she’s in danger, of course, she’s also digging into a story and always seems in control. I kind of wanted to follow her and find out more about the story she’s chasing.
Sooner rather than later, the kids’ paths cross with their mothers. Lois’ reaction when she saw Jon show up and his attempt to hide how he knew her was amusing and showed that Lois as a mom can be a lot of fun when she’s not being limited to “Nagging mom” or “Ma Kent 2.0”. Damian and Talia…less amusing. There’s some serious bad blood between the two of them, and Damian is not holding back at all when it comes to stopping her. Still, Talia seems to have some affection for her wayward son – a lot more than she did in Batman Inc – and seems to have a sense of pride when he bests her. A little too much of this issue is devoted to fighting random ninjas, and the plot feels a bit stretched out, but overall this arc has had one big strength – Damian and Jon feel like friends again. Snarky, bickering friends, but still. Damian is less abusive, Jon gives as good as he gets, and I’ll miss this book when it wraps up.
Corrina: I love the contrast here between Lois and Talia–one utterly supportive and one so damaged they wouldn’t know what supporting and loving their son even looks like. (Yes, Bruce is the better parent. Chew on that one, Talia!)
Lois also has considerable experience with covering for the secret identities of those she loves and her dialogue with Jon as Superboy was delightful. It’s too bad that no one can write Lois anymore as rescuing herself or having a better clue that she’s taking such risks—Hey, Lois, you’re sitting in Gotham with someone wanted in front of a plate glass window–but given how badly written Lois has been written over the last year in the Superman books, I’ll take the crumb.
But this story is also about Damian and Jon’s friendship. We’ve seen little of that in this title so far, with the boys mostly sniping at each other, far past the point where they theoretically should, given what they’ve been through together. Seeing Damian mellow this issue was a good change. Let’s hope the pair doesn’t backslide again.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.