Review – Superman #24: The Wrath of Xanadoth

Comic Books DC This Week
Superman #24 variant cover, via DC Comics.

Superman #24 – Brian Michael Bendis, Writer; Kevin Maguire, John Timms, Artist; Alex Sinclair, Colorist

Ray – 8/10

Ray: Superman sought out some therapy from the new Doctor Fate and wound up in a battle against the original lord of chaos. Just another day in the DCU. Now, John Timms and Kevin Maguire share art duties on an issue that is heavy on exposition and magical action. Superman and Khalid are up against Xanadoth, an ancient being that was locked up eons ago to allow the forces of order to triumph. Xanadoth has a good design, although it’s interesting that she’s supposed to be female—the art didn’t get that across, but I guess a giant being of pure evil magic wouldn’t need to be gendered in any way. The presence of Doctor Fate means that Nabu can give us a full flashback to the villain’s origin, going back eons. There are a lot of double-page spreads in this oversized comic, but too many of them are just static shots without any real action.

Xanadoth rising. Via DC Comics.

Bendis has done a good job with capturing Superman’s mental state during this run full of upheavals, and it’s about time he had the chance to talk to someone outside of his circle about his massive decision to reveal his identity. That storyline was mostly derailed by Xanadoth’s arrival, although there’s a good moment at the end that indicates it’ll be followed up on. There are some really clever moments involving Superman and Nabu working together and at one point merging. As for Xanadoth herself, she looks like a good villain but doesn’t really establish herself much as a character. Much like Rogol Zaar, she represents an unbeatable and terrifying force but falls prey to the “Doomsday problem”—we’re told more about the threat level than getting to see it. Still, I am overall satisfied with how Bendis is handling Superman’s character as we head to next month’s double-sized anniversary special.

To find reviews of all the DC issues, visit DC This Week.

GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

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