Review – One-Star Squadron #2: The Ballad of Minute Man

Comic Books DC This Week
One-Star Squadron #2 cover, via DC Comics.

One-Star Squadron #2 – Mark Russell, Writer; Steve Lieber, Artist; Dave Stewart, Colorist

Ray – 8/10

Ray: It actually kind of sucks being a superhero. That’s the message Mark Russell seems to be trying to get across with his new gig-economy satire. If you’re not one of the A-listers, you’re pretty much on your own—something that gets harder as you get older. The first issue mostly focused on Gangbuster, who only has a cameo this issue, but this issue turns the focus on probably the most pathetic member of the company—Minute Man. The retro superhero whose powers only last for a minute was never exactly an A-lister, but this issue reveals a darker secret about him. He’s been reduced to getting his power from Miraclo pills he purchases from a stereotypical drug dealer. He’s only been able to get together enough for one—which he buys with a DVD copy of the movie made about him. Yes, that’s right, he had a movie made about him! If you don’t remember, don’t worry—he’ll remind you pretty frequently.

Desperation. Via DC Comics.

At the corporate headquarters, where Power Girl is quietly plotting a coup, Minute Man gets increasingly desperate to make a name for himself with gigs. When his attempt to get on a security detail for an app designer’s meeting with Lex Luthor fails, he’s forced to resort to a birthday party gig—which goes horribly wrong when his powers don’t last the full minute and a group of savage children take full advantage. That leads to a last-ditch gig signing autographs at a convention, which leads into yet another humiliation conga for the unfortunate hero. This issue packs some good laughs, but can feel a little mean-spirited at some points, and I was missing the more sympathetic heroes like Gangbuster and the focus on Red Tornado’s family. There is a lot of promise in this concept, but it needs to be careful that it keeps the focus on the system—because this issue felt a little too much like we were supposed to be laughing at the heroes.

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

GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

Liked it? Take a second to support GeekDad and GeekMom on Patreon!