I’ve been a fan of this book ever since Gates and Igle arrived. Last issue wrapped up the first major story arc, “Who Is Superwoman?” This issue picks up the pieces of the explosive finale while transitioning into the Hunt for Reactron. Plus, presumable, setting up pieces of the “Codename: Patriot” crossover.
In some ways, it’s a lot of housecleaning. We get some background on the Lane family and why Lucy Lane was posing as a Kryptonian. There’s some investigation into her “death” (no body = no death) and General Lane vows revenge.
The real heart of the story, in my mind, is when Supergirl delivers the news of her sister’s death to Lois. Lois’ response is probably a very realistic one. She can’t handle the news and asks Supergirl repeatedly to leave. On the one hand, it seemed a little harsh given that Supergirl did not knowingly do anything wrong. On the other hand, I imagine a lot of people would react in exactly the same way if someone told them they accidentally killed their estranged sibling.
Characterization, which had been missing from any previous incarnation of this book, is now it’s strong suit. Kara responds to Lois’ emotional request with the complexity of a teenager. But also with the grace of a hero. Previous writers would have shown Kara fly off on a tearful and destructive path. But Gates shows a clearly hurt Kara acquiescing to Lois’ wishes.
After the confrontation with Lois, Lana Lang tries to reassure Kara that she didn’t do anything wrong. It was my favorite scene in the book and both characters really shine. Again, previous writers would have had an overly emotional Kara throwing a tantrum. But Gates deftly shows the inner strength of Supergirl.
After putting all her affairs on earth in order, Kara flies back to New Krypton to deal with her mother. She is being pulled in two directions, which she ackowledges. But she also reaffirms that she is up to the challenge. As the last page makes clear, she is Supergirl after all.
As transitional issues between major story arcs go, this was a great read. As always, Igle’s art hits all the right notes. This creative team’s winning streak continues!