I’ve never been a huge Supergirl fan. Or, well, I’ve never been a huge Kara Zor-El fan. For me, Supergirl was always Linda Lee Danvers, whose “Many Happy Returns” story-arc remains one of the best blends of modern age storytelling focusing and enhancing some silver age ideals (as well as being absolutely heartbreaking). When Kara returned in the mid-2000s, it was as a sexed-up teenage brat, and it wasn’t long before I gave up on her completely. It was only with the reboot, and my decision to give every book a shot, that I really decided to give Kara another chance to grab me, and I’m glad I did. Michael Green and Mike Johnson are not telling a complicated story, but they are telling it well.
Still uncertain as to how she got to Earth or what happened to Krypton, Supergirl has rejected Superman and seeks to find a way back home. Unfortunately, the pod she crashed in has been removed from the site of her landing, and grabbed up by a reclusive trillionaire named Simon Tycho. However, upon flying to his space station, she discovers that Tycho may not have her best interests at heart.
Kara’s personality is still forming, but Green and Johnson are doing a solid job of introducing us to a capable, confident heroine during a time of extreme duress. This Supergirl is no petulant teen princess; no, Kara is a responsible young woman in an impossible situation, one who refuses to give up on her home world until she knows for sure it’s gone. Unfortunately, most of Kara’s personality thus far has been wrapped up in her quest to return home, so Green and Johnson have given little suggestion as to what the month-to-month reality of the book will be like.
Still, I’d be lying if I said that the writing was my number one reason for enjoying the book. No, Mahmud Asrar, Bill Reinhold and colorist Paul Mounts play a huge part in making this one of the most delightfully readable books of the New 52. Their crisp, clean lines go well with the slightly faded colors the book uses, and Asrar and Reinhold display a great deal of competence both at crafting an exciting, easy-to-follow action sequence and at giving their characters distinct physical features, body language and recognizable facial expressions.
There’s nothing complex about Supergirl, at least not so far. But, anyone who enjoys a fun action book with an engaging lead character should at least give it a shot. Right now, the book’s biggest problem is its pace: three issues in, and it feels like only thirty minutes have passed since the book’s opening pages. The decompressed storytelling may frustrate some readers, but those who don’t mind a slow-moving narrative should find an enjoyable adventure.
– Cal C.