Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Blackest Night: Superman #3

“The Long Dark Night”

Writer: James Robinson

Penciller: Eddy Barrows with Allan Goldman

Inker: Ruy José with Eber Ferreira

Editor: Adam Schlagman & Eddie Berganza


While Krypto saves Martha Kent from Black Lantern Lois Lane, Allura orders a force field activated that will protect New Krypton from the menace of the Black Lanterns. In Smallville, Superman is on the verge of being defeated when Superboy frees himself from Black Lantern Psycho-Pirate’s control. Together, Superman and Superboy incapacitate the Pirate and Black Lantern Kal-L, but realize that there is still more work to be done…


Page 1: Krypto was last seen in Blackest Night: Superman #1. Poor little guy got a nasty beat-down from Black Lantern Lois Lane-Kent.

Pages 2-3: Supergirl and Black Lantern Zor-El last appeared in Blackest Night: Superman #2.

Notice that Zor-El is trying to get Supergirl to express an emotion other than “will.” He finally succeeds, making her angry.

Black Lantern Psycho-Pirate last appeared in Blackest Night: Superman #2.

Psycho-Pirate’s having a field day here, making the people of Smallville go mad with avarice, love, rage and fear.

Pages 4-5: Superman, Superboy and Black Lantern Superman last appeared in Blackest Night: Superman #3.

Superboy is currently under the Psycho-Pirate’s control.

Superman and Superboy are a rainbow of emotions; together, they are expressing the entire emotional spectrum.

“I wrestle between being you or Luthor everyday!” A revealed way back in Teen Titans (third series) #1, Superboy is a clone whose DNA donors are Superman and Lex Luthor. As seen in current issues of Adventure Comics, Conner Kent is struggling between these dual natures.

Pages 6-7: Martha Kent and Black Lantern Lois Lane-Kent last appeared in Blackest Night: Superman #2.

“You’ve lost everything. Your husband cold and dead.” Jonathan Kent died in Action Comics #870.

“Your son too. First you lose him to the city.” That would be Metropolis, of course.

“Then to that city whore version of me.” I’m pretty sure that Lois Lane would take exception to being called “that city whore.”

“And now you’ve lost him to his people.” The Kryptonians from Kandor left Earth to reside on New Krypton in Action Comics #873. Superman went to live there as of Superman: World of New Krypton #1.

“Conner will grow and leave too.” Conner is, of course, Superboy, who is currently living with Martha is Smallville.

Page 9: As we’ve seen several times before, Black Lanterns can almost immediately regenerate any damage done to them as long as their ring is functioning. As revealed in Blackest Night #3, the power of a Green Lantern power ring, when combined with the energy of another emotional spectrum, can incapacitate a Black Lantern for good.

Page 10: Damn. Remind me to never try and steal one of Krypto’s treats from him. He can be an angry pup.

Page 11: Allura last appeared in Blackest Night: Superman #2.

I was wondering how the Kryptonians were going to be kept off the board for the remainder of this story. “We need some manpower. Think Superman can get a couple hundred thousand Kryptonians to help us?” Yeah, that would be a fantastic finish to this story.

Page 12: “Come, ‘my husband,’ I’ll have that kiss after all.” After he rose in Blackest Night: Superman #1, Black Lantern Zor-El said to Allura, “Kiss me.”

Page 13: All of these panels are from Black Lantern Kal-L’s point of view. Thus, he sees Superboy’s emotions lit up like a Christmas tree. Conner goes from rage, avarice and fear to a mixture of fear, hope and rage as the Psycho-Pirate’s hold on him weakens.

Superman isn’t showing any emotion, presumably because he’s unconscious.

I do feel like Superboy gets off a little easy here. I really don’t see that point at which he breaks free from the Psycho-Pirate’s control. Is it the sight of Superman about to be killed? He was okay beating the crap out of his friend, but as soon as he’s about to be killed, that’s no longer cool? Sorry, it doesn’t totally work for me.

Page 14: Superboy uses his tactile telekinesis on Black Lantern Kal-L. This is the first time since his resurrection in Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds #4 that he has used this power.

This page is also the start of several pages drawn by artist Allen Goldman. He’s a decent artist, but I don’t think that he’s as good as Barrows, and I find the artistic change jarring. Look, I understand that artists work hard, deadlines creep up, and sometimes they fall behind, and I don’t mind it as much on a regular, monthly series, but this is a three-issue mini-series, gosh darn it. (Yes, I typed it, gosh darn it.) I think that if Mark Bagley can drawn over one hundred issues of Ultimate Spider-Man without a fill-in, then I think that other artists can draw three issues of a mini-series.

Okay, sermon over. I’m getting off my soap box now.

Page 16: Yep. They’re going absolutely crazy in Smallville now.

Black Lantern power levels at 93.01%. Gee, you think something big is going to happen when they reach 100%?

Page 17: The Medusa Mask is the source of the Psycho-Pirate’s powers.

Superboy is all about hope and will now.

Page 19: Using the Medusa Mask, Superboy is expressing the more “positive” emotions of will, love, hope and compassion in an effort to calm the citizens of Smallville.

“Here, creep, look at me!” Superboy’s going after Black Lantern Psycho-Pirate now.

Page 20: With that flaming hair-do, Black Lantern Zor-El is looking a hell of a lot like Firestorm these days.

Page 21: Force field around New Krypton activated! We won’t be seeing any of those meddling Kryptonians for a while, now will we?

Page 22: Superboy uses the Medusa Mask to make Black Lantern Kal-L feel emotions – all of them. This cause his power ring to malfunction, just like the Psycho-Pirate’s did (you can see the Pirate’s Black Lantern power ring attached to the mask when Superboy holds it up to his face).

Page 23: With the Black Lantern power rings “switched off,” Kal-L and Psycho-Pirate are nothing more than corpses again.

Page 24: Note that the sun is rising over Smallville. This is the first real indication in the Blackest Night series of how time is progressing. Thus far, the events of the story have only taken a few hours, starting with “Memorial Day” for heroes in Blackest Night #1, which was “yesterday” in the DCU.

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