[Editor’s note: This review may contain spoilers.]
Writer: Steve Orlando
Artists: Matias Bergara and Michael Atiyeh
Supergirl enters the mind of Lar-On, a Kryptonian turned werewolf during moonlight, to try and figure out what triggers his transformation and save him.
This a fantastic issue that really showcases Kara’s emotion and compassion not only for a fellow Kryptonian, but for the beings of Earth as well. Right from the start, we get Kara trying to convince Dr. Veritas that an escapee wasn’t her fault, and that she is incredibly vital to the D.E.O.’s success. But Kara’s compassion didn’t end there. Lar-On, who you might remember from Supergirl Rebirth way back in August, was still in stasis and needing a cure. Kara, despite her own safety, feels compelled to help him, not only because her father failed him, but also because she gave her word that she would. It’s kind of what heroes do.
Kara learns a lot about Lar-On while being in his mind, including how to help him. Close to the end of the issue, Kara, not in Lar-On’s mind anymore, is standing in a park, giving a heartfelt speech to all the people that lost their lives in the Argo City attack, and a special acknowledgment to her own mother.
The art in this book was decent, and did have some great looking panels. One in particular was at the end with Supergirl floating in the clouds. Bergara’s strength is most definitely in close ups and the eyes specifically, where you can see the emotion. The page where Supergirl is flying with Lar-On at the end of the “mind meld” is also another beautiful piece. The cover by Emanuela Lupacchino and Atiyeh, as well as the variant cover by Bengal, are fantastic. You can’t go wrong with either one.
As someone who has read the entire Supergirl run of The New 52, I’m so thrilled that we’re finally getting a Supergirl that isn’t constantly emotional of missing home, settling every debate with her fists, and who’s finally building a life on earth. It’s been way to long since we’ve seen a Supergirl who’s mature and genuine.
As a big Supergirl fan, this is never my favorite part, but nothing is ever perfect. The main and only focus of the story was Lar-On, and you really learn about his disease and his childhood while Kara is in his mind. Now that’s all well and good, except we haven’t seen or heard of Lar-On since Supergirl Rebirth, which was eight months ago. I actually needed to go back and look over that issue again to really understand and appreciate this one. A proper backstory or flashback in this issue would have been good, especially for readers who didn’t read Supergirl Rebirth.
One issue I’ve found in Orlando’s writing is lack of flow from one panel to the next. There was one page in particular where Kara is trying to determine if the problem with Lar-On is emotional, and the very next panel we get Jeremiah in mid sentence talking to Cameron Chase, saying how dangerous the mind experiment is. Blips like that tend to take you out of the story temporarily.
This issue seems to be a stand alone, and not really part of a bigger storyline. As such, it’s not necessarily a “must read” from that stand point, but it certainly builds on Kara’s character. There is a nice cameo on the last page which potentially sets up the next story arc. If you’re not sure to whom I’m referring, check out Emerald Empress’s disappearance in Justice League vs. Suicide Squad #4.