“Multiplicity” continues as Superman must face off against a mysterious threat who is after every Superman from every Earth! We review issue #15 to answer the question, is it good?
Superman #15 (DC Comics)
So what’s it about? The summary reads:
“MULTIPLICITY” part two! Superman and New Super-Man fight alongside an army of Supermen from across the Multiverse against the threat trying to wipe them all out of existence! Plus, Jon and his neighbor Kathy investigate a hidden horror that seems to be growing in their town.
Why does this book matter?
If you’re familiar with DC Comics’ history with multiple Earths you know it’s a can of worms most writers shouldn’t open. Patrick Gleason and Peter J. Tomasi may be the best writers for the job however as the last issue of Superman was intense with some fantastic ideas already present.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Dig the Superman skull.
This issue opens with a bang as it explores Earth-14 and its gun toting Justice League heroes. I don’t think this Earth has been shown yet (here’s a handy guide) and it has a very different feel from what we’ve come to expect from DC Comics. The world is reduced to rubble as the Earth-14 heroes battle waves of monsters and it’s fun to see how the creative team has changed the way the heroes we’ve come to expect look. Oh, and the Justice League of this Earth includes Harley Quinn! This opening salvo does a good job establishing the stakes and impending threat to Superman while introducing a different flavor of Justice League.
Much of the rest of the issue involves Superman of our Earth banding together with the heroes already aware of the impending threat. There’s some much needed new information and a fantastic montage showcasing Superman recruit heroes from multiple Earths. It’s a quick and efficient way to show the varying worlds and their slightly different heroes, but also ramps up the heroics. This all leads to a climax that should get folks ready for Superman at war next issue.
The art in this issue is by four different artists with Ryan Sook, Ed Benes, Clay Mann, and Jorge Jimenez contributing. The art is top-notch throughout, and the varying styles aren’t jarring as they switch at opportune times when the narrative changes worlds; this actually helps define each world so it feels unique. Generally the designs of the alternate versions of heroes are fun and varied which gives the reader ample reason to linger on a page to ogle the designs.
It can’t be perfect can it?
The pace at which this plot is running made me question if I missed a chapter. I’m pretty sure I didn’t, but with the opening set in a completely new world and the narrative switching gears further along than I expected, I had to double check I didn’t miss a tie-in or something. Because things move along so fast there’s very little character work or time to soak in the stakes, though given the decompressed storytelling going on in most comics it’s nice to see it move fast and furious.
I need that Batman in action figure form!
Is It Good?
Superman #15 continues the intriguing exploration of the multiverse Grant Morrison explored in Multiversity in all the right ways. It’s not overly convoluted, it moves at a fast clip, and it relishes in the eclectic look and feel of multiverse heroes.