This week DC Zoom gets a first as the first sequel to an ongoing graphic novel releases in book stores and comic shops. The follow up to Super Sons: The Polarshield Project features the young heroes as a team now that they’ve been introduced. Or at the very least, they’re trying their best to work as a team. Ridley Pearson and Ileana Gonzalez continue the adventure that has separated Batman and Superman from their sons leaving the kids the job of bringing some justice to their flooding city.
If the first volume was about joining the forces of these children together the sequel is about the growing pains of working together and discovering what the characters are capable of. Superboy still can’t fully fly, but he’s getting there and makes a few leaps into figuring out his powers in this volume. Damian Wayne aka Ian is also getting a better handle of being a Bat-kid. Pearson continues to reveal how Damian is a natural-born leader while Jon has a good heart and always does the right thing. Candace continues to be developed well too. She’s a new character introduced in this series and it is starting to become clear Candace may be more powerful than both the title characters. Her family and nation are a big part of the main conflict of this volume which allows Pearson and Gonzalez time to probe the character.
As far as superhero books go there are a few tropes that’ll make fans cheer. I’m talking about hero vs. hero battles, characters triumphantly teaming up and kicking butt, and solid detective work bringing down the baddies.
The art continues to be striking and cartoony in nature. The use of speed lines in backgrounds and other graphic touches help add energy and a fun vibe to the book. The use of color is good too especially when the narrative takes the characters outside the city.
As a digest-sized graphic novel for younger readers I think the pace and look is great, but for the older set, you might be wishing for a bit more dynamic layout design and art. Scenes can feel a bit flat, in part because layouts tend to be lower on panels, and backgrounds tend to be more abstract than detailed. The look is strikingly similar to a cartoon, but at times the energy can falter and the story can feel stiff. That goes with the pace too as the narrative can chug along.
It’s worth noting there’s sufficient recap early on so you aren’t entirely lost, or if you’re like me and it has been a few months since reading the last volume you get an adequate reminder of what is going on. The themes involving global warming continue to be strong and the added element of biowarfare gives the story a modern touch.
This volume improves upon Candace ten fold opening up the character and revealing a lot more about her. That’s an improvement on the first volume. This volume also has stronger superhero elements throughout and should please fans of superhero comics in general. That said, the plot and pace can feel slow and the story can feel muddled.
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