Mark Waid, Dan Mora, and Tamra Bonvillain continue to build on their excellent start from issue #1 of World’s Finest. The action is more muted in this issue, but the consequences and setup make it worthwhile as they build up this story arc. This issue will have you on the edge of your seat with the operation to save Superman, the history of Nezha, and just what happened between the Boy Wonder and the Maid of Might.
SPOILERS AHEAD for Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #2!
To start, I have to shout out to Tamra Bonvillain for her excellent choices of color that really set the scene. With the opening taking place right after the last issue, we find our heroes at Caulder Mansion, where they will try their best to save Superman’s life. I love how the darkness is the dominant shade on the page as it helps to pop the kryptonite scalpel and Robotman’s headlight; once they have made the primary incision and Superman’s chest is opened up, that heart full of red kryptonite is just glowing!
With that operation, Mark Waid and Dan Mora direct the action by taking this scenario and amplifying it. What was already a complicated surgery becomes a wild gambit on the powers of Negative Man. The hype to build that scene and its dynamic were tremendous and perfectly balanced by Batman’s worry for his friend. One of the many things I’ve enjoyed about this new series is that the two heroes seem to be friends.
Not only do we get to see Batman’s worry, but the moments with Robin are great as he interacts with his surroundings and just how wild a situation this is. That makes for some funny bits to help lighten the tone. Once the operation has finished, Mark changes the scene to set up the villain’s backstory; again, the humor shines here as Dr. Caulder and Batman measure brainpower with Robin and Superman witnessing. Moments like that help make the heroes feel entertaining again as they come off human with emotions.
I found the history lesson about Nezha to have a good spin on what a father would do for his son and how that strife paid off, but the delivery of the story was the better part of that bit in the issue. Once that part is over, we see more of the DCU with guest spots by Flash and Wonder Woman, along with Supergirl joining the adventure.
There is a bit where we discover that Dr. Caulder knows what is going on with other heroes, which was great as it gets under Batman’s skin, and Batman, of all people, should judge. I found that funny as Mark Waid wrote JLA: Year One, where Martian Manhunter was keeping tabs on his fellow heroes, and JLA: Tower of Babel, where Batman had dossiers on the heroes — it was a brief scene, but I hope it plays out in future issues.
The interaction between Robin and Supergirl was hilarious! They played off each other well and created a situation that made me wonder what Mark Waid was referencing. Waid is known to be a human encyclopedia of DC Comics. The banter between Supergirl and Robin could be something from an actual comic book or something Waid plans on playing out later; either way, consider me interested in that story.
Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #2 is an excellent follow-up issue that builds the story with moments that play on the reader’s emotions. More heroes of the DCU make their way into this book which is fantastic as it is titled World’s Finest, but we get plenty of extra heroes. The time travel part was a little unbelievable, but I won’t get too hung up on it for the stake of the story. The issue serves as a good setup that drives you to continue this adventure. I am enjoying the spark of hope that Mark, Dan, and Tamra are bringing to the DCU.
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