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Jeremy M. Kossak

Superman #13 Cover

H’el on Earth has begun! Superman #13, Superboy #14, and Supergirl #14 are the subjects of this review and each issue acts as a prelude for the mayhem sure to follow. Each issue also deals with their respective stories currently in progress. Superman tries to find balance between his life as Clark and as a superhero while Superboy continues to have trust issues. Supergirl is the only one to confront the bizarre H’el head on.

There sure is a lot of action between the three issues. So much action, actually, that story and character don’t seem to matter at all! The only thing that really happens in Superman #13 is the fight between Superman and an ancient Kryptonian dragon. This threat has seemingly nothing to do with H’el’s character. Even Clark’s decision to quit the Daily Planet seems like a throwaway moment with how poorly Scott Lobdell constructed this issue. He was terrible on Superboy; I can’t believe he was given writing duties for Superman.

Superboy #14 Cover

Speaking of Superboy, that title continues to be a mess as it crosses over with H’el on Earth as well as Teen Titans. Superboy’s “team” is useless in helping him against H’el. This isn’t just because they’re inept and useless; it’s also because H’el apparently has any superpower under the sun. Why should I care about a character that seemingly has no weakness? This is the second issue of the crossover and we’re given a character we know nothing about, who hates Superboy for no clear reason (except he’s a clone and clones are baaaaad!), and can do anything. I can get over the mediocre art, but I can’t get over that fact that I have no reason to care about H’el, his presence on Earth, or Superboy himself.

Superboy’s presence in this storyline continues in Supergirl #14. H’el finally reveals his goals to a vulnerable Supergirl. I get it; he wants to rid the world of the abomination that is “the clone”. He clearly has the power to do it. Why hasn’t he? Just do it and put him (and me) out of his misery. What I really want to know is why H’el is reaching out to Kara and not Clark. So far this crossover doesn’t feel like a crossover at all. These issues don’t feel connected by story or emotion and the writing is inconsistent. There are certainly no emotional ties between Superman and his “family”. How can DC call these comics part of the “Super-family” of titles when their characters feel like anything but family?

Overall Grade: 4/10