Can't you Hear My Heartbeat?
Written by: Brian Buccellato
Art by: Mike S. Miller, J. Nanjan and Wes Abbott
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: March 1, 2016
Year Five may be the Year of the Villains to some, but if you are like me, this year has stalled and turned into the Year we repeat things and stall a bit. Whether it's Batman and Superman arguing about killing the Joker for the thousandth time or Catwoman telling Batman she's outie 5000 a couple weeks in a row, I really want (and need) this book to take a jump forward and get my adrenaline pumping again. Last issue was a good start as we got some of the classic feel of characters being straight up murdered, but it ended with Catwoman...you know, I said it above. So, does this issue put the car back in drive or are we just going to sit in one place and rev our engines like that kid in High School who can drive before everyone else because he flunked twice? Don't be that guy, kids. Hit those books. On with the review...
The issue opens on the two biggest besties in the whole damn world...Trickster and Bizarro??? If you read last week's issue, you know the score...Bizarro had just killed Weather Wizard and Heatwave and if Trickster hadn't thought quickly, he would have been fried as well. Think quickly he did and convinced Bizarro they were tight friends and that all lead to him freezing his ass on the High Atlas Mountains in Morocco.
After Bizarro takes him to Death Valley to warm up, he asks Trickster to tell him about Superman. It's a quick and comical 90's "bad means good" conversation that ends with Trickster setting the stage for the battle of the Supermen sometime soon. Meanwhile, back in the hall of Justice (where's Ted Knight when I need him), Cyborg and Wonder Woman are trying to make heads or tails of this "red and white blur" on the monitors when Superman shows up and explains it's an impostor, a killer and the new Regime enemy numero uno.
Showing he means business, Superman gets "all hands on deck" to press the flesh and ask fist questions until they find out who the heck this fake Superman is. Meanwhile, the real Superman heads off to pay Lex Luthor a visit and asks him a few personal questions himself. It's a great couple of pages where Superman acts like a living, breathing polygraph and leaves satisfied for now that Lex wasn't involved in creating the impostor.
All of this is interrupted by a villain breakout that just might have happened on a Sunday...or maybe it was a Monday or a Thursday...I have no idea, but the issue ends with a couple guys in red and blue tights both showing up to save the day. Oh snap!
This issue may not have been the leap forward I was hoping for, but it was pretty damn exciting and sets up a huge battle between Superman and Bizarro that I want to see now. I know that the odds aren't in Bizarro's favor (is their such a thing as no odds whatsoever?), so I'm hoping that he'll at least make a good show of it. I also want to see what happens when and if Bizarro finds out that the Trickster is no friend of his. Probably the same thing that Superman will do to Lex when he finds out the same thing.
Mike S. Miller is back on art and while this isn't his strongest issue, it's not bad. What I'm trying to say is it's pretty middle of the road with average character models overall and a very odd looking Superman.
Bits and Pieces:
Brian Buccellato begins moving forward again with a heavy dose of Bizarro and questioned friendships. I love Bizarro and would love to see him last this whole Year Five, but I fear the worst and after seeing this week's cliffhanger, the worst may be coming up quickly. I feel bad saying I can't wait to see it, but I also don't want to lie. If the next few issue grab this week's baton and run with it, we may just get back to Year Five kicking ass and taking names. One can hope, right?