Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Batman/Superman Annual #1 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Greg Pak
Art By: Jae Lee, Kenneth Rocafort, Phillip Tan
Cover Price: $5.99
Release Date: March 5, 2014

All In The Family

Do you remember the three part Mongul story arc that ended with issue #7?  Well I hope so, because this
continues that story.  In case you don't remember, I'll bring you up to speed a bit.  Mongul tried to take over the world by creating a real life video game.  So what you got was an over the top, popcorn story, where Batman fights Superman.  It started out fun, but by the end you were just glad it was over.  So Mongul was defeated and thrown into the Phantom Zone.  Our heroes prevail, for a second I guess, because this continues the story, so let's see what kind trouble our duo has to face.

Explain It!:

Mongul's locked up in the Phantom Zone, and our heroes believe their work is done.  Oh oh, but you forgot Warworld!  The victory lap our heroes were taking get's interrupted by Mongul's son Jochi, who wants a bit of revenge for Batman and Superman taking his father down.  Well it's not so much a revenge thing, as much as it's an honor thing.  Since Mongul was defeated, it's actually part of his law, that he should be left for dead, or some such warrior code, no Jochi doesn't want his father back, he just feels he deserves retribution.  To get this he tells Batman and Superman that they are to pick two of their clan to come to Warworld and fight for their world's salvation.  Oh did I forget to tell you that Jochi has a giant energy weapon on Warworld pointed at the earth?  My bad.

To give you a bit of a time frame for this story, it's after Red Hood had to take on Ra's Al Ghul, so he has his energy swords that I hate so much.  Who would of thought that I'd miss a hero with a gun after living through the 90's?  Also this story is after Krypton Returns because they mention the fact that Superboy (Kon) is believed to be dead.  Back to the meat of the story.  For our heroes picks, Batman chooses Red Hood, and reluctantly chooses Batgirl.  You know because of the whole being paralyzed thing.  Actually he's reluctant to choose Red Hood as well because of the whole getting him killed thing, but decides to pick him anyway because they might need someone on Warworld who doesn't mind killing, and Batman knows he can handle himself.  Batgirl just won't take "no" for an answer.  As for Superman, he picks Supergirl, and what I thought was a strange pick in Steel.  On to Warworld.

Okay even though we just went through all the picking of the clans, let's throw all that out.  Superman planned for Steel to hack into Warworld and shut down the cannon pointed at Earth, and now that the Bat Family's techno guru Batgirl is here, the two pair off to take on the challenge together.  Luckily Krypto shows up so Superman has the appropriate number of clan members.  But what about Batman?  Well before you start getting nuts on me, it's easily remedied.  When our heroes enter the arena, they see that Jochi is fighting for his life, because apparently others believe that they can lead better.  So Batman claims that Jochi is of his clan, and Mortal Kombat begins.

One clan versus another clan, in an ongoing tournament.  Of course our heroes clean up, that is until they are the last two clans, and the rules state two clans enter, one clan leaves.  So we're back to Superman and Batman fighting each other.  It seems that this tournament goes on for a long time, so you have to wonder how long Steel and Batgirl were actually trying to shut down the energy cannon.  To me it seemed like days, but what do I know?  The cannon is finally taken out because Batgirl gets fed up and blows up the controls, like she wanted to from the beginning.  Superman and his clan leave, and Batman stays behind trying to save Jochi from a raging Warworld, but Jochi wants to face them like a warrior, and chooses not to be saved.  In the end Superman traps Warworld in the Phantom Zone before it crashes into the Earth.  Now there's an epilogue to this story.  You know how we just had a great action packed, sensitive story about teamwork?  Well let's end on a downer.   Jochi meets up with his father in the Phantom Zone, and Mongul kills him.  That's the Annual, time to get back to First Contact.  See you next month.

Bits and Pieces:

This has to be the best issue of Batman/Superman yet.  I mean the interactions between the characters was phenomenal, and makes me wish we could see more of both the Bat, and Super Families more often, and portrayed this way.  Even though they had three different artists, the transitions between them were almost flawless.  I was so engrossed in the story, I had to go back later to realize that there was a change at all.  Obviously I'm just fluffing the creators at this point, but everyone who is a Batman/Superman fan should get this issue and check it out.



  1. Very nice review, I do hope that Mongal shows up next!

  2. He should Definetly show up in Green Lantern!! Or atleast one of the three main Lantern Comics, it would be Epic!!

  3. Yeah I love Mongul, but haven't been impressed with his inclusion in the New 52 so far. I could Definately get behind him being in a GL title. Thanks for reading.