Monday, September 28, 2020

Batman/Superman Annual #1 Review


The Age of Imps

Writer: Joshua Williamson
Artist: Dale Eaglesham, Clayton Henry, Gleb Melnikov, Alejandro Sanchez, and John J. Hill
Cover Price: $4.99
Release Date: September 29, 2020

It's Annuals time again at DC Comics, and I was hoping for something fun from Joshua Williamson.  I mean, the World's Finest should be able to give fans something to smile at in a one-off Annual, and thankfully, Williamson agreed.  He even got a couple of tiny guest stars to help out.  What am I talking about?  Let's find out...

The issue opens with some kids playing with Batman and Superman action figures like they are Eric Shea!  It looks like a lot of fun, even if it starts to get heated over who would win in a fight, Batman or Superman?  It's one of the oldest battles in comics, and it only gets better when we see this is taking place in the Fifth Dimension, and Bat-mite and Mxyzptlk are in the house!  The two imps decide that the kids are nonsense and have to step in to determine who is the best superhero in all the land.  And really, that's the gist of the Annual, and I loved it!

Bat-mite and Mxy decide to have a story battle, and while that's not as impressive as a thumb war or dance-off, it's still pretty cool. First up is Bat-mite, who spins a yarn about how Superman's very existence is ripping apart the Multiverse.  Batman has to save the day, and Bat-Mite has him use contingency plans on top of contingency plans as the other DCU heroes fade away.  In the end, Batman goes so over-the-top to stop Superman that you have to shake your head and laugh.  At least I know that Bat-Mite goes with the "if your opponent loses, that's all that matters" philosophy like myself.

Mxy disagrees with the victory and tells his own story that begins perfectly, gives Batman a bit of credit, changes venues and rules to help Superman (yea, he cheats), and ends with Superman's classic go-to move.  It may not have been as thought out as Bat-Mite's story, but it made me chuckle many times.

The issue ends with the usual Williamson "Superman and Batman are best friends" talk, but it didn't feel as forced in as it does in this book's regular run.  Oh yea, we also get a bit of Krypto vs. Ace and an ominous idea that one day, Bat-Mite and Mxy could cause some real damage.

I loved this Annual.  It looked great and was a ton of fun.  Williamson uses a tired argument and then uses cliches and tropes to shoot it all down.  It all works because of Bat-Mite and Mxy, but Williamson doesn't overdo it, which can easily happen with those two.  Kudos all around for this one!

Bits and Pieces:

Joshua Williamson gives fans an Annual that is light-hearted and hilarious.  It also looks fantastic thanks to Dale Eaglesham, Clayton Henry, and Gleb Melnikov.  Overall, this isn't going to change the DCU (or is it?), but it just may make you smile, and that might be more important these days. Highly Recommended!



  1. Thanks for the review. This comic was a ton of fun, certainly as crazy as it should be with both Bat-Mite and Mxyzptlk in it. I'm honestly surprised it's as good as it is. If only Scott Snyder's Justice League actually showed the fight between the two; the brief glimpse with Jorge Jimenez' art just wasn't enough. At least this Annual is great.