“I will always be a strange visitor.”
Hey, all. This is D.C. here to throw down some on DC’s Supergirl #1, which starts off the “Reign of the Cyborg Supermen” arc.
I was impressed by the Supergirl: Rebirth, so I was optimistic about how the creative team will take things.
In terms of action, not much actually happens in Supergirl #1. In some ways, it reiterates some of what already happened in the Rebirth issue.
Still, writer Steve Orlando does a great job emphasizing the division Kara Zor-El feels between her old utopian life on Krypton, versus the difficulty, noise, and primitiveness of Earth life. I laughed at Orlando’s portrayal of Supergirl’s adjustment issues, because it reminds me of adult life: the more knowledge and technical skills you’ve amassed, sometimes you find difficulty performing or solving even rudimentary tasks. Kara’s problems were very relatable.
More than that, Orlando excelled at showing how this dichotomy affects Kara. She’s tormented: she’s an orphan (for all intents and purposes), having lost her life, prestige, and culture, stuck on a world that she can’t relate to in any fashion. Even her foster parents/handler’s attempts to make Kara feel any semblance of home falls flat. It was a great series of points that shows that Kara has so many hurdles to endure before she can be the heroine she aspires to be.
Penciler Brian Ching’s emotive cues on the characters work very, very well with Orlando’s script to make the characters dynamic.
Compared with Emanuela Lupacchino’s art from the Rebirth issue, I did not find Brian Ching’s art a welcome change. At times, Ching’s art flip-flopped between what would fit with a superhero comic, to far too sketch-like and lacking sufficient detail. The pencils are almost too sharp, too simple, and childish for my tastes–at least so far as my expectations from the last issue to this. The inconsistencies bothered me more often than not.
But again, Ching still manages to capture the emotion in Orlando’s writing when dealing with the cast…even Cameron Chase’s stiff and stoic demeanor.
I have the same issues regarding colorist Michael Atiyeh. Some of the time I felt the colors given were plain. Still, he could capture a striking set of colors when Supergirl travels in space. Perhaps this is an intentional point towards the dichotomy in this issue? If so, then Atiyeh deserves much more credit than I’m giving.
In some ways I’m torn by this premier issue of Supergirl. This one of those times where the writing very much supersedes the art, and both are very important.
I much preferred Emanuela Lupacchino’s take on Supergirl, so Brian Ching’s inconsistent pencils did little for me. However, he captures Steve Orlando’s effective emotive cues with the characters effectively that he gains more points than he loses. Still, this was a very worthwhile read.
Orlando’s taken Supergirl’s typical “lost daughter of Krypton” motif and really knows how to hammer home Kara’s emotions and loss, and the fact that Kara believes that she has little to be optimistic about. She is still trying to find her place in the DC universe, and I think she’s in good hands with Steve Orlando.