As much as I like Superman in concept and what he stands for, he’s not actually my favourite member of the Superman family. At times he’s more of an archetype than a character, meant to be someone we can all look up to. That’s part of the reason I prefer Supergirl as a character. Unlike her more famous cousin, she’s still young and has a lot of growing and maturing to do. She wants to be a hero like Superman, but hasn’t figured everything out yet. It’s that extra room for character development that makes her more compelling to me. For the most part, writer Steve Orlando does a great job at introducing Supergirl to DC Rebirth.
Even though DC’s Rebirth is a bit hard to follow in a number of ways, Supergirl Rebirth feels like a natural progression from the end of Supergirl’s New 52 series. Her powers are heavily weakened from an event that I don’t know much about, because I stopped following New 52 Superman for a while, but she regains her powers thanks to an experimental rocket launch into the sun, only to learn after coming out that the DEO base is under attack … by a kryptonian werewolf. This werewolf-like creature could be a very interesting character going forward, whether he’s a hero, a villain or something in-between.
The main thing I should point out with this comic is that it takes a lot of cues from the CBS Supergirl TV show. Kara Zor-el now has foster parents on Earth, both agents from the DEO, also based on the TV show. There are differences, like how Supergirl is still a teenager in this series, and how she’s going to high school instead of working for a news network. For the most part this works in this comic’s favour, and could help any viewers of the TV show to ease their way into the comic, while not making any major changes to Supergirl’s mythos. The only part I don’t like, and this is also my complaint with the TV show, is that her “Earth” name is Kara Danvers. Yes, it’s a mix of her kryptonian first name and “Linda Danvers”, an alternate version of Supergirl that Peter David wrote way back, but it almost sounds like they’re trying to make her name sound like Carol Danvers. I can’t help but be suspicious about DC’s motivations here.
The art by Emanuela Lupacchino is fantastic. There’s a clean look to everything, whether it’s the shiny spaceship that sends Kara to the sun, character’s uniforms, or the way hair flows in action scenes. There’s also a lot of detail in the fight scenes, like bullet shells as DEO agents fire at the kryptonian werewolf and the saliva spraying out of his mouth. Facial expressions perfectly convey emotions from fatigue as the humans work to repair the DEO base to determined looks while Supergirl battles the werewolf. The colouring by Michael Atiyeh is also great. Everything is bright, colourful and appealing. Overall, this is probably the best looking comic I picked up this week, and there is a lot of great art today.
This is a great start to Supergirl’s DC Rebirth run. There’s a great balance of continuing off from the New 52 run and making everything easy for new readers to understand. Bringing in elements of the show and fine tuning it to fit the DC Rebirth universe is a brilliant move, even if I’m not a fan of the “Kara Danvers” name. If you’re interested in checking out Superman’s kryptonian cousin, this is a great place to start.