Thursday, June 20, 2024

Supergirl #5 Packs an Actual Punch

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Last month, we caught up with our personal favorite Kryptonian and her adventures in comics. Supergirl Issue #4 gave us a big emotional payoff in the escalating Cyborg Supermen storyline, and teased the battle to come. Kara’s father, the Cyborg Superman (Cybersupes), is attempting to restore Argo City by feeding off the odic force of the human race, making Earth their new home. Of course, Kara has a big problem with this. This month, in Supergirl #5 the battle for Earth is in full swing, with Kara joining the fight after her escape from Argo City.

Kara Cuts Loose

We open with Jeremiah Danvers and Director Chase of the DEO in a street-level battle with Cybersupes and his mindless minions. Kara makes her appearance in the nick of time, and in classic superhero fashion. Finally, she gets to flex her muscle a bit and take down a couple of bad guys. Don’t get me wrong, last issue was amazing, but it’s been a little while since Kara was actively “Super” and it’s nice to see.

She makes it look so easy.

Kara fills Director Chase in on the deets, but her super hearing picks up trouble at Catco. Kara’s frienemy Ben Rubel is in trouble, and she zooms to the rescue. They exchange some awkward words, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the romantic tension between these two. They are rivals at Catco, but I assume they will get together at some point. This only cements that suspicion.

you think?

The Plan

Their meet cute is cut short, as Catco is still under attack. Kara saves the day again, and asks Cat Grant for her help. The cyborgs have cut off all communications to National City, and Kara has something in store to level the playing field.

Meanwhile, Jeremiah Danvers is in trouble, as Cybersupes himself is on the offensive against Kara’s new dad. For the fourth time now, Kara zooms to the rescue, but this time there is no quick dispatch of one of the mindless minions. Cybersupes is much more powerful. Kara and Cybersupes duke it out, and exchange words. Kara tries to convince him that she is happy here, and that what he is doing is not right. He insists that she’s being childish, and that he is only thinking of her and the people he failed.

That’s kind of a confusing thing to say.

Kara’s actions prove her loyalty to Earth over her father. Enraged, he gives her his supervillain monologue, and the final phase of his plan is revealed.

And the Verdict

In contrast to last issue’s emotional climax, this issue is a bang-pow action packed ride start to finish and ends with a cliffhanger. It’s great to see Kara being super: hurling cars around and punching the bad guys. This is a superhero comic after all. That said, it isn’t completely devoid of emotion. Kara’s heartfelt plea to her father, and his self-centered rejection of her feelings, is the real battle here. Kara was able to talk some sense into her mother last month, but daddy is a much harder sell. He’s so entrenched in his own self-serving redemption arc that he can’t see the real damage he’s doing, neither to his own daughter nor to the planet she calls home.

No, you’re a giant douchelord.

The supporting characters are given a little more to do this issue, with Jeremiah and Director Chase defending the street-level citizens, and Cat Grant helping Supergirl with her secret plan (that we assume will come to fruition next month). Kara and Ben’s little moment is cute, but is over very quickly as there are bigger and more important things to take care of. We’re actually glad they didn’t dwell on it too long.

There is one especially great moment when Kara is fighting her father. Their blows are so powerful they shatter all the glass in the skyscraper nearby. Kara, seeing this, puts the fight on hold to save the people from the falling glass. This felt like a direct nod to everything that the Man of Steel movie got wrong about Superman. Where the epic showdown in the film leveled whole city blocks with no implied consequences, Kara shows her dedication to the safety of her adopted homeworld by turning her back on her own conflict and racing to the rescue of people she’s never met. This baffles Cybersupes (whom I now totally see as a stand-in for Zack Snyder. Don’t think too hard about it, just go with it.) who seems disgusted at her rejection in favor of mere humans.

Pictured above: Everything Man of Steel wasn’t

Throughout the issue, Kara proves herself as the selfless capital H Hero. Her dad Zack Snyder Cybersupes thinks he is being a hero to his people, but is really just trying to fix his own mistakes, even if that means making an even bigger one in the process. (Batman v Superman? Anyone? C’mon, it totally works.)

All the Art

The art continues to be really good, especially action sequences. Brian Ching’s linework shines during the kinetic fight scenes, and since this issue is mostly fight scenes, he gets a chance to really shine. The colors work well, with most of the people in the background in drab greens and oranges contrasted with Kara’s bright Supersuit. She stands out appropriately, as does Cat Grant, the only one wearing bright colors besides Kara and Cybersupes.


This issue offered up the action that had been somewhat missing from the last few issues, but the best is yet to come with the conclusion of the Cyborg Supermen arc next month. We can’t wait!

Supergirl #5: Reign of the Cyborg Supermen Part 5 Credits

Writer: Steve Orlando

Artist: Brian Ching

Colorist: Michael Atiyeh

Letterer: Steve Wands

All images courtesy of DC Comics.

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