It’s sad to think that Sterling Gates is almost done with his run on “Supergirl.” For a book that looked to be doomed to flail for direction as it chewed up creative teams and spit them out (10 writers in 34 issues is an impressive tally), Gates had managed to beat the odds and provide a thoroughly fun comic about Superman’s favorite cousin.
With that in mind, though, he’s going out strong, writing the conclusion to a Bizarro story that serves as a sequel to the story by Richard Donner, Geoff Johns, and Eric Powell in “Action Comics” a few years ago. It’s nice to see writers actually using what came before and building a story off of it, but what’s especially nice is that even if you didn’t read “Escape from Bizarro World” Gates provides enough back story to keep you in the loop.
More importantly, though, this isn’t really so much a conclusion about Bizarro World or Bizarro Supergirl, as it is the flip side to the start of this storyline, where Supergirl was having self-doubts about still being a superhero after the deaths and destruction from the end of New Krypton. Now that Supergirl has her own confidence back, it’s nice to see her take those lessons she learned earlier and help Bizarro Supergirl with them; it’s a tightly-plotted story in that regard, and while it ends up making the actual defeat of the bad guy feel almost secondary, that’s not a bad thing. It’s the way that this story should’ve ended, and a good wrap up (for now) of life on Bizarro World.
Bernard Chang steps in this month on art, and since he’s coming back full-time starting with #60, it’s a good way to preview his approach to “Supergirl.” Chang has shed some of the stylistic choices he made for his recent run on “Superman,” and while I was actually sad to see them go (that rough, scratchy style was gorgeous) I can see him wanting to approach “Supergirl” with a cleaner, crisper look. Chang’s art has a nice angular style to it here, from the way that Supergirl’s hair moves in the air, to the shards of buildings in the background. There are some great individual moments here, from Bizarro Supergirl’s hands clasped together in fear, to something as simple as the curl on Superman’s forelock of hair. I already was looking forward to Chang being the replacement for Jamal Igle (whose work on “Supergirl” has been great as well), but now that we know just what we have in store it’ll be that much better.
It’s too bad that all we have left are two issues and an annual for Gates, but hopefully we’ll see some more comics from him before too long. Still, Gates is going out with a bang, and you can’t ask for much more than that, really. (Oh, and Bizarro Arsenal? Gates and Chang, you made me laugh for several minutes. Well done.)