Supergirl #24 // Review
A young Kryptonian’s search for clues regarding the destruction of her home planet reaches a bar on the outskirts of the galaxy in Supergirl #24. Evan “Doc” Shaner takes over the art in Marc Andreyko’s continuing story, which falters a bit this issue. While it’s not quite as compelling as recent issues have been, it’s still solidly entertaining.
Clues to the destruction of the planet Krypton find Supergirl in a shady bar on a frontier planet. Her attempt to keep a low profile fails in spectacular fashion as the seedier elements of the galaxy discover who she is. Supergirl lands in a barroom brawl featuring a spectrum of different surly lifeforms who all seem to want her dead. In the chaos of the brawl, a scruffy-looking Coluan tried his best to befriend her in hopes of getting off the dusty planet.
Andreyko’s run on Supergirl begins to feel a bit weak here. Little sparkles of clever originality seem pretty sparse here. There are a couple of cute moments, including a coin-op yellow sun recharging station on the frontier planet that is particularly fun. On the whole, though, the issue largely borrows heavily from other space westerns. The bar is essentially the cantina at Mos Eisley. The Coluan is essentially Han Solo by way of Peter Quill. Even the novelty of seeing Ambush Bug bomb while performing stand-up comedy at the bar is vaguely cringe-inducing. This being said, Andreyko continues to give Supergirl her own identity quite distinct from Superman. She’s more aggressive, more likely to throw a punch, and, on the whole, a lot more identifiable than the other one wearing the crest of the House of El for DC.
A big part of the overall feeling of declining quality in the series with this issue stems from the slightly jarring shift in art. Amanda Conner offers-up some really warm personality for an alternate cover to the issue, but the interior is another story. Supergirl has arrived on the edge of the galaxy in a sketchier, less emotionally adroit visual reality. Faces feel a bit sloppier. Emotions don’t seem as sophisticated. Evan “Doc” Shaner’s line-work isn’t bad, but it’s kind of an abrupt shift from Kevin Maguire’s clean subtlety. The action of the art is carried to the page quite well, though. Shaner certainly knows how to put together an action sequence. The brawl is a fun centerpiece to the issue that makes excellent use the kinetic dynamic of Shaner’s art.
Supergirl #24 might be a bit of a letdown after the last 3 issues, but the story continues to propel forward through a dull space western chapter under the power of a distinctly appealing take on the lead character.