Happy Monday! Time to start another new week with a fresh batch of Monday Morning Comic Book Reviews, now titled MMCBR. This week I am kicking off the week with reviews for Harley Quinn #7, a Fear State tie-in, and Superman: Son of Kal-El #3. Both these series have been comics I’ve enjoyed for different reason. Let’s see if they can continue the momentum they’ve each built.
Writer: Stephanie Phillips
Artist: Riley Rossmo
Colorist: Ivan Plascencia
Story Rating: 5 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 6.5 Night Girls out of 10
The Good: Harley Quinn #7 is in an awkward spot as a tie-in to Fear State. For as awkward as the tie-in to Fear State that this issue is Stephanie Phillips writing of Harley Quinn continues to shine. She is having so much fun writing the character and that is clear anytime she is on screen. Kevin continues to be a great supporting character that makes Harley Quinn’s brand of comedy thanks to the well-timed reactions he has. The setting of a camping trip switched things up to explore Harley and Kevin’s dynamic more.
What made so much of the story in Harley Quinn #7 work was the continued excellent artwork by Riley Rossmo. Rossmo was born to draw the adventures of Harley Quinn. Her style makes everything the character and everyone in this series just pop of the screen. The forest setting opened things up for Rossmo and colorist Ivan Plascencia to provide a new setting to play with for the color palette used in the artwork. Having this setting contrasted with the darker environment of Gotham City made everything work even better.
The Bad: Harley Quinn’s role in Fear State has been firmly established in both Batman and Catwoman comic books. Which makes the placement of Harley Quinn and Hugo Strange in this issue something that will cause readers of Fear State to scratch their heads. It almost feels like between where we find Harley Quinn and Hugo Strange in this issue that Harley Quinn #7 takes place in its own universe that is telling a Fear State-style story. Which is a problem many tie-in comics run into when weaving a giant event into the current ongoing storylines as Phillips has developed during her Harley Quinn run.
Overall: As much fun as Harley Quinn continues to be this issue was a miss because of how it works in the Fear State storyline. Stephanie Phillips writing continues to be at its best when writing Harley Quinn and Kevin’s dynamic. And if Harley Quinn #7 just continued to focus on telling its own story involving Hugo Strange’s ongoing planning, it would’ve been another great issue. But because of its status as a Fear State tie-in the fun in the writing does not hit the same as it has in previous issues.
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: John Timms
Colorist: Gabe Eltaeb
Story Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 7.5 Night Girls out of 10
The Good: With how quickly Jonathan Kent has been thrusted into the role of Superman it has been nice to see how Tom Taylor is taking his time with developing Clark Kent and Lois Lane’s son in the role. As we once again see in Superman: Son Of Kal-El #3 taking on the legacy of his father is something that Jon is still learning to do. He is doing so by learning on the job, which is in its own way valuable experience since his father similarly learned on the job.
The big thing we see Taylor explore is how Jon is doing his best to save as many people as he can. Whether its saving people from a collapsing building or showing unity with protestors Jon is learning how to be his own version of Superman rather than just being exactly like his father. Opening Superman: Son Of Kal-El #3 up with father and son working together to save the day further pushed the idea that Jon can’t just think being exactly like his father. Doing things that maximize his strengths and ideals is what will make him truly live up to the legacy his father created.
Ending Superan: Son of Kal-El #3 with Clark Kent finally leaving Earth came across as the big next step for not just Jonathan Kent but the DC Universe. Taylor and John Timms captured this moment with Clark and Jon saying goodbye to one another well. It felt like the training wheels were being taken off and it is now officially Jon’s show as Superman. Which led to an ending that certainly hits hard as the stakes just got raised for Jon’s future as Superman.
The Bad: Nothing.
Overall: Superman: Son Of Kal-El #3 is a tightly written issue that continues to establish Jonathan Kent as the one who will carry on his father’s legacy. The final interaction between Jon and Clark Kent felt like the training wheels are now off and its Jon’s time to be fully step up as Superman. Everything just worked as we look forward to what the future holds for the young Jonathan Kent.
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