Tag Archives: James Robinson

Superman 700 – coming home, doing Robin’s work, and deciding to walk


Superman 700 (Aug. 10) is a double sized anniversary issue, which contains an epilogue of sorts to the New Krypton storyline, a prologue to the next storyline, Grounded, and a story from Superman’s early days that teams him up with Robin.


The issue opens with a story by Robinson and Chang, which sees Superman return to Earth, just in time to save Lois Lane from the Parasite.  He is working as muscle for the Prankster, but the villains are not really important in this story.  In fact, we do not even see Superman capture the Prankster.


Instead, the story deals with Lois and Clark renewing their relationship.  They discuss losing Chris, and Lois’ feelings about her father.  It makes a warm ending to the long and powerful storyline, and I love the final page, of Superman and Lois embracing in the Metropolis sky.


Dan Jurgens and Norm Rapmund jump back in time for the second story in the issue.


Dick Grayson is still in high school in this story, and Bruce Wayne refuses to let him go out as Robin until he finishes his geometry homework.  But despite Alfred’s efforts, Dick sneaks out anyway, and winds up going after some gun runners.


Superman winds up coming to Robin’s assistance, and Commissioner Gordon is always happy to deal with the polite Superman.  As Robin has been out much later than expected, and is exhausted, Superman quickly finishes his geometry homework for him.  Dick believes that he has successfully conned Bruce into thinking he did it himself.


But of course, no one puts something over on Batman.  It’s a cute story.  Made me smile.


The final story in the issue, by J. Michael Straczynski, Eddy Barrows and JP Mayer, launches the Grounded storyline.


Superman is answering questions with a crowd of normal people, one of whom is a woman who blames Superman for not using his powers to cure her husband’s brain tumour.  Superman takes this to heart.  Although he really shouldn’t. Superman is hardly responsible for every person’s ailment on the planet.


He visits Batman in the Justice League satellite, and sees how things are viewed from way above.


And then he talks to the Flash, who tells him that things are a blur at super-speed.


And so, Superman comes to Earth and decides to walk across the US.

This just rubbed me the wrong way, and I didn’t collect any of the Grounded storyline.  But now I am going to read it, and write about at least part of it, as it is the final story arc before the book gets cancelled because of Flashpoint.


Superman 699 – Superman and the Legion of Super-Heroes battle Brainiac


Robinson and Chang bring the Last Stand on New Krypton towards its conclusion in Superman 699 (June 2010).


Battles take place left right and centre in this issue.  The Legion of Super-Heroes who are in the present: Element Lad, Sensor Girl, Matter-Eater Lad, Star Boy, Tellus, Quislet and Chameleon Boy are fighting Brainiac’s drones and the various alien races from the previous issue.  They are aiming to free Mon-El, although once again the hero frees himself.


They manage to retrieve Kandor, which Brainiac has shrunk and bottled once again, this time with Superboy trapped inside.  Brainiac 5 and Supergirl take the city to expand it again.


Brainiac is too busy to stop them, being all caught up in a fight with Zod.


Luthor, never one to miss an opportunity for destruction, chooses a bottled city at random and enlarges it while it is still on Brainiac’s ship.


As the issue ends, the enlarging city rips through the hull of the ship, which is located directly above the restored Kandor.

The story concludes in the final issue of Last Stand of New Krypton.

Superman 698 – Superman and Mon-El vs Luthor and Brainiac


Superman returns to his own book with issues 698 (May 2010), as the Last Stand of New Krypton pits him and Mon-El against Luthor and Brainiac in a story by Robinson, Pina and Chang.


Brainiac has sent robotic drones to New Krypton, slaughtering the citizens as Zod and Ursa try to determine how to strike back.


Superman is being held captive aboard Brainiac’s headship, and Mon-El comes to the rescue.  But before he reaches the hero he has to face much nastier versions of Brainiac’s classic pet Koko.


Brainiac tries to draw all the knowledge Superman has gained about New Krypton, but the hero manages to break free of his restraints.


Mon-El winds up not only fighting against the white apes, but also the four alien races from the 1960s origin of Ultra – The Multi-Alien.  The telepathic aliens in one of Brainiac’s bottle cities send out a plea for help.


But before they can do anything about the bottled cities, Superman and Mon-El have to face a horde of killer robots.

The story continues in the next issue of Adventure.


Superman 697 – getting ready for the final battle


The various plot threads from Action, Superman, Supergirl and World of New Krypton are all tying together into a big climax, but Robinson, Chang and Pina take a bit of a break in Superman 697 (April 2010).


Things start hot and heavy, as General Lane orders his troops to attack Chameleon Boy.  Although Mon-El and the Guardian are there, the day gets saved by Quislet, who reveals himself to have been in “disguise” as a hover-cam.


The various Legionnaires come together, but Chameleon Boy, Quislet, Sensor Girl, Tellus, Matter-Eater Lad and recent Justice Society member Star Boy abandon Mon-El.  I’m not sure why.  Even though I’ve read this a few times.


A time lapse follows, as Steel and Mon-El protect Metropolis.  We see Clawster, Ultraa and a Composite Superman, all rarely appearing villains.


We also learn that when Mon-El was in Smallville, he enlisted Superboy’s aid in repairing his old rocket ship.

The Legionnaires return en masse on the final page, which leads into the next issue of Adventure Comics.

Superman 696 – after the explosion


Robinson and Chang dig into the wreckage following the explosion of the Science Police headquarters at the end of the previous issue of Action, in Superman 696 (March 2010).


Nightwing digs Lois Lane, his “mother,” out of the rubble.  The Guardian is now convinced of the innocence of Nightwing and Flamebird, and runs interference for them with General Lane.


Mon-El and the Guardian stop all of Lane’s troops, allowing the two wanted Kryptonians to escape.  Mon confronts Lane, but does not attack him.  He simply lets the general know that he has learned all of his manipulations, and despite the public’s love of Lane, intends to see that the truth gets out.


Another Legionnnaire gets revealed, as Control is found in the wreckage, unconscious.  She has partly transformed back into Chameleon Boy.

The story continues in the next issue.

Superman 695 – Mon-El triumphant


Mon-El battles against the Parasite and Bizarro in Superman 695 (Feb. 10), by Robinson and Bernard Chang.

sup_695_001Mon-El’s battle with the Parasite and Bizarro is made more difficult by the fact that his powers keep turning on and off.  But this turns out to be a plus where the Parasite is concerned.  When the Parasite draws off of Mon-El’s powers he also draws on his lead poisoning, and the pain makes him easy to subdue.  Bizarro fights until he no longer feels like fighting. He leaves for Bizarro World.  This is the final appearance of the pre-Flashpoint Bizarro.


Mon-El meets with Perry White, and learns (as do we) that Jimmy Olsen is still alive.  Natasha Irons is also there, and fills Mon-El in on the Captain Atom storyline taking place in the back pages of Action Comics.  Together, they add up the various things they know of Sam Lane’s plans.  But the public remain in the dark, as Morgan Edge interviews Lane, who spreads a great story about Mon-El getting mind controlled by the Kryptonians, and the government releasing the story that he was dead to give them time to de-program him.


Mon-El and Billi Harper take their relationship to a new level.  You gotta be happy for Mon-El, as things are, otherwise, not going to well for him.


The story ends with a lead-in to the next issue of Action, as Mon-El and the Guardian discover Nightwing and Flamebird busting out of the Science Police headquarters.

Superman 694 – on the farm, and in Metropolis


Mon-El gets a new costume, complete with an “S” crest in Superman 694 (Jan. 10), by Robinson and Pina.  The story intercuts action in Metropolis, with time Mon-El spent recuperating in Smallville with Ma Kent and Superboy.


The action picks up from the end of the previous issue, with the Guardian and the Science Police battling with Bizarro. Mon-El shows up, to their surprise, and joins the fray.


When a child gets trapped in a burning car during the fight, we discover that another Legionnaire has been a part of this run.  Mitch goes into action, eating the car to free the child – it’s Matter-Eater Lad!


The Smallville scenes are quite good as well.  They give a greater depth to Mon-El, as he plays with Krypto and converses with both Ma Kent and Superboy about what it means to take Superman’s place.  Ma makes him his new, Superman-like, costume.


The battle with Bizarro reaches no conclusion in this issue.  Far from it, the situation gets even worse when the Parasite joins the fight.

The story continues in the next issue.