We have before us the last issue of Superman Family Adventures. As mentioned in our reviews of previous issues, sales have not been kind to this title. But then, to be fair, DC’s marketing hasn’t been mindful of it either. So lets call this one a comic book that never had much of a chance. Those that lucked into it–in large part, the Art and Franco fan club that follow them from title to title–have been treated to the most satisfying run of Superman fiction in many years. Grant Morrison’s run on Action Comics may have stretched our minds, but SFA is storytelling that pleases from head to toe. It is made to order for true believers in the myth of The Man of Steel.
This month, Darkseid is literally driving the “meteorite” running gag into the ground, as he steers the fiery meteorite toward Earth. Darkseid will either learn the location of New Krypton, and/or destroy Metropolis: he doesn’t care which, just so long as he gets back to his job as Lunch Lady Darkseid on Monday morning. Superman battles Darkseid on the meteorite’s surface, and his guest stars, the Justice League, have been entrapped by meteor rock.
Darkseid fixes his gaze on Superman, and just as the Omega beams home in on The Man of Steel, he dodges, and the beams crack the rocks holding The Justice League. Despite being outnumbered, Darkseid is still a threat, as he dispatches a horde of Chibi Parademons at them.
Ultimately, the entire Superman Family, including an awesome cameo by the Super-Pets, come to place themselves between the Earth and the meteorite.
Art and Franco also close their chapters on the other story arcs in this 12 issue series. Lex, Miss Teschmacher, and baby clone Lex sail away into the sunset. Jor-El and Lara make their way over to the Kent farm and express their gratitude to Jonathan and Martha. Long time Superman fans know that upbringing is everything, and without these wonderful biological and adoptive parents, Superman is just a an Imaginary Story or an Elseworld away from being a despot. So this scene, while light on the surface, expresses one of the more important truths of the Superman myth.
If you were expecting closure of a romantic nature, you will not be disappointed. That moment everyone is waitIng for occurs in the final narrative frame, and let’s just say that it is a smack in the face–hopefully a sobriety-producing smack–to whatever currently passes for romance in New 52 Superman continuity.
The good news is that the cancellation has caused the creators’ stars to rise, so that we find them in three projects in 2013. Next month, Art & Franco will be joined by Ig Guara on The Green Team from DC Comics. Guara recently put his unique stamp on Blue Beetle. His humorous panels, vision for character, and ability to turn superheroes and supporting cast into people will be an asset to The Green Team. If you’re looking for more true stories from Art and Franco, you can also find them in Aw Yeah Comics. If you have a hard time finding print versions of this Kickstarted comic book, you can find them here on comiXology. And in August 2013, you can read Itty Bitty Hellboy, an all-ages version of Mike Mignola’s supernatural superhero. According to the Nerdist, we can expect a three issue mini-series this summer.