Superman/Batman: Public Enemies - Jeph Loeb, Ed McGuinness, Dexter Vines

I have to admit: I love the contrasts between Batman and Superman, the yin and yang of superheroes. In Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns, they're pitted against each other, Superman's inhuman strength versus Batman's ingenius gadgets. In this book, however, they team up against President Lex Luthor, who blames an approaching Kryptonite asteroid on Superman and puts a price on Superman's head. The device Loeb uses in this book is to show the inner monologues of Batman and Superman, playing them off one another in a series of comparisons and contrasts. Their motivations and methods for fighting crime couldn't be more different, so it's fun to get inside their heads and imagine what they think of each other.

The artwork in this one is the newer, slick-looking style, where everything looks highly polished, from Captain Atom's metallic armor to Lex Luthor's bald head. There are a slew of other superheroes and supervillains (all trying to capture Superman), many of whom I'm not too familiar with, but the story works fairly well as a stand-alone, unlike many comics that tell you to "See Batman #143!" Not as well done (or as long) as Batman & Superman: World's Finest, but not bad, either.

Fed to jonathan's brain | October 31, 2004