When Mark Waid stepped down from his leadership roles with BOOM! Studios they lost more than just their CCO and former editor-in-chief. They eventually saw the end of what was easily the publisher’s best title, Irredeemable. Ever since the series wrapped up earlier this year BOOM! has been searching for a new book to emerge as their flagship title. The more I read Grace Randolph’s Supurbia, the more I am convinced it has the potential to fill the void left in that classic book’s absence. This month Supurbia #2 begins to up the ante and remind us why it is one of the best new series to come out of 2012.
Supurbia’s in depth look at the private lives of superheroes begins to really come into its own in this month’s issue. In this second installment, well arguably sixth if you include the mini-series, Randolph’s melding of action and reality-television style drama reaches new levels of refinement and narrative flow.
Like issue one, Supurbia #2 is a busy comic that flashes between the off-duty lives of the various members of the Meta Legion. This installment sees Batu taking her son to see the council of Bright Moon. Sovereign and Helen Heart must deal with bad press and the awkward love triangle between Night Fox, Agent Twilight and Alexis Fritsche only continues to get more awkward and messy.
Out of all the superhero shenanigans that go down in this issue easily the most interesting and multifaceted is the relationship between Batu and her son Eli. Although a running theme through both issue one and the mini-series, the odd relationship between Batu and her son is particularly prevalent here as she is forced to choose between what she believes is right for him and the rigid laws of the Daughters of Bright Moon.
Russel Dauterman’s art is also getting noticeably better. Panels appear a lot more detailed, layouts are starting to become a bit more hit than miss and this issue in particular features some great splash pages. Overall the level of visual storytelling is much better in this issue and there is some stunning imagery, namely the secret jungle temple of Bright Moon.
Although Supurbia still has some teething issues with Randolph and Dauterman both lacking in comic book writing and illustrating experience respectively, it’s a solid book. Even when compared to some of the stellar titles being released by Marvel and DC, Supurbia can for the most part hold its own. What it lacks in polish and precision this book makes up for in pure energy, originality and passion.