The Hypernaturals #1

Think of this new series as an alternate world Legion of Super-Heroes. And it’s written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning, the creators of one of the most beloved (by fans, not so much by DC) versions of the Legion ever.

Our setting is the distant future, a hundred years after the Quantinuum AI “achieved Singularity and refashioned human galactic culture.” Superhumans are moderately common, and the best of the best are selected to serve five-year terms as members of the Hypernaturals, the galaxy’s greatest superteam. We get introduced to them through a Hypernaturals team from seven years ago, including Clone 45, Bewilder, Thinkwell, Kobalt Blue, and Shard as they battle a super-genius called Sublime, who has obtained a weapon that he hopes to use to kill off the Quantinuum AI that has become a near-god.

But before we can even see how that turned out, we jump forward to the present-day. Clone 45 is a down-and-out schlub, Bewilder is the media relations contact for the current Hypernaturals team, Thinkwell is retired — and the new Hypernaturals team have all been killed in their first mission — along with everyone else on the planet 28 Kosov. Bewilder and Thinkwell are chosen to investigate the disaster, along with Shoal, a newbie with the power to control strangelets, and DeeDee, who came in second place in the competition to be in the last Hypernaturals team and wear the high-tech Halfshell powered armor. Will the team discover what happened on 28 Kosov? Or are they as doomed as the last team of heroes?

Verdict: Thumbs up. An excellent debut issue, with lots of very interesting characters, a semi-familiar setting, great dialogue and action. So far, characters are where this first issue really shines — I want to find out a lot more about all these people, and I hope this series continues for a while.

Batman Inc. #2

This issue focuses almost entirely on Talia al Ghul, daughter of Ra’s al Ghul, mother of Damian Wayne. We watch her childhood being trained as an assassin and mostly being ignored by her father. He’ll buy her anything she wants, but she doesn’t know her mother and her father doesn’t really value her as much as he’d value a male heir.

Verdict: Thumbs up. I was actually a bit nervous about this one — that Talia would be portrayed solely as a seductress. As it is, we get a much more femme fatale view of her — at least as competent as her father or Batman, and possibly more dangerous. Yes, she’s seductive, but she’s also smart, a devastating fighter and assassin, and as ruthless a leader as her father is. It’s also clever the way we get some flashbacks into Batman’s most famous battles against Ra’s. All in all, I was fairly happy with it.

Today’s Cool Links:

  • Turns out the DC Reboot was a disaster from the start, with no planning, no foresight, and ultimately no future. Here’s to the day DiDio, Johns, and Lee get their walking papers.
  • A bunch of Stephanie Brown fans have started a campaign to get the former (and best) Batgirl back in comics.
  • If you like the “Meet the Team” videos for the Team Fortress 2 computer game (and you should like ’em, ’cause they’re very funny), the final one — “Meet the Pyro” — has been released.

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