REVIEW: ‘Batman/Superman Annual,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Batman/Superman Annual #1

Batman/Superman Annual #1 is published by DC Comics, written by Joshua Williamson, art by Gleb Melnikov, Dale Eaglesham, and Clayton Henry, with colors by Alejandro Sanchez and letters by John J. Hill. What do fifth-dimensional beings do when they get bored? They argue about who would win a fight between their favorite earth heroes of course! But try as they might, some things can’t be manipulated. Not even by godlike beings.

Some fans can really get into the media they love. To an extent, this is understandable. You spend years, maybe even decades, following the adventures of a character and it’s easy to understand how they could come to mean something to you. You cheered for them, and you wept for them. But, in the end, they are just fiction. Some people forget that basic fact from time to time. One of the classic instances where fans often bring a little too much heat to the discussion is the classic “who would win” conversation.

We’ve all had these discussions. And, when everyone involved is being reasonable, it can be a lot of fun. Comparing the greatest feats and cunning plans of our favorite characters is always a blast. But, then you have that friend that takes it a bit too far. Who cannot abide by someone disagreeing with them. They act like saying someone could beat their favorite character is somehow an attack on their own person, as well as their fictional idol. And, thanks to the anonymity of the internet, these people have often only gotten worse. It’s a real problem. Especially when you consider who these people are throwing insults, slurs, and on many occasions death threats in the name of.

How anyone could read an issue of Superman and then decide the appropriate response to someone saying Batman could take him in a fight would be to insult their parentage or tell them their stupid. Or worse. This completely misses the point of the vast majority of heroic stories. Batman/Superman Annual #1 does a great job of calling out how ridiculous this behavior is. And while it’s far from the first comic story to shine a light on some of fandom’s less savory tendencies, it nevertheless does the job quite well.

Batman/Superman Annual #1 

Mr. Mxyzptlk and BatMite have brought back some earth toys for some young 5th-dimensional imps to play with. But when the kids start arguing about which hero is better between Batman and Superman the two elder imps quickly get caught up in the discussion.

To decide which hero would win in a battle between them both of the imps present a scenario where they feel their favorite would win the day. Williamson does a spectacular job of delivering these arguments in such real a why I almost wonder if one of the comic fans I’ve had this discussion with wasn’t actually Batmite. Batman/Superman Annual #1 leans into both of the classic arguments presented for the characters. Whether it’s Batman’s legendary arsenal and vast failsafe options, or Superman’s overwhelming power, all the classic points are delivered here. Though in the end, the true answer isn’t reached until the World’s Finest themselves weigh in. And if you don’t know off the top of your head what that answer is, I highly recommend you pick up this book.

The art in Batman/Superman Annual #1 is terrific in its execution. As the two imps give their versions of how a fight between the two heroes would go the art changes to emphasize the eventual winner’s look.

Batmite’s story is heavily shadowed as the story takes the much darker Batman-style visual tone. Likewise, Mr. Mxyzptlk’s story is brighter, as it harkens toward Superman’s iconic style. This coordination on the part of the entire art/coloring team creates a great look for the book.

Lastly, the letter work by Hill does a great job delivering the story in Batman/Superman Annual #1 with all the flash I could ask for. With moments of heightened emotions getting that extra cartoony emphasis, keeping the story on the humorous side, while still saying something important.

When all is said and done Batman/Superman Annual #1 delivers a fun, entertaining tale, that also says something meaningful. I hope at least a few fans might read this issue and take what it says to heart. Since there are far important aspects to the heroes we love than who would win in a fight.

Batman/Superman Annual #1 is available on September 29th wherever comics are sold.


‘Batman/Superman Annual,’ Issue #1
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TL;DR

When all is said and done Batman/Superman Annual #1 delivers a fun, entertaining tale, that also says something meaningful. I hope at least a few fans might read this issue and take what it says to heart. Since there are far important aspects to the heroes we love than who would win in a fight.