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Supergirl Vol. 2: Candor by Greg Rucka
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Supergirl Vol. 2: Candor

by Greg Rucka, Ian Churchill (Illustrator), Joe Kelly

Other authors: Ron Adrian (Illustrator)

Series: Supergirl (6-9), Superman/Batman (collects 27)

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This was very, very, very confusing. The stories jumped all over the place with no rhyme or reason. It was disjointed and strange.

About a third of the way through, we're in the middle of the aftermath to Infinite Crisis, but there's no coherent story to follow. Why should I care about this story? I know part of the issue with Infinite Crisis is that everything is fractured, including people's minds, but there has to be a way to indicate that without making it so confusing for the reader.

Also, I don't know how this can be a "Supergirl" comic when a large portion of it is about Power Girl, Superman, Batman, and Huntress, with very little Supergirl at all. ( )
  Krumbs | Mar 31, 2013 |
I'm sure plenty of people will feel that the trade just sucked and that I'm being over-generous when I say that it's not really the fault of the characters or the writers. But the thing is, as alluded to above, Kara (and I think this may be true for all the characters) really gets screwed over by the whole Identity Crisis/52/One Year Later thing--although admittedly the rotating door of writers on the title at this period didn't help. The second Supergirl trade draws from, in addition to her own title, JSA Classified, Superman, JLA, and Superman/Batman, and still (or perhaps because of this) completely fails to provide any coherent picture of exactly what's going on. Kara's story starts out as a continuation of Loeb's storyline, with her assimilating into both Earth society and the system of superheroes, then apparently she goes to the future, then somehow she gets in the Bottle-City of Kandor.

Not to mention that the Kara that we saw in the 31st century is, in terms of both writing and art, more wholesome and otherwise different (not quite so skinny, for one) than the one we see in the other titles.

The Kandor storyline isn't bad, I don't think (again, I think plenty would accuse me of being overgenerous) but it comes out of nowhere in the context of the trade (and due to the One Year Later thing, I think that was probably true for those following the issues too), and it seems rushed--by the time one has gotten oneself oriented, Kara's not in Kandor anymore and it takes a couple of re-reads to figure out why. The whole thing just feel rushed; it really needs to have a trade to itself instead of just taking up pp. 79-148 of the trade (and the pun isn't very funny), and should have been a four to six issue arc instead of just getting three issues. (Then again, the Kandor arc is kind of painful, so maybe we should be glad it was only three issues.) The very last issue of the trade, "Big Girl Small World," in which Kara has returned from Kandor and has to deal with her role and identity on Earth, is IMHO excellent, but in the context of the trade it's too little, too late, with too little connection with anything else going on. The only reaction one can really have to the trade as a whole is "WTF?" Somebody has to introduce the editor to the Aristotelian unities.

I like the new version of Kara and her character-concept, although her anorexia is frustrating and I go back and forth on her rather self-objectifying fashion sense (I do think it can be read as part of the character instead of just pasted on, and it's an interesting character trait in the context of an indestructible teenage superheroine), but I do like the vision of adolescence--emo, angsty, and potentially self-destructive, but with the potential to work through all that--that peeks through when the title's at its best. It's just that Kara rarely gets enough time to breathe during all of these events going on in the trade to actually be a teenager.

So I think it's mostly the fault of DC's editors screwing up the continuity. (I do get the feeling that outside of Birds of Prey and Manhunter DC has less clue what to do with its female characters than Marvel does.) I sort of doubt it will ever be a strong franchise from a marketing perspective, but I do think it has the potential to tell a great story, and that the volumes since this one have to some degree born me out. I really do love Kara.

My advice would be to, unless one really cares what Kara was doing during the Infinite Crisis/52/One Year Later (and if one does, Candor presents a fragmented vision at best; I'm still not sure what other issues I need to figure out what was going on), one's best bet is skipping the Candor arc completely and seeing if one can get an issue of "Big Girl Small World" (Supergirl #9) by itself from somewhere, which pretty much catches up the reader as much as one needs (Kara's on Earth, she used to be in Kandor, she's angsty) and would put one in a position to follow the Supergirl on Earth continuity following that (presumably any subsequent trades will pick up right after it), which so far seem to have shown a marked increase in quality. ( )
1 vote Alixtii | Aug 18, 2008 |
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» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Greg Ruckaprimary authorall editionscalculated
Churchill, IanIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Kelly, Joemain authorall editionsconfirmed
Adrian, RonIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Growing up and finding your place in the world is difficult for any teen, but when you're the most powerful girl on Earth, it takes an immeasurable effort. As the Infinite Crisis begins, Supergirl must choose where she can be of most help -- at Superman's side, with the Justice League, or on an intergalactic task force headed to the center of the universe.… (more)

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