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The Starman Omnibus, Volume Five by James…
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The Starman Omnibus, Volume Five

by James Robinson

Other authors: Keith Champagne (Illustrator), Dan Davis (Illustrator), David S. Goyer (Story), Craig Hamilton (Illustrator), Tony Harris (Illustrator)12 more, Andrew Hennessy (Illustrator), Geoff Johns (Contributor), John McCrea (Illustrator), Lee Moder (Illustrator), David Ross (Illustrator), Steve Sadowski (Illustrator), Peter Snejbjerg (Illustrator), Ray Snyder (Illustrator), John Stokes (Illustrator), Wade von Grawbadger (Illustrator), Chris Weston (Illustrator), Steve Yeowell (Illustrator)

Series: Starman Omnibus (5), Starman, Starman [volume 2] (Omnibus 5)

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692264,399 (4.14)1
Jack Knight, the superhero known as Starman, goes in search of his girlfriend's long lost brother but finds himself traveling through time, where he meets the futuristic Legion of Super-Heroes, Adam Strange, and Superman's father.

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Volume Five returns the narrative energy to Starman; having launched into space, it's one zippy adventure after another. It's a very different tone to previous Starman stories: despite now being set in space, it's a much lighter set of stories, especially at first, as Robinson and Goyer use the new setup to revisit a neverending series of classic DC space characters. Which I love, of course, as the only thing better than sci-fi or superheroes is sci-fi and superheroes. I love Jack and Mikaal's visit to the future, and especially the three tales of Starman related by the Space Cabbie and his buddies, each of them more ludicrous than the last.

I also really enjoyed the final story arc, set on Throneworld and tying together a number of diffuse strands of the Starman mythos into a single story: Prince Gavyn, Will Payton, Mikaal, and Jack, all together in one story. (Gavyn returns in Rann-Thanagar Holy War and Strange Adventures, but I don't think those acknowledged his dual identity as Will.) Jack's complicity but attempt to abstain from revolutionary violence makes for an interest subcurrent in what might otherwise be a fairly simple space opera.

Meanwhile, on Earth, there are some interesting goings-on with the Starman of the 853rd century, not to mention an appearance by one of my favorites, the Elongated Man! A pleasant surprise, to be sure. (As was the appearance of the Dee Tyler Phantom Lady; I didn't realize she'd ever appeared again after her debut in Action Comics Weekly.)

Peter Snejbjerg didn't click for me at first as the artist in this volume, but as it went on, he got better, I think. His dark illustrations for the Throneworld issues in particular really shine. This isn't the best of the Starman volumes, but I think it succeeds perfectly at what it sets out to do.
  Stevil2001 | Dec 31, 2013 |
Starman heads for, well... the stars, in this fifth volume of the omnibus edition of his adventures, which follows Jack Knight and Mikaal Tomas as they travel through space and time, meeting up with various notable super-heroes, and in some cases, influencing their past and future lives. On a quest to find the missing Will Payton - a hero who once bore the moniker Starman, and the brother of Jack's sweetheart, Sadie - the two friends find themselves becoming involved in a number of alien conflicts, from their efforts, together with Adam Strange, to counter a violent attack upon an interstellar peace conference on Rann, to their involvement in an uprising on Crown Imperial, where they help to reinstate the long absent Prince Gavyn (who turns out to be someone very familiar indeed!). Along the way, readers gets to meet everyone from Superman's father to Space Cabbie (I really liked Space Cabbie!), and to digress into some "Tales of Times Past" with the Shade.

As a latecomer to the comic-book/graphic novel genre, I continue to be amazed at how much I have enjoyed this series! At the instigation of a friend (thanks, Michael!), I began reading Starman in the trade paper editions - Starman: Sins of the Father, Starman: Night and Day, Starman: A Wicked Inclination - before moving on to the Omnibus editions with the second installment. It's hard to believe that there is only one more volume left! I did enjoy this fifth entry in the series - favorite moments include Jack's reaction of horror, when he discovers that his tattoos have been wiped clean, following his miraculous resuscitation on Rann - although I did not think it quite the equal of what came before. It all felt just a little too diffuse, and some of the adventures seemed too easily resolved, the challenges too quickly overcome. The entire thing lacked the kind of narrative tension I was expecting. Also, I think that I prefer Tony Harris' work to Peter Snejbjerg's, although that may just be a question of becoming accustomed to something new.

In any case, despite these quibbles (and they weren't significant enough to merit a single star deduction), I enjoyed The Starman Omnibus, Vol. 5 immensely! I actually have an advance copy of the sixth sitting right in front of me, and I hope to dive in, in the next week or so! ( )
1 vote AbigailAdams26 | Apr 14, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
James Robinsonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Champagne, KeithIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Davis, DanIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Goyer, David S.Storysecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hamilton, CraigIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Harris, TonyIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hennessy, AndrewIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Johns, GeoffContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McCrea, JohnIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Moder, LeeIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ross, DavidIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sadowski, SteveIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Snejbjerg, PeterIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Snyder, RayIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Stokes, JohnIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
von Grawbadger, WadeIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Weston, ChrisIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Yeowell, SteveIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed

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The acclaimed series STARMAN, starring a Gen-X super hero from the 1990s, is re-presented in high quality format. In this volume, Starman embarks on a personal space odyssey to find the long lost brother of his girlfriend. But when a chance encounter sends Starman sprawling through time, Jack ends up sharing an adventure with the futuristic Legion of Super-Heroes, battling aliens alongside Adam Strange and meeting Superman's father on a still intact planet Krypton.
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