Monday, May 31, 2010

Superman: Emperor Joker (Review)

Citizen's Grade: Impressive.

In Emperor Joker, a multipart story throughout the Superman titles, the Joker steals Mister Mxyzptlk's (a Superman Character from the 5th Dimension) reality altering power, remaking the entire world into a twisted caricature, with everyone in it stuck in a loop, repeating the same patterns over and over. The conflict focuses on the fate of Batman in this world, with the Joker torturing and killing his adversary every day, only to bring him back to life and do it over and over again.

Superman's powerful will allows him to fight off the Joker's influence enough to make contact with the weakened Mxyzptlk, who along with a less-powerful Spectre, encourages Superman to work out the Joker's weakness before reality is destroyed by the Joker's misuse of Mxyzptlk's power. As time runs out, Superman realizes that the Joker still cannot erase Batman from existence, as the Joker totally defines himself by his opposition to the Dark Knight; if the Joker can't even erase one man, how can he destroy the universe? The Joker's control shattered, Mxyzptlk and the Spectre manage to reconstruct reality from the moment the Joker disrupted everything, but Batman is left broken from experiencing multiple deaths. Superman has to steal Batman's memories so that he can go on, transferring them to the Joker and leaving him catatonic.

This is a great story if you're a Joker fan! Writers Jeph Loeb, Mark Shultz, & Joe Kelly join with Ed McGuinness & Scott McDaniel to tell the tale of the Joker's Universe gone insane! You cannot underestimate the masterpiece of work that is created when Jeph Loeb & Ed McGuinness team up (see: Superman/Batman series & currently The Hulk for Marvel Comics)!!!

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