Review Superboy #17 “Herald of a Lost Cause”



It’s the final countdown of H’el’s Star Machine. The solar flares that it draws its power from are reaching critical levels of radiation that have begun bombarding the Earth. Singularities have appeared all over the world and have commenced tearing through the delicate fabric of existence. The irony is not lost on Superboy who has begun disintegrating on the cellular level without the protection of his Kryptonian armor. The end is near and annihilation has fallen upon the earth. Superboy now gathers all of his strength to hold himself together for one last attempt to save the world he loves . . . at any cost.

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Whilst reading Superboy issue 17 I had a coworker walk over to my desk and ask me why I sound like an Adam West Batman show. The amount of onomatopoeia could have filled a 1960’s T.V show. This issue was so frustrating that I had no choice but to verbalize my feelings. When trying to find a word to describe this issue only one came to mind, overwritten. Tom Defalco is a good writer but his writing style is not right for this specific arc. Just about every line he wrote in this comic is over the top and unfitting for a character such as H’el or Supergirl. I’m unsure how an alien that has spent so little time on earth understand idioms. The most frustrating part of this issue was that in the end Supergirl is just a rebellious teenager who does not care about the consequences of her actions because she is in love. The dialogue in Superboy issue 17 just doesn’t work with the characters.


The illustrations in this comic are mediocre at best. Every panel is reminiscent of pictures I have seen in my middle school art class. R.B Silvia’s work on the previous Superboy issues has been stellar but this issue seems as though he has lost interest in his work. What really stands out and takes the average art work to a new plain is the color work. Richard and Tanya Horie cornucopia of color contrast is unbelievable. The bellowing smoke in the back ground the vibrancy of Superman’s armor, every panel leaps from the pages and touches the reader creativity.

Deflaco’s scrip is overwritten and mediocre in an already overwritten and mediocre crossover. The color work in the comic is astounding but could not right this sinking ship. This whole “H’el on earth” crossover just might be a lost cause. Superboy #17 gets a 6.5 out of 10. Needs some serious work.


Have you read “H’el on earth”? Do you like it? Discuss and comment below and follow me on Twitter @pzenns and thumblr