Thursday, September 3, 2015

Tales From the 50 Cent Bin! - Supreme #41

Next up on the list is a character I know little about: Supreme. He was created by everyone’s favorite 90’s whipping boy, Rob Liefeld. He first appeared in Youngblood and then got spun off into his own title. From what I’ve read online, he had the powers of Superman but not the morality. He wasn’t a bad guy but he was willing to have blood on his hands.  His origins were also pretty incoherent. The guy even went up against Thor and Loki… no, not Marvel’s Thor and Loki. This Thor actually had red hair but no beard.

Somehow, Liefeld was able to get Alan Moore, the bearded dude himself, to come write on the book. Apparently, Moore’s only condition was that he could pretty much ignore what came before with the character. From what I’ve seen online and actually read with those early issues, I can’t blame him. The ones I read (look, they were cheap) weren’t horrible but they weren’t any good either. Supreme #41 was published by Maximum Press aka Awesome Comics and released in 1996. All I know is that Liefeld was over that thing. Moore wrote the issue. Joe Bennett provided the main pencils and Norm Rapmund provided the main inks. There are also some pencils and inks done by Keith Giffen and Al Gordon. I’ll list the rest below.

Supreme #41
Writer: Alan Moore
Pencils: Joe Bennett and Keith Giffen
Inks: Norm Rapmund and Al Gordon
Colors: Reuben Rude
Letters: Todd Klein
Editorial Assistant: Brent Braun
Editor: Eric Stephenson

“Supreme Story of the Year Part 1”
The story begins with Supreme returning from a mission in space. It apparently involved the evil Loki (that guy’s everywhere) and alternate versions of himself. He’s shocked to find the Earth flickering. It’s like he’s seeing two versions of everyone. He’s wondering if he’s still under some sort of spell when other versions of Supreme show up and try to talk to him. They even got a jive-talking black woman from the 70’s… you just have to read that dialogue. At first, Supreme thinks it a trick and attacks one of them. Suddenly, he gets knocked out by Squeak the Supremouse and I start to smile.
Man, Sister Supreme sounds like someone try to be hip and failing completely at it. Hilarious!

Supreme wakes up and realizes that this is not a trick. They tell him that he needs to come with them to a place called the Supremacy before the Earth revamps itself. Hmm… they’re wearing white and they’re from the Supremacy? Well, they do have a black woman and a talking mouse with them, so they seem alright to me! Realizing that “this $#!$ be cray cray”, Supreme leaves with them and heads into the portal. After they exit the portal, Supreme finally sees the Supremacy, a big gold city filled many different versions of Supreme. They take Supreme to their leader, Supreme the Fifth. He and the original Supreme inform our Supreme about this place which exists in a dimension called Limbo. Whenever Earth is revamped, the Supremes end up in the Supremacy. Our Supreme is the newest incarnation (avatar) and the rest want to have a celebration for him.
Oh man... and I thought Supreme looked ridiculous at times! At least someone might like it... also the person who created Vampirella might want to sue.

At the celebration, Supreme runs into other versions of himself. He even runs into his sidekicks who decide to stay there. He even sees some other supporting cast members that belong to some guy named Superman. He also has the choice of staying in Limbo or heading to his new Earth. He does consider it but realizes that this new Earth will need him. He goes through a new portal and ends up at his work place in civilian clothes. He is Ethan Crane, a comic book artist for Dazzle Comics. After he runs into his editor and possible love interest (Diana Dane?), he heads home to his apartment. The issue ends with Supreme trying to see what this new Earth will bring him.


So, it looks like this Moore guy is really going places! Sarcasm aside, I really enjoyed this issue.  It felt like straight-up homage to Superman’s history. Moore grew up in that Silver Age era, so he just lets all of that history ooze on the pages. You see it in the dialogue and even some of the art. The story was pretty interesting. It felt like he was riffing on comics itself with the whole revamps/reboots thing. The dialogue was also quite nice. Even though it had that Silver Age feel, I liked it and some of it even made me laugh.

Supreme himself was a bit bland though that may had been the point. He had no memories and is really along for the ride while his world is renewed. The artwork is decent for an issue with not much action. Everything flowed pretty well and it didn’t get confusing with all of the different Supremes running around. It is definitely of its time though with all of the overly muscled bodies and questionable art choices. You definitely see it with Supreme’s huge arms. Still, there are enough good things in the artwork that makes it good.

Overall, this was a nice treat. I definitely want to check out the rest of Moore’s run and see if it continued to be good. If current Superman isn’t doing it for you, then this is something you might like. Well, it’s time to move on to another superhero. Peace and God Bless.


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