Review: Supergirl Vol. 3: Girl of No Tomorrow (Rebirth) trade paperback (DC Comics)

March 27, 2019

 ·  1 comment

Steve Orlando's Rebirth Supergirl Vol. 3: Girl of No Tomorrow improves upon the previous volume in that there's a greater sense of important things happening and more of the supporting cast utilized. The main story radically changes most every character in this book, which is good, though it all still seems a little thin.

I still believe this title's grave misstep was not using more of the supporting cast in Supergirl Vol. 2: Escape from the Phantom Zone, such that now when Supergirl faces loss and betrayal, the audience isn't significantly moved because there hasn't been  enough time spent establishing these characters' relationships. This series' similarity to the CW TV show is one of the best things about it, but I can't help thinking it's been leaning on that too heavily; we feel for what happens between Supergirl and these characters largely because we know them from elsewhere, not because of what happens on the page.

[Review contains spoilers]

Girl of No Tomorrow only collects three issues and an annual, which seemed short to me at the outset but feels satisfactorily full in the reading. The "Girl of No Tomorrow" story is two regular issues and the annual, which maybe counts as about four issues total, and the story is epic and action-packed throughout. Then there's one final issue, significantly talky and guest-starring New Super-Man Kong Kenan, such that even when the main story is over, there's still what feels like plenty more. Orlando delivers a lot of bang for the buck, which in some respects might be the most important thing.

There's a surely interesting moment at the end of the book in which Kara Danvers is privy to Cat Grant's secret plans to take down Supergirl, such that Supergirl will be able to fight what's coming in the next volume, albeit backhandedly. But notably this is one of the first times we've even seen Kara with Cat after more than a dozen issues of this series, such to make Cat's trusting of this information to a student worker (who's seemingly done nothing so far) rather absurd and makes the drama of Cat's betrayal kind of forced. We do at least get a scene of Kara at school early in the book, but when Kara's foster parents show up momentarily mid-story, it's rather a shock because they've rarely been seen and then almost immediately disappear again.

I'm inclined to be patient (though we know Orlando has just one more volume on this book), so perhaps it's unimportant that we barely know anything about the "Fatal Five" that Emerald Empress recruits against Supergirl here; maybe Orlando intends to reveal these origins in time. On one hand I can take for granted that Selena is some kind of sorceress (who's plagued Supergirl in other mediums over the years), but on the other hand Orlando's use of Indigo seems a weak spot.

Indigo is an established (pre-Flashpoint) DC character and I wasn't sure if this was meant to be the same Indigo (Orlando, after all, used a New Blood apropos of nothing in Justice League of America) or a new character. With Magog, at least, we got a throwaway line tying him to his New 52 appearances, but Indigo warranted no explanation and, continuity concerns completely aside, that took away from the impact of Supergirl's sadness over Indigo's death in the end (who/what ultimately did we lose?). The story perhaps seems to trade on Indigo's appearance in the Supergirl show, but to its detriment.

I did think, in the epilogue issue, that Orlando wrote New Super-Man very well, tying Supergirl's struggles with her powers directly into a storyline in that title and also very suddenly shunting Supergirl and New Super-Man into a potential international incident. The Super-titles are overloaded these day with Superboys, but I'd be happy not to see New Super-Man fade away, especially with the mix of goofy and heroic that Orlando portrays in him. At random, as well, Orlando's use of the Kryptonian werewolf Lar-On was unexpected fun in this story; though one more supporting character takes away from the other ones, this antagonist-turned-ally is interesting and I imagine we'll see more from him next volume before Orlando finishes.

Support Collected Editions -- Purchase Supergirl Vol. 3: Girl of No Tomorrow

I want to reiterate that Steve Orlando probably writes about the best portrayal of Supergirl since Sterling Gates, which is to say a young hero, still a little alien, but without the angst or delinquency we've seen in other runs. In fact, if one was coming to Orlando's run directly from the Supergirl TV show and was perfectly satisfied to imagine this Cat as that Cat, this Cameron Chase as a pseudo-Alex Danvers and Ben Rubel as Winn Schott, probably Orlando's Supergirl would be more than satisfactory. Maybe because I'm still smarting from the fact that the ties to Saturn Girl and Rebirth are almost nonexistent, Supergirl Vol. 3: Girl of No Tomorrow didn't quite do it for me, but I respect Orlando's intentions regardless.

[Includes original and variant covers, interior and cover sketches]

Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
Supergirl Vol. 3: Girl of No Tomorrow
Author Rating
3 (scale of 1 to 5)

Comments ( 1 )

  1. Fingers crossed for one day seeing Kong Kenan on the Supergirl TV show

    ReplyDelete

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