After the humans attack on the city of Kandor left a very important Kryptonian dead, the rest of the race fire up their city and leave the Earth. Their destination ended on the other side of the sun, with intentions on living there away from the people of Earth. Superman travels to their planet apparently forsaking the Earth, but he really intends on keeping an eye on them, especially since their leader is former Phantom Zone inmate General Zod.
An assassination attempt on New Krypton has left General Zod in critical condition. The assailant is beaten senseless by the angry mob until he's saved by Superman and the Military Guild. They take the attacker for interrogation, but he makes an escape with his destination being Earth. Superman and Supergirl pursue him in an attempt to prevent a full scale war from breaking out between New Krypton and Earth. -summary
For starters, Superman: Codename Patriot is a crossover title in the New Krypton saga, and it's not at all a mere filler story. It's actually an essential crossover that must be read in between the third and fourth volumes. James Robinson, Greg Rucka, and Sterling Gates gets the ball rolling here as things begin to really heat up. This TPB contains World of New Krypton 6, Action Comics 880, Supergirl 44, Superman 691, and Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen 2.
Story wise, Codename: Patriot is firing on all cylinders. The plot follows Superman and Supergirl as they chase down would-be assassin Ral-Dar, revealed to be a Kryptonian who believes he's saving his people from Zod's mad ambitions that will almost guarantee a war with Earth. Their chase soon lands them into the cross-hairs of the true mastermind, General Sam Lane, who was already revealed to be alive and well, but Superman learns of this for the first time. Soon, Lane's plan quickly comes together as he ambushes multiple Earth-based Kryptonians such as Mon-El, Nightwing and Flamebird, with some serious heavy-hitting help on his side. The story is well put together with various surprises and whole sale action.
The direction is very strong here as the characters are further developed, and the story becomes even more engrossing. Lane I think lives up to his potential as a true villain. I enjoyed the way he was used through out this entire storyline, but I think here is when his presence is finally noticed. He's indeed a military strategist as he manipulates all of his enemies from behind the scenes, with a hint on not even being close to finish. The reader becomes fully aware that he has every intention on making sure the Kryptonians will be extinct by the close of this ordeal. Robinson and company also do well with the handling of their themes; such as creating public panic on the part of the Kryptonian race, where they no longer feel safe due to the attack on Zod. The confused and frightened state their in forces them to remember their torture at Brainiac's hands, which makes it kind of easy to sympathize with them. The people of Earth also fall victim to the usual media manipulation that plays a role with them losing trust in Superman. The writing team does a splendid job in playing with these multiple side plots and devices as they continue to build suspense at a brisk pace.
The story features non stop development and it would be the perfect, plot pushing crossover if not for one thing. It's not at all newbie friendly, because it doesn't exactly stand well on its own. Before this story took place with Superman leaving the Earth for New Krypton; he left Mon-El, another "Kryptonian" in his place to look over Metropolis. Along with him, two other Kryptonians by the names of Nightwing and Flamebird decided to look after things as well. Their individual stories which took place in Superman: Mon El, and Superman: Nightwing and Flamebird Volume One & Two fills in some of the obvious missing gaps, while Supergirl: Who is Superwoman? fills in the rest. The story can still be enjoyed, but the lack of knowledge of the things being mentioned may be distracting for those who aren't very well rounded.
Once again, the consistent artwork for this crossover is still very good. The character designs look as good as ever, and the action panels can be brutal yet entertaining, with some gorgeous and well detailed backgrounds.
Overall, Superman: Codename Patriot is an excellent follow up. Although it's clearly missing certain pieces, I can't say it's the least bit unreadable because the main gist of the story and plot is firmly intact. If you enjoyed this story arc up to this point, then here's something to look forward to.
Pros: -Heavy story development, action
Cons: -Has an obvious feel some things are missing.
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May 22, 2011
Jun 15, 2013 08:21 PM UTC
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