Ever since I was young I loved the issues of Batman and Superman when the two would team up. Even when I wasn’t a huge fan of DC Comics I thought these were some great stories. I feel the same way today and that’s why I really love Superman / Batman. Recently I got my hands on Superman / Batman Annual #1, a 38 page retelling of the Superman and Batman’s first team adventure which was originally published in Superman #76 in 1952.
The original tale involved Bruce Wayne and Clark Kent boarding a cruise ship along with Lois Lane. A fire breaks out and they each have to save the day, save Lois, and catch a jewl thief. This tale also involves the three characters aboard a cruise ship, but rather than a fire breaking out, there is a pan-dimensional rift where Owl Man and Ultraman show up, along with Superwoman and two Deathstrokes (see update at the end of this article). The overall story has a silly, over-the-top feel, but it is done very well. In fact, it offers an explanation for it’s silliness at the very end which I will not spoil for you. The front cover hints at this outcome in it’s title “a re-imaginary story”.
If you’re a fan of the monthly Superman / Batman series and haven’t picked up the annual, be sure to get a copy. Also, if you enjoy lighthearted stories that have no impact on later issues, this is a comic for you.
If you only enjoy comics with a serious tone, steer way clear of this comic because you’ll be very disappointed.
Personally, I really enjoyed reading this comic (I even laughed out loud a couple of times). The rivalry between Superman and Batman was nicely portrayed. I came away with a longing for a monthly series featuring retellings of older issues. Nicely done!
Update: It was brought to my attention that in fact there was one Deathstroke and one Deadpool which is awesome (Deadpool being a Marvel character that is almost identical to Deathstroke). This makes the book way more hilarious and I can’t believe that I overlooked that detail (cut me some slack… the two characters are basically twins. On top of that, they never say his name… I just figured he was an alternate Deathstroke).