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Review: Supergirl #52

Can Brainiac 5 tell Kara how he feels?

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Brainiac 5 struggles to keep the secret of his relationship with Supergirl secret while they try to shut down Brainiac's reactor core in the Last Stand of Krypton.

Characterization is the strong point here and Gates conveys a true spectrum of convincing personalities that Rodriguez  then conveys convincingly. As out there as a time-displaced love affair can get, there was a solid emotional core to latch on to. I also liked the device of dueling narrative captions, here, conveying (in a fun way) what these characters think of each other and what they're hiding from one another.

This issue's a reminder of just why DC had to do Crisis On Infinite Earths in the first place. Plot lines, particularly those relating to Superman, were just getting way too convoluted. I'm familiar with this stuff already and even I am having trouble keeping track of all the different timelines, the different versions of Krypton and the list of which ones have returned after Infinite Crisis and which ones haven't. Gates manages to keep it all focused here, but it's on the cusp of tying my brain into knots. On a small note, I thought the coloring on the characters was a little overly shiny in parts. People looked like they were wearing rubber.

With middle-act issues like this, it's really best to comment on how the story and characters, and I can say that I was involved in the steps of Braniac 5 and Kara's relationship. Characterization can frequently be lost in crossovers as big and crazy as this, but you can definitely relate to the green guy's anguish over not be able to tell the woman he loves how he loves her. This is worth picking up, even if you haven't been following Last Stand of New Krypton.