Superman #42 Review: Entertaining, but the Bizarro Speech Gets Confusing

Superman #42 opens on Bizarro World, and we get to see how the Bizarro version of the Superman family looks and behaves. After this, we turn back to our world and our Superman family. Superboy is smitten with a girl in Kansas, and it leads him to minor conflict with his family.

Superman #42 cover by Patrick Gleason and John Kalisz
Superman #42 cover by Patrick Gleason and John Kalisz

While I do have a great love for Bizarro and how he and his kind speak, boy is it difficult to follow all the inversions when it's only Bizarro characters speaking to one another. That's the first big hurdle the comic throws at the reader.

To Superman #42's credit, the art team of Patrick Gleason and Alejandro Sanchez do a good job of filling in the gaps. You can intuit what's going on from the visuals, but that doesn't change how flustering it can be to try and follow all the Bizarro speak. Plus, it's still difficult to discern what Bizarro is trying to do in many scenes.

The Superboy plot is cute. He has a crush, it's interfering with his life, and he's embarrassed about it. Clark and Lois have good chemistry, and their dialogue is endearing.

The main problem with the Superboy sections is that there's no real sense of tension or genuine conflict. It's just him not doing his chores and getting in trouble with Lois. Set aside the Bizarro section, this just feels like fluff.

Superman #42 art by Patrick Gleason and Alejandro Sanchez
Superman #42 art by Patrick Gleason and Alejandro Sanchez

Gleason and Sanchez's art is quite good, and there are plenty of great spreads of Bizarro in all of his pale and meaty glory. Boyzarro and Lois-zarro look adequately creepy. A lot of the scenes in the Bizarro World are funny too. The color palette is played with well. The skies are grey, and everything looks just a little off in the Bizarro World.

All in all, Superman #42 is a fun enough read. It has its flaws, but I finished it satisfied with the experience. The Bizarro section is funny, and the art is great. This one gets a recommendation. Check it out.

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Joshua DavisonAbout Joshua Davison

Josh is a longtime super hero comic fan and an aspiring comic book and fiction writer himself. He also trades in videogames, Star Wars, and Magic: The Gathering, and he is also a budding film buff. He's always been a huge nerd, and he hopes to contribute something of worth to the wider geek culture conversation. He is also happy to announce that he is the new Reviews Editor for Bleeding Cool. Follow on Twitter @joshdavisonbolt.
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