Saturday, July 3, 2010

The World's Greatest Super-Heroes Hardcover Review

The World's Greatest Super-Heroes
DC Comics
Oversized Hardcover - Slipcased
396 pages
$49.99 (2005) $29.99 SC (2010)
ISBN 761941241661

Contributors: Alex Ross, Paul Dini, Todd Klein, and forward by Chipp Kidd

Reprints: Superman: Peace on Earth; Batman: War on Crime; Wonder Woman: Spirit of Truth; Shazam!: Power of Hope; JLA: Secret Origins; JLA: Liberty and Justice

Synopsis: Chronicled here are tales of four individual heroes facing the most difficult, unsolved problems of humanity. 
  • Superman vows to feed the hungry across the globe for one single day
  • Batman fights an unending war on crime and tries to make more than a temporary difference
  • Captain Marvel grants the wishes of the patients in a hospital's childrens' ward: from terminal patients to those suffering domestic abuse
  • Wonder Woman tries to fulfill her duties as ambassador to man's world, but feels ineffectual and is not being taken seriously
Finally, the Justice League rushes to stop a dangerous alien plague from devastating the entire population of Earth, while dealing with the fear and mistrust of a world on the brink of panic. 

Pros: Alex Ross' art is stunning in these often full-page splash presentations, Dini's take on super-heroes tackling real-world problems perfectly melds with Ross' realistic artwork, the Justice League has never looked so good, origin spreads for each character are fantastic, great sketchbook section with notes, pull-out pinups, quality slipcase edition (like an absolute edition)

Cons: Story often takes a back-seat to the art, outside of regular DCU events, title of edition is vague

Mike Tells It Straight: Fans of Alex Ross are in for a real treat with this collected edition.  I held off on buying the individual oversized graphic novels due to the abnormal size and feeling they would get damaged amidst my collection.  Good thing because this book is gorgeous, well constructed, and fits perfectly with my absolute editions.  I like the premise of super-heroes trying to solve real-world problems (haven't we all thought about this at one point?) although the stories were a bit sterile and somewhat bland.  The art more than makes up for anything the story lacks.  This book is one of those rare genre-defying pieces anyone can truly enjoy - from your grandfather to your toddler. 

TO BUY and Recommendations: