General Mills Batman v Superman #1

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Coo-coo for comic books

Not content with merely making the World’s Finest cereal, General Mills has teamed up with DC to put collectible Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice comics in some of your favorite morning vittles. More than simple marketing gimmicks, these four minis feature creators whose names comic fans will recognize, and self-contained stories that feature various kids relating to our favorite heroes, both in concept and in person.

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Superman flew in

Issue #1 provides the perspective of Jacob, a young boy in Metropolis whose class prepares to take a field trip to S.T.A.R. Labs with none other than The Daily Planet’s own Clark Kent. But a fun day out is interrupted by an alien invasion and Jacob’s nagging feeling that he should have done more to help a neighbor in need. As expected, Superman comes to the rescue, but it is his selfless example more than his awesome power that leaves a lasting impression on Jacob.

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They’ve been reading your articles all month, Mister Kent

Jeff Parker writes a tight little script, with dialogue that rings true for school kids. Jacob is a likable character with an internal arc that feels just right for the length of story. While the “moral of the story” feel to the book’s resolution is a tad heavy-handed for an adult, I think it’s appropriate for younger folks, and I personally find it endearing to see superheroes presented as role models in a way they seldom are in comics today.

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Superman himself is just what you’d want him to be: strong, somewhat humorous, and an incorruptible beacon of goodness in the midst of tough situations. By all accounts, he is not the Superman we’ve seen in trailers for the film. Maybe that’s a problem for continuity between media, but I don’t mind it.

Silva, Marzan Jr., and Dalhouse produce artwork completely in harmony with the characters and subject matter. Faces are soft and simple without being cute, and the layouts and coloring are full of energy. Gary Frank’s cover, while not tonally consistent with the story itself, is quite nice, as well.

Recommended if…

  • You agree with the rabbit–Trix aren’t just for kids, and neither are comic books.
  • You enjoy a fun story with artwork that fits it like a glove.
  • You miss seeing Superman be Superman, in both comics and film.

Overall

I’ve been genuinely surprised by the level of quality in prior tie-ins to Batman v Superman, and I feel like this one took it up another level, particularly in the art department. That’s not to say that it is not also well written, which it is. Jeff Parker works masterfully within the limits of this mini-book’s length, and you end up with a fun story worth more than one reading. I would have gladly paid a buck or two to purchase this for one of my kids, and if you can say that about a free book that you got out of a cereal box, I’d say you’re coming out ahead.

SCORE: 7.5/10

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