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.
There’s not much belief in Gotham City
The final two General Mills Batman v Superman tie-ins take place in Gotham. #3 tells its story through Emily, a middle or high school student (I’m not entirely sure which) who has a close-up encounter with Batman. When her friends don’t believe her, she sets out to get proof. After all is said and done, she learns a valuable lesson about the importance of what we do–and even (especially) those things we do not.
In Emily, Marguerite Bennett creates a character with whom many of us can immediately sympathize. While the folks giving her a hard time seem to be friends, they treat her like an outcast because of their disbelief in her claims. Her desire to prove what she knows to be true is relatable–especially to the children who will likely make up the majority audience for this book (because we all know that most of the adults that go after these things will be keeping them in the package).
Bennett also one-ups the prior two installments by (wisely) choosing to limit her focus to a smaller problem. There are no extended battle sequences or perilous situations–the sorts of things that make a short book feel like empty calories (much like the cereal that accompanied this comic–SEE WHAT I DID THERE?). This does not, however, mean there aren’t some opportunities for sweet shots of Batman:
A ghost. A shadow. A legend.
Those sweet shots come courtesy of artist Marcus To and colorist Irma Kniivila, who together deliver the best art in the series. To’s figures look great, and his facial aesthetic–much like Silva’s in issue #1–is perfect for its context. It feels youthful, but not silly. Nothing ever comes across as too menacing or dark for children, but adults should likewise feel comfortable with the style. Kniivila, for her part, does a fantastic job of creating distinctive moods in the book’s various locations, and this “news chopper” view of Gotham is absolutely stunning:
- You like awesome artwork and want to stare at that aerial shot of Gotham for hours on end.
- You like cereal and happened to buy a box with this inside.
- You–like me–have never read anything by Marguerite and want to be pleasantly surprised by her strong storytelling and character work.
I’m torn between this one and #4. They’re both really good for different reasons. Suffice it to say that this one is excellent–a comic of such quality that the cost of Cocoa Puffs does not come close to a fair price (even if you buy your Cocoa Puffs when they’re not on sale, like some fancy-pants money bags person). This one was well worth the two boxes my wife bought the other day.