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REVIEW: DC’s Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #4

Mark Waid and Dan Mora’s Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #4 puts DC’s heroes face to face with the devil in a fun, beautifully drawn adventure.

The Man of Steel and the Dark Knight find themselves in danger from an unlikely antagonist as the power of Green Lantern’s light is turned against them in Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #4, written by Mark Waid, with art by Dan Mora, colors by Tamra Bonvillain and letters by Aditya Bidikar. The devil Nezha has gotten the upper hand, taking possession of Green Lantern, the rest of the Justice League, and countless civilians. Batman and Superman, who is naturally weak to magic, are left feeling remarkably vulnerable. It’s going to take everything these heroes have to stand a chance against Nezha.

Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #4 follows Batman and Superman as they unite to become the fusion hero Superbat, whose combined abilities are just enough to keep Nezha at bay. Meanwhile, Supergirl and Robin make their way back in time to seek the help of the Warriors of Ji to find a way to defeat Nezha once and for all. But the solution they find may require a terrible sacrifice.

Related: Batman Has Doomed the Justice League – Again

The World’s Finest series has been one of the most intense and visually beautiful DC comics in recent years. The rapport between Superman and Batman and the various other heroes and close friends they call teammates and family is the thematic backbone of this series and this issue. Even Supergirl and Robin’s chemistry is excellent and entertaining as the two young heroes travel through time.

Batman and Superman are the ultimate dream team of back-to-back badasses, with their opposite personalities, powers, techniques, and tactics balancing each other out, while they are united in their common desire for truth and justice.

But that’s not the only thing that unites them. In order to hold back Green Lantern’s power, the two heroes combine their willpower to absorb his energy and become one fused being in the process. This fusion is the biggest talking point of Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #4. Superbat, whose existence had been teased in a variant cover, is awesome to see in action, even if his existence is brief. Superbat isn’t portrayed as all-powerful or invulnerable. He wipes the floor with the possessed Justice league, but his powers run on borrowed time. It doesn’t take much for Nezha to keep up with and subdue Superbat, and once they are de-fused, it takes an intervention from Supergirl to save both Superman and Batman. It’s thrilling, if a little scary, to see these two beloved heroes overwhelmed despite their awesome power-up.

Related: REVIEW: DC’s Nightwing #93

Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #4 has some of the most beautiful visuals in any DC Comic. Mor’s art is absolutely stunning. He favores thin, intricate pencil lines to design characters with the right balance of realism, cartoonishness, and elegance. There are details throughout this issue that give the world depth and beauty — from the way Mora renders hair and clothes to the depiction of power and magic. The seamless design of Superbat is just as excellent, combining the subtle physiques of both heroes and adding equal details from each character’s costume to create a cohesive look. Tamra Bonvillain’s color palette is perfectly suited to these visuals. It is bright with just the right amount of softness and saturation to keep it from being dull but not overbearing. Her use of watercolor textures and solid flats complement the details of Mora’s line art.

Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #4 is deep, beautiful, nostalgic, and scary. This issue features the most incredible and anticipated eleventh-hour superpower fusion between two superhero icons. The stakes have been set for a potentially devastating and game-changing sacrifice against one of the strongest villains the franchise has seen.

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