It is a massive task, but with a most excellent result.
As part of DC Comics The New 52 second wave, the decision was made to relaunch one of it’s most iconic titles, and populate it with two characters with a, lets just say, complicated history.
The original World’s Finest lasted for decades and when it was cancelled in the mid 1980’s, it was a Superman/Batman team-up book. This revival stars the new, refreshed, version of two heroines pulled from the longtime history of both these dynasties, Power Girl and The Huntress.
For the younger set, Power Girl was the teenaged cousin of Superman on an alternate Earth, while Huntress was the daughter of Batman and Catwoman also on this Earth 2. This history was massively rewritten when DC did a reboot of its continuity with Crisis On Infinite Earths in the mid 1980’s. Both characters still existed, but DC kept plugging alterations onto them to make them fit into the modern mythos. With limited success. Now that DC has rebooted again, the original, unvarnished, versions of these classics are back, but with some of the modern trappings smartly still present.
Whew! Now that the Comics 101 lesson is over, all you really have to remember is that Power Girl is Supergirl and that Huntress is a female Robin. And they are both from Earth 2. The big twist this time? They are trapped on the wrong Earth, and trying to find a way back.
One star of the series is the aforementioned Power Girl, who is loud, brash, smart, rich, and very much an extrovert, running a big tech company whose chief job is to find a portal leading to home. And she has trouble keeping her costume intact during battles.
The other star of this series is The Huntress, who is smart, cunning, methodical, daring, and a bit of an introvert, who is also trying to find a way home. And she is “borrowing” money from this world’s Batman.
Most of the issues so far have split the stories between two time periods. Flashback vignettes show how they arrived on the wrong Earth, with progressive segments chronicling their journey to get home and keep a low profile. The current sections have shown some battles they have engaged in, and how they have adapted to a world not their own.
The twin joys of this series is the true friendship and character interactions between these two. Right from the start it is obvious they share a deep kinship, built over years of trust and heartbreak. The Zero Issue, which came out in September, shows their lives leading up to the big event, the first team-up between the duo, which is unfortunately tinged with tragedy.
The banter, physical cues, and strange humour they share defines these characters solidly. Writer Paul Levitz provides the best of both versions, all lovingly cobbled together. Artist George Perez, who builds the present day, brings an epic scope to their adventures. While artist Kevin Maguire, who allures us with the past, pops emotional moments into the narrative. The three together makes this impossible book possible.
World’s Finest, the first one, was the blending of the personalities of Superman and Batman, all in order to save the planet. World’s Finest, the current series, is the wonderful friendship of Power Girl and Huntress, all in order to save two planets.
They are Best Friends Forever. Just as it should be.
P.S. All images are copyright 2012 to DC Entertainment.