Review: Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #26

“Impossible” Part One
Writer: Mark Waid
Artist: Dan Mora
Color Artist: Tamra Bonvillain
Letterer: Steve Wands
Review by Bryant Lucas

The cosmos is in chaos, as Earth is invaded by 5th-dimensional imps, in this month’s Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #26.

The issue picks up where the World’s Finest 2024 Annual and World’s Finest #25 left off, with chaos in the 5th Dimension.  Bat-Mite and Mr. Myxzptlk have been on the run from a terrible unnamed foe who has murdered a group of their friends.

Naturally, the mischievous imps make their way to Earth in search of help from the World’s Finest. After making contact with Batman and Superman, they suddenly receive distress calls from other League members. Flash and Green Lantern are attacked each by a villain who now also has a 5th-dimensional counterpart.

It turns out that Earth is facing an invasion of evil 5th-dimensional imps, each with an affinity for a DC supervillain. The teams split into two groups to deal with the threats only to discover that there’s a more powerful and sinister force behind these attacks.

Transdimensional Shenanigans

Confession: I’m a sucker for 5th-dimensional stories. I love both Bat-Mite and Myxzptlk, so I’m predisposed to liking sagas like this one. Waid’s script is a lot of fun, as he brilliantly captures the zaniness that has traditionally gone hand-in-hand with each of these iconic characters. From granting superpowers to summoning mech suits, these imps get up to a mess of fun and trouble.

Waid also differentiates between these very similar imps by giving each a distinct voice. Mr. Myxzptlk was created as a goofy sci-fi villain for Superman back in the 40s. Bat-Mite, however, didn’t arrive until the 50s, as DC attempted to produce more kid-friendly Batman comics. Therefore, DC poached the tone of Superman comics/villains for Batman, creating what’s often seen as one of the lower points in the Dark Knight’s history.

Accordingly, it’s easy for Bat-Mite to come across as a carbon copy of Mr. Myxzptlk. Using Robin as an analog for the readers, Waid has Superman pithily distinguish between the two imps, pointing out how each differs in their relationship to their corresponding hero. Bat-Mite all but worships Batman while Mr. Myxzptlk simply likes to annoy Superman.

Narrative-wise, he continues the trend by pairing Mr. Myxzptlk with Batman and Bat-Mite with Superman. This allows Waid to once again use each of the characters as foils, contrasting each imp with the opposite hero. It’s a clever writing tool that leads to some fun interactions.

5th-Dimensional Art

As usual, Dan Mora’s art is phenomenal, some may even say transcendent (I can hear your groans from all over the world). Seriously, Mora’s vision of 5th-dimensional nonsense is great. He captures the loony-tunes aesthetics of these characters masterfully.

What’s even more impressive is how he translates this style into his designs for the 5th-dimensional imp villains. These knock-offs look both goofy and malevolent at the same time. He absolutely nails it, and I’m incredibly excited to see more of the new imps in the coming issues.

Conclusion

Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #26 is another great issue in an all-star run. I might be a simple man to please, but there’s something delightful about 5th-dimensional imps, they just bring me joy. That being said, it’s worth noting that this title’s consistency is remarkable, as Mark Waid and Dan Mora continue to produce comic book gold. It remains fresh after two years, and there’s no sense that this title will be slowing down anytime soon.

Final Verdict: Bring on the 5th Dimensional War!

Images Courtesy of DC Entertainment


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