The Ame-Comi Girls series is a peculiarity in that it’s a digital-only set of releases that focus on a DC continuity in which only women have superpowers — heroes, villains, and all. By this logic you have a wide spectrum of familiar characters showcased, ranging from Batgirl, Wonder Woman, Powergirl, the Joker (Joker’s Daughter, to be more succinct), and most recently, Supergirl. The comics themselves are actually based on the line of figures: vibrant, sexy, and quite bubblegum in nature. Explosions of color, distinct art styles, and intriguing narrative choices are the hallmarks of this mini-series, spanning five three-issue arcs.
Supergirl #1 is the fifth three-issue tale to have entered into the fold, and follows up where the last issue of Power Girl’s run left off. We open to expository dialogue on Krypton, foretelling the prophecized destruction of the planet by the hands of Brainiac. Power Girl finds Supergirl stranded in a cornfield with a female version of Brainiac wreaking havoc on Earth, just like the prophecies foretold. Jor-El and Zor-El had previously made attempts to stave off the invasion to no avail. As the battle wages on, Supergirl comes to, realizing the responsibility of stopping Brainiac from annihilating Earth with the help of her android army and other villainous allies rests on her shoulders.
If that seems like a rather flat synopsis, that’s actually a succinct retelling of every single bit of content in this extremely short issue. Across roughly 20 pages, expository dialogue is relayed through flashbacks and back-and-forths between Power Girl and Supergirl, while (presumably) Brainiac’s androids hover in the air without bothering to attack the two blonde heroines conversing in the middle of the field. Aboard Brainiac’s ship we get a nod to Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, and Duela Dent as they witness the destruction from their safe haven, but the villains get one line each between them. In short, this first issue acts mainly as a prelude to the war that is soon to break out.
It’s all set to a dizzying symphony of enormous breasts, too-short skirts, and unbelievable awkward poses. “What?? That’s INSANE!” exclaims Power Girl in a particularly terrible panel after Supergirl (rather predictably) drops a bombshell on her cousin. While the art direction in general is still a breath of fresh air and character designs are admittedly intriguing, some of the poses here are geared more toward spotlighting T&A than making attempts at a believable plot. Having come into the series late and read the back issues only far enough to bring myself up to speed, there may be more moments spready throughout the Ame-Comi series with more substance, but judging solely on Supergirl #1, less-than-stellar writing, strange proportions, and slow pacing seem to be the norm.
It’s a shame, as Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray are certainly capable of better, and Emanuela Lupacchino’s phenomenal cover depicting Supergirl floating in the depths of space is almost false advertisement for the lesser art within as well as the predictable sludge. With a brilliant premise such as this one, Ame-Comi has seemingly missed a great chance at doing something interesting with familiar DC characters in swapped gender roles, and this close to the end, they’ll need to pull out some phenomenal tricks to up the overall quality. I’m hoping the last two issues end up more than an over-abundance of puzzled Power Girl faces and Supergirl’s skimpy costume close-ups.