Knight Terrors: Superman #2, “Maid of Mayhem!” brings Supergirl into the fray as the DC Summer event races towards its conclusion. Kara invaded Clark’s nightmare world at the end of last issue and now we get to see her journey to that moment. Meanwhile it appears Atlanteans are immune to Insomnia’s assault as Aquaman and Mera devise a way to wake Superman from his slumber.
Taking a look at the various cover art, the main cover is brought to us by Gleb Melnikov. A great eerie piece as Earth’s survivors of Krypton easily vanquish a group of animated skeletons. Superman’s eyes are colored red without the distinctive glow that generally accompanies his heat vision giving him an otherworldly presence. Topped off with a background that purposefully clashes with Superman and Supergirl’s outfits and the result is fitting for this horror inspired tale.
The variant by Jon Bogdanove & Hi-Fi is another chilling scene. The notion of a helpless Superman slipping towards his death by drowning is terrible enough on its own, but the addition of his hand breaking the surface of the water pushes it towards the horror trope. The dark and muted colors sell the bleakness of Clark’s situation. Knowing the unlikely scenario that would find Superman in a position where he couldn’t escape from drowning doesn’t lessen the worry or fear this visual marvel conveys.
Mikel Janín’s variant showcases Kara’s tenacity as she crawls through a pile of Kryptonite. The look of determination on her bloodied face sums up her relentless resolve and survivor’s willpower. You can almost see her arms tremble from the weakness beset by kryptonite poisoning and yet it’s an awe-inspiring piece as she overcomes the seemingly impossible.
The other two variants are by Pete Woods and John Giang and follow suit with the horror theme of the Knight Terrors event.
Artist Tom Reilly and Colorist Nathan Fairbairn go all out with the interior art. Blending different styles between the nightmare realm and the waking world, these two make it easy to tell where we are at any given panel. There’s some definite homages to different eras of comics as Superman’s look changes from setting to setting as well as all the zombie versions of past Supergirls. It’s simply a visually fun book made more impressive by the fact one art team did the entire comic.
Writer Joshua Williamson, lettered by Ariana Maher, not only touches on Kara and Clark’s relationship but also brings in a little team Aquaman to make it an entire family affair. The story picks up a little before we left off in issue #1 by following Kara’s nightmares before finding Clark. From there the two try to figure out each other’s fears and quickly realize their demons hold little sway over them. In true Clark fashion, he figures out a way to seek out Lois who’s been fighting off her own array of cleverly conceptualized nightmare creatures.
In the waking world, Aquaman and Mera uncover the mystery surrounding why Atlanteans aren’t affected by Insomnia’s abilities and use that knowledge to block his power over Superman. Williamson even manages to subtly progress the story behind Marilyn Moonlight tying the book to his current Superman run. For a two-part interlude, Knight Terrors: Superman #2 was fun and managed to feel relevant to the main storylines of today’s Superman titles.