Krypto The Superdog #1
DC Comics (November, 2006)
“Here Comes Krypto” (based on the episode “Krypto’s Scrypto” by Alan Burnett & Paul Dini)
and “The Dark Hound Returns”
WRITER: Jesse Leon McCann
PENCILER: Min S. Ku
INKER: Jeff Albrecht
COLORIST/LETTERER: Dave Tanguay
ASSISTANT EDITOR: Rachel Gluckstern
EDITOR: Joan Hilty
The first episode is a truncated version of the first episode. Krypto comes to Earth after a test flight malfunctions. (It’s not like we haven’t used test animals in our early space program. Virtual mentor Jerzy Drozd even wrote a graphic novel about it with his wife.) He comes across Kevin, a boy whose family just moved to Metropolis and is having trouble making friends. Krypto also gives Kevin an earpiece that translates animal speak. (It’s a kids show, if you haven’t guessed.) When danger strikes and Superman’s away Krypto takes on the identity Superdog and saves the day, later learning that Superman is the boy who owned him on Krypton. But with Superman always busy he’s going to have to stay with Kevin, to everybody’s delight. So only Superman and Kevin know Krypto’s secret. Well, and Kevin’s little sister, but she can’t talk well yet.
I would have rather seen the episode fully adapted instead of this shorter adaptation but it does give all the important details in case the reader hasn’t seen the show and wants to follow along. The show’s DCAU influences are obvious not only with the episode’s writers but Superman’s design being closer to the DCAU version, just with a better chin. The art style resembles the show perfectly, which is what I want in a cartoon adaptation and expect no less from Min S. Ku. It’s also not a bad explanation of where Krypto goes when he isn’t with Superman even in the comics. Overall it works okay and leads into the main story of the issue.
In that story the Joker sends his hyenas, Bud and Lou, to spread laughing gas underneath the city, causing the rats and other animals underground to go into fits of laughter strong enough to cause an earthquake in Gotham City. (Again, kids show/comic.) Ace the Bathound calls Krypton and Streaky the Supercat (I hope a future issue adapts his origin episode as well) to help. I don’t remember the regular DC villains being connected to the crimes of their pets on this show, and the Joker is really going to accept the stolen loot while still in Arkham? Otherwise it’s a fun story with the Superpets.
It shouldn’t surprise you if you’ve been reading this site for any decent length of time that I was enjoying this show despite being in probably my 30s when this came out. I’m not sure why I didn’t get the other five issues of the miniseries after reading this one but I didn’t. I kind of wish I did. It’s a fun series of adventures with Krypto and his friends. The Dog Stars also showed up in the series, and all these hero pets showed up in the comics while the hyenas and Catwoman’s cat Isis were both from Batman: The Animated Series. Other pets were given to Lex Luthor and I think a few others, while untied criminal animals also show up in the show. This is a great show for kids and those of us who enjoy lighthearted stories like this. This issue serves its tie-in show well and is worth taking a look at.