I found a bunch of Starman trades in a secondhand bookstore, which is rather appropriate, considering this particular iteration of the character. So I had to buy them, and now I’ve got yet another series I’m reading/rereading.
This is the Starman series by writer James Robinson and artist Tony Harris, which was highly acclaimed when it came out in the ‘90s. I bought the first two omnibus collections a while back and was impressed with them, and now I’ve got the later issues (still need to track down the middle ones, though).
The series starts with issue #0, as this was one of the new titles launched after DC’s Zero Hour crossover. I don’t remember any of those others, but Starman feels special right from the start. Robinson and Harris introduce us to a new fictional city, Opal City, and its new protector—David Knight, the older son of the original Starman (cue the David Bowie song).
With his father retired, David takes up the mantle. He’s the typical DC Comics legacy hero…until he’s assassinated right off the bat, setting events into motion that will force younger brother Jack to reluctantly assume the superheroic identity.
Jack has no interest in being Starman, and he even has some disdain for the concept. He’s a geek for antiques and collectibles, and he’s perfectly happy running a store full of them. But a hallmark of a great story is when the hero doesn’t get what he wants, but gets what he needs (cue the Rolling Stones).
Jack Knight will become a superhero, and he will carry on his father’s legacy. But as of this premiere issue, he’s not nearly there yet. And that’s a great start.
I’m looking forward to rereading these early issues and reading the later ones for the first time.
Writer: James Robinson
Artist: Tony Harris
Inker: Wade Von Grawbadger
Publisher: DC Comics
How to Read It: back issues; Comixology; included in Starman Omnibus vol. 1 (HC)
Appropriate For: ages 12 and up