Reviews: The Last Son


I originally wrote a review for this fic a while back, then reread it recently. It has not aged well.

The Story Arc and world building are still astonishing.


The Character Development is variable in quality, plot points seem to be ticked off one by one, narrative style goes well past quaintly charming into childish, cheesy and irritating. It evokes the more nauseating elements of the Silver Age. This seems to be part of the author's Signature Style, as it doesn't mature across the books and is a serious problem, as it makes it difficult to build up tension.

On the same subject, there is also the lack of challenge for Superman, Gary Stu extraordinaire. Credit to the author, he rectified this in Book 3 with the introduction of General Zod, who proved to be one of the most compelling characters in the entire series, trading on its best parts, its complex world building and sense of history, and the emotional wringer he and Alison were put through, something that (mostly) ensured that she was Rescued from the Scrappy Heap, and from that point on, began to balance Marvel and DC better.

However, the treatment of Carol Danvers, particularly in Book 3, easily brushed past at first, is, on closer reading, abominable. She's of the first really strong, powerful female comics characters with real agency, a woman who kicks butt, stands up to torture, takes names, has a career and isn't going to be held down by anybody - but equally, isn't a Straw Feminist, has her share of romantic attachments and very real issues relating to alcoholism, a Stay in the Kitchen father, a boyfriend murdered by Mystique and Rogue's famous theft of her memories and powers.

The author, however, sees fit to reduce her to the classic hysterical woman stereotype, crossed over with a degree of racism ('ragheads') and classic right wing warhawk, who's full of issues because her husband died on tour in Afghanistan. In this, she gets her powers not out of a desire to fly and do good, but to become a Living Weapon, through SHIELD using Kree research on the Inhumans. This parallels many real world scientific advancements, good coming from bad. Instead, the author has Supes pull his Holier Than Thou routine and effectively dismisses her.

I am not impressed.

The Last Son

This fanfic is a fairly good DC/Marvel crossover, but it has some issues. Superman feels like a Gary Stu at times, ESPECIALLY at the beginning. His weaknesses are all quickly eliminated— kryptonite, annoyingly enough, by a quick-activating nanosuit, and magic by willpower, an infuriating development that has no basis in either marvel or DC. Most characters that weren't shown in Smallville or the animated shows are complete O Cs as well. Dazzler has very little resemblance to her canon marvel counterpart, several of the New Mutants have different character (Jamie Madrox especially), but the worst of all is Carol Danvers, who is transformed to a nice, heroic woman who was given her powers against her will to a horrible person who used an untested, dangerous technology on herself with no forethought just in case she was needed.

The story has good point— the plot is fairly well-done, and it's nice to see DC and Marvel characters interacting like this. The X-Men come across as a tight-knit family, which can create some legitimately heartwarming moments as well.

Read this story if:

You are a Superman Fanboy

You don't mind a super-powerful character that outclasses most everyone else

You like shipping comic book characters.

DO NOT read this story if:

You don't like Superman

You don't like In Name Only characters

You don't like a character who is above everyone else in power.

Good, but flawed

Okay, the world building and the plotting for this series are downright brilliant. The explorations of Krypton, Kryptonians, Sentrius, and the foreshadowing that is laid down from the start are fascinating.

But. There are several buts.

One, the DC characters drastically overpower the Marvel characters. Thor goes from someone who has, in the past, put down Superman and the Martian Manhunter at once, and been described by Superman as the most powerful enemy he ever fought, to someone on Storm level. Hulk gets beaten by needing to breathe. If he gets angry enough, he doesn't.

This can be excused by the author's admittance that they don't know much about the Avengers, which is fair enough, and what they do know is clearly based off the Ultimates, explaining Carol Danvers' characterisation.

Two, Kryptonians. If you're Kryptonian, you're basically God. Kryptonite? Destroyed or defeated by a special suit. Magic? Willpower. Other superhumans? Pwned by your amazing powers. Zod is badass, yes. But his main advantage over Superman is his experience and willingness to kill. Thor has him beat in the former and is quite willing to kill if needs be.

Three, Superman is a Gary Stu. Majorly. The only foes who he hasn't been able to beat solo are Galactus and Zod. He's super intelligent, super nice, super wise, super everything. I have yet to remember where, aside from on Zod, he was last wrong. Also, everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, is about him. Even Ragnarok. If you are against him in any way, shape, or form, you are not sympathetic.

Four, Alison Blaire. Oh my god, Alison Blaire. The world's most annoying Love Interest and Mary Sue. She improves over time, when the rest of the cast stop acting as her cheerleaders, and she develops an actual character. The best that can be said is that she's an easily ignored annoyance who has some redeeming features, most notably a genuinely Dark And Troubled Past, once she discovers it. The Empathy bond between her and Supes, however, is nauseating.

That said, the plot is compelling, it has a well fleshed out supporting cast, and some fascinating examples of world building. It is well worth reading... it just isn't perfect. Not by a long shot.

An epic work, although some complaints.

An very interesting DC/Marvel crossover and I have to agree with the epic battles with an all-star team with the Justice League and the X-Men. The author have a spin on villains from the likes of Lex Luthor and Zod we see from the comics have a basis for why they go bad while showing that they are just people that didn't just go born as evil and can be sometime nice. Although I have some consideration for the story, namely Superman being a Gary Stu and his love life which really borders too much on the soap opera genre, in which Quicksilver bluntly point out in the second chapter in Book 4.