THIS WEEK: Superman and Supergirl face their nightmares in Knight Terrors: Superman #2.

Note: the review below contains spoilers. If you want a quick, spoiler-free buy/pass recommendation on the comics in question, check out the bottom of the article for our final verdict.

Knight Terrors: Superman #2

Writer: Joshua Williamson
Artist: Tom Reilly
Colorist: Nathan Fairbairn
Letterer: Ariana Maher
Cover Artist: Gleb Melnikov

The two-month Knight Terrors event is approaching its conclusion, and the numerous two-issue event tie-in miniseries have been wrapping up all month. This week has a few conclusions, but only one from the architect of the overall event. Knight Terrors: Superman #2 concludes writer Joshua Williamson and artists Tom Reilly & Nathan Fairbairn dive into the Man of Steel’s deepest anxieties, with a side of Supergirl and Lois Lane’s for good measure.

The strongest event tie-ins are the ones that both advance the overall event storyline while also pushing forward a title’s existing threads, and Knight Terrors: Superman has checked both of those boxes. It helps that Williamson is writing the Superman ongoing series, so he’s able to seamlessly bring in elements like Marilyn Moonlight and Metropolis’s secret history and use the goings-on of Knight Terrors to flesh those out.

As the lead on the overall event, too, Williamson uses this series to more fully explore what’s going on outside of everyone’s dreams, and bringing Aquaman into the mix here is a really nice addition, especially since he didn’t get his own tie-in series. The whole series has just been that much more satisfying as a reader of both the ongoing series and the overall event.

Williamson also uses dream logic extremely well in this series. One of my complaints about the event tie-ins in general is that the stories have been so linear, when that’s just not how dreams work at all. For my money the Poison Ivy tie-in has done the best job of capturing the feel of being in a dream, but Superman and the Williamson-written Batman tie-in both come in a close second and third. Having Superman, Supergirl, and Lois know that they’re in a dream changes the dynamic, and it’s entertaining to see their rational, alert minds try to make sense of the craziness going on around them. I understand why two months of titles that make no sense probably wouldn’t have worked, but it sure would’ve been a lot of fun, and I’m glad at least a few of the tie-ins were able to recreate that vibe on the page.

Of course there’s no vibe without the visuals, and Tom Reilly and Nathan Fairbairn knock it out of the park on this book. Knight Terrors may be a horror event, but this Superman series has been very clearly an action comic (no, not Action Comics), and Reilly and Fairbairn are the perfect team for that. Reilly’s linework is clean and energetic, his characters moving effortlessly throughout the page, which makes the already-big action all the more dynamic. Fairbairn’s colors make even the darkest sequences pop off the page beautifully. Of particular note is the team’s work on the Aquaman scenes, as they bring the fluidity of underwater movement to the page expertly, along with the intensity of Aquaman’s battle with one of the Sleepless Knights, a sequence which finds the hero swimming through a river of flood and kind of just laughing it off. It’s an incredible scene, and Reilly and Fairbairn crush it.

It makes sense that DC would release the Knight Terrors tie-in stories as their own series. Single-issue comic fans are a notoriously finicky bunch who both dislike when an event storyline ‘interrupts’ what’s going on in an ongoing series and also dislike stories they feel are ‘skippable’ or not important to the overall universe of stories being told. Knight Terrors: Superman makes a strong case for not separating a character’s event tie-in from their main title, though. It’s an effective tie-in to Knight Terrors while also advancing and enhancing the stories Williamson is already telling in the pages of Superman. It’s great work from a fantastic creative team, and it has me excited to check out Williamson & Reilly’s next collaboration on Skybound’s Energon Universe Duke series.

Final Verdict: BUY.


  • Elsewhere in Knight Terrors tie-ins, the Wonder Woman tie-in features a main story by Josie Campbell, and Juan Ferreyra in which the amazing Amazon confronts the contradictions of the character head-on. It’s a nice meta-commentary on Diana that addresses criticisms readers have of her modern characterization, and that embraces those contradictions rather than shying away from them. 
  • Outside of the event storyline, Batman/Superman: World’s Finest #18 begins a two-part story in which Mark WaidTravis Moore, and Tamra Bonvillain update the first meeting between Batman and Superman. There are clever references to other first meeting stories – where else are we ever going to see Magpie pop up – and the requisite lines of dialogue that are ironic given what readers know about the characters’ futures. This series continues to be a blast to read.
  • Harley Quinn: Black, White, & Redder continues with a trio of stories spotlighting everything people love about Harley. The standout here in my opinion is the issue’s first story from Kelly ThompsonAnnie Wu, and Clayton Cowles, as Harley struggles to get out from under the shadow of her origin being tied to The Joker. It’s a smart story about character growth beyond one’s origins and letting the past define us, and it’s also really damn funny.

Miss any of our earlier reviews? Check out our full archive!