Review: The New Adventures of Superboy #39

The New Adventures of Superboy #39 cover
Cover by Gil Kane

The New Adventures of Superboy #39
Published and © by DC,  March 1983

Title: “A World Without Christmas”
Synopsis: Attempting to cheer up a classmate who has the seasonal blues, Superboy takes him to a parallel Earth without Christmas.

Writer: Paul Kupperberg
Artist: Kurt Schaffenberger

Review: Superboy is such a throwback title; this feels like a Silver Age book for younger readers. Paul Kupperberg’s dystopic tale of an alternate Earth has potential but doesn’t have the grit of a Bronze Age comic. Kurt Schaffenberger’s art is highly polished but is stylistically of another era.


Title: “Beyond a Shadow of a Doubt!”
Synopsis: Vicki and Chris become Rock and Roll to save a school bus and get the football team to the game.

Writer (plot): E. Nelson Birdwell
Writer (script): Bob Rozakis
Penciler: Howard Bender
Inker: Joe Giella

Review: Tries to capture the high-school dynamic of early Spider-Man tales – to no avail. Pedestrian, but fitting for this series.

Grade (for the entire issue): C+

Second opinion: “An intriguing story, with a level of theological undertones quite uncommon in comics back then.” – John G. Pierce, Comic Effect #45, Spring 2006

Cool factor: Let’s go with that Gil Kane cover.
Not-so-cool factor: Who, exactly, was the target audience for this series?

Collector’s note: According to the Grand Comics Database, there is a 75¢ Canadian variant of this issue.

Character quotable: “How d’you like that! Even on a whole other world Clark Kent’s a wimpy little coward!” – Bash “I’m not Flash Thompson” Bashford, showing his Christmas spirit

Editor’s note: This review was written Dec. 10, 2021.

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