There's an awful lot of exposition this issue, and I couldn't be happier, as writer Justin Jordan elegantly, entertainingly links the cuddly Dr Psycho seen in this book of late with the thoroughly nasty lot shown in the Justice League's Trinity War crossover. He also connects this instalment directly to last week's issue of Action Comics, with the Psycho Pirate revealing that he's fighting Superman at the same time he's confronting Kon. Sharp dialogue and regular bouts of action ensure this isn't just a big old infodump, and there's a new wrinkle added as Superboy learns that Dr Psycho knows more about his clone origins than he was letting on, courtesy of Psycho Pirate ('You're a living organ bank').
It's sad to see Superboy realise that he hasn't yet stopped being everybody's patsy, and then give in to the anger Psycho Pirate is stoking in him, but I'm hoping the unpleasant epiphany will lead to a period of calm. Superboy's been too much the loose cannon in this series, his personality ever changing; it'd be good to see him cast off the shackles others have forged and make his own way in the world, embracing the heroism that seems to break through whatever programming he's been given by the likes of rubbish bad guy Harvest.
Robson Rocha's layouts are terrific, and there's also strong figurework, distinctive characters and compelling settings (just look at Dr Psycho's mindscape, complete with a crooked house). In a single, small panel he shows the state of mind of his three leads - Superboy unnerved; Psycho Pirate, commanding; Dr Psycho, despairing.
Brett Booth, Norm Rapmund and Andrew Dalhouse pencil, ink and colour a well-composed cover that shows off the Psycho Pirate's mental strength extremely well. Me though, I'm more excited by the logo colours - purple and white with a green tinge, a very rare combo and an attractive one.
Yeah, I'm sad. And I can't blame the Psycho Pirate.