It sounds daft, but the situation was played straight in the Superman titles of the time, and it made for good drama. This Convergence tie-in, though, sees writer Keith Giffen play the scenario for cheap - but funny - laughs. And he doesn't entirely deny the Matrix Supergirl - Mae to her mates - the respect the protoplasmic proto-heroine deserved.
The story opens with Supergirl and Lex Luthor meeting in a park, in a Metropolis surrounded by a dome created by Brainiac lackey Telos. Lex is moping because Superman isn't around to pester - I assume this takes place during his self-imposed space exile - so he feels he has no purpose.
He's incredibly rude to Mae, but as she's his bodyguard and hasn't hasn't yet developed much sense of self-worth, Supergirl takes Lex's abuse rather than punching him into next Tuesday. When the dome goes down, Lex sends her on a maguffin mission involving a way to get off the world.
Howard Porter and Hi-Fi's cover is decent, but doesn't represent the book very well. I suspect it was commissioned before DC assigned Giffen the two-issue mini. But the opening page, well, that tells us what we're getting - JLI-level Giffen super-nonsense.
And while I should likely kick against Mae stereotyping by appearance, some gay men are a bit fey and melodramatic, while some lesbians do like the short hair. We know that in Nineties continuity Mae goes on to merge with teen Satanist Linda Danvers and make at least one gay pal, Andrea, who's also a space super-horse/angel (now THAT'S diverse), so consider her consciousness eventually raised.
The point here is that in seeing how Lord Volt and Lady Quark, victims of an arranged marriage - and I realise that in the real world there are many, many such matches that work, as love and respect grows - attack one another, Mae gets an insight into her own situation. She begins to realise Lex has no right to treat her like so much purple chewing gum on the sole of his shoe. And that's something that paid off in Mae's Nineties history.
The art by penciller Timothy Green II, inker Joseph Green and colour house Hi-Fi is light and airy, perfect for this issue. Their Mae is pretty darn delightful, while the unhappy couple that is Lord Volt and Lady Quark are kinda sexy in their own way. As for Lex, with that ginger Abe Lincoln beard, he looks as terrible as he did back then. The fight scenes have a lovely angular fluidity. And the final page is a real winner. It's great storytelling from start to finish. And that includes the contribution of letterer Corey Breen.
It's good to see a super-silly Supergirl story, I can't recall any since the original had a run-in with Ambush Bug. Here's hoping next issue continues the fun and games.