World’s Finest 283 – the Composite Superman returns, the Atom guests, and Green Arrow shoots for the mouth

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The Composite Superman returns, decades after the death of Joe Meach, in World’s Finest 283 (Sept. 82), by Burkett, Tuska and McLaughlin.

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After a preliminary scene with a mysterious character escaping a prison in outer space, the story shifts to Earth.  Batman runs into Superman, who tries to kill him, and then Superman faces a Batman armed with kryptonite.

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Angry and confused, the two heroes confront each other.  But any overall plan to turn them against each other is cut short when the Composite Superman phases through the walls to attack them.  They are aware that Meach died, and puzzled as to how the Composite Superman can still be alive.

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Burkett really utilizes the various powers of the Legion of Super-Heroes members that the Composite Superman has – much moreso than in either of the character’s original stories.  A very good first chapter, weakened only by Tuska’s art.  At the end, Superman thinks of running back to his Fortress in fear, knowing that the Composite Superman is reading his mind.  In fact, he heads off to the future to see the Legion.

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This issue also has a short, but fun, Atom tale by Rozakis, Novick and McLaughlin.  It’s kind of a shame that this two pager is on facing pages.  A mugger approaches a man walking down the street, and the kicker is that this is really the Atom, walking around as Ray Palmer.  The wrong man to mug.

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Barr and Kane conclude the devious revenge plot by the mother of a boy Green Arrow killed.  Although it appears that Green Arrow killed Slingshot in the previous issue, in fact he noticed the difference in weight with the arrows, and shot Slingshot in the shoulder.

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Slingshot realizes he was set up by the woman.  Green Arrow follows him as he heads back and takes both her and Black Canary hostage, demanding a one on one fight with Green Arrow.  Arrow agrees, as long as he will let both women go no matter what the outcome.

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But rather than fight Slingshot directly, and take the chance that he will go back on his word, Green Arrow fires his shot at Black Canary, ripping her gag.  She wastes no time in using her cry, taking out Slingshot. The woman who had planned all this winds up feeling very guilty, even moreso as Green Arrow risked his life for hers.

While Green Arrow returns in the next issue, Black Canary ends her tenure in World’s Finest with this issue. Slingshot is done, no more appearances for him.

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