Miracleman: The Silver Age #4 is the fourth issue of the Silver Age storyline. This chapter of the Miracleman saga was cut short after only two issues due to the demise of the publisher, Eclipse Comics. Subsequently, the rights to Miracleman were legally disputed between writer Neil Gaiman and Image Comics co-founder Todd McFarlane before Marvel Comics acquired these rights in 2013.
S P O I L E R S
Entitled “An Alien Walks Amongst Us”, Miracleman: The Silver Age #4 asks the pertinent question that undercuts the flawed premise of superhero franchises – “Now what?” Stories need to be finite to be effective and characters have to die to be engaging. Superheroes are forever and the characterisations and the plots necessarily suffer.
Phon Mooda, a white Warpsmith is summoned by the Black Warpsmiths – giant god-like beings similar to Marvel’s Celestials – to report on the Miracle Family’s stewardship of the Earth and the Young Miracleman problem. Mooda is uncertain and suggests that ultimately the Miracle Family’s reign is not viable or sustainable and neither is the utopia they have wrought.
Meanwhile, Dicky Dauntless continues to suffer his existential crisis as he seeks counsel from the former hero, Mister Master but finds the answers more troubling than his questions. In addition, Miracleman and Miraclewoman ponder their dilemma and are at a loss to come up with a solution that would adequately help Dauntless. The couple come across as naive and without agency despite their considerable powers. Intriguing contrast.
Miracleman: The Silver Age #4 comes up short, as if Gaiman has run out of ideas. He even inserts a filler reprint of Young Miracleman fighting Young Nastyman from the Mick Anglo days. Not a good sign. At least when Alan Moore utilised this as a framing device for Miracleman #1 all those years, it had story-telling relevance. Is this some kind of meta commentary that superheroes are archaic and irrelevant? Perhaps.
… still there’s more …