DC Comics proves they love their audience by giving them what everyone wants at this time of year: a valentine. "Young Romance: The New 52 Valentine's Day Special" is a new one-shot featuring six love stories which star Batman, Catwoman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Nightwing, Aquaman, and more. The publishing giant isn't content to just scour the past pages of their books to capitalize on the holiday. They hired new creative teams to give us fresh stories filled with Valentine fun.
Batman urges Catwoman to "Think It Through" in the first story. Readers get to experience the fateful night the two met and began their complicated relationship. Emanuela Lupacchino brings Ann Nocenti's words to life with her precise illustrations.
Aquaman and Mera find their lives mimicking that of a centuries old love affair ending in tragedy in "The Lighthouse." Cecil Costellucci pens a touching tale of unrequited love finally being quenched. Inaki Miranda lends his exhilarating art to visually tell Costellucci's tale.
Batgirl gives a down-on-his-luck ex-con his wish in Ray Fawkes' "Dreamer." Artist Julius Gopez knows how to effectively capture emotions and actions through his work. Writer Fawkes obviously knows a little something about pining for the love of someone thought to be unattainable.
"Seoul Brothers" features Apollo assisting Midnighter in a battle against Uranium-stealing thugs. After Midnighter spurns Apollo's romantic advances, the super hero hits the night life looking for love in other places. It's a same-sex Valentine story authored by Peter Milligan which, quite honestly, feels like a forced attempt at zeroing in on that audience. Simon Bisley's art is a welcome component of this tale.
Nightwing partners up with Ursa Minor to kick some criminal booty in Kyle Higgins' "Another Saturday Night." The two take some time to unwind and reflect on their lives after the job is done. I really enjoyed Sanford Greene's unique artwork. It stood out to me from the rest for some reason.
Writer Andy Diggle is set on ruining what could be a nice quiet date night for Superman and Woman in "Truth or Dare." The Mantic Sisters plan to spoil the evening with their siren songs of destruction. Penciller Robson Rocha fills the panels of this entry with equal parts action and romance.
The issue also includes free collectible Valentine's Day cards featuring many of the main heroes from the DC Universe. There's also a news report from Bethany Snow of Channel 52 covering little snippets of stories from the pages of DC Comics. I'm not entirely sure what this was all about.
"Young Romance: The New 52 Valentine's Day Special" was a fun read. Most of the stories did a good job of mixing romance and adventure together. It's perfect for anyone who loves super heroes and romance stories… whoever that might be.