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2006-08-29 - 11:50 p.m.

I've never been a fan of Superman, in any of his incarnations, and it is at least partially because of this that I enjoyed It's a Bird, DC/Vertigo's decidedly unromantic take on the hero.

It's the autobiographical story of author Steven T. Seagle's struggle with a family secret, and his negative response to DC's offer to author the latest Superman comic book. If it sounds a little meta and po-mo, it's not quite that, although it suffers a little bit from the overseriousness endemic to all graphic novels.

Still, it's a smart and engaging tale, and the artwork by Teddy Kristiansen is remarkably moving.

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