aaron_bourque (aaron_bourque) wrote,
aaron_bourque
aaron_bourque

Note To Self, Batman

Justice League.

Ah, the Justice League.

Ah! The Justice League.

Argh, the Justice League.

Justice League was the first of the new 52 comics published, all on its own one week, an attempt to let everyone know what they were going to be getting with this reboot/relaunch thing. And in a way, it was a complete success.

Justice League is not that good.

It's not entirely the creative team's fault. Well, except for Jim Lee, he's not as good an artist as most people consider him. I will for the life of me never understand why he's considered such a high profile artist. His rendering is too stiff, he's characters always look like they're smirking or scowling, he's too in love with hash-marks, and he has a stupid tendency to draw Batman with his ears sticking out too much through the batcowl.

In short, I don't like him. Well, his art, I'm sure he's a nice guy.

And for some reason, he has redesigned practically every superhero in the relaunch, giving them new (sorta ugly) costumes. And he's the artist for the unintended flagship, Justice League.

The writer is Geoff Johns, the guy also writing Aquaman and Green Lantern. Johns actually got his start on a team book, the previous version of the Justice Society of America, a group of heroes from WWII-era teaming up to mentor and train a new generation of heroes. He did a good-to-great job on that series, and it was because of that job that he got other, higher profile work, revamping older heroes. I've talked about that already.

The League is supposed to be the heavy-hitters of the DC Universe. That has not always been true, but when people think of the Justice League, they think of guys like Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Flash, etc. This version will be like that, but with Cyborg, too, for some reason. Cyborg, Vic Stone, is a long-time member of the Teen Titans, originally made up of sidekicks of the DCU, and then of those of contemporary age. There's a push to make Cyborg high profile here, and a power boost, to boot. Plotwise, the pace is slow, and it's telling the story of how the League got together, so they start off as a group of independents who need to work together.

It doesn't work. There's too much decompression going on, and the threat (I don't want to spoil things), is one that you shouldn't use for an opening arc. I mean, where do you escalate from someone who wants to destroy and/or enslave all of reality? Sure, it's a suitable threat for the League, but it's too soon for them to be going after a threat of this level.

And the interplay between the team members ends up making everyone (except Batman) look like a boob. Oh, well, not Wonder Woman, either. She's just a battle-happy bruiser who lives for conflict. I don't know what it is about Wonder Woman or Geoff Johns, but he's never been able to write Wonder Woman properly. There's a cute scene with ice cream (we all scream for cute scenes) in the third issue, but the rest overshadows that one brief glimpse.

Another problem is that the team is taking forever to form. Not just gel, not just work together as a team. Just for all of the members of the team even appear all together! By the end of the third issue, it still hasn't happened, argh!

So this arc is disappointing and slow. It's not bad, so much, as just not being any good.

. . .

Maybe the next arc will be better?

Aaron "The Mad Whitaker" Bourque; and Hal Jordan somehow looks like an even bigger dolt than in his own title!
Tags: analysis, comic books, essays, the new 52
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