By Alexander Webb
Last month, I wrote a review on the mediocrity of Justice League 3000, Issue 3. I didn't see it going anywhere. I thought the character's attitudes were laughable and saw the art as maybe the only shining spot. Issue 4, on stands today, shows me how wrong I was to write this series off.
The biggest problem with this series was the direction. I thought Issue 1 came out of the gate strong, posing interesting and pertintent questions such as, 'Who are these new Justice Leaguers?' 'How did they end up in the future?' and 'Why is Superman such a jerk?' I couldn't wait until the next issue..
Which turned out to be more of the same; more questions, more confusion and more Super-jerk. I started to lose faith in the series by Issue 3, as it seemed they were just making a future-Justice League for the sake of making a future Justice League. Then this week's issue happened.
We get an answer to our biggest question, 'Who are these new Justice Leaguers?' They are, in fact, not clones as previously suggested, but DNA fusions. A host body, in this case a normal human 'volunteer,' was genetically recombinated with the DNA from the original Justice League members. The new DNA took over the host body and made it it's own, essentially 'killing off' the volunteer. Memories and attributes are gone, but the body's essence and being stay intact. Pretty involved stuff, huh?
After that question was answered, I felt a greater sense of satisfaction, so I settled in to see what would happen next. We have two bad guys (Locus and Convert) to contend with, as was the case with the last issue; now, we get a new enemy, Kali, and a betrayal that leads to our remaining heroes Batman, Wonder Woman and Superman being thrown right back into the fire of battle.
Green Lantern is still contending with crazed-adolescent god Locus, who is quickly becoming one of my favorite villains. She is childish and unpredictable, but feels like a fresh breath from the usual gallery of evil-doers. GL tries to escape her clutches, but this is one girl he won't be running away from so easily. Especially in outer space.
J. M. DeMatteis and Keith Giffen do an excellent job spinning this tale into something that went from a drain-circling eye roll to a fast-paced action movie. The dialogue is a little clunky here and there, but if their intent is to paint Superman as a jerk and Batman as distrustful and inquisitive, they're doing fine. Howard Porter comes up big in this issue, as he has the entire series. His art style may take a little getting used to, but it makes for a visually appealing treat, especially his larger scope works (top-down views of the city, background settings, etc). Well done by a talented team.
Oh, and remember how Flash was savagely killed by Locus a few issues ago? Well, they created a new Flash, with a new host body, and gave us a new Justice Leaguer to join him in his battle against Convert…Firestorm! Looks like things are really heating up. (See what I did there?)
I am happy with the direction this series has taken. With questions answered and new ones rising (What's future Firestorm going to be like??), I can't wait for next month. See? Patience can be rewarded. With a little help from some talented people.
Alex Webb is a fitness trainer by day, Batman-enthusiast by night. Ask him about fitness, comics, RPGs, and answering life's mysteries via Twitter and Instagram @officiallywebb