By Koppy McFad
November 7, 2009 - 00:56
Mr. Terrific, the technology expert of the Justice Society has been murdered despite the best efforts of the team to keep him alive. But now, half the team is resorting to sorcery to bring him back while other members angrily debate how this murder happened.
To make matters worse, an army of supervillains attacks their headquarters, just as the team is about to fall apart amid more acrimony and suspicion.
On one hand, this book is written quite well. On the other hand, it also feels forced and even rushed. The key characters all have larger-than-life personalities that leap out at the reader, leaving a lasting impression, even in the space of a few panels. Although there is a lot of dialogue, it isn't the "decompressed" type with characters rambling on and on. It is direct and forceful, explaining the action in the story while fleshing out all the characters as individuals with their own thoughts and agendas.
The new Dr. Fate is coming along nicely. He is far from a master but has enough confidence to stand with the big shots. Not so bad for a guy who was just living on the streets a few months ago. Flash-- Jay Garrick-- is also shining as the veteran who keeps a cool head, doesn't panic and approaches problems methodically. He isn't the "aw-shucks" grandpa that some readers see him as.
But the whole storyline-- which involves the imminent break-up of the Justice Society-- seems like it is being hot-shotted onto the book just so they can come up with the new JSA spin-off as soon as possible. It was just a few months that we had all these issues showing what a tight-knit family the Justice Society is, with all the new members being accepted by the old members. Now, suddenly, the team is on the verge of exploding and even a loving couple-- like Hourman and Liberty Belle, are bickering. It is like the writers have a deadline to break the team up so they have a lot of people acting like jerks just to accomplish this.
The art is extremely satisfactory for this type of book. It carefully utilises the panel space to accomodate a cast of dozens. The details and the backgrounds are all well done, helping the reader know when a scene has switched locations or where the characters are during the story. While the art certainly isn't as flashy or dynamic as the art in other 'hot' books, it certainly helps the story and keeps things clear, never confusing the reader about what is going on during the comic.
Rating: 7 /10