Barry Allen 20 – 23

Flash 20

The Flash (Volume 5) #20
Written by Joshua Williamson
Art by Neil Googe

Meena is back and is now an agent of Black Hole for some reason in this okay but forgettable issue focusing on Iris investigating grave robberies being perpetrated by Back Hole. Not much else to say about it.

Flash21

The Flash (Volume 5) #21
Written by Joshua Williamson
Art by Howard Porter

Ok this is Part 2 of the Button crossover with Batman that began here. Flash is investigating what happened to the Reverse Flash in the Batcave. Barry decides to use the Cosmic Treadmill to follow the energy signature on the button to its source. Which honestly seems like a dumb move by the Flash considering what happened the last time he used it. Batman joins him (it is never really explained how Batman is just running behind the Flash on it) and they see elements of the timeline from before New 52 and Barry even says it is not an alternate universe but part of the stolen years! The real DCU IS BACK BABY! We see Martian Manhunter as forminmg the league and Identity Crisis and Barry’s death during the Crisis. I was smiling with joy as I read these pages.

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Justice Society 50-54

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Justice Society of America #50
Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Tom Derenick, Howard Chaykin, George Perez, Freddie Williams II, and Scott Koblish

So Martha Kent designed the Superman costume? I am pretty sure that flys in the face of continuity. Also I am pretty sure Alan Scott was in retirement when Hal got the ring right? Does DC not have editors? That being said it is always cool to see how the modern heroes knew about the Justice Society growing up which is what the first part of this anniversary issue focuses on. The secon story has something to do with Per Degaton traveling between universes. The third is the JSA vs. the House on Un-American Activities in the fifties being retold, and then finally the modern day JSA sets up shop in Monument Point just as Jay Garrick is sworn in as mayor. I really liked how Guggenheim threaded all of these stories together and it all lead up to certain events in the modern story. This issue mattered and that is so important in serial storytelling.

Justice_Society_of_America_Vol_3_051
Justice Society of America #51
Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Tom Derenick

At one point in this issue it says Jay Garrick is the first superhero to be elected to office. That is not true I know at least Green Arrow became mayor of Star City but maybe the person didn’t know. Anyways Lightning makes it out of the after life okay and alive and there is a touching moment between her and Doctor Fate. Also, Jay Garrick kicks into gear as the Mayor of Monument Point and we get hints that there is a strange history behind the city that I am excited to find out about. Derenick draws the shit out of this book and does a wonderful job. I sometimes feel his facial expressinos always seem menacing though when the story doesn’t call for it.


Justice_Society_of_America_Vol_3_52Justice Society of America #52

Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Tom Derenick

This was another good issue. Mr. Terrific finds out the man who took away his intelligence is a deranged original Mr. Terrific fan kind of like the same guys who complain whenever a hero is replaced meanwhile the JSA and the Challengers of the Unknown go deep underground Monument Point to learn about its ancient mysteries. I enjoyed it.

 

 


Justice_Society_of_America_Vol_3_53Justice Society of America #53

Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Jerry Ordway

Wow Jerry Ordway sure is a breath of fresh air. Why can’t he be the book’s regular artist? He is perfect for the JSA and while I have liked what Derenick has done lately he really only draws menacing facial expressions even on the good guys. This was a fun issue where the JSA accidentally release a God who draws his power from metahumans. I can’t believe this is the penultimate issue of this series though.

 

Justice_Society_of_America_Vol_3_54Justice Society of America #54
Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Jerry Ordway

 

Damn…just damn. This was clearly not Guggenheim’s plan to have a rushed ending to this arc and have Alan Scott sacrifice his life so quickly and without much fanfare. The fact of the matter is that the true JSA Villain is Dan fucking Didio who has no respect for the DC Universe and has publicly complained about the JSA “being old” in interviews. He is responsible for the awful New 52 and I am so glad the real JSA will be coming back soon. I wonder how much will remain in continuity but I have to say Guggenheim’s run could have been great but it was cut off too soon.

Streets of Gotham 19 and 20

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Batman: Streets of Gotham #19
Written by Paul Dini
Art by Dustin Nguyen

 

The House of Hush storyline seems all over the place here filled with time jumps but I don’t mind cause it has been a good story so far and I loved the Joker stuff in this.

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Batman: Streets of Gotham #20
Written by Paul Dini
Art by Dustin Nguyen

This was even more flashback to the Waynes and this time includes the Justice Society with Hippolyta on the team!! Despite comments by Didio and DCU Legacies, I knew she was still the Golden Age Wonder Woman! It is weird how Nguyen draws her here though.

Bruce Remembers

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Power Girl (Volume 2) #21
Written by Judd Winick
Art by Sami Basri

 

This was awesome for anyone enjoing Generation Lost as Power Girl manages to convince Dick Grayson with the help of Bruce Wayne of Max Lord’s existence and villainy. Bruce’s presence here was just awesome and it was great to see that he remembers Lord – because if anyone could it would be Bruce. I also loved how Basri got all the pre-infinite crisis costumes correct in the flashback. I know that sounds easy, and it is, but so many other artists at DC would have gotten it wrong cause their editors suck at their jobs.

Superman Batman 79 and 80

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Superman/Batman #79
Written by Chris Roberson
Art by Jesus Merino

 

Roberson introduce (or re-introduces for some) to the DC Universe of the 853rd Century and I am one of the few who have never read DC One Million and therefore I am fascinated by this Justice Legion with its many worlds and I can’t wait to see more next issue. Epoch Lord of Time doesn’t seem like a new character but I could be wrong but he was a great way to frame the story and allow for the past and the future to collide.

sb80

Superman/Batman #80
Written by Chris Roberson
Art by Jesus Merino

Epoch is stopped by the Bronze Age World’s Finest and travels through time being defeated by each era’s Batman and Superman – Brilliant! I am looking forward to seeing more of Roberson’s run on the main Super-book after reading this awesomeness.

Like The Creators, But Not The Comic

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Batman Confidential #50
Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Jerry Bingham

The switches between the far East and Gotham left me very confused as to what the hell was going on in this issue. The second feature with the Justice League was interesting but I still just didn’t care. Definitely not impressed with this arc so far and I like these creators.

Interesting Things Are Around The Corner

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R.E.B.E.L.S. #17
Written by Tony Bedard
Art by Sergio Arino

In another exciting issue of this always entertaining series, the conflict between Tamaran and Rann is ended by Vril Dox creating a treaty between the two. I have a feeling that having Blackfire and the Tamaranians live with the Rannians is not going to go so well. This should be interesting. I wonder how Starfire will deal with it. The Trial of Brainiac hinted at should be interesting as well.

Let’s Stay Focused On The Other Characters

gl53Green Lantern (Volume 4) #53
Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Doug Mahnke

Really Johns? Another Donner Superman reference? Give me a break. We get that you liked the original Superman movie but this is getting out of a hand lol all we had was Lex Luthor and already he is referencing the Donner Superman movie. I liked this issue, that being said, as it focuses on the group of New Guardians. It makes for a great way for Johns nto to focus on boring old Hal Jordan. Didio’s DC Nation at the end of this week’s books explain a lot about why certain characters keep coming back. He is such a douche.

Meh

gl51

Green Lantern (Volume 4) #51
Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Doug Mahnke

 

The Black Lantern Spectre is defeated and Hal is no longer Parallax is one issue. This all seemed to be just stalling for the fight against Nekron and it bored me. There were some cool moments, none of which featured Hal Jordan of course, but otherwise it was just a waste. Mahnke’s art seemed really rushed too.

You Killed Her For Me…You Crazy Bitch

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The Atom And Hawkman #46
Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Ryan Sook and Fernando Pasarin

This was a really awesome “resurrected title” issue. Yes, it was more Atom then Hawkman but I think it was still a good fit. It would have been nice to see Ryan Choi but whatever, we got to see a lot more of the Indigo Tribe and how their power works. I loved what Ray said to Jean about the murder of Sue Dibny (Hence the title of this post) and Johns does a great job of acknowledging the history of the Atom. Good stuff.

Robinson Actually Made Me Excited For the Justice League Again!

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Justice League of America #41
Written by James Robinson
Art by Mark Bagley

 

Wow! I didn’t expect this to be this good! It took Meltzer seven issues to put a team together, Robinson does it in just one and makes it more exciting then all seven of those issue put together. Sure Congorilla isn’t in the issue but he’s the only one who hasn’t joined up yet. I felt very much like Robinson was giving the middle finger to Meltzer with this issue and I loved it. I mean he even has Donna refuse to call Doctor Light by anything but her codename where as Meltzer had the heroes always call each other by real names. It was great. I can’t believe it I am actually excited for the Justice League again!

Jurgens The Underrated

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Booster Gold (Volume 2) #26
Written by Dan Jurgens
Art by Jurgens and Mike Norton

Jurgens is by far one of if not the best artists DC has, why doesn’t he get any appreciation for it?! He is also just as good of a writer. You don’t have to have read anything with Booster Gold before and you would completely understand and enjoy this issue. If you know Booster’s history, you will enjoy it more but that means it is a good use of continuity. I loved every page of this issue. Pick this up if you are a fan or just someone getting into DC through Blackest Night.

It Is Good To Have Plas Back

jla36

Justice League of America #36
Written by Len Wein
Art by Tom Derenick

Okay it took them thirty-six issues, but I think finally we have a Justice League issue where the characters are given equal screen time, have unique voices, and well…it just feels like the League. I think I was too easy on McDuffie, sure he was always being overly managed by DC editorial, but he really wasn’t good at writing this book. This was just a sigh of relief. I love having Plastic Man back. I really missed him. I liked how they actually showed Vixen asking Starfire to join the league. Heck I even liked the origin of the Royal Flush Gang that they recapped. When Robinson comes on this book, this book better stay this good.

New Eras

Justice Society of America #25
Written Geoff Johns and Jerry Ordway
Art by Ordway

This is Johns’s penultimate issue and he bring the Marvel Family into their next era here. Shazam takes Mary and Billy’s powers away after returning from the dead and turns Isis and Black Adam to stone. I imagine Mary and Billy will regain their powers in the future. I wonder if this is the real Shazam? He is acting like a jerk and not himself. Although now that I think about it I don’t know if he was ever really nice. I love Ordway draws Fawcett City, he is great at it. In the end, Alan announces that everyone is going to stay on JSA (well except Amazing Man and Hawkman and I think Starman) and Atom Smasher rejoins. I really liked Amazing Man and he seems to be leaving for no reason. Kick Magog or someone off the team and bring him in. I thought Citizen Steel wanted to leave? Maybe I misunderstood that.

Praying For A New Artist

Justice League of America #30
Written by Dwayne McDuffie and Len Wein
Art by Jose Luis
and Marco Rudy

I am very confused as to how the Shadow Cabinet and Icon betray the League here? Icon seems pretty upset that they betrayed them but how? Did they take Dr. Light’s body? I don’t get it. Anyways, this book gets a fill-in artist and he draws just like Ed Benes! Total shit. What the hell! Why, oh why? Please DC put some good art on this series so people can understand what is going on in it and characters look like actual different people from one another. The origins and omens backup revealed what looks like the post-Final Crisis line up; Black Canary, Vixen, Firestorm, Green Lantern, Doctor Light, and Icon. That should be interesting. Maybe there will be a new artist. Let’s pray for it.

The JSA is Back!

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Justice Society of America #23
Written by Geoff Johns and Jerry Ordway
Art by Ordway

Now this is more like it! After a year of the overly-long Alex Ross Kingdom come crap, we finally get back to good old JSA story telling. Sadly, this is Johns’s final arc on this book. Isis returns to life and is not so sweet and nice as she once was. I hope that that is a ruse and she will go back to her old ways. She was such a good influence on Black Adam before. But for now, I like that she has gone rogue. The JSA has to decide who is on the team after the events prior, and I am sad to see that Starman and Amazing Man are likely to be leaving. Although, that may or may not  be the case as the final roster is not decided this issue. I liked that Billy Batson still hasn’t shared his secret identity with the JSA. That is so awesome, because in the post-Meltzer DCU it seems like everyone knows everyone. It is refreshing that Billy has waited this long. Anyways, it looks like were back to the basics with the JSA, and I couldn’t be happier to be back.

Reintroducing A Cosmic Vampire

jla29

Justice League of America #29
Written by Len Wein
Art by Chris Cross

Until that last page, I believed this issue was just filler and had nothing to do with the ongoing storyline in this series. I was wrong, as the last page shows it is Starbreaker who is the boss of Shadow Thief, who Hawkman warned about last issue. So who better to reintroduce an old JLA villain then an old JLA writer, Len Wein. Wein definitely writes in a very retro style. For old fans, this type of writing is probably very refreshing. But for people like me, who don’t remember a time when comics were written like this. It just seems…well…lame and out of place in this book. I hate to say it. But I really don’t need to have Superman explain in thought bubbles everything he does. That is not to say it is bad, just very very retro. It was cool to see Aquaman kick some ass though. And it was a nice break from Benes art.