Justice League of America #8 & 9
Publisher: D.C. Comics
Writer: Steve Orlando
Artist: Felipe Watanabe
Inker: Scott Hanna
Letters: Clayton Cowles
Review by PeteR
Justice League of America issues #8 and 9 are the latest mission of the newest incarnation of the JLA. Previously, in Justice League of America: Rebirth, Batman decided to form a new League but instead of recruiting “Gods”, he wanted people. The core group of seven heroes (including himself) he has assembled are: Ryan Cho-the new Atom, Black Canary, the Ray, Vixen, Killer Frost and Lobo.
This embodiment of the Justice League of America is a unique mix of characters. Lobo is as big a bastich as he normally is, but he and Batman have some sort of arrangement based on Lobo’s “word of honor”, for the “Main Man” to assist him. Of course, Lobo sees this arrangement as temporary, at best. Vixen, is legitimately trying to change the world for the better while multitasking her modeling career, her “brand” and her charitable foundation. Both Ryan Cho’s Atom and the Ray are very new to the superhero life and struggling to get their footing. Killer Frost is looking for redemption while trying to contain her vampire-like thirst for the life/heat forces of living things. Black Canary has been a member of the JLA forever, so she has experience not only on a super-hero team but also she has worked with Batman enough to not be intimidated by his demeanor.
Justice League of America #8 & 9 ‘s main story, although interesting is less important than the inter-personal dynamics the team. There are trust and respect issues that need to be ironed out. Batman and Vixen almost fulfill the mom & dad roles for the team. Although Batman is in charge, Vixen has to assist him communicating his thoughts and methods to the younger team members.
Steve Orlando did an impressive job pulling this team together in Justice League of America: Rebirth. Based on his previous series, including Batman: Night of the Monster Men, Midnighter and Supergirl, his take on Justice League of America and its newest roster should be very good.
Justice League of America‘s penciler is Felipe Watanabe of Cyborg, Flash and Teen Titans fame. Team books have a tendency of utilizing a lot of “talking heads” panels. Watanabe does a creditable job keeping those as visually interesting as the action scenes. Scott Hanna is the inker. He has worked extensively for both D.C. and Marvel comics over the years. His inks enrich Watanabe’s artwork without overpowering it.
The coloring for Justice League of America #8 and 9 are by Hi-Fi Coloring Design. They specialize in digitized coloring and were founded in 1998. As you read Justice League of America, take time to study Vixen’s spirit-animal auras. The penciling has been completely replaced by color to give them an astral feeling. The prolific and proficient Clayton Cowles does the lettering for Justice League of America.
Why you should buy this book? There have numerous variations of the Justice League of America. This particular run should be fascinating because of their overall founding motivations. It’s not about just punching the bad guy of the month. Vixen said it best; “This is what the JLA is about. Empowering people to better the world.” With Lobo on the team, maintaining that credo will be a neat trick.
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