Mild Mannered Reviews - Annuals

This year the Annuals throughout the DC Universe are themed: "Ghosts". With our favourite heroes being haunted by visions of characters long thought dead.

JLA Annual #3

JLA Annual #3

Scheduled to arrive in stores: July 7, 1999

Writer: Len Kaminski
Penciller: Jason Orfalas
Inker: Jordi Ensign

JLAPE - "Gorilla Warfare"

Reviewed by: Josh Gehling (

On Monday, in Gorilla City, Solovar, supreme simian of Gorilla City asks the United Nations for membership of as a sovereign nation (and reveals the city to the press). Over the next few days, Solovar appears on TV interviews, meets the president of the US and signs copies of his new book. On Friday, as Solovar gets in his car to leave, the car explodes [!gasp!]! At the D.E.O. Headquarters (Department of Extranormal Matters) a blurry video image is sent from the freedom fighters of the human supremacy movement claiming that they killed Solovar. The D.E.O. is unable to make out the person who sent the transmission (it's just a shadow).

In Gorilla City, a council of Gorillas is in chaos over Solovar's death. Far away, a group of gorillas known as "The Inner Circle of Simian Scarlet" watch the events through a video camera in the council's building. They watch as the heir to Solovar, Ulgo (who, unknown to the council, works for the group) approaches the council and tells them what must be done. Even farther away, the whole boss of the scheme (although the group doesn't know that they, the manipulators, are being manipulated themselves) tells himself that, now that his greatest foe (Solovar) has been eliminated, he is closer to his ultimate goal.

At the JLA moon-base J'onn receives a message inviting the JLA to Gorilla City, where the JLA is to act as intermediaries between apes and humans. When they arrive, they're immediately attacked by the apes, and while they're fighting, apes hiding in the mountains manage to launch an ape bomb at them! The ape bomb immediately turns them all (Superman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Aquaman) into apes. Suddenly, the team starts to realize that the bomb didn't only affect their body but their mind as well as they scream "Death to the HU-MANS!" This causes arguments and the they start to fight. As they prepare to leave, J'onn arrives (actually he'd been there the whole time, only invincible and he's also an ape) and calms them all down (because of his martian psychology, he was not affected mentally by the bomb) (if J'onn's a shape-shifter, why doesn't he change back?! I guess he's stuck in that form...?). After a brief fight, J'onn teleports them all back to the moon-base.

At the moon-base, Green Lantern and Batman arrive to find the rest of the league to be all apes. J'onn explains to everyone that while he was invisible, he managed to steal an ape bomb that, with reverse-engineering, might turn the league back to humans. As J'onn and Batman scan the bomb, they are led to Animal Man for information. J'onn probes the un-stable Animal Man's mind for information and leaves. When J'onn arrives back at JLA headquarters, he finds that the men are fighting over who will get Wonder Woman and he has to (once again) break them up. Later, J'onn mentally calms down each member of the JLA.

Meanwhile, Ulgo arrives at the United Nations and speaks before them. He recaps the events of the past days and then declares war on the human race. He tells them that the Gorillas will cause the extinction of the human race but they will not stoop to the humans barbaric ways. As he throws a gorilla bomb into the audience, he tells them that there will be no killing, only unification. In the moon-base the JLA sees the gorilla bomb and quickly teleports to the building. When GL arrives, he is turned into an ape (Batman didn't come). Inside, the former humans now fight each other as apes. When the bomb's effects are over, Batman and J'onn teleport down with their newly constructed reverse-ape bomb. In order to use it, the JLA must leave the building or the Gorilla bomb won't be affective because it would be too much for it to handle (or something like that). So, the team sets the bomb and gets out.

Outside, J'onn tells the league that he did a mind scan of Ulgo and that this attack was only the beginning. The apes plan to attack Themyscira, Atlantis, Central City, Bludhaven, Metropolis and Low Earth Orbit (how convenient...). So, the league splits up and goes off to save the world once more.

3Story - 3: First off, let me say that I think that this is one of (not THE) the stupidest post-crisis stories ever! I thought this was why we had post-crisis was to get rid of trash like this! These complaints aside, the issue wasn't too bad (this is crap, but aside from that, this issue isn't too bad, hehe). The writing was pretty good, the Animal Man interaction was hilarious (but only if you'd read issues 25 and 26 (I think) of Animal Man, where his family is killed and it leads him to... Grant Morrison, where Morrison explains that AM is nothing but a comic character) and the apes mating ritual with Wonder Woman was really great. I really wish that the annual's would just be over-sized comics instead of the "cross-over" like issues they've become. Oh well, I hope to never see anything remotely having to do with these apes again after these annuals. This just isn't my kind of stuff, as you can probably tell by the review, I didn't find it that fun to read.

3Art - 3: Very Boring stuff. Of course, the full pages look great but when you get a tiny picture, the attention to detail is slim to none. Just a step above Pajarillo.

3Cover Art - 3: Batman did NOT turn into an ape, so why's he an ape on the cover!? I think it would've looked a lot better if it would've had the towering Super-ape standing over the human Batman. The art's not bad but not spectacular either. An overall average issue.

Mild Mannered Reviews


Note: Month dates are from the issue covers, not the actual date when the comic was on sale.

June 1999

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