Mild Mannered Reviews - JLA Comics

JLA #59

JLA #59

Scheduled to arrive in stores: October 31, 2001

Cover date: December 2001

Writer: Chuck Dixon & Scott Beatty
Penciller: Darryl Banks
Inker: Wayne Fauncher

"Bipolar Disorder"

Reviewed by: John-Paul Zito (

Two explorers are trekking across the Antarctic when they discover they aren't moving towards the South pole, but it's moving towards them. Suddenly they come face to face with a "Jokerized" Polaris who is having difficulty with his multiple personalities as a result of his "Jokerizing." Polaris does away with the explorers and continues across the Antarctic.

Mean while in California, Superman and The Flash have just met up at a prison camp where they've been dumping some of the "Jokerized" villains so they can be cured or dealt with accordingly. Flash and Superman catch sight of the aurora australis as it flashes above them in the California desert. Batman, Manhunter, Plastic Man, Wonder Woman, and Green Lantern are en route to a magnetic storm in the South pole and suggest that Flash and Superman meet them there. The group consensus is that Polaris is behind this.

When they arrive in the South pole Polaris downs the JLA's plane despite its ceramic construction. Batman, Manhunter, Wonder Woman and Lantern are saved by Plastic Man's rubbery body which breaks their fall. Somehow Superman discovers Polaris has become the nexus of the southern hemisphere's magnetic field. Kyle suggest that a full frontal attack be used to deal with Polaris but Batman disagrees. Because Polaris was insane before he was "Jokerized" Batman argues that his split personalities have made him chaotically unpredictable. The team sides with Kyle and they saddle up, with the exception of Plastic Man who has been frozen solid in the arctic cold.

After the JLA get trounced by Polaris it's only Flash's speed that helps them get free of his clutches. By creating a tornado effect Flash blows his teammates clear of Polaris' control. Rethinking their strategy the team elects Plastic Man to save the day. Jonn throws Plastic Man into the fray while Superman blasts his heat vision into the sky and GL redirect/magnifies it with a ring construct. The heat vision melts Plas so he is able to smother a distracted Polaris. Wonder Woman soon arrives to deliver the knock out blow putting Polaris on ice as it were.

It's decided that Polaris will have to remain in the South pole as he still controls the magnetic field moving him would throw the earth off its access. Plastic Man is forced to stay behind and guard him. Kyle apologizes for his haste, and offers to fly Batman back to Gotham, but Batman steps onto a conveniently placed JLA transporter and tells the JLA to deal with the "Jokerized" metas, and leave Gotham to him.

1Story - 1: Ugh. This doesn't make sense. How can Kyle doubt Batman when not too long ago (Action Comics #784) Batman saved Kyle from his "Jokerized" fate? And where does Kyle get the sudden idea that he knows what's best for the JLA? He's not that kind of guy, Kyle knows when he's out of his league. And why does Plastic Man get left behind to guard Polaris when he is so easily frozen in the Arctic weather? Can you make a jet out of ceramics? If so I'm gonna sign up for a pottery class. Why does a mental deficient like Polaris go and usurp the role of mobile south pole? There's no motive to his actions. It's assumed that just because the Joker toxin makes you insane that we can forego motives. And what's the deal with this dialogue? Polaris says silly three times. Batman says "Blast J'onn, you spoke to soon." Ugh. Thank God this crossover is done.

2Art - 2: It's hard to rank this art because it varies page to page. In some panels characters appear completely disproportionate and faces are skewed. In other panels we get decent action shots of the JLA getting beat down by Polaris.

4Cover Art - 4: The cover was the best thing about this book. It gives you a good idea of what you should be getting in the book. The JLA looks to be engaged in do or die combat with a powerful villain in a snow covered valley. Sigh. At least we got the snow covered valley.

Other recent reviews:

Mild Mannered Reviews


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

January 2001

February 2001 March 2001 April 2001 May 2001 June 2001 July 2001 August 2001 September 2001 October 2001 November 2001 December 2001 Annuals

Back to the Mild Mannered Reviews contents page.

Check out the Comic Index Lists for the complete list of Superman-related comics published in 2001.