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Mild Mannered Reviews - JLA Comics

Justice League of America #28

Justice League of America #28

Scheduled to arrive in stores: December 31, 2008

Cover date: February 2009

"Welcome to Sundown Town" - Chapter Two: "Shadow and Act"

Writter: Dwayne McDuffie
Penciller: Jose Luis
Inker: JP Mayer

Michael Bailey Reviewed by: Michael Bailey

Click to enlarge

Batman, Black Canary and Firestorm fight Payback and Starlight in the home of the second Doctor Light with neither side gaining a clear advantage.

Meanwhile, in the Haz Mat room of the Watchtower the Shadow Cabinet and the League face off. The League demands that they return the remains of the first Dr. Light, which the Cabinet refuses to do. Finally Icon punches Superman out of the Watchtower and the fight is on. Wonder Woman and Donner trade blows while Hardware and Red Arrow trade artillery. As with the fight on Earth neither side has a clear path to victory though it is apparent that the League has it over the Cabinet in raw power.

In space Icon and Superman chat about the situation. Superman wonders if they have been out there long enough but Icon is quick to point out that it is crucial that the Shadow Cabinet remain unaware of their agreement. Icon believes that all in all the best course of action is to have the two teams fight for the greater good of taking out the ultimate threat.

Back in the Watchtower Hardware makes an end run toward the dimensional barrier but is knocked back through. Suddenly Hawkman emerges and informs the group that the Shadow Thief is trying to destroy the Earth and he can't stop the Thief alone.

4Story - 4: Alright, I am going to get this out of the way quick because I have stated it in nearly every review I have written lately. Justice League. DC. Using this title to support other projects. I don't like it. Blah, blah, blah.

Good. Glad I got that out of the way.

All in all I was very pleased with how this meeting of Justice League and Shadow Cabinet went and when I write meeting I really mean fight. This issue was one, long fight scene and because of how it was handled, especially when it came to characterization and the twists and turns it took I have no complaints. This was a necessary evil. Frankly people expected these teams to duke it out. This is the super-hero genre of comic books. That sort of thing happens and it happens a lot. Some call it a cliché but I prefer to think of it as a normal day at the office.

Seriously, though. All of the back and forth and all of the introductions and the speedster versus speedster and strong woman versus strong woman was so darn entertaining. This isn't the only type of comic book story I like to read but it is among the top five. There is something about a good bust up when it's done right. This isn't an angst ridden drama where super-hero is fighting super-hero over some ideological difference that is threatening to tear society apart, though there is something to be said for that sort of story. This is two teams fighting a cross between a turf war and the old "we don't trust you so the fight will," sort of thing.

And I dug it. Sometimes you don't need to a deep and meaningful plot. Sometimes all you need is some great dialogue and people in tights sorting out their problems through violence.

What really made this issue work for me was the conversation between Icon and Superman. At the end of the day Icon was and is the "Superman" of the Milestone Universe. There were enough differences between the two of them to make it really interesting, but when you boil down Icon to his essence he is Milestone's Superman archetype, so seeing the two together and not so much getting along but working together did my fan heart some real good. It really did.

Add to that a great cliffhanger ending and I am officially on board with this story. The big fight is out of the way. Now is the time for a team up and we'll hopefully get to see the two groups working together for the common good. All in all this issue was a satisfying chapter in the overall story line and I'm looking forward to seeing how it turns out in the end.

Oh, before I forget to mention it again...grumble, grumble. Gripe, gripe. JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA should be about the actual Justice League. Blah, blah, blah.

Man, this was a good issue.

4Art - 4: What I'm about to write comes from the feeling that one of the things holding this title back a little in terms of being on time is that Ed Benes cannot maintain a consistent, monthly schedule. I have no direct evidence of this. It's just a hunch, so take it for what it is worth.

If I'm right than Eddie Berganza has found a happy medium in finding artists that have a similar style to the main artist. Jose Luis has his own style but it looks enough like Benes to not throw off the overall story. When this is collected into a trade or maybe even a hardcover and then a trade the new reader won't get too "disoriented".

Luis has a strong sense of storytelling and the action was particularly good. One of the things I liked about his style compared to Benes was the lack of gratuitous shots of the female anatomy. Sure the women looked good but it wasn't riding the bullet train to offensive.

One quick question though; why is Batman's costume mostly blue? Did the colorist watch a little too much of the sixties Filmation animated series?

Seriously. It needs to stop.


4Cover Art - 4: Eh, it was good. Nothing exciting though. It's a typical face off cover and Benes has been drawing a lot of this sort of thing over the past year. So not bad but nothing to really jump up and down about.

Mild Mannered Reviews


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

January 2009

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