Justice League #62 – Brian Michael Bendis, Ram V, Writers; David Marquez, Xermanico, Artists; Ivan Plascencia, Romulo Fajardo Jr, Colorists
Ray – 7.5/10
Ray: Bendis’ writing is always a mixed bag—sometimes it can be surprisingly profound, and sometimes it just misses the mark completely. This issue has a little of both, with the opening segment being some of the best stuff he’s written at DC. It’s a quiet scene, as Hippolyta makes her way to the Justice League headquarters and shares a quiet conversation with Flash about how she’s trying to figure out what her daughter got out of this world on her own mission. Hippolyta is a character we rarely get to see be vulnerable, and this scene makes me think this run can be a game-changer for her. But her story shifts pretty quickly to the main one, as Flash realizes he may have made a critical mistake.
The rest of the League, lost in Naomi’s world, quickly find their powers out of control. This makes her easy prey against the vicious Brutus, who intends to trade up worlds and invade the DCU. He still has the personality of a common hoodlum and repeats his motivation way too often to be intimidating, but the fight scenes are entertaining—especially once reinforcements get here. Despite being the focus of this first arc, Naomi really doesn’t get too much to do this issue, and the end of the main segment shifts the threat level dramatically with a big arrival. Overall, what we’ve seen so far of this run isn’t bad, but it’s very scattered and we still don’t feel like we actually know this Justice League.
The same can’t be said for the Justice League Dark backup, as Ram V’s team feels lived-in like only the best teams do. Much of the action here takes place in an enchanted library, as the team encounters cursed books, a mercurial librarian, and a surprising prophecy that makes Ragman the bearer of some unwanted insider knowledge. The dynamic between all these oddball magic-users is highly entertaining, and they’re going up against a serious threat. This evil version of Merlin has a plan centuries in the making, and the end-of-issue twist promises to bring in some unexpected characters and elements soon. I just wish this had gotten to continue as a main series, but the biweekly schedule this book is starting helps.
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GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.