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Mild Mannered Reviews - JLA Comics

JLA #112

JLA #112

Scheduled to arrive in stores: March 16, 2005

Cover date: May 2005

Writer: Kurt Busiek
Penciller: Ron Garney
Inker: Dan Green

Syndicate Rules - Part 6: "Divided"

John-Paul Zito Reviewed by: John-Paul Zito

Click to enlarge

The Qwardians have entered our solar system, and the Crime Syndicate have begun to construct a headquarters on our earth somewhere in China. The Justice League calls in the reserves from the JSA and the JLE. On such short notice only a few are able to answer the call but they anticipate more will arrive in due time.

The expanded League splits up into three groups. The Heavy hitters are headed for the Void Hound battle cruiser and the Qwardians. The dirty fighters are sent to China to pin down the Crime Syndicate. Meanwhile, Batman leads a team into the Antimatter universe to find a weapon or an ally to help defeat the Crime Syndicate.

Unfortunately the heavy hitters find little success against the Qwardians and are devastated by their advanced weaponry. The dirty fighters prove little interest to the Crime Syndicate who consider their JLE adversaries "second stringers." And Batman discovers the Antimatter universe to be filled with many contradictions as he and his team try to publicly flush out answers.

Just when all hope seems lost and the JLA appear defeated by the Qwardians, The New Gods arrive via boom tube. With one devastating blast from their New Genesis weapons they manage to crack the hull of the Void Hound. The JLA and the New Gods rush inside hoping to find better luck against their enemy by changing the battle field.

But Suddenly, just as hope arrived so does despair; the Crime Syndicate have managed to escape their brawl with the dirty fighters and sought out the Justice Leaguers they wish to do battle with. Their opening salvo,to crushMartian Manhuntercaught unawares in his mobile command center in the battle field...

To Be Continued...

4Story - 4: My scoring is a little misleading. While I enjoyed this issue much, much more than any of the previous in this arch I'm still disappointed in the over all story. It's taken us six issues to get to a point where I feel engaged.

Again that might be a bit misleading. I'm not trying to imply that action equals emotional investment. But up until this point there's been very little to grasp onto as a reader. The Crime Syndicate arrives plots and schemes, acts evil andplots some more. Then every few pages we'reexcessively exposedto the exploits of an alien race we have no history with. There were too many cliches and dragging plot threads that needed to be cleaned up from the JLA/Avengers crossover.

This is the first issue I've read in Busiek's run so far that tells its own story. And if I review it on its own it is actually constructed very well. The ups and downs, the agony of defeat at the hands of the Qwardiansand the rush of company crossover when the New Gods arrive. However, judged on a whole this issue hasn't earnedits summer blockbuster status. When you group this issue in with those that preceded it the "event" becomes more of a blip. The arc, overall, is flawed.

4Art - 4: I still enjoy Garney for the most part. His work with Flash is getting better and better. We're starting to see more imaginative and detailed work now that Garney has a feel for the guy. Garney does a fantastic job quickly and easily conveying information during the action scenes. He sets up a number of great panels along the Z axis and it allows us to get a strong sense of the battle field despite the quick camera angle jumps.

I still have my problems with the colors, especially in regard to how flat the energy blasts look in this issue. Its like a faded old cartoon. You'd thing for a flag ship title like JLA they could find a wider or richer pallet to work with.

2Cover Art - 2: Eh. Group shot - no background. Lacks imagination or an eye catching motif. As a result the latest issue of JLA fails to capture the eye of yet another casual reader.

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

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