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Mild Mannered Reviews - Justice League Unlimited

Justice League Unlimited #9

Justice League Unlimited #9

Scheduled to arrive in stores: May 4, 2005

Cover date: July 2005

Writer: Adam Beechen
Penciller: Carlo Barberi
Inker: Carlo Barberi

"Castle Perilous"

Reviewed by: Adam Dechanel

Click to enlarge

Before you yell about the review being very 'lite' - buy the issue I'm actually being in depth!

The Shining Knight brings the league through time to Camelot on orders from Merlin. The roster is Superman, Wonder Woman, Firestorm, Red Tornado, Martian Manhunter, Captain Atom, Booster Gold, The Ray, The Atom, Green Lantern, Black Canary, Batman and Vixen - all specially selected by Merlin (however, the entire team, bar one member could have stayed at home in bed.) Vixen is a little worried. She can take on the ability of one animal courtesy of her magical charm. However she can only change into animals she knows and here some animals may not exist.

A short (VERY nonessential as he does nothing except look cool on the title page) intro to Shining Knight ensues. He rescued Merlin from a spell, for which he was awarded a magic sword, armour and flying horse. An Ogre froze him and Sir Justin was left in ice till 1941 where he thawed out and joined the All-Star Squadron and the Seven Soldiers of Victory during WWII. He is immortal and has fought crime and followed Merlin's orders ever since... (Filled in now? Good now kiss Sir Justin goodbye as he now has nothing to do with anything.)

Back to the story: The League arrives and sees Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table are waiting inside the walls of Camelot. Morgaine Le Fey has cast a spell to manipulate time drawing out hundreds of Black Knights to take over Arthur's castle (Motivation? UNKNOWN)

Everyone jumps into battle except Vixen & Merlin. Merlin informs Vixen that her colleagues WILL fail. They are science based heroes and are just toothpicks against the magic of Morgaine Le Fey. Vixen is shocked, why bring the rest of the League if they can't do diddly squat? (Merlin's motivation? UNKNOWN)

The next few pages is literally filler showing that the League ARE a useless bunch of weaklings. (Nice touch in their own title guys - attract more readers by wimping the main cast!) Merlin explains the reason he sent the League to their death was to show Vixen she had a misconception of her powers. She can't ONLY change into animals she knows exist in her lifetime however she can change into ANY animal from ANY time - if only she believed in herself and her magic totem.

Merlin shows Vixen a skeleton of a Dragon for a little inspiration.

Meanwhile the League are being pulped into mashed potato as Le Fey watches laughing. Enter Vixen, breathing fire and flying high above. Green Lantern encases the League in a bubble as The Black Knights barbeque to smithereens. (Why Green Lantern didn't do it earlier, i.e. before the ass whupping? Who knows...)

Morgaine Le Fey is shocked that Vixen is able to use the power of the long dead great dragons, she's then also fried.

King Arthur explains Vixen's fire breathing sent the Black Knights back to their respective milliseconds and that Le Fey was sent to the dawn of history (How does Arthur know this? Who knows...)

Vixen quizzes Merlin as to why he didn't just tell her from the start she could change into a dragon and end the battle in two panels?

Merlin explains that the story was too empty and he had to pad it out for 21 and a half pages, Also the reason why the League was there? Well he then explains that nobody would spend $2.25 or $3.00 canadian dollars or 2.50 on a title if it was just Vixen he had to bring in the League and let them get crushed. Vixen adds that the League has a roster or many magic based heroes and villains that could have been better suited to the mission, Merlin again adds - that the writer really didn't know what to do with the issue.

OK, OK he explains that he couldn't just tell her she could do it - she had to be shown and believe she could do it.

2Story - 2: Someone get Adam Beechen to watch Cartoon Network - PLEASE. Nothing is tied up properly - what the heck happened to Morgaine Le Fey after Vixen set her on fire? And didn't the whole grabbing a villian from milliseconds in time to create an army of himself happen before???? YES it did -The Atom dealt with a time crisis in the early issues of Justice League and had to stop time freezing up - funny how Atom forgot all about that this issue... What was the point of the scenes with Lancelot & Batman? What exactly did Firestorm, Captain Atom, The Ray, Booster Gold and The Atom actually do? We English don't and never have spoken the way it was written - I found that borderline racist. Perhaps I am expecting too much from what DC has bastardized into a baby title. Then again its been de-evolving for a while now and I should be used to it...

4Art - 4: Carlo Barberi again deserves a 4/5 for his effort, I'll repeat what I said about the interior art before: In the past the pages of JLU been shaky to say the least but this guy seems to have a good grasp and I hope it carries on!

2Cover Art - 2: NOOOOOOO! I'm sorry that it must seem like I'm always ragging on this guy he's a good artist so I give him a point. However the title is suffering - the action is there but this guy just can't get the JLU style down right. It's an eye-catching scene for which it receives an extra point but the cover really doesn't sell the JLU.

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

January 2005

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