Review: Justice League of America #1

jla_cv1_dsMeet the Extremists-self-proclaimed saviors from another Earth, they thirst for peace, prosperity and total submission to the will of their leader, Lord Havok! How can the newly assembled JLA stop this group of misguided maniacs before the Extremists unleash their own unique-not to mention dangerous!-brand of law and order on our chaotic world?

A new Justice League of America has taken form with a menagerie of heroes brought together by Batman… for some big purpose only hinted at. Written by Steve Orlando, this new JLA is a populist take in contrast to the god-like power of the Justice League. No aliens or deities here, this team is a mix of newcomers, veterans, and criminals.

Made up of Batman, Black Canary, Vixen, The Ray, The Atom, Killer Frost, and Lobo, this new team is interesting due to their rather odd backgrounds. And that mix is part of the fun. JLA to me has the x-factor that the Justice League for the most part has missed and with that expectations that they’ll be able to overcome obstacles easily is thrown out as well.

Orlando’s handling of the characters are solid. This first issue feels like the team is just getting off the ground and they’re quickly thrown into a situation involving what seems like alien fascists come to save the planet. Their not having their HQ set up, or even really having worked together, creates an atmosphere of a group that’s going to slip up and fail in some ways. They’re discovering as we’re discovering and that’s part of the fun.

The art by Ivan Reis is solid with inks by Joe Prado, Oclair Albert, and Julio Ferreira. This is entertaining top tier art for a top tier comic. All of the characters have their distinctive looks. The HQ details are solid. The crowd with the invasion is nicely done, and the action is engrossing as far as the visuals. I don’t know if Reis is the one who designed the Extremists, but each of them had me lingering to check out their designs and detail, as if each tells a story.

The first issue has a flaw, it’s too short. It might have been helped with an oversized issue but with so much packed in, nothing gets quite the focus it needs. That’s good and bad. The bad is, we don’t get enough and it feels a bit thin, but the good is I wanted more. I like the characters. I like the dynamic. I like the set up. And, I like these first villains. When you want to read more, that’s a good thing right?

This issue sets the JLA apart from the Justice League. This is more down to Earth team, and that’s emphasized a lot. Orlando has taken inspiration from some of the quirky teams of the past and delivering his own take in a solid debut that has me wanting to see where it all goes.

Story: Steve Orlando Art: Ivan Reis Ink: Joe Prado, Oclair Albert, Julio Ferreira
Story: 7.95 Art: 8.05 Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review