This comic has no Bat-anything in it whatsoever. Does it have some important stuff in it that will affect Batman in the future? Yes. But for now Justice League #0 has little to do with the league and instead is totally a Shazam comic… and it’s pretty great.
I’ve made it pretty clear how much I’ve enjoyed the Billy Batson backups by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank these past few months and to finally get a full issue devoted entirely to one of the most underrated super heroes is a delight. I can’t wait for all of these backups to finally get collected in their own TPB–which better happen. Issue #0 of Justice League didn’t give me chills like Batwoman #0 did, but it definitely had me laughing out loud. Seriously, I chuckled. I’ve always thought Shazam had incredible potential to be a very entertaining ongoing comic and he could even carry his own movie if the creators keep in mind that when Billy turns into an adult superhero, he’s still just a kid at heart. The Young Justice cartoons do a great job of executing this. Shazam (still called Captain Marvel on the show, last time I checked) stars in some of the best episodes.
But back to this comic. It looks great. The moments that should make your jaw drop, do. The moments that are supposed to make you laugh, hit their mark perfectly. The kids looks like kids and the super heroes look like gods. And when Shazam does a fist pump over a twenty dollar bill I couldn’t help but laugh.
The only drawback here is that new readers wanting to take advantage of zero month and try out Justice League for the first time see no Justice League members anywhere at all and those who are curious about Shazam miss out on the majority of his origin story since it spans across the past five or six issues or so. Still yet, this Shazam issue has no real beginning or end. It’s great for those of us who have stuck with Justice League, but anyone else will feel like they are walking into the middle of a movie.
The book’s backup adds more mystery to the upcoming Trinity War thing, but felt kind of out of place here as well. I would’ve rather had more Shazam, but oh well. You might also want to read your New 52 Free Comic Book Day Issue again for a quick refresher on Pandora, the Trinity of Sin, and the box, etc. I’ll be glad when this event finally happens. We’ve been getting teased about it for a year now and it still doesn’t make sense. I will say that a cameo in this backup is going to make a lot of fans happy. I know I was pleased to see…ahem, this character again (don’t want to spoil it). I wasn’t expecting them to show up anytime soon.
Good read? Absolutely. New reader friendly? …maybe not so much.