It seems like forever since I’ve been able to discuss Justice League with you all. Oh yeah, because it has been forever since I’ve discussed Justice League with you guys. Judging by the sheer scope of this issue, I can definitely say that the extra time was needed. And this is just the prologue! Coming off the Amazo Virus arc, I was pretty excited for JL’s return. Now, my anticipation is through the roof, the stratosphere, the bleed of the Multiverse! (Sorry, I just finished Morrison’s Multiversity).

Actually, it was pretty cool reading this issue after reading Multiversity and a few of the Convergence titles. Not that you need any of them for this book, but it does comment on quite a bit on DC’s multiple universe shaking events (i.e. Infinite Crisis, Final Crisis, Flashpoint). Looking at it from the perspective of the reader, it’s fun seeing it as an explanation from a character of how these events affect reality in the comic book world.

The narrator and main character of this issue is Metron, the Observer. An omnipresent being who witnesses ALL events across ALL universes know and unknown. He makes it clear that he has no allegiance to anyone or any sides, but has intervened in certain cases when he deemed a threat too great. Metron gives some background insight essentially into the destruction and rebirth of the Multiverse. He also told the story of a time when he meddled in worldly affairs to prevent a cataclysmic war that would have involved Apokolips and New Genesis. The significance of that story is the inevitable war between Darkseid and the Anti-Monitor.

Metron, self-proclaimed voyeur to the universe....creep
Metron, self-proclaimed voyeur to the universe….creep

What I really enjoyed about this introductory story is the terror that both the Anti-Monitor and Darkseid impose without really unleashing any sort of large amount of power yet. There’s a bit where Metron is telling the story of when he prevented a war from occurring. He describes the look on Darkseid’s face, but they never actually show his reaction. I think it worked perfectly to create this really evil feel to the leader of Apokolips. I’ve seen numerous people complain about Darkseid’s power level. Hell, even I thought it was kind of strange (even though I enjoyed it) that Batman took on hordes of Apokolips’ army and Darkseid to retrieve his son’s body in the pages of the Robin Rises. Same goes with the Anti-Monitor, in terms of scare factor. I’ll admit that I’m not too familiar with the character, but he possesses a menacing stature, and he seems to have his mind deadset on initiating this war.

Now as far as the art goes, let’s just say that it goes! It was pretty spectacular to me. Initially, I was shocked at the number of inkers, pencilers, and artists, but after viewing the different panels I could see why. I previously read that Jason Fabok was really trying to focus all of his attention on the Darkseid War. The scale of this story, and the large number of characters shown in this issue alone is ridiculous. It’d be insane and downright torture for Fabok to tackle this alone. I’m sure he’ll get more solo art duty in the other issues, but this at least gave him enough time to knock those pages out for later. Besides, we end up getting some beautiful pages/splashes from Kevin Maguire, Phil Jimenez, Dan Jurgens, Jerry Ordway, Scott Kolins, and one of my personal favorites, Jim Lee. Brad Anderson and Alex Sinclair were on color duty and I can’t even imagine how meticulous that work must have been. The colors came out stellar, the entire book had a vibrant look to it; even on the smoldering world of Apokolips or the desecrated Earth-Three where the Anti-Monitor conversed with Metron.

Spoiler
I put this splash in a spoiler tag only because it was amazing to see firsthand once I arrived at that page. I literally sat on this page for a good while before continuing.

[caption id="attachment_20212" align="aligncenter" width="1074"]This splash alone made my head spin. How many characters do you recognize? This splash alone made my head spin. How many characters do you recognize?[/caption]

Recommended if:

  • You’re interested in Darkseid and/or Anti-Monitor
  • You want to jump onto the Justice League bandwagon
  • You want to see some terrific art
  • You don’t want to be made fun of for missing out on a large single book event (No crossovers)
Hey look! Even Braniac likes to check out Batman-News.com
Hey look! Even Braniac likes to check out Batman-News.com

Overall: 

Some folks don’t like Johns’ direction for the League, but I think he’s done a swell job so far. He touches on what’s currently going on in DC in comic book form, and got my anticipation up to high levels for this book, and here’s the kicker– the Justice League weren’t even in this book (save for a small cameo). Having so many folks working on the art of the issue and making it all work cohesively should be commended. My prediction: a whole lot of destruction and some wonderful character development. I’m ready for the Free Comic Book Day issue and #41 already.

SCORE: 8.5 / 10