What’s better than World War II and a bunch of heroes/villains? Probably a few things, but either way the combination works well in the pages of Justice League United. The title delivers on all fronts, bringing comedy, action, and a healthy dose of weird as the rotating teams fight and struggle to take down the breakers.
My first thoughts while reading this issue titled War Zone 2: Weird War, is the sad fact that this title will end soon. It’s actually really entertaining and I had no problems going back just to see how things started. I enjoy these later issues, but overall I think JLU has had a decent run. The concept of the breakers is so unique and offers compelling settings for our heroes (and villains) to occupy. Breakers are anomalies that surpass the concepts of time and space, and threaten the existence just with their presence. The last arc had a giant flesh island, while this one features a war zone that is in a constant loop, meaning continuously fighting the same fight for years on end. These strange anomalies aren’t too far off from reality. Just recently, there was a floating city mirage that hovered above a province in China. You could literally see the outline of buildings…in the sky!
What I like about this arc is that it plays out like an episode of the Twilight Zone. The last JLU team had to face that island monstrosity, and that was more weird and disgusting than anything. Here, the Breaker is disrupting time and has all the soldiers in a constant loop. I just really enjoy the concept of the Breakers. That along with the the rotating JL team makes for pure comic book magic. This really is an excellent book. There’s always been some focus on Star Girl throughout the title, but we get a Batgirl and Vandal Savage team up. An unlikely pair indeed.
A majority of the book has the heroes trying to get their bearings and the individuals stuck in the loop scrambling to figure out what exactly they’ve gotten themselves into. The immortal Vandal Savage always came off to me as a maniacal brute, cursed with the gift of immortality. While that may be true, this issue sheds a little bit of light into Vandal’s way of thinking. His conversation with Batgirl showcased a more human aspect to Vandal Savage. Albeit, a cold, pessimistic one, that small insight was great to see nonetheless. Of course this wasn’t a sympathetic moment for Savage as he celebrates joyously the death of an enemy via land mine. Vandal remains savage.
Star Girl’s separation from everyone else helps offer a scope of just how this Breaker works. There seems to be no escape from the time displaced battlefield. However, for some reason the pilot who shot down Star Girl, and subsequently saved her, is always able to refuel and restock supplies to continue his war. Now that’s not too strange as it could attributed to the nature of a continuous loop. The head scratching moment comes from the fact that he’s able to restock with special ammunition that can take out the modern airships (and knock a super heroine out of the sky). The Breakers appear to be unpredictable anomalies, but this would suggest that there’s something larger behind it all.
Jeromy Cox steals the show with his beautiful hues. His colors and Rob Hunter’s inks assists wonderfully to the fun style of Paul Pelletier’s pencils. Each page looks fantastic with its vibrant colors and Pelletier pays attention to small details that make his panels even better. Besides Poison Ivy from a few issues back, I think Batgirl has had some of the best facial reactions in this title.
- You want a smorgasbord of characters
- You enjoy stories with Vandal Savage
- You want to keep up with a great title
This wasn’t the best of issues, but not because of anything wrong with it. I’m just hoping for more. The story has some great concepts and the array of characters keep things fresh. A lot is going on in the book, but never does it feel bloated or confusing. It is really great because I can’t imagine what it’s going to take to bring an end to this predicament, but I imagine it’s going to be a grand group effort. There seems to be a few hidden factors that could alter the outcome of the situation, and a not so very hidden factor. I’d like to see more about the Zeta Beam and Adam Strange’s ordeal, but for the time being, I’m enjoying the ride. All in all, I feel like this is a sleeper title that readers are sure to enjoy if given the chance.
SCORE: 8 / 10