Justice League of America 10
Matt Kindt, Tom Derenick, Eddy Barrows
Spoiler alert! You have been warned!
Writer Matt Kindt continues to take over the DC Universe one book at a time and though I do enjoy his work on Suicide Squad (and the Villains Month issues that led into said run), I have to say, so far, I’m not the biggest fan of the direction (or lack thereof) he’s been taking Justice League of America. The consistently inconsistent artwork in this book hasn’t really been helping him out much, either. To be completely honest, this book is really just starting to seem like an excuse to have Justice League be a weekly comic.
The plot is pretty basic. It’s been the same story (more or less) for the last three issues now. Stargirl and Martian Manhunter trying to escape the Crime Syndicate’s prison. But this time around, we get an entirely Stargirl-centric issue, which, unless written by Geoff Johns, I don’t think anyone would ever admit to asking for. What it could have been is an interesting character study that advanced the plot without feeling forced. What it ended up being was a Who’s Who of the Secret Society, a bunch of flashbacks, origins, doubts, fears, and an escape. With an added revelation, which is kind of neat, but doesn’t really make a whole lot of sense at this point: the prison that the three Justice Leagues have been trapped inside isn’t a traditional prison (which we already knew), but rather, they are stuck inside Firestorm (which is totally confusing, yet admittedly intriguing).
The basic flaws of this issue fall not entirely on the pacing or storytelling (or choice of characters to be spotlighted), but are also equally put on the shoulders of artists Tom Derenick and Eddy Barrows, who are both normally very good at what they do. This seems like a very rushed product, and, unfortunately, there are more sequences featuring strange or distracting facial expressions than there are ones with compelling looks, glances, and emotions. The artwork is rushed. The story is a simple “move the plot along and grab some more bucks for the company with a crossover tie-in,” but it is not without its merits. In fact, it’s actually still much better than quite a few other books on the stands today. And the biggest strength of this issue (and the crossover as a whole) is a sense of something bigger happening. And one of obvious continuity. The characterization, though kind of boring at times, is spot-on. Stargirl and Martian Manhunter never seem like they are written incorrectly. And though not a whole lot has happened, the “twist” at the end of this issue promises that we are finally going to be getting some answers. Hopefully they arrive in the form of some action. I believe they will.
My Rating: 3/5