This issue is all about the inner workings of the JLA and how they feel about outsiders. You get to see a lot of personality from each of the members, including Batman, which was a bit of a surprise for me. A lot of things are shown in this issue that you might find yourself wishing had been explored more in depth. Maybe in the future it will be, for now let’s look at the official description for the issue and get on with the review.
“In the five years that the Justice League has been a team, Green Arrow has never once been a member. And he intends to rectify that right here, right now! One member against his candidacy: Aquaman! Plus, in “The Curse of Shazam” part 2, Billy arrives in his new foster home just as an ancient evil is uncovered halfway across the world.
So apparently there was a 5 year jump from when the League first formed. So the team has been together for awhile and you get a few ideas in the issue what has happened to them over the past few years. I found these to be the most interesting parts of the issue and really wish they were each an issue unto itself. Things like Cyborg’s Boom Tube teleportation ability malfunctioning and getting them transported to Apokolips twice are kind of a big thing to skip over in my opinion. Another story that was skipped over was a big surprise for me, and the reasoning behind the group being so closed off to a new member. We’ll come back to that. At the start of the issue we see that Steve Trevor is still being harassed by the government about the Justice League. So 5 years later he is still in the same kind of meetings where they are trying to get some say in the Justice League’s actions. I found this boring, especially with the time jump, the government should either be the mysterious force in the background or just out of the way completely in my opinion. Making Steve sit down with these old guys and tell them “no” all the time just feels weak. I seriously doubt the government would ask consistently for five years and not take more drastic action to assert some control.
They try to get Steve to open the minds of the Justice League to a new member. Steve immediately shoots this down, knowing the League has a firm stance on the subject already. We then start to follow some League adventures where we find Green Arrow throwing himself into action with the League in order to earn membership. This leads to some funny moments, one being where Green Arrow flips over Amazo’s fallen robotic body to show his contribution to the team effort, an Arrow in Amazo’s behind. While this made me laugh, it made me feel sorry for Green Arrow fans. I’m surprised DC was willing to make Green Arrow such a joke in this issue considering the CW has a live action TV series in the works about the hero titled Arrow. You would think they would try to make him look cooler, tougher.
The adventures the Justice League face in this issue are all quickies, nothing that felt like it needed a League presence but there they were together, and Green Arrow tagging along, annoying most of them except Superman, whom I was glad held more respect for the Emerald Archer. One nice thing about the missions was a tie into the Court of Owls; I haven’t read my most recent Batman comics but it was refreshing to see the storyline featured a bit in the Justice League books. I hope to see more tie-ins like this that aren’t exactly focused, but rather acknowledging of a members storyline.
At the end of the issue we find out the reason for not letting another member join the Justice League. Beyond blatant disrespect for Green Arrow it is because the team was betrayed in the past by none other than Martian Manhunter. My jaw dropped, mostly because I can’t believe this was something that was skipped over in the five year jump. Although it looks like something that will be revisited soon, I still couldn’t help but think, WHY? That would have been a great issue or couple of issue’s instead of this mediocre stuff I’ve been reading since the end of Darkseid.
That’s my final thought of the issue; it’s mediocre. It’s funny if you’re not a Green Arrow fan, even though some characters like Batman seem to be written out of character a bit. The rest, although a bit harsher then I’d imagine, had some witty dialogue. I’d still say to get the issue, the art is still beautiful and you can tell they are heading somewhere with Steve, I just wish they’d get there already.