Seconds the best
I don't know what I was expecting when I first heard of Earth 2. Actually, scratch that. I thought it would be basically the basic DCU with a few cast changes and a bit of creative liberty. What drew me in was where this creativity could go.
And man, did it go places.
Let;s compare it to the obvious: JLA. Now, I say this without an ounce of Hyperbole, this one issue delivered more than the first arc of Justice League of America. I am not joking.
One thing it had was weight, a feeling that stakes were high and a sense of drama about what could happen and what it could mean for this newly explored world, something JLA lacked. Obviously, this is done through no fault of JLA itself, but the liberty of a title free of continuity really allowed James Robinson to go hog wild, and helped deliver a truly emotional story, with characters we actually managed to care about in less than 20 pages, which gave the twist so much more impact, and let's face it, JLA trusted it's readers to care about it's iconic characters beforehand, and therefore didn't do too much to get us invested. Not only that, I found the art to be quite superior, which is hard to do when competing with Jim Lee.
But enough bashing JLA, let's look at what it does to set it apart.
First, the new superheros in the story, Alan Scott and Jay Garrick, are introduced in a way that doesn't expect you to just instinctively know who they are. there not in costume yet, they have yet to go through their origin. Giving them this chance to grow on us is smart, if nothing special, but it's really done quite well. They're already made into likable characters, so I'm immediately interested in their stories, but still obviously have room to grow.
I also love the little details. Wonder Woman seems to follow the Roman gods, not the Greeks, and it seems her mythology might tie into another hero, which is clever. Seeds for the future are also sown, though if I have one gripe at all with this issue is that I dislike the name Steppenwolf, it get's born to be wild stuck in my head.
I really liked this issue. It's basically JLA, but without the usual flaws and ticks and habits Geoff Johns has in his writing, and wonderfully helps set up, and set apart, this world. If it continues like this, I am going to be a happy comic fan.