For the past few months we've been teased with the idea of the Justice League and a showdown with Darkseid. That time is just about here.
One of the first things you should notice is the cover. You'll notice that Jim Lee's depiction of Aquaman is different than what Ivan Reis is doing over in AQUAMAN. Lee is clearly giving us a different look to reflect the fact that this story is taking place before the events in AQUAMAN. The other characters may not have such obvious visual differences but that's where Geoff Johns comes in. The behavior and speech of Superman and Wonder Woman also shows us that these are different characters that what we're seeing in their individual titles.
It's the interaction between the newly (and unofficially) formed Justice League that makes this different than the original meeting. We've seen many variations involving heroes meeting for the first time. We've seen some of those all combined within these pages. What gives this a truly different feel is they aren't all happy and cheerful to be together. They're not going to be holding hands and singing songs. They are aware of each other to an extent but aren't exactly gung ho to be working together. How this group can ever bond together and evolve into the Justice League we (think we) know will be another journey.
There is still plenty of action to showcase Lee's talent. Seeing characters like Aquaman or Wonder Woman use certain aspects of their powers, that we've seen hundreds of times, looks amazing when drawn by Lee. Throughout the mayhem, we do get some tiny updates on what makes characters like Green Lantern and Cyborg tick. The feeling and combination of old and new is what makes this story exciting.
It was announced that Darkseid would be showing up in this issue. As much as it's been great seeing the different members meet up, we're finally seeing some progress as Darkseid makes quite the entrance.
I've raved in past reviews over Lee's art and Johns' writing. It's understandable that this arc is meant to be the introduction of the team and how they got together. Despite the updates and revelations, things have been dragging on just a little. Darkseid has some big plan in motion and he's just now putting in an appearance. We've had some great action scenes but most of it has been the League fighting Parademons. We're ready to see how the Justice League versus Darkseid will play out.
There's also the slight sacrifice in getting some really nice splashy Jim Lee pages. Some of the scenes play out on full or half pages. It's a great way to see all the detail Lee puts in but makes the story feel that much shorter. I do love see Lee's art but I'm not sure how much story pages should be sacrificed in order to get them.
It's starting to feel like the end of the world in the DC Universe, just when the Justice League finally got together. Johns and Lee continue to give us high octane action and with the appearance of Darkseid, we're finally to see even more crazy action. Seeing the big panels with Jim Lee's art is always great to see but it's starting to feel a little like they're coming at a cost to the progress of the story. We are seeing the team meet for the first time and they do need to get a feel for each other but having them fight non-stop hordes of Parademons is getting a little old. This issue didn't have the major revelations seen in past issue but it's still a treat seeing everyone get used to each other. Next issue, for sure should be an explosion of action and story-telling. If seeing the way Johns and Lee introduce Darkseid here doesn't get you amped up, I'm not sure what will.