Justice League International Vol. 1

May 5, 2008 | Trades


Justice League International Vol. 1
Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis, Kevin Maguire, Al Gordon
DC Comics
$29.99/$24.99 US (Hardcover)
**** ½ (out of five)

Rule No. 1 in writing a major, mainstream DC Comics title: Batman isn’t funny.
Of course, that’s not to say you can’t surround him with a bunch of quip-throwing heroes and make him the straight man.
That’s pretty much the formula followed by the writing team of Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis back in 1987 when, along with artists Kevin Maguire, Terry Austin and Al Gordon and editor Andy Helfer, they reinvigorated the Justice League.
Instead of a collection of the world’s greatest heroes dedicated to stopping evil and only talking business, these heroes (granted not necessarily the world’s greatest, either) tended to view the Justice League as more of a superhero club, where they could be themselves (for better or worse) and, oh, also stop evil whenever it reared its ugly head.
The result was an instant classic.
From Captain Marvel’s naïveté to Guy Gardner’s boorishness to Blue Beetle’s wise cracking, the book blended humour and action better than any book before or since.
This new hardcover collection of the first seven issues of the series — which sees the transition from mere superhero team to UN-sanctioned international peacekeeping force — breaks rule No. 1 and a lot more to boot and the result is quite simply extraordinary.

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