Thursday, May 3, 2012

Justice League: Cry for Justice #1 (September, 2009)

22,300 miles above Earth in the JLA satellite, Green Lantern Hal Jordan demanded a new course for the team. With Batman and Martian Manhunter recently killed, Jordan wanted to start attacking evil, rather than responding to it. This was a stance no other current Leaguer besides his old buddy Green Arrow was willing to take, including Ollie's wife, Black Canary. The pair left in a huff within a power ring construct.

In Albuquerque, New Mexico, Ray Palmer and Ryan Choi teamed up to raid the hideout of Killer Moth. Each man was so impressed with the other that they both thought the time had come to relinquish the Atom brand. Specifically, Ray was the better at fighting and weight control, while Ryan had “energy” and “fire.” Palmer spoke first, telling Choi, “You are all I thought you’d be and everything I hoped for.”

Palmer set about extracting information from Killer Moth about the stolen Time Pool technology that he had been tracking. With Professor Hyatt having gone senile, the thieves had murdered his retired assistant Mike Dante to get at the tech. Ray knew Moth didn’t have the brains to be behind the scheme, but Moth also wouldn’t give up his boss. “Have you ever had a sinus headache-- so torturous you thought your head’d explode? What if I shrank to microscopic size, entered your skull, then began to grow. Imagine how that would feel.” When Moth protested that heroes like the Atom didn’t act that way, Ray pointed at Ryan. “He’s a hero. I’m Ray Palmer. Welcome to pain.” Following a trip through a tunnel of snot, Ray tortured the name of Prometheus out of Moth, then asked Choi to return to protecting Hyatt in Ivy Town. “Mike Dante was my friend and he died a bad death, so I’m far from okay… Me, I’m taking this all the way to Prometheus’ doorstep. I want him to pay. Yeah… justice!”

In Opal City, former Starman Mikaal Tomas mourned the death of his lover as an extension of the outbreak of super-villain violence. In Africa, the former Congo Bill mourned the massacre of his gorilla tribe and the murder of the hero Freedom Beast. The great golden Congorilla demanded justice.

Taking the name rather literally, “Cry For Justice: The Beginning” was by James Robinson and Mauro Cascioli. Given the anger directed at this book, I was expecting it to be more provocative. Aside from being repetitive and starring a bunch of characters I don’t much care for in a slow building story, I found the issue pretty solid. The art is attractive, the premise is sound, and I think the characterization is dead on. It was also nice to see Ray and Ryan team up, however briefly.

Brave New World

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