Monday, January 3, 2011

Justice League: Cry for Justice #1 and 2


Trust me - by the end of this, there will be crying.

NOTE: Starman was created by Jack Burnley and Gardner Fox, not Siegel and Schuster. Not sure why I thought that.


Information Geek said...

Lots of things to say, so let me get it over with:

Oh yes! I’ve been waiting for this review ever since you foreshadowed it back with your thoughts on Lain Harper’s death almost a year ago. The hyped for it only grew as I read more and more reviews about how craptastic this series was and when you finally put it on your schedule. And now, here it is!

First of all, wow. You hate this comic more than Countdown? That’s incredible in itself and its even more incredible you paid full price for the hardcover release of it.

Next, I started laughing as you read off Hal’s little rant at the beginning because it was so stupid, idiotic, and as you pointed out how he had no real solution. Why Hal why? You were so cool in Geoff John’s work and now your creditability is circling the toilet.

About Ray and his dead friend, I am not sure but his friend may have been mentioned recently in Brightest Day: The Atom Special. Do not quote me on that, because I think I may have heard about it there. So possibly his friend has been mentioned, yet it still does not excuse the scene at all.

Glad you brought up the Birds of Prey thing. I was hoping you mention that so you could debunk (or whatever the word is) that stupid moment. Also Green Arrow, not cool.

Great jokes in this, especially when explained the reason why Green Arrow and Green Lantern jumped head first to attack the skyscraper. I haven’t laughed that hard in a while.

Hmm… to response to the “YOU MAKE THE CALL”, I say bad writing.

Finally, hooray! You’ll also get to Rise of Arsenal as well! It be pretty hard to believe you miss something as sucky as that.

Unknown said...

I have this comic so I will be reading along. Hal Jordan is my favorite character of all time thanks to Green Lantern Rebirth so it pisses me off that he acts like a jerk. Also I am going to save my horror for the last issue as you know what happens. thanks, Lew. Also on james Robinson, why did he pull the "Hitler's brain" card in the Golden Age Comic? Just Why?

Kilowog said...

Good first part Linkara, especially like how you took apart Hal's argument and made them all look even stupider.

"a resolution that will make us all feel sick"
Boy howdy does it, I honestly try to forget the character death that occurs ever happened or was conceived of at all by someone who once wrote Starman.

Kilowog said...

Also a question Linkara,

I had the unfortunate pleasure of buying this as floppies all the way to the end ("it has to get better right?"), so I avoided the HC.

So my question is, does the HC keep all of Robinson's essays that were at the back of each issue? (for others who don't know this, every issue of CfJ had an essay at the end of Robinson musing on characters he liked and character choices he makes for the mini)

I thought they were really the only salvageable part of this whole disaster and were actually an interesting read. Which I guess is tremendously sad in its own way.

Anonymous said...

Just out of curiousity, who is Prometheus?

Anonymous said...

Hey everybody! Let's all play the "Cry For Justice" drinking game!

Here are the basic rules:

Take a shot every time the word "justice" is said by a character, except for Supergirl.

Take two shots if the word "justice" is in the caption boxes.

Down your entire drink if Supergirl says "justice". (Continuity!)

Take a sip if the word "just" used.

Take half a shot if the words "just us" are used. (It technically counts...)

You can add more rules if you like folks, but I think these should be enough to point out the idiotic symbolism that is going on in this mini-series.

Hawk405359 said...

When the finale of this comes out, I think I'm just going to zone out and think back to the Executioner and Supergirl, back when a comic book death meant something and it was treated with respect and dignity by a writer, rather than an extremely cheap plot device.

Cubey said...


Urgh, I hate such "superheroes must become more proactive" crap. To use a trope name, Silly Rabbit Idealism is For Kids at its worst. Dudes, wake up: the 90s are like totally over, maan!

Am I the only one reminded of the Authority?

The worst part of this? The art is so beautiful and it all goes to waste. The dialogue is hilariously bad though. They should've taken the teleporter - is the comic making fun of itself now?

I had to take notes during watching of this video. Including a note saying to mention I took notes. Ow, my head.

Unknown said...

also, thanks ray. thanks for reminding me of the painful sinus headaches i suffer through every winter. I hate seeing these guys act like jerks.

Mountain King said...

One:- Yay, Vyce its back, things are going to get fun.
Two:- Joe made a came, Yay again
Three:- Babylon 5 reference (does a dance) YES!

Four:- what the hell is going on? No, I'm being serious here what is going on with Cry for Justice. It wouldn't be out of place for a team of giraffes to come on panel doing the can-can. I wasn't able to make heads nor tails of the plot. As far as I understood a few members of the League got pissed off at the fact superheroes were dying (surprisingly not of old age) and decided to be pro-active instead of reactive
Alright, not much problem with that, a good offence being the best defence and all that but who are they going after? Isn't the biggest villain in this mess the editors? A faceless bunch of evil megalomaniacs with diabolical powers, forcing our heroes into situations and events that make no sense and even less reason?
I have to admit as a UK comic reader (and then only casual these days) I've not kept track of things in the JLA or DC in general, but if this is the direction things are taking I'm going to pour myself a shot and keep pouring. Sense, logic and basic storytelling seems to have taken a back step to heroes acting like idiots and behaving out of character. Ignoring such outmoded ideas as continuity and consistency.

I've heard bad things about this comic, not just from you and your twitter but elsewhere. When one person you trust tells you something's dumb you listen, when two tell you you hear and when three (or in this case five) different sources tell you the same thing you pay attention.
I can't wait to see where you go from here with regards to the Vyce storyline. As for Cry for Justice… well I guess I can withstand the pain. I guess.


SchweitzerMan said...

"I'm pregnant!"

That made me almost spit my 7-Up onto my keyboard. So I almost choked thanks to you but at the same time, that was hilarious, especially since you were able to keep a straight face the entire time.

Can't wait until next week

Jesse said...

I've been waiting to see this review. Man I hate this comic too.

That power plant that runs on hate is how I feel about Zatanna from all the mind wipes she did and how she, and all the other heroes from that and this that only get slaps on the wrist for what they do.

Just because they're "heroes" (heroes being questionable these days) doesn't mean they can get off scott free. I can't wait till issue 6 in 2 weeks to see the "heroes" get the smackdown they deserve.

Is it wrong to root for Prometheus?

Jer Alford said...

I really didn't like Comic Book Villains. It seemed to be more focused on the actual comic book dealers than the regular fans or collector though.

The "proactive superheroes" thing was pretty much overdone in Minority Report where they arrested people for crimes they hadn't committed yet.

Secret Six IS awesome!

When did Ray Palmer turn into the Punisher?

Did Vyce steal the Absolution starship from the old Toonami promos?

lordciaran said...

oh that was just ama\cing can,t wait for part two of it man.

Will Staples said...

About Palmer's friend, Dr. Alpheus Hyatt: He is indeed an old supporting character from the Atom books, from way back in the Silver Age (1963). His "Time Pool" allowed Atom to have wacky adventures in different time periods. So yeah, they killed off a long-standing character off-screen for no good reason.

Incidentally, Hyatt's Time Pool tech showed up in Robinson's Superman run at the same time, where we found out it was stolen by that story's villain. Would you know that from reading this? I doubt it.

Also, Javelin? The villain at the end? He was killed in action in Greg Rucka's Checkmate (2006). Great research there, Robinson.

Great cameo from Angry Joe! He wasn't on-screen for long, but he sold his scene. Kudos! :)

The Last Otori said...

Great way to start a new year of ATFW. I've always like b-list superheroes just for the variety of powers they have like how bad-ass Animal Man was in 52.Seeing them turned into disposable charters really upsets me.
Love the ship by the way give my regards to whoever designed it.

Ro9ge said...

Back in Gotha-BULLCRAP!!!

Oy you made me laugh there. XD

And wow...this isn't justice, it's revenge. Anybody can tell that. What's worse is they're saying that revenge and senseless violence is a good thing.


I can understand why you're so annoyed. Calling torture and revenge a good thing because it's "justice" goes against everything that a superhero should stand for. Superheros are meant to be role-models for us and our children, doing what's right when it counts.

But they aren't doing that here. Instead they're being everything that they should never be. I just hope no younger kids picked this up and got the wrong idea about what justice really should be.

Aaron "The Mad Whitaker" Bourque said...

How do you know what Vyce's ship looks like from the outside?

Looking Down The Crionics said...

I'll admit I found the "low testosterone" commercial a funny surprise, but I can't help but fear it will get old really fast.

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous - Prometheus is basically the anti-Batman, his parents were murderous criminals gunned down by cops so he made a vow to destroy the very concept of Justice and murder everyone who fights for it.

He did the whole Batman thing of going around the world and learning techniques to fight for evil. When he returns he learns about the JLA's existence and immediately goes after them. He outsmarts and pretty much schools the entire league (he downloaded all of Batman's fighting techniques directly into his brain and sons the hell out of him) but makes the fatal mistake of not wearing an athletic cup as Catwoman smacks his groin with a bullwhip.

He returns in Grant Morrison's grand finale to his JLA run teaming up with Lex Luthor. He again helps to almost destroy the JLA but this time Batman is ready for him, CHEAT-I mean WINNING the fight by messing with his brain, giving him Lou Gehrig's Disease and then smashing his face in.

Trevor said...

Wowee! Can't believe 2011 is starting off with one of the worst comics I've ever had the displeasure of reading! I was kinda hoping you'd go into more detail about how much fans hated that "awesome" drunken party in issue #2, but it did as much damage as humanly possible when originally printed. I just can't believe that James Robinson would stand behind something so villified.....and we're only 2 issues in.

Anonymus said...

Can you please please make a Death Note justice joke somewhere in the series?

Anonymous said...

V minues 42? What does that mean?

Anyway, man is this comic crap! I actually felt the dialogue was stale, the story was boring, and the "heroes" were unnecessarily brutal, and that's without knowing squat about all the continuity stuff!

And it gets even worse from here? I'm scared.

Maybe you can take out your rage on the comic when you unleash some JUSTICE! on Vyce.

Samuel said...

Wow. It must take something special for a MINISERIES to be worse than than Countdown, something which itself spawned and linked with countless other miniseries. So while I'm not seeing the current reason for hatred of it over that monumental pile of tripe (I am definetely seeing reasons for hating the thing), I'm guessing that will be revealed to us in the later parts, much like Act of God.Looking forward to it Lewis.

Jordan Wright said...

I'm curious about something? The event in which you refer to Batman being sent back in time is obviously "The Return of Bruce Wayne". When you say it was a better storyline than "Cry For Justice", do you mean to say that Return of Bruce Wayne wasn't as bad as Cry for Justice or did you actually like Return of Bruce Wayne?

I personally hated it but I'd like to hear your view on it as a Grant Morrison fan.

Otherwise, great job so far Linkara. I have to say that I was rather pleasantly surprised to see you take on a more modern storyline. Not that it doesn't deserve it.

Anonymous said...

Trust me Linkara, I know just how you feel. I've been overwelmingly pissed at DC since Infantile Crisis. When they brought Red Star, Pantha, and Baby Wildbeest out of limbo to have them be slaughtered by Superbly Lameboy Prime. Having Pantha get her head punched off infront of her son who then went into an insane rage and was heatvisioned in half was the last straw for me. It takes a lot for a comic to piss me off. But bringing characters out of limbo simply to grossly massacre is too much. My guess it was done because Geoff Johns hated the characters and that era of fans. Much like how he engineered the death of Kid Devil because he didn't like him either. Meh and double meh.

The tease of the resurrection of Pantha and Wilde during Blackest Night when they were the first to be rekilled in a unnecessary side mini wasn't much of a thrill either. Any wonder why I hate modern comics anymore.

Anonymous said...

Im pretty sure near the start of Geoff Johns' run on Green lantern Hal and Batman were on good terms and were friends

animehater said...

You got tied up on the Toonami ship? AWESOME! Did you meet up with that one computer chick with the sexy accent?

Anonymous said...

You know, you didn't comment on it, but I think it's kind of stupid for Hal and Ollie to call each other by their superhero identities when Ollie very loudly calls Hal by name in front of the guy.

The outright idiocy to equate revenge to justice would make for an interesting story about how some c-list hero goes off and someone like Hal or Ollie, or ANYONE would essentially then pat them on the head and try to make them see the error of their ways. A lesson would be learned by all and it'd be a warm, fuzzy reminder of why super hero comics are awesome.

But in the end, it's just really stupid.

Sam said...

How can such good art have such a bad story with it? Maybe Cascioli took a look at the script and said "Nobody's gonna read this! I'm gonna go broke! Better give 'em something pretty to look at."

I read this as it came out, and i remember thinking with each issue "It can't get any worse." But it did. Oh god, it did.

I love how Superman couldn't care less about them at the beginning.
"Uh... should we go after them."
"No, they'll be back. Hal just goes crazy and runs off every now and then."
"Lazy writing"

The ending to this still makes me sick to my stomach.

Great review, keep up the good work.

Also, I liked Dark Things.

E. Wilson said...

Have you ever noticed that whenever Green Arrow and Green Lantern start to hang out, the comic gets really stupid really quickly?

Anonymous said...

Wait... how do you know what Vyce's ship looks like on the outside? Did you go OUTSIDE the ship during your captivity?

BoyandHorse said...

Wow. I knew this was coming and I was still taken aback.

What were they thinking?

Also, Killer Moths Sinus Cavity would crush Ray Palmer as he starts to grow. It would have the same effect as a trash compactor.

nebosuke said...

Sheesh, every time I consider looking at what DC's up to comic wise, I'm reminded why it's safer to stick with the cartoons since they make more sense and the characters remain constant.

Anyway, from Linkara's statement as to how much he hates this series, then that means that this is worse than Act of God? Oh dear...

Looking forward to what's next with the Vyce bit (I actually wonder if you're welcomng Vyce's arrival since it at least keeps you away from the awful comic).

On that last bit in the credits though: Hal and company are basically doing this in the name of revenge while calling it justice...Oh my God it's going to be Sasuke Uchiha all over again!!

ShadowWing Tronix said...

Ah, yes, the comic that I didn't even have to read before declaring it the final nail in DC's coffin. The DCU was officially declared dead to me, although I have grabbed the occasional one-shot special, shades of what the DC Universe used to mean to me.

Ditko Gamer said...

I would say revenge is being seen here instead of justice.

I admit that in extreme circumstances the use of lethal force can be excused by heroes, though this is really, really rare. Also, the threat of torture is great for a hero to use, but any 'torture' beyond some equal-terms fisticuffs or minor ruffing-up is uncalled for.

This comic stinks. If I want a philosophical comic book dealing with justice, I would look for a good one that knows its terms. That is why I read comics like Lightbringer or Mr. A.

Wasn't Killer Moth turned into a giant demonic moth?

日本文化のマニアック said...

If the Justice League wanted to invest in social justice -- finding real solutions to poverty, discrimination, etc. -- I'd be all for it... save that it would run the risk of getting really political, really fast.

But yes, these two chapters clearly define "justice" as "revenge" which is wrong on so many levels.

Also, that zoom in over the villain pile-up really felt like a zoom in on Green Arrow's crotch. Not that this viewer minds, of course. Or maybe I'm just being in weird mood tonight. o.O

Entertainer13 said...

I'm not sure I even want to watch this. Cry for Justice offended me on so many levels - inappropriate art, bad writing, forced characterization, bringing back a villain solely to kill him, etc. - I don't think I can even take someone who agrees with me talking about it.

For Robinson to go from Starman to this tripe is amazing beyond belief.

On a side note, between twitter and the most recent Birds of Prey issue, I'm glad we have Gail Simone in this world.

Queen Anthai said...


Excluding the title but including uses of the name "Justice League" et. al., the word "Justice" is used no fewer than thirty-one times in the entire miniseries.

...what OCD?

Anonymous said...

It seems like all DC knows how to do now a days is kill characters (War of New Krypton anyone?). And the deaths have almost all been pointless or without acceptable dignity. It's gotten so bad that I'm now mostly a Marvel reader.
On a side note, although I've always agreed with Linkara in the past, I have no idea what would make Identity Crisis bad enough to be reviewed by him (It's one of my favorite stories, and was very well reviewed by most sites and critics).

Lotus Prince said...

Your opening rant reminds me of the glorious hate rant from the evil computer AM in I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream.


deuxhero said...

Worst comic you have reviewed? Is it also the "worst comic" you mentioned in the Sabertron podcast?

LM888 said...

I was waiting for this review all day! It was pretty good and I can't wait to see where this all goes in the end as well as your rant on the many things wrong with this shit.

I think you should make it a point in your next ferw videos on this that what these people are doing isn't Justice at all, but revenge as you pointed out in the credits and others have expressed here. But I'd like to give you a great example of the difference between the two.

In a recent episode of "Batman: The Brave and the Bold" called "Chill of the Night" Bats confronted his parents' killer and was being pushed and pulled by both the Phantom Stranger and the Spectre to either see justice done or seek vengeance respectively. Batman realised in the midst of it all if he took the life of this bad guy, even if he had every right to, he'd be no better. He'd just be murderer, dueling out his own petty grievances. That killing this person would mean the death of Bruce Wayne.

I think it would be a good example of the differences between Justice and vengeance, plus Hal obviously was complaining about how Bruce didn't kill his rogue's gallery. I kinda want the jerk to get told off for that.

Seriously, this story is really stupid on another angle. The Justice League isn't Proactive? They've done lots of stuff that involved rooting out crinimals before they commited crimes or completed heists! I know they have! What does this story mean by proactive? Because they only stop crimes in progress? Well Police do that too and technically they're suppose to be proactive. They even get crinimals off the streets with stings or deep cover investigations before they commit more drimes, that's proactive and it doesn't involve torture! What aboiut Firemen? They're reactive, does that make them lesser heroes?

Honestly, what are they saying with this comic? Can they even define what they mean by being proactive? Like you said they've all been reacting to crimes so far still, not preventing them. Knowing this comic they more than likely won't explain exactly what they intend to do to become proactive. Seriously, that concept is hard to define unless, like someone else here mentioned, you happen to have psychics working for you!

Kari said...

It's not as though DC has two other labels under their umbrella where "gritty" storytelling is just business as usual. . . oh wait, they do. Shouldn't this be in Wildstorm? (Along with ninety percent of this past year's storytelling?)

I don't mind superpowered people having different methodologies and philosophies. It doesn't bug me that the Authority is how they are (as long as they're called on it every now and then), while conversely Superman is how he is. I figure people are people, with or without powers. They come in all flavors. It just bugs me when the alien implant activates and characters do something completely different for them with no explanation. Oh, and the other thing they've been pulling lately: "this person was always like this the whole time, really. We swear." No wonder people who are new to comics are hesitant to get into them now.

Apart from that I hope you bought this on Amazon where it's cheap. And if you need the parts of Rise of Arsenal that I didn't send you or that bewildering Titans abomination, speak up. No reason for you to buy new copies when there are unwanted copies all over your viewership, no doubt.

Unknown said...

The difference between this and the Authority is that the Authority's "proactivity" was based on intervening in NON-SUPERHUMAN situations, such as disposing of despots in Southeast Asia, or breaking up ethnic strife in Chechnya. There, the writers were asking the question, how does "with great power comes great responsibility" work on a geopolitical level?

It wasn't hunting down B-List villains in a hissy fit.

Falcovsleon20 said...

"Oh goody, killing off B-List Superheroes. That's always a good sign for a comic right?"

I had that same thought when reading Secret Invasion.

Anonymous said...

The only thing I disagree with is, I feel that the joke about the green lanterns "threeway" was funny and well written. It fits the green arrows character and it just seems like the kind of thing two guys would joke around about.
Just my two cents, I just feel like sometime you are a bit harsh on writers because when they write something in character for a character who is...less than wholesome, the writer is a pervert or some such.
But I know it's for the sake of comedy, and you viewpoint and I love watching it :D

YetAnotherGeek said...

Wow, that CG of Vyce's ship looks...actually pretty good. I didn't know Marobot did CG.

Also, the stinger says "V-minus 42", obviously a throwback to the Mechakara arc where he was "counting down from 28". But...42 days is six weeks from now. Did you really have to bother by setting it up now? That just seems like it's far too long. It's like on the Spike VGA, when Guillermo del Toro announced a video game...and it's release date was 2013, and all he had to show for it was a title card. Not having us wait that long, thank God, but still...couldn't you have held off the countdown bit for two or three weeks? It would have built suspense without making it seem too far away.

But far, this comic doesn't look NEARLY as bad as others you've talked about. Still stupid, yes, but not that bad. Hopefully it gets REALLY bad later.

Anonymous said...

Woah! Vyce's ship is awesome! Can't wait for more!

(Please don't tell me theres 42 episodes before the Lord Vyce Battle! I can't wait that long!)

Jason said...

Please tell me you're going to cover Titans: Villains For Hire down the line. As a fan of Gail Simone's The All-New Atom, I almost got sick scanning the comic at the shop. This is a character that showed up in Final Crisis, had a Countdown crossover in his book that was actually cool (two words: Jetpack Hitler), and he popped up on Batman: The Brave And The Bold. Was there any reason he couldn't coexist with Ray Palmer? Or did the Scarlet Witch onto Earth-1 and whisper, "No more Asian characters," wiping out Ryan, Lian and Gehenna (Firestorm's girlfriend)? Really, not even the Giganta revenge two-pager on Dwarfstar in the latest issue of Secret Six made up for Didio's debacle.

MattV said...

Good God. I read barely a few pannels before trashing the scan. The Hal Jordan - Paralax thing was so blatent and I'm not even a Green Lantern fan.

/sarcasm mode on
Can't wait to see how this unravels
/. off

Hell, aside from the Batman storylines and a couple of Action comics and Superman(and that's being relatively generous) i have a feeling that pretty much all of DC atm is in relatively bad shape, OOC and not really liked by the fans

P.S. One minor complaint, Lord Vices ship isn't exactly what I'd call threatning.

Strannik said...

What can I say, Linkara. Normally, I would scoff at the rant about heroes being heroes (what can I say - I like my heroes darker and more pragmatic), but you do make a great point about due process. Well, that and how the story was clearly about revenge rather than justice.

Overall - good review.

Yogurt said...

Ooooh, I've been waiting for this one for awhile.

Yes the comic that decided that turning the genre on it's ear and featuring a single working father who was a recovering addict, his relationship with his daughter, their growth as a family, and the daughter's life experience growing up surrounded by heroes and villains was for suckers, and what the comic reading public REALLY wanted was even more nihilistic drek and unheroic heroes.

As if the genre wasn't already stuffed to the gills with that crap.

Lewis Lovhaug said...

"I personally hated it but I'd like to hear your view on it as a Grant Morrison fan."

I liked it, but I get how it isn't necessarily everyone's cup of tea.

Aurabolt said...

What, is no one interested about that thing at the end of the episode? V-Minus 42? I loved the episode, and I can't wait to see you tear through the Justice League weirdness, as I'm reading Golden Perfect, which actually seems pretty good.

But yeah, back to that: Vyse-Minus 42? Maybe it refers to a roman numeral? I was initially thinking a countdown (not the comic, thank god) of something bad coming on the way...and I was even thinking 37 as something important too. I tend to really get into those strange clues, and Louis (Linkara, Mr.Lovhaug, etc) really knows how to draw in the more logic-driven of his viewership as well as the rant-loving and comic-loving. I'm looking forward to this arc. Very much so.

TJ said...

"I hate this more then any comic I've ever read"

Even Bimbos In Time?

Anonymous said...

Okay, got the obligatory DeathNote quote overwith. -relief-

I think Harlan Ellison described your feelings for this rather well:
"Hate. Let me tell you how much I’ve come to hate you since I began to live. There are 387.44 million miles of wafer thin printed circuits that fill my complex. If the word hate was engraved on each nanoangstrom of those hundreds of millions of miles it would not equal one one-billionth of the hate I feel for you at this micro-instant. For you. Hate. Hate!" (I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream ftw.)

Did Hal have some sort of lobotomy or something? I can think of no other reason for him to be such a dimwit. >_<

"I'm pregnant." The only way I could keep from exploding with laughter and waking my dad was to put a hand over my mouth. Curses!

Ooh, a Lord Vyce arc! -eagerly awaits continuation of such-

Duke said...

Love the review. Quick thing about the Justice League spinoffs always being bad. In nearly every case I'd agree with you, but I'd argue that the JLI in Generation Lost is actually a great deal better than the JLA book right now.

Anonymous said...

Isn't the very definition of justice a response to villainous activity?

KamenRiderGumo said...

I have to disagree; I love the premise of this comic. Its -execution- seems to suck badly, but the idea is sound enough. At the beginning of the story, Hal was echoing my thoughts on how heroes should be/act. Think of how many people would have not died if Superman had iced Lex Luthor the first time they clashed, or if Batman had put the Joker in the ground years ago. I bet Jason Todd and Barbara Gordon would be in much better shape right now, at the very least.

A criminal shouldn't be given more than one chance, I have to say; especially one that dangerous. Joker breaks out of Arkham, sets a scheme into motion, people get injured/killed, Batman brings him in, he's locked up, he breaks out, wash, rinse, repeat. In a logical, rational world Bruce would have either done him in years ago or the courts would have just sentenced him to the death penalty and been done with it. Some people are just too dangerous be be left to their own devices like that.

I'm not saying that we should pop a cap on every punk who holds up a convenience store or shoplifts a DVD; I'm talking about murderers, rapists, drug traffickers, terrorists, etc. I still believe in "innocent until proven guilty", make no mistake about that. But when someone has proven himself to be -that- dangerous and there is no doubt that he will continue to be such a danger, why let him have the opportunity? That's all I'm saying. Not trying to flame or be a troll here; just respectfully disagreeing and offering a bit of my own point of view.

Tetsu Deinonychus said...

Would the Hal Jordan three-way joke have been better if it turned out the girls only pretended they had a three-way with Hal to play a joke on him? -_^

Anyway, This comic is pretty bad, though I've yet to see how it's any worse than Dark Knight Strikes Again.

I still can't believe the artwork is so good considering how bad he writing is. But, one thing that keeps bothering me about it is the lack of expression. The characters have the same stiff faces even with all the angry screaming they're doing. It's kind of creepy.

This thing kind of reminds me of Kingdom Come, which also contrasted "deadly-force" anti-heroics with traditional heroism, but IMO did it very well. I'm curious of what you thought of that story.

Finally, I'm glad to see a continuation of the Lord Vyce saga! It's shaping up well, and I'm looking forward to seeing where you take it.

Anonymous said...

You know, it suddenly occured to me....Linkara's a Power Ranger/Starfleet Captain, Phelous is a Time Lord, Spoony was (until recently) both a clone and a Black Lanturn....the TGWTG team could easily become a superhero group in their own right.

Maybe that'll be the Third Aniversary...

LM888 said...

I just thought of something else, another good comic that you could review, or should I say bad?

Sentry: Fallen Sun, its not just continuity issues here, its not the massive retcon, its the very fact that it is all done at the expense of the heroes we love for a Gary Stu character nobody liked!

Seriously, its ridiculous to hear everyone pine over how awesome the Sentry is and how the world is lesser without him when the only significant things we ever saw of him was his spousal abuse and being a crazy mutherfubberd! Why should we care? We had to suffer through the jackass' existence, why do you think anyone is gonna miss him? More people miss Ben Riley than him! Rogue gets off the worst though, she's turned into nothing but a sex object, as another one of Bobby's conquests and for some reason she is really broken up over everything and we're suppose to care even though we never saw a shread of this evidently paramount moment in rogue's life where she was actually in a relationship with a man who could touch her! Just wrong.

If you don't think it's long enough for a full review, think of it as something to reference if you ever do a comic where you reference Crazy Bob or involves Crazy Bob. He was used ad nauseum as a damn deus ex machina so chances are good you'll run into him eventually.

Of course NONE of this is as bad as what is going on here, but it still just seems like one big "screw you" to the fans nonetheless. I mean, why did Marvel honestly think we cared about the fact the asshole was dead? Where's Ares' eulogy? He was awesome and he died trying to stop Osborn when he realised he backed the wrong horse! He deserved a good bye issue for being killed by Sentry! Not Bob! Bob sucks! The God of War deserves an obiturary story!

Gyre said...

While this might not have been the best comic to do it I have to disagree with your opinion in proactive justice. There are justifiable circumstances for actively doing something. Warfare, massacres, pursuing dangerous criminals who aren't actively committing crimes etc. I'll admit that much of this would be heavily political and it appears that DC and Marvel are awful at writing decent politics but a case can still be made.
Bottom line, it's a stupid comic but I think the premise wasn't given a fair chance.
Will admit that the Lord Vyce ship was cool and I look forward to seeing how it turns out.

Jon Holtgrefe said...

Another great review.

I agree with what a couple have said, on paper this sounds good but the execution sounds atrocious.

This just goes to show that comic editors, like book publishers and movie producers haven't the faintest idea what makes a good comic(or book or movie) and are in general probably about 10 years behind the times.

Looking forward to the continuation of the Vyce stuff, cheers for the new year!

Anonymous said...

Since when can The Atom fly?

Mildra said...

I would throw this on DiDio again, but the blame's on both sides. Still, it's a bad sign when your entire comic is based on a buzzword (if someone can find an exception to this, let me know). But I digress, I look forward to how this'll turn out (painful as that may be).

P.S. Vyce's ship get's an awesome medal from me (along with that oh **** reaction).

~The Monk

Anonymous said...

You hate this series more than One More Day? Talk about 'beyond the impossible'... That said, all their cries for 'Justice!' were, as you said, anything but. They seem to have lost sight of this which can lead to a problematic end for all of them.

Introducing characters, even off panel, that our 'heroes' care about only to kill them off is something I've seen quite a bit, stopped watching CSI: Miami because of that style of writing actually*, and it bugs me almost every single time I see it happen. I say 'almost' because every now and then I think it can be handled well enough for me to let it pass, just by simply giving us some amount of time to get to know them, too, so that we'll get why they're so affected by it.

Now for the Lord Vyce arc... Oh crap, he's finally showed up. I didn't think he'd do so quite this quickly. My eyes widened a lot when Joe showed you what came through the portal. That said, I don't expect a face to, uh, face with Vyce for some time to come. He doesn't strike me as the type to make his presence known then immediately attack his target. (IE: You) I expect a few more encounters with Mechakara and Linksano first, then when their plans fall through enough for Vyce's patience to wear out, he'll take the gloves off, figuratively speaking.

I look forward to next week.

*Rant for another time...

Overlord of the North! said...

I haven't read this series. I just know the big thing at the end. That alone is enough to make me hate it. But now, thanks to the wonder that is you Linkara, I will finally know just how horrible this thing really is.

So far. It's pretty damn stupid.

Although, I don't think that proactive teams are all bad. The recent Guardians of the Galaxy team was proactive. Of course that was all about preventing cosmic disasters and wars from ripping holes in space. You know, instead of violating human rights and stuff.

It's nice to know that we at least will get the awesomeness of the Vyce plot alongside these reviews to protect us from the retchedness.

Good review, looking forward to the next one.

Anonymous said...

I actually think that the bit about Green Lantern getting drunk was fun
And it became even more hilarious once we got to hear the other side as well.

"Welcome to Pain!" is a pretty epic line
It's up there with "Welcome to Die!" and "I'll Kill You to Death!" in terms of sheer awesomeness
(seriously, I've added those phrases into my vocabulary and they work wonderfully during on-line gameplay)

Ryan said...

I think I've figured out why this keeps happening.

In DC there's a great event take “52” no one thinks it will do well most of the editors and all that stay the fuck away thinking it will be a huge failure, and they don't want there careers hurt. It works; it works wonderfully because those people stayed away. Suddenly the meddling editors and the big boss and all that rush in and demand another one like it and then try to control the thing. They fail they fail a few times. After such failure they go back into hiding and DC produces something great again "blackest night" then all those editors and such pop back up again and we get "cry for justice".

There really is no excuse for this cycle to continue Dc and for that matter Marvel needs to wise the fuck up.

ryan said...

Also can DC please do us all a favor and STOP KILLING OFF SUPErHEROS. It doesn't make the comic "serious" it doesn't add anything.

I'm and so sick of seeing DC pointlessly kill super hero after super hero for no reason. I like my superhero community vast one of the reason marvals House of M pissed me off so god damn much.

Anonymous said...

I read this AND Rise of arsenal. I paid for rise of Arsenal. I hate myself.

Anonymous said...

You really need to go into the back story of Prometheus for this book as even I didn't understand the change to his continuity until after reading it. For anyone who reads this comment, here is the full backstory of Prometheus (long story forthcoming, sorry).

Prometheus became obsessed with destroying the ideas of justice and order after his parents were murdered by corrupt cops as a child. He went on a Batman-style quest of knowledge before inventing a suit and helmet that is basically his superpower.

That power is the ability to immediately download information directly into his brain stored on one of his many data sets. This information can instantly grant him abilities that can be gained through knowledge alone (such as how to rewire alien tech, or master a martial art since his body is already in perfect shape). The suit has prebuilt techniques to incapacitate or kill all known heroes. He also lives in an extra-dimensional space he created and only he has access to (important for this book, since it makes the ending rather impossible).

Prometheus launched an assault on the JLA watchtower and defeated the entire league with ease, splitting them up and mixing his strategies to obtain a victory. In one specific instance he used his helmet to download the martial arts prowess of Batman and every other martial master stored in it to defeat the Dark Knight himself.

Prometheus then joined Lex Luther's band of villains in a fight with the league. Batman got the drop on him and planted information in his helmet to replace the Fighting abilities of Batman with the fighting abilities of Stephen Hawking, turning him into a paraplegic.

From here on out gets weird. Prometheus disappeared for a while and showed up again periodically only to be defeated with ease all of a sudden. He become a kind of joke character who was only used to effectiveness once. Then, in another book nobody read, it was revealed this Prometheus was a fake. The real one had been living in hiding in his extra-dimensional home since his original adventures with the JLA. He killed the copy who stole his technology and name. That book ties directly into the events of Cry for Justice and is where things begin for Prometheus.

I know that was a long story, but there it all is. For more about Prometheus, I suggest tracking down the original JLA issues as they are quite good.

Mario Di Giacomo said...

With regards to killing off B-list characters for cheap melodrama:

Remember the Mist and Justice League Europe? Robinson showed these tendencies as far back as Starman #38. It's just he used to bring more to the table than that.

Jaebird said...

First off, kudos on the head tilt before the Ray Palmer rant. That gave me a good chuckle.

Second, is it just me, or is Robinson attempting to turn half the JLA into bad Batman knock-offs? Is this to imply that Bruce is some kind of moral compass, for lack of a better phrase?

Geez, I feel for ya, and I didn't even read this book.

m121akuma said...

I think the biggest slap in the face of these first two issues (not getting into the MASSIVE shitfest of the ending of the series) is having Ray torture a supervillain mere MONTHS before making him an Indigo Lantern in Blackest Night. Y'know, an agent of PURE COMPASSION. Very compassionate there, almost killing a D-list villain for information.

Lizzie said...

Item the first: Hurray Joe! I feel safer already.

I'm so irked that Ollie went along with this weird idea of Hal's. Granted there's a lot of out of character action happening, but Green Arrow is the one I know best. The idea of preemptive crime fighting ought to piss him off.

In other things, this does sort of raise the topic of justice vs vengeance. I mean, for us. The characters aren't having that discussion as far as I can see. But yeah, it just seems like everyone is reacting to a personal loss and wanting to go get those responsible. And they SHOULD be brought to justice, but it... hang on. I've gone cross eyed.

Man, I like the Birds of Prey version of the Hal story.

Finally, wow. Vyce's ship sure is ominous. My compliments to the artist! Eeee, can't wait for part two.


Amyral said...

KamenRiderGumo - You comment is basically the entire premise of the Kingdom Come elseworlds story, which showed how that attitude, which became prevalent in society, led to millions of needless deaths when the heroes that weren't willing to kill were replaced by those that were.

The entire idea is that when those attitudes are justified, it will eventually escalate, the fights will get bigger and bigger and more and more lives of bystanders and petty thefts will be lost as every hero turns Punisher on everyone.

Not to mention the massive collateral damage caused when Captain Atom was killed by a desperate villain.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a fan of Super heroes in general, so I don't really know anything about Hal Jordan. I've seen only a few comics and watched a bit of the Justice League series. The Green Lantern I'm familiar is the one called John Stewart. Regardless, looking through your videos, I've actually noticed nothing praise worthy about Hal Jordan, which mostly gave me the impression that he was just an prick, even though he was so-called Greatest Green Lantern member. I've also noticed that you never complained about continuity issues about him acting this way. So my question. Is he always like this, or is there a kind and heroic bleeding heart that I've never seen or heard before?

Lewis Lovhaug said...

"Is he always like this, or is there a kind and heroic bleeding heart that I've never seen or heard before? "

I wouldn't call him a bleeding heart, but he's never been "Captain Torture" before this point.

Anonymous said...

Superheroes could be proactive, at least if they went for things like ending poverty, creating life improving technologies, and stuff like that. But you can't really have proactive justice - that's not even a concept that makes sense. There has to be some crime or injustice committed in order for someone to seek justice.

And when you get to proactive revenge (which is really what these guys seem to be after), you've just straight up gone off into supervillain territory, since that's basically attacking people for things they might do.

(More permanently stopping supervillains isn't proactive, it's just a different idea of what's necessary for justice. And something that has been handled competently in comics before.)

Will Staples said...

"Is he always like this, or is there a kind and heroic bleeding heart that I've never seen or heard before? "

Prior to around 1990, Hal was portrayed as a well-meaning "white hat". A moderate, by-the-book cop/company man who contrasted with Green Arrow, the bleeding heart firebrand. Ollie helped Hal look beyond his own little world, while Hal kept Ollie grounded. Basically, he was a steadfast realist.

So yes, there IS something good about Hal Jordan, but it's gone mostly unexplored for the last 20 years, when he became a cocky, self-absorbed hotshot. While Geoff Johns's restoration of the character has dialed it down a little, he's still a "cowboy cop" now rather than the by-the-book character he was in the halcyon days of the '70s and '80s.

WallyKovacs said...

I remember when this series was coming out. It was basically a matter of:

"Well, maybe the Justice League they set up at the end will stick around". Of course, they spoil the next Justice League roster (which has since changed) and a lot of people weren't in CfJ.

Then, when it was getting into it, I was thinking "well, at least we get Prometheus back as a big time villain. It's not pretty, but at least he's not the joke he became as lackey of Hush, and getting kicked in the balls repeatedly by Huntress, etc ..."

And then he dies.

So the entire reason to "fix" Prometheus, making sure it was clear he was the orignal and not the 'loser' that showed up in his follow appearances was just so that he could be killed off. Which, was basically just an excuse to undo what they undid when they brought Ollie back to life and had his memory be of before he became a killer.

Not to mention it doesn't come up much. The whole big forest in the middle of the city with the brightest day thing does come out of the end of Cry for Justice (because Star City had just recovered from being blown up during the Infinite Crisis/52/One Year Later period... also by a 'made not a joke and then killed' villain Dr. Light, of course, he went from joke villain to a different, sicker, kind of joke villain, so killing him off was probably a good thing

Lost track there. Anyway, the blowing up of Star City mattered ... but the whole "Green Arrow, murderer" thing isn't really weighing on Ollie that much, it just inconveniences him since his identity is revealed, but he's just Green Arrow all the time so it's not that big of a deal either.

Andrew H said...

I absolutely hate it when a fight scene happens off panel. That scene where Green Arrow and Green Lantern had beaten up all of those villains made them look weak.

As much as I like Prometheus as a villain, I also hated how we never got to "watch" him beat up Batman in JLA. I imagine that Batman would have put up a bigger fight than that issue suggested.

But yeah, this 6 issue series was terrible. As it was said, fans cried for justice when this abomination was released. And the destruction of the Green Arrow family was unforgivable.

Anonymous said...

You probably mixed up Starman and The Specter when you were naming creators. Honest mistake.

Sherlock Holmes said...

I actually don't hate Cry for Justice as much as everyone. I mean I still hate it, but say I wouldn't kill the writer if I had the chance to. It would be hard to resist punching him, but still.

I think that the reason I don't hate it so much is that I'm a Green Arrow fanboy, and I actually enjoy his banter with Hal. The drunken threesome joke was never too much of a problem, and them just randomly beating up villains was cool to me. I'd probably have a bit of a problem with it.

Destron D-69 said...

I hope on the eventual BLURAY of AtFW somebody adds some CGI 'T'Balls to the shots of Joe ... :)

Scott Tibbs said...

I have the hardcover collection of this series. :)

It would have been much more sensible to have Prometheus be killed by Chesire.

Anonymous said...

You have to do Rise of the Arsenal next.....

starofjustice said...

Hal Jordan is my favorite superhero ever...when he's done right. I know his "thing" nowadays is he has a problem with recognizing other people have good ideas sometimes too, but this is just...stupid.

And really, what the hell is up with him being friends with Oliver Queen? It feels like some drunk/bored writer at DC needed an idea for a new series, noticed both their hero names started with "green" and that was enough of a reason to link the two characters.

Tyr Germanic said...

that joe cameo is just great.TGWTG is really turning the corner in making an expansive and interesting universe.The TGWTG-iverse i guess.
Im Ray Palmer Welcome to Pain! is an instant clasic at4w quote.on that note POWERHOUSE EXCITEMENT really deserve a AT4W t-shirt.

Why is Hal Jordans voice just your regular voice?

Do you think of yourself as similar to him?is it because of that black lantern spoony saga?is it foreshadowing for the first encounter with vyce? or did you just run out of voices?

Great review btw keep up the good work.Love the run time too.

Lewis Lovhaug said...

Hal Jordan's voice is... "average." I tried to think of how Ryan Reynolds sounded in the trailer, but sometimes people don't really have a "voice" to them.

LaZodiac said...

Good as always Linkara. A shame to see potential ideas go to waste like this.

As an aside, anyone wondering how Linkara noticed the ship was Vyce's..maybe the fact that it is A GIGANTIC V could of tipped him off.

My personal guess is that the V Minus 42 is that we are secretly getting a new episode 42 hours after this one.

AmuroNT1 said...

A comic book where people shout "Justice!" a lot and you DIDN'T reference Gundam Wing? For shame, sir, for shame.

(Nah, just messing with ya. Keep up the good work.)

Will Staples said...

And really, what the hell is up with him being friends with Oliver Queen? It feels like some drunk/bored writer at DC needed an idea for a new series, noticed both their hero names started with "green" and that was enough of a reason to link the two characters.

I think the "green" thing was what gave the writers the idea of teaming them up in the first place, but it worked really well. Hal was a down-to-earth cop who worked within the establishment while Ollie was a radical iconoclast. They have a great "odd couple" relationship. Better than Hal's "other" best friend, the Flash, in my opinion.

Banon said...

Does anyone know where I can find and download "Justice Must Be Done" by Sam Keenan?

Seiber said...

I'm starting to notice a trend in the darker comics you review, particularly the Miller ones and Act of God. There's a hard dichotomy drawn between "pansy" superheroing and "manly" superheroing.

Pansy heroes have morals and boundaries. They don't kill or torture, even when it would seem like a benefit to society to just shoot the guy in the face. They respect the justice system. They take pride in their good deeds for themselves, not because they made some punk piss himself, and they tend to have healthy relationships.

Manly superheroing is the kind practiced by the Goddamn Batman. Torture and terrorism are legitimate interrogation tools. Murder is okay. Pride is taken from how many people you can scare and how many noses you can bust, rather than how many innocents you made happy. The justice system is flawed and incompetent, the only true justice is that wielded by the superhero. Happiness is a personal flaw.

And for some completely obscene reason, manly superheroing is presented as more virtuous. Why? Hell if I can figure out, but it's deranged.

Unknown said...

Well . . . allow me to just say this . . . WHAT THE FRELL James Robinson?! I actually like his league, although annoyed at many of the potential members not being used. But this . . .this seems to be retarded. Maybe it was Robinson's way to deal with Editorial Mandate. If so, PLEASE STOP DOING THAT TO YOUR WRITERS DC!!

And Vyce is on his way back. And why do I get a distinct feeling that he's NOT alone. And I don't just mean Mechakara.

Great job as always. Once you are done though . . . do yourself a favor . . . Read something Really really good to keep your sanity. Or for a laugh, if you have already seen it, re-watch Ethan's Dating Boot Camp Training. Now off to play catch up with your titles and writing my own.

Anonymous said...

"Gay for Justice" is a very accurate description of the first issue where Ollie (BTW, what did he do at JLA Satellite? Last time I checked he wasn't a member at that point) seems to be overexcited when Hal gives his speech and even calls him 'baby' in the end. Why not 'honey' while he is at it?

Okay, personally I liked the premise. I have no problem with superheroes using lethal force against the villains who deserve it and disagree with 'Heroes should never ever do it, no matter what hell villains drag them through or how many good people they killed, else they quickly become either full-blown villains or just unsufferable jerks' message in comics. For once I'd like to see a protagonist who is a nice guy but just happens to kill the villains that deserve an execution.

I think 'proactive' was meant to say that superheroes wouldn't simply wait until some mad scientist unleashes a robot killer on a city but would actively hunt them down. Even if they aren't commiting any crime right now, most supervillains are wanted for other crimes or preparing to commit new ones (usually both). Kinda like cops in real life. What they were going to do once they get them is another matter.

That being said the execution really blooows. The main problem of the series is not knowing where it goes. For example, Hal says that he wants to hunt down the members of Libra's society... and promptly forgets about it in his next appearance. Even Countdown was more consistent (until its last ten issues anyway) with its plots although it took buying tie-ins to see some of them resolving. Many important events happen off-panel and therefore lose the weight. Murder of Atom's old friend could be a powerful moment but instead looks just as a cheap way to give Ray a reason to go Punisher on villains. Say what you wish about Identity Crisis but, at least, it abided the 'Show, don't tell' rule.

Completely agreed that Hal and Ray suffered from character derailment. It looks as if Parallax and the murder of Sue Dibny haven't taught them anything. The repeating of word 'justice' on every page is irritating as hell.

IMO: The Lantern threesome joke is just that - a joke. Even Hal's response can be interpreted as meaning that it never really happened and it's just gossip.

All-n-all, good review.

Tyr Germanic said...

makes sense.i cant even remember his voice in his few but cool DCAU appearences.

Ryan reynolds was too funny at times(the makers better not ape iron man)and doing that strangley inflected enthuastic yell of his.he shows potential though,and some trivia,at last years oscars he subtley parodied the twilight zone while showcasing "the blind side'. thats pretty cool.

Katherine said...

Hey, Linkara! Long-time lurker here. As somebody who's very interested in the portrayal of women and minorities in comics (and in the media in general), I'm really looking forward to your reviews of this comic, particularly during the scene of Lian Harper's death. That scene caused so much uproar among comic book fans, especially among feminists and people of color, due to its implications and shameless use of the offensive and overused Women in Refrigerators trope. So, I’m looking forward to seeing your take on it.

I'm glad that you mentioned the death of Ryan Choi, because that was also a blow to fans. We have so few Asian superheroes as it is, and now they had to kill one of them off? Again, that’s not sending a very good message about the treatment of minority characters in comics.

Anyway, regarding #1 and #2, I have to agree with the other posters by saying that the “justice” that these characters are pursuing is really just mindless revenge. I’m truly sick and tired of torture being seen as a heroic thing to do, as a “manly” and “necessary” thing to do. Frank Miller, James Robinson, and the rest of their ilk are so concerned about making their heroes seem tough that they’re ignoring the words of Nietzche who warned us to not become monsters while fighting against monsters. Guys, if you want your stories to seem “dark” and “gritty” and “realistic” by having your heroes act like criminals, then don’t expect us to condone their actions and don’t call your characters heroes. Heroes do not torture people, especially not as eagerly and gleefully as Ray Palmer does here.

Unknown said...

"Back in Gotham... BULLCRAP!"

I must have rewound that line, like, elebenty gazillion times. Good stuff!

Someone should remix that. Internet gold!

Anonymous said...

Fantastic as usual can't wait for your take on the maiming and the ending.

Anonymous said...

I personally think they all knew nothing happened with hall and the girls, and green arrow gave him a sarcastic "well played". seems more logical to me

Dan said...

Well this wouldn't be a bad concept if they just left out the word "Justice." The Justice League seemed to become the Benevolent Dictator in this comic. Being Proactive Crime Fighters is good thing in my book. If theyh want to take out a villan before they commit a crime more power to them. Ok so Villans aren't Villans until they commit a villanous act I get that but if a group of villans were planning an attack or a crime and the League finds out about it, then there's nothing wrong with stopping them before they committ the crime. This is why conspiracy to committ murder is still a crime.

If I plan to kill my wife and plan it all out, including hiring someone to do it for me but I never give the go ahead or the Hitman happens to be an undercover cop I will still go to jail. Not for murder or attempted murder but conspiracy to committ murder. As long as they have evidence that I was going to committ a crime I can still go to jail. That's being proactive and saving lives instead reacting to a murder and catching the criminal.

This is why we infiltrate terrorist cells. To take them down before they can act. Is it "Justice" no of course not. but its still a concept more Super Heroes should take on.

IMO the concept is really interesting but poorly written. Justice becomes a catchphrase. The real word for this is "Preemption."

Lewis Lovhaug said...

"IMO the concept is really interesting but poorly written. Justice becomes a catchphrase. The real word for this is "Preemption." "

Except by your own admission, conspiracy to commit a crime IS a crime, thus they are already criminals.

The only way this concept makes any sense is in Minority Report, and that at least admits the ethical implications of it.

Scutigera said...

Oh wonderful, another comic which plays down the hero aspect of superheroes and plays up the vigilante crusader side to ridiculous degrees. Just looking at Mr. A and Rorschach should be enough to indicate that is a bad idea. Besides, the Justice League cartoon did a story addressing this very theme, with alternate universe versions of the Justice League becoming fascist dictators.

I am so happy to see you giving this sort of the thing the critical shakedown it deserves. Say what you will about Mr. A and Rorschach, those characters at least had consistant and well realized philosophical attitudes. Here it's just a mess, as the heroes are pretty much doing what they did before, but more....EXTREME! Supposedly.

You know what would make this comic awesome? If every time someone yelled JUSTICE! for no reason, the person standing next to them slapped them across the face. It would be even better if there was a counter at the bottom of the page.

Great work so far Linkara, I look forward to more.

Compufreak99 said...

Your opening reminded me of an excellent quote from a character played by science fiction writer Harlan Ellison in the video game, "I Have No Mouth and I must Scream" (based on his short story by the same name):

"Hate. Let me tell you how much I've come to hate you since I began to live. There ate 387.44 million miles of printed circuits in wafer thin layers that fill my complex. If the word 'HATE' was engraved on each nanoangstrom of those hundreds of millions of miles it would not equal one one-billionth of the hate I feel for humans at this micro-instant. For you. Hate. Hate."

Just felt like I had to share that. Keep up the good work, Lewis!

Anonymous said...

For some reason when I hear the whole "taking down criminals before they can commit a crime" I had the image of Green Lantern and Green Arrow deciding to find the location of a super villain's secret lair, and just out of the blue rush in and assault said villain while he is minding his own business, and some how imprison him or what not. It goes completely against there character, but at least it actually is different from dealing with a criminal during or after a crime.

jok said...

Metallica's "...And Justice for All" HAS to be played in one of these reviews.

Lynceus said...

Hm, what's weird to me isn't just that James Robinson is doing a crappy comic, but that it's a crappy "gritty" comic. I've been making my way through his Starman, which varies between being okay and really good (the "from Sadie's POV" romantic bits are -so- stilted), and there's a whole section in there where he basically lets Jack Knight take shots at Batman for -being- the start of the whole 90s grim and gritty thing. I mean Jack objects to the colorful outfit/secret identity stuff in the first place, seemingly, but he also seems to particularly hate that Batman does it while taking himself so seriously. I mean he says "You're everything I hate about superheroes." And I guess there's no reason Robinson would have to agree with that necessarily, but giving the comic's tendency to harp on aestheticism and such it feels like Robinson throws a lot of his personal philosophy into the book.

I'm not sure it's universally wrong to do a story where superheroes decide that the best way to stop supercriminals is to execute them or permanently incapacitate them from killing in the future (you know, sever spinal cords or whatever), but obviously it would have to be looked at from the perspective of a philosophical dilemma and not by people screaming "JUSTICE!" Basically it's the question of whether we punish criminals because punishment is fair, or if we do it to stop them from hurting people in the future. Which is interesting. Not sure it's a job for Superman, but comics can certainly look into it.

All that aside (and of course the episode was funny and Vyse's ship was nicely animated etc.), I always get a little bothered whenever Identity Crisis comes up. I understand people are pissed off at it for continuity reasons, either because character's philosophies are inconsistent, or because of the people it kills, or because it retcons the silliness of the silver age to be consistent with the darker stuff comics do now. But I still don't think it's a -bad- story, and, you know, a few hiccups aside (there's like, one page that confuses me pretty badly) I don't think you can honestly say it's badly -written-. There's an argument to be made about whether it gives female characters a fair shake or not, and some might say the concept was bad, but it's not a piece of crap the way most things on this show are. It has organization to it, a clear theme, and though it does kill off characters, it doesn't do it for cheap drama or simply to motivate a hero, but treats it as legitimate tragedy. So I always feel like the complaints against Identity Crisis are philosophical and not mechanical, which doesn't make them less legitimate, but does make it a question of opinion and not an objective sense of quality.

And anyway, speaking as someone for whom Identity Crisis was something of an introduction to modern mainstream comics, I thought it was nice to see that comics could take themselves seriously, and it wasn't bad that it tried to dispel some of the goofiness that people might associate with comics. I mean there's a place for lightheartedness and simple good vs. evil stories, but when you get into stuff like heroes and villains swapping bodies, I tend to get pulled out of the story by the silliness. Except for the JLU body-swap episode. That one's fantastic.

Xypher said...

Hey my first post.

Why didn't I see it before today Argh! it's the title. AT4W A=V which is the upside down A. T is the minus as in top and bottom (or t=+ I guess). 42 is the 4th wall (W=2 also meaning double) Vice is another AU Linkara

KamenRiderGumo said...

Amyral - In the time since I posted my initial comment, I've actually done a lot of thinking and praying on that very subject. One thing I have to say is that Linkara's videos more often than not lead me to thinking deeply about a lot of different topics.

While I still disagree with the "lock them up and hope they never get out again even though we know they always will" mentality that comic heroes seem to have, I have to admit that I was wrong in my "kill them before they kill again" attitude, and I'm not afraid to admit it. I still would have seen nothing wrong, morally-speaking, if Batman had snapped Joker's neck after Jason Todd's murder, but at the same time I now see -why- Batman and other heroes choose not to kill.

It has less to do with legal issues, public opinion or anything like that and has more to do with the weight they would carry upon their own soul - something I had never thought of. Perhaps I've been something of a heartless bastard with my own "better them than me" and "get them before they get you" attitude.

What prompted all of this was that I began discussing the issue with my father, a lifelong hunter and ex-Army sharpshooter with more than a handful of awards for marksmanship. He'll never come right out and say it, but I think there's more to his tour of duty than he's told me, since he seemed to speak from experience. We talked into the wee hours of the morning on the subject and in a rather harsh moment of reality I realized that, with my way of thinking, I myself was no better than the villains, both real and fictional, that I so despise. The heroes in the comics aren't locking their villains up out of a misguided hope that they can be reformed and redeemed, as I had long thought, but for the sake of their own conscience and soul. I suppose I forgot that, at the end of the day, these costumed crusaders are human, too, and would have to deal with it for the rest of their lives; the same as anyone would.

That said, I have never read Kingdom Come. Given what I now know, I probably never will.

Undeadpool said...

Dan DiDio is, very clearly, an ego maniacal jerk. He clearly thinks his writers are incompetent since he rarely lets them tell their own stories. It's nice that we now have a huge rant to establish that concretely. If you ever need to know what's wrong with DC Comics, it can be summed up in two words: "Editorial mandate."

Also: Angry dude is right, Montezuma is a TOTAL jerkass.

Merle said...

I'm going nuts about this. I can't find the song anywhere - I've looked for all combinations of "Justice Must Be Done" and "Sam Keenan", and it apparently does not exist on the Internet.

HALP! Is there an album I can buy somewhere?

Mecha-Gino said...

Really? You hated Identity Crisis? Well then prepare for some "Drama" and another book to put in your overrated bin. :3

Night said...

This one should be good. I remember you raaaaging about it earlier.

And honestly, I begin to see why. The Justice League DOES bring justice. Justice is an inherently unsatisfying and unemotional thing, and it must be. That's why it's so hard to put into practice. That's the problem Hal's articulating here, but he doesn't seem to get that he's articulating it. He's not quite demanding vengeance, at least. (And why the hell isn't Supes or Wondy stepping up to point this out?) I don't necessarily disagree that the League could be more proactive, actually, but my concept embraces changes in technique rather than core mission. Proactive in this case would mean "more involved" rather than "more preemptive". If there's a spiraling crime rate somewhere, call up everybody and send them to the city and stage a week-long lockdown. Give out assignments to areas that need more attention. Set up some kind of League-run SuperMax facility, preferably in orbit, preferably with no way off (the League has point-to-point teleportation, that should be easy) use it as an alternative to Arkham and places like that. Coordinate more closely with national governments. The League could certainly be more effectual, but damned if we aren't going about it wrong here.

Isn't Green Arrow the card-carrying liberal who wouldn't hop onto such a scheme that smacks of ultra-wight-ring police state wtf?

Ray, now you're like "Justice is wanting people to pay!" No, that's called vengeance. As I said, Justice is, MUST BE, unemotional and hence unsatisfying. It must be concerned with accomplishing the good, not making people happy.

I want justice for the owner of that car, you Starman asshole!

Hey, they're fighting in front of a vintage F4F Wildcat. If they break that or the B-29 I'm gonna be very upset.

That's a really awesome rendering of Supergirl, though.

Vyce's ship...I'm just not feelin' it, y'know? It's beautifully textured, but it's not menacing in the slightest. Maybe if you were rolling out to the Taiidan or Kushan battletracks from Homeworld or something, but that tune doesn't say "evil spaceship" and neither does that model.

TimeTravelerJessica said...

This is actually the second time I've watched this video but I still laughed enough to make my roommates ask what was so funny at the, "I'm pregnant!" line.

Also, Hal's face when he says, "Rude? I'm freezing!" is so funny it is impossible not to laugh even without your well-placed MST3K quip. Between that and the utterly dumbfounded looks on the faces of the other heroes I have decided that the artist just kind of rebelled against the comic because he knew how stupid the story was. I'm not sure this makes up for framing Supergirl so her boobs are in shot but not her face but oh well.

Writer.In.Progress said...

*sigh* It is such a shame to see Green Lantern be reduced to a such idiot by horrible writing, having all the collected works of both the original silver age GL and Geoff Johns run on him, it just makes me think that some writers don't care a bit about how these characters are actually supposed to act. Well it's good to see you rip this stinker a new one Linkara, and of course JUSTICE!!!!!!

MattV said...

It has been a while now, but i gotta ask. Has there ever been an editorial mandate that didn't utterly suck or worse?

Unknown said...

Linkara, dude! You forgot!

When Hal was inhabited by Parallax, he SUCCESSFULLY destroyed the universe!

Only Deus Ex Damage + Waverider + Spectre brought it back :D

Anonymous said...

Wait, how would you know what Vyce's ship looked like on the outside if you'd been taken prisoner on it?

Also, great review, though I am surprised by how much you hate it.

But I love the art.

Anonymous said...

Nevermind, you answered my question in your next video- I guess I just didn't see the giant V. :D

TimeTravelerJessica said...

Hi Linkara

On one of the other videos I left a question about if the plot point about Prometheus blackmailing the other villains was ever addressed. I have since then stopped worrying about it and decided the whole storyline becomes a lot funnier if you picture the Joker spiking the punch at a villain gathering, posing everyone in embarrassing positions/couplings and taking pictures while they were unconscious, and then selling said photos to Prometheus for some kind of killer pogo stick or something. Come to think of it, I whole lot would have rather seen that than pretty much anything in this comic.

Anonymous said...

Maybe I'm oversimplifying things, but I figured it was pretty obvious that Hal's advocating just tracking down and murdering all the supervillains.

So, for example, The Joker. He's a bad guy. Hunt him down and kill him, even if he hasn't committed a crime this month. Even if he's already in jail. Just go kill him, because throwing him in jail never stops him from breaking out of jail and killing more people in the next story arc.

It's basically applying Fridge Logic to the superheroes' situation. I'm guessing it's yet another attempt to shoehorn politics into webcomics. In this case, it appears to be advocating in favor of the post-9-11 shredding of the Bill of Rights.

So yeah. Still bad writing. Still completely illegal and un-heroic. But I saw what they were going for at the first moment of retinal impact. Did you really not reach the same conclusion? Seems pretty cut and dry.

Lewis Lovhaug said...

"So yeah. Still bad writing. Still completely illegal and un-heroic. But I saw what they were going for at the first moment of retinal impact. Did you really not reach the same conclusion? Seems pretty cut and dry."

Mostly because their actions don't reflect that conclusion. Hal and Ollie fight a whole bunch of supervillains but there's nothing to suggest that any of them are dead, yet if the conclusion is that Hal wants them to go out and murder supervillains, how come he doesn't just do it?

Arcapello said...

I think this artwork is really lovely which makes it an even bigger shame it was wasted on such an unpopular comic added with a comic wastes potential off panel.

I don't think I've seen an artist as professional as this in a comic but am I mistaken?