Thursday, February 17, 2011

JUSTICE LEAGUE: GENERATION LOST #15

“Tomorrow is Today”

Writer: Judd Winick
Pencils: Joe Bennett
Inks: Jack Jadson & Ruy Jose
Editor: Rex Ogle & Brian Cunningham

Synopsis

Maxwell Lord is enraged that not only does no one in the world remember who Wonder Woman is, but he can’t find her, putting a huge wrench in his plans.  Meanwhile, with Captain Atom recently-returned form the future, the J.L.I. regroups at their Australian headquarters.  Fire consoles Ice, while Captain Atom declares that he’s ready to hunt down and kill Max.  Booster Gold reminds Captain Atom that they are heroes and that they won’t be killing anyone, only so Booster can beat Lord himself.  The team’s downtime is interrupted by an attack from the Creature Commandos, whose opening salvo critically injures Fire…

Notes

Pages 1-2:  Another recap of Maxwell Lord’s death at the hands of Wonder Woman as seen in Wonder Woman (second series) #219.

I get it, this is driving Max, and he wants his revenge on Diana.  I just feel like Winick’s beating this horse into the ground.  Enough with the flashbacks, move on…

Why does Diana have a red star on her belt in panel two on Page 1?  And how does her tiara flatten out into a golden throwing disc?

Page 3:  Why does this issue have the same exact title as last issue? 

Maxwell Lord last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #13.

Professor Anthony Ivo last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #11.

Page 4:  All records of Wonder Woman’s existence have been removed, as per the current events in her ongoing series. 

“I guess there’s irony in this.”  Because Lord himself erased all knowledge of his existence from the world, he is now stymied by the fact that no one can help him find Diana.

Page 5:  “Not after everything I’ve done.  Everything I’ve worked towards.”  What?  You mean all of this plotting and planning wasn’t to benefit the world, to prevent Magog from starting a metahuman war?  You mean Max had a bigger plan?  Who knew…

Page 6:  “Or she and the rest of her spandexed, super-powered varsity squad are messing with me.”  And now the paranoia sets in…

Page 7:  The events depicted on this page, in which Captain Atom seemingly kills Magog in Chicago, took place in Justice League: Generation Lost #13. 

“ - as if the radiation was absorbed completely, leaving no trace of -“ That was courtesy of Captain Atom, who absorbed the radiation at the cost of quantum leaping into the future. 

Page 8:  Captain Atom last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #14.

Blue Beetle and Booster Gold last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #13.

Rocket Red last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #12.

Why the J.L.I has a headquarters in the Great Victoria Desert in Australia is completely beyond me.  Last I recall, their embassy was in Melbourne.

“I’ve seen the future.  Twice now.”  In Justice League: Generation Lost #6 & 14.

“Does the world see Magog being brutally forced to turn his own weapon upon himself?!”  The real version of what transpired in Justice League: Generation Lost #13.

Page 9:  “Oh man, just grow up.”  Heh.  Funny that Booster Gold is telling someone to grow up.

Page 10:  Fire and Ice last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #12.

“There was a scientist.  He was charged with recruiting for the Global Guardians.  We said I was a princess from an ancient tribe of magical Norsemen.”  A slightly-altered version of events originally depicted in Secret Origins #33, which told the origin of Ice, then known as Ice Maiden. 

“I was living with my mother and my sister in Otta.”  Otta is a town in Norway of approximately 2,750 inhabitants.

“We more or less had been on the run for a decade.”  After Tora’s powers went out of control and she accidentally killed her father, as seen in Justice League: Generation Lost #12.

Members of the Global Guardians shown here, from left to right, include Godiva (partially-seen), Ice Maiden, Bushmaster, Wild Huntsman, Olympian, Little Mermaid, Doctor Mist and the Tasmanian Devil. 

“Not always.”  Fire’s father had ordered thousands of deaths under a U.S.-supported, South American-sponsored anti-communist program that involved assassinations, torture and disappearances.  Not a nice guy. 

Page 11:  “But Tora…that level of power you wielded after the fight with the Metal Men, when you attacked me…What happened?”  As seen in Justice League: Generation Lost #11-12, Tora’s powers went a little haywire.

Page 12:  J.A.K.E. is a designation given to a series of robots known as the G.I. Robot, which first appeared in Star-Spangled War Stories #101.  The most recent version, J.A.K.E. 6.1, was a Rook for Checkmate that first appeared in Checkmate (second series) #24.

Page 13:  “- I’m gonna beat the every-loving @#$% out of him.”  Booster is still smarting from the beating Max gave him back in Justice League: Generation Lost #1.

Page 15:  Skeets last appeared in Justice League: Generation Lost #11.  Where the hell has he been hiding out lately?

Why do Max, Booster, Captain Atom Fire and Ice remember Diana when no one else does?  Because this isn’t some simple mindwipe that Max did, this is big.  Max couldn’t remove all evidence of his existence from the world, so people just selectively ignore it when presented with it.  Bit with Diana, it is as if she was never there. 

Page 16:  “So…just you, me, Fire and Ice.  Again.”  They were the only four who remembered that Maxwell Lord ever existed after Lord mindwiped the world in Justice League: Generation Lost #1 and Brightest Day #0.

However, as seen in Brightest Day #14, the recently-returned Bruce Wayne might know about Lord.

“This is revenge.  Even if it plays into some larger scheme…He’d kill her with the whole world watching.”  The Brother Eye satellite broadcasted Max’s murder at the hands of Wonder Woman so that the entire world could watch and see her as a killer, as seen in The OMAC Project #6.

Page 18:  “It’s been a while, and they look different.”    Not sure when Booster Gold ever met the Creature Commandos; maybe he was flipping through some old issues of Who’s Who and recognizes them from there?

Pages 19-20:  The Creature Commandos, first appeared in Weird War Tales #93.  The modern-age team debuted in Creature Commandos #1, but that took place at an unspecified point in the future.  They first appeared in current continuity in The OMAC Project #6. 

Members include…

Aten, mummy-like communications specialist;

Bogman, an amphibian grunt that resembles the Creature from the Black Lagoon;

Patchwork, Pvt. Elliot “Lucky” Taylor, who resembles the Frankenstein’s monster;

Medusa, Myrra Rhodes, who has snakes for hair and resembles a Gorgon;

Velcoro, Sgt. Vincent Velcoro, A vampire that can change into a bat and requires human blood to survive;

And Wolfpack, Warren Griffith, who suffers from lycanthropy allowing him to change into a werewolf.

Page 22:  Ouch.  That looks like it hurt.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

BRIGHTEST DAY #15

“Whatever Happened to the Manhunter from Mars?”

Writers: Geoff Johns & Peter J. Tomasi
Artists: Patrick Gleason & Scott Clark
Inkers: David Beaty, Mick Gray, Tom Nguyen, Rebecca Buchman, Keith Champagne, Sandra Hope & Gleason
Editors: Eddie Berganza

Synopsis

It’s been twenty-five years since J’onn J’onzz restored life to Mars, and he celebrated this milestone with a visit from his friends in the JLA.  However, their reunion is cut short as each of the heroes is attacked and killed.  J’onn teams up with Superman to find the killer, but the murderer is revealed to be J’onn himself.  He soon realizes that this perfect world is simply an illusion projected into his mind by D’kay, and he wakes up with his hand around her throat…

On Earth, Firestorm arrives at the Hall of Justice, begging the JLA for help – he’s about to destroy the universe…

Notes

Page 1:  Seven inkers?  Really?

Note the White Lantern symbol on the ground that emanates from the obelisk. 

Pages 2-3:  According to Batman’s comment, the events of this story take place 25 years after J’onn restored Mars to life, as seen in Brightest Day #12.  However, as we learned in that issue, Mars’ restoration was merely a mental trick D’kay played on J’onn.

J’onn J’onzz last appeared in Brightest Day #12.

Note that unless I am completely and one-hundred percent mistaken, this story marks the first time that the entire, original, charter membership of the Justice League of America – Superman, Batman (Bruce), Wonder Woman, Green Lantern (Hal), Flash (Barry), Aquaman and the Martian Manhunter – has appeared together since Justice League of America (first series) #200.  And that was in 1982. 

Granted, since that issue, most of them have died, retired, been broken, or been otherwise indisposed, so a reunion was impossible.  However, with the recent return of Bruce Wayne, is it really such a bad thing for the original gang to get back together?

M’yriah is J’onn’s wife.

Note the White Lantern symbol that appears in the sky over Mars.

Page 4:  “Kinda strange to think that the last time most of us were together on Mars it was lifeless and barren and we happened to be burying you, J’onn.”  That was in Final Crisis: Requiem #1.  Clark, Bruce, Diana and Hal were there, Arthur was dead, and Barry had yet to return from the Speed Force.

Page 5:  Ah, the classic League.  It’s been a while.

I know, I know, time marches on, teams grow and evolve, but let’s face it; it’s been almost thirty years since we’ve seen this team together.  Grant Morrison’s JLA came close to recapturing this line-up, but as much as I love Wally West and Kyle Rayner, they aren’t Barry Allen and Hal Jordan.  It’s just cool to see the originals, the icons, interacting like old friends, that’s all. 

Page 6:  Not sure if the dog is supposed to be the one which was owned by D’kay’s family which J’onn rescued from the shelter back in Brightest Day #3, or just a dog that looks like it.  Hard to know for sure when you deal with mental illusions and all.  It is, however, named “Melissa,” which was the name of Saul Erdel’s daughter, who witnessed D’kay’s arrival on Earth when she was younger.  J’onn took the dog to her to keep as a pet. 

J’onn feeds the dog Chocos, to which he was addicted years ago.  Hopefully he has conquered this addiction and can live a Choco-free life. 

Page 7:  K’hym is J’onn’s daughter, who has grown up to become a Manhunter. 

Page 9:  Batman was shot with pearl bullets, calling back to his origins, in which Joe Chill shot Thomas and Martha Wayne after Thomas refused to hand over Martha’s string of pearls. 

Page 10:  Like Bruce, the rest of the JLA was killed in pretty horrific manners.  Diana strangled with her own magic lasso, Arthur dehydrated in the desert, Barry keeps running even through he’s been decapitated and Hal lost his ring hand, causing him to freeze in space.

Page 11:  J’onn seems to relinquish his Green Lantern power ring here, preferring to act as a Martian Manhunter and not a member of the Green Lantern Corps. 

Page 12:  Imprisoned in the Martian underground security bunker are Despero, Starro and someone who looks like Johnny Quick from the Crime Syndicate. 

Page 13:  “When do we get the same consideration the Earthlings do?  Where do we rank, da?”  J’onn’s personal demons are manifesting in the words of his daughter, specifically his guilt about not being able to save Mars like he has done countless times for Earth. 

Page 14:  “When do you finally cut the ties that bind you to Earth so you can be here with us completely in mind and spirit?”  This is the central question being posed by J’onn’s journey in Brightest Day.

Page 16:  “Have you ever felt like the ‘Last Son of Krypton’?”  This is a nicknamed commonly attributed to Superman. 

“I need Mars to remain a living and breathing planet now more than ever.”  How far will J’onn go to see Mars restored?

Page 17:  Oh. J’onn, you crazy, homicidal Martian, you…

Pages 18-19:  D’kay D’razz has carved the symbols of “love” and “hate” onto her body, as explained in Brightest Day #12. 

Page 20:  “Wake up!”  Bruce was trying to write this on the ground as he died to warn J’onn, as seen on Page 8.

Mars has gone a little crazy here…

Page 21:  Man. J’onn is pissed….

Page 22:  D’kay’s a bit twisted.  It seems like she dug up some Martian bodies and arranged them at that makeshift kitchen as a set piece for her little fantasy with J’onn.

Does it remind anyone else of the corpses found in the cave during the first season of Lost?

Page 23:  Congorilla, real name Bill “Congo Bill” Glenmorgan.  First appeared (as Congo Bill) in More Fun Comics #56 and (as Congorilla) in Adventure Comics #248.  A human mind possessing the body of a powerful golden gorilla with superhuman healing factor and the ability to increase its size.

Starman III, real name Mikaal Tomas.  First appeared in 1st Issue Special #12.  Sonic crystal embedded in his chest allows him to fly and project energy. 

Page 24:  Firestorm last appeared in Brightest Day #12.