Current Reviews


DC Comics Presents Justice League of America

Posted: Friday, September 3, 2004
By: Michael Deeley

“Secret Behind the Stolen Super-Weapons”
Writer: Harlan Ellison, (adapted by peter David), Artist: Joe Giella

“Mayhem of the Mysterious Marauders”
Writer: Marv Wolfman, Artists: Dustin Nguyen (p), Richard Friend (i)

The eighth and final tribute comic to Julius Schwartz sees Schwartz himself battle the Justice League. Then, the modern day JLA attack their past selves to save them from one of their deadliest villains.

Reading these stories brought a little tear to my eye. Ellison writes a funny, touching tribute to one of his dear friends. And Joe Giella’s art is still as great as it ever was. It may appear simple, but in fact it’s elegant, subtle, and exciting.

Nguyen and Friend try something different with their story. They draw the old League in a Silver Age style, and the new league in a modern style. Both versions look good, though their “old” Wonder Woman’s face looks a little awkward. Wally West delivers a tribute to his uncle Barry Allen. It’s really Wolfman paying tribute to Schwartz. It’s a good note on which to end these books. Solemn, yet respectful

I feel like I should say some words. But I’ve never met Schwartz; I haven’t read many comic books he edited. (Except the ‘Ambush Bug’ books, and any editor who’d allow those to be made earns my respect!) I only know his work as a modern comics fan. And that’ show other will know him too. Long after his friends and family have passed away, the comics he edited will remain in print. His work on ‘The Flash’, ‘Green Lantern’, ‘The Atom’, and countless others will continue to be read by new generations of fans and professionals. They’ll look to those stories for inspiration, to learn what’s already been done, or just to read something they’ve never read before.

I can say that if Julius Schwartz hadn’t re-imagined those DC heroes in the 1950’s, if he hadn’t assembled and encouraged great writers and artists like Gardner Fox, Carmine Infantino, Joe Giella, and Joe Kubert, the superhero genre would have faded away. Instead, it made a comeback, leading to other publishers creating their own heroes. We wouldn’t have the Marvel heroes, Captain Atom, The Question, or Dr. Solar if it wasn’t for Julie.

And for that, I thank him.

Well, that and ‘Ambush Bug’;)

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