Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The Classics - Justice League of America #29 & 30

   My favorite issues of the original Justice League of America were the annual crossovers between Earth-1 and Earth-2 as the heroes teamed up with the Justice Society of America.

   But if I had to pick my favorite of those crossovers, it would probably be this story from 1964, as the heroes of both worlds faced an invasion from Earth-3.

   The story by Gardner Fox and Mike Sekowsky broke the usual mold for such stories (heroes meet, split into teams to fight threat, then team up at the end for the final victory).

   Instead, the JLA and the JSA barely even meet, and that not until the end of the first issue.

   This time around, the super-powered Crime Syndicate of America - made up of Ultraman, Owlman, Superwoman, Johnny Quick and Power Ring - discovers the existence of alternate Earths, and decides to fight the heroes of Earth-1.

   I love the reason for the conflict. The bad guys feel that they're getting complacent, because there are no super-powered opponents on their world. They need a challenge.

 Over the course of the two issues, the JLA and the CSA face off three times, and the JSA and the CSA once. It works because the bad guys are powerful (in unexpected but logical ways) and clever, and the pairings (opponents) are not the ones you might expect - in other words, it was a great matchup for the heroic teams.

   Oh, a few of their tactics are really dirty pool (as they snatch victory from the jaws of defeat), and the final disposal of the bad guys is downright silly - but the story is loaded with action, surprising twists and fun visuals.

   Best of all, the teams face an opponent that can challenge them on every level - a true rarity in the early adventures in the series.

   You really got the sense that the creative team enjoyed these stories, as it allowed them to resurrect classic characters and breath new life into the series, weaving epic stories on a large scale.

   I loved it!

Grade: A


1 comment:

Kevin Findley said...

Loved those crossovers. I read the first one as a reprint in a 100 page super-spectacular. Great stuff!