The war between Batman’s new Justice League Task Force and Ra’s Al Ghul new League of Assassins filled with heroes and villains has reached another level recently. Ra’s was already a big threat with all the heroes and villains he has been able to recruit to his side. Now he has become an even bigger threat as he has captured Green Arrow, Black Canary, Black Lightning and other kids from Batman’s group. That act has forced Batman’s hand as he must now act in order to ensure he keeps his allies on his side. Will Batman be able to do that while also making sure Ra’s doesn’t destroy the Earth? Let’s find out with chapter seventeen of Injustice 2.
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Daniel Sampere
Inker: Juan Albarran
Colorist: Rex Lokus
Story Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Synopsis: In Washington, D.C. people gather for the inauguration ceremony of the new President. Somewhere in the city Batman, Black Lightning, Aqualad and Steel are monitoring the area to protect the ceremony from an attack by Ra’s Al Ghul since the new President is anti-environment.
Batman assigns Aqualad and Steel to specifically watch the President’s back while he and Black Lightning set-up in case something goes down.
Above the Earth, the Justice League Task Force arrive to the coordinates so their jet is right above the Amazon Rainforest. Batgirl has Black Canary, Green Arrow and Wildcat stay on the jet so they can lay low.
Batgirl has Plastic Man and Luke O’Brien use their powers to wrap around her. She then dives out the plane. As they near the ground Plastic Man and Luke reshape themselves into a glider and the three land silently in the rainforest.
Batgirl, Plastic Man and Luke come across some League of Assassins members. Plastic Man and Luke work together to quickly knock out all of the assassins.
Plastic Man then leads Luke inside Ra’s lair and shows his excitement at doing some father-son bonding.
The Good: Tom Taylor deserves a lot of credit in giving both sides of this war an equal amount of time. Splitting time equally between both sides has allowed us to get in the minds of all the characters involved. Injustice 2 Chapter 17 continues that trend by showing us how Batman is preparing the Justice League Task Force to be ready to strike on multiple fronts.
Spending the entire chapter focused on how Batman and Batgirl are leading the Justice League Task Force showed us that Taylor isn’t going to keep things uneven between the two sides. Up until now it has felt as though Ra’s and his crew have been in control of everything going on. That has in turned made everything Batman and the Justice League Task Force do to be more reactionary to what is going on in the moment.
Taylor changes that with this chapter and it was a refreshing change of pace. Batgirl leading her members of the Justice League Task Force in a covert mission showed us how our heroes are looking to gain the upper hand. Because with how many heroes and villains Ra’s has gather there is no way the Justice League Task Force can outgun those numbers. By using the shadows we are able to see how the Justice League Task Force are maximizing their resources to make up to the numbers disadvantage.
Using Plastic Man and his son Luke to accomplish the covert mission was a great way to use the characters. It is rare to see Plastic Man play such a role given the goofy nature of the character. How Batgirl utilizes Plastic Man and Luke’s powers in a different way than they usually do shows her ability as a leader. And the short father-son combo at the end builds further interest in seeing how Plastic Man and Luke will be key in getting all of the kids back from Ra’s control.
On the other side, seeing Batman run his own plan as he prepares for Ra’s attacking the new President’s inauguration ceremony continued to show us how he is approaching things. Taylor is writing a great Batman as this version shows a robotic sense of planning. Everything he chooses to do and how he talks to his allies is methodically using all the information he has at hand. At the same time Taylor does a good job of showing that everything Batman does is because of how much he cares even though that is not how others perceive his decisions.
It’s also interesting to see how Taylor continues to present Black Lightning’s character in all of this. As one of the members of the President’s cabinet it is clear Black Lightning is conflicted. Taylor highlighting this fact in Injustice 2 Chapter 17 does leave the reader to wonder what exactly Black Lightning’s arc will be in what is going on in the war between Batman and Ra’s.
While he isn’t given a big action sequence to draw Daniel Sampere continues to provide solid artwork for Injustice 2. With a dialogue heavy issue Sampere is able to get across how every character feels with the two different operations that the Justice League Task Force are running simultaneously. The brief bit of action we do get does show us how Sampere plans to use Plastic Man’s power to do some creative things with the action sequences in the future.
The Bad: As enjoyable as it was to see how the Justice League Task Force went on the offensive, Injustice 2 Chapter 17 was another set-up issue. Though not inherently a bad thing we have had a lot of these recently. For those looking for big action sequences they may find this disappointing given how many set-up chapters there has been so far in this series.
Overall: Injustice 2 Chapter 17 did a very good job showing us how Batman and the Justice League Task Force are being more proactive in taking on Ra’s group of heroes and villains. The chess game between both sides continues to be a fascinating thing to see play out as it still not clear how this conflict will turn out. The mystery around the outcome makes the anticipation for what comes next from Tom Taylor even more exciting as we come back to the Injustice 2 world on a weekly basis.