Justice #7 Review

The Revolution has enjoyed Justice. I’m a big fan of Alex Ross and I liked Krueger’s work on Earth X so I wasn’t surprised that I have liked Justice. One reason that I like the story so much in Justice is all the silver age goodness. I like seeing the silver age JLA in action again. These are my favorite versions of all these characters, so with all the massive change in the DCU currently, it is nice to get some quality silver age action involving heroes like Ray Palmer, Barry Allen, Arthur Curry and others. I fully expect Justice #6 to be another entertaining issue. Let’s hit this review.

Creative Team
Plot: Jim Krueger & Alex Ross
Script: Jim Krueger
Art: Alex Ross & Dough Braithwaite

Art Rating: 10 Night Girls out of 10
Story Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 8.5 Night Girls out of 10

Synopsis: This issue begins with Martian Manhunter and Zatanna discovering Aquaman’s body. He is lying on a table with his brain having been open up and dissected.

We cut to the Legion of Super Villains. Lex states that Brainiac did not find what he was looking for from Aquaman. Grodd then sends telepathic signals to their teammates to go ahead and capture the people closest to the members of the JLA.

We shift to Batman and Wonder Woman being the first JLA members to arrive at Superman’s Fortress of Solitude. Red Tornado contacts Wonder Woman and tells her that it was Batman who destroyed the JLA satellite. Dr. Magnus has finished re-assembling Red Tornado.

We cut to Hawkman and Hawkgirl destroying all of the Brainiac robots. Hawkman uses an energy bomb to blow up the entire factory destroying all the Brainiac robots and the assembly machines that were creating the robots. Hawkman then finds what appear to be little worms flying out of the wreckage of the factory.

We shift to Captain Marvel and Superman devising a plan to help stop the Flash from running. The Flash’s metabolism is beginning to eat him alive. Captain Marvel, with the speed of a god (Mercury) is able to catch up to Flash. Captain Marvel yells “Shazam” and the lightning bolt blasts both of them effectively stopping Flash from running. Superman swoops in and catches both men. Billy turns back into Captain Marvel. They then take Barry Allen to an all-you-can-eat buffet so he can restore his energy.

We then cut to various members of the Legion of Super Villains taking out people close to the JLA. We see Jimmy Olsen and Lois Lane abducted from the Daily Planet. We see Wally West and Dick Grayson captured by Solomon Grundy. We see Black Manta attacking Aqua Lad.

We then shift to Hal Jordan inside his power ring floating through uncharted space. The power ring informs Hal that now that he has been converted into energy, he will never die. Hal demands to be turned back into human form so he can die in space. The power ring refuses to do so since that would violate its primary programming to safeguard Green Lantern. Hal will now live forever. Alone.

We cut to Mary Marvel and Freddy in human form at the Rock of Eternity. Suddenly, Black Adam appears and grabs Mary and covers her mouth. Black Adam tells Freddy if Freddy says his magic word then Black Adam will kill Mary.

We zip back over to the Fortress of Solitude. All the members of the JLA have assembled outside the Fortress. Superman unlocks the door and the heroes enter the Fortress of Solitude. (This is one incredible double page splash shot.) The heroes know that the Legion of Super Villains know all of their secret identities and the people who are closest to them since they accessed this information from Batman’s computer files. Superman says they must come up with a plan and act as team.

We shift to Zatanna and Martian Manhunter at Doom Patrol’s headquarters. Professor Caulder tells them that there is nothing he can do for Aquaman. That is because Aquaman’s brain has already healed itself. Professor Caulder says that Aquaman is more extraordinary than anyone had ever thought before. That Aquaman can regenerate his cells. Aquaman is placed in a tank of water to increase his regeneration rate. Aquaman is soon fully healed and wakes up saying “Mera…?”

We then conveniently cut to Mera holder Aquaman’s son. Aqua Lad enters the room and tells Mera that Black Manta is attacking Atlantis. Aqua Lad then suddenly punches out Mera. (Another hero falls under the mind control of the villains.) Aqua Lad takes Aquaman’s son and gives him to Black Manta. Black Manta holds the baby and says how happy this baby is going to make Brainiac.

The Good: Justice #7 was another excellent issue. Krueger ratchets up the action in this issue. The opening scene where J’onn and Zatanna find Aquaman’s body was eerie and creepy. Brainiac’s lab with all of these test animals in cages added to the gruesomeness of this scene. This scene helped further established what a sick and twisted creature Brainiac is.

The scene with Batman and Wonder Woman waiting for the rest of the JLA members to arrive at the Fortress of Solitude was great. Krueger writes a great Batman. Wonder Woman goes along with Batman’s orders to keep it a secret from everyone that her golden lasso is the only thing keeping him from falling under control of the worms inside of him. I also liked Batman’s comment about only someone as trusting as Superman would leave his key to his fortress out in the open for all to see.

The scene with Hawkman and Hawkgirl destroying Brainiac’s factory was cool. Krueger serves up a wonderfully violent and confident Hawkman. The part where he produces his energy bomb and Hawkgirl asks him what he is going to do. His answer is “What I always do. Win.” And with that he blows up the factory and they narrowly escape the bomb’s blast. Perfect. That is exactly why I dig Hawkman. He can be such a great character if handled this way.

The scene where Captain Marvel and Superman save Flash was nice. I thought Marvel’s plan was pretty smart and it was nice to see Superman stand down to Captain Marvel claiming that Marvel has the speed of a god and can do what Superman can’t do: Catch the Flash. Ross has always done a great job with Captain Marvel and clearly loves this character. It is nice to see Captain Marvel as a character that is more than just a poor man’s Superman. Captain Marvel’s comment about how taking Barry to the $5.99 all-you-can-eat-buffet was going to be unfair to the buffet was humorous. It was nice to have a touch of humor in a storyline that has been overwhelmingly dark and somber.

It was great seeing Wally West and Dick Grayson back when they were Kid Flash and Robin. I hope we get to see them in action whenever the JLA finally rescues them from the Legion of Super Villains.

I’m also glad that we also are getting more of the Marvel Family injected into the story with the addition of Mary Marvel and Freddy. The scene in the Rock of Eternity is cool. I am enjoying the evolution of Black Adam’s character over in 52. However, it is really enjoyable to see the old nasty evil Black Adam in action. I’m looking forward to seeing where this plotline goes.

The scene with Hal Jordan inside the power ring was beautiful and sad. The overwhelming feeling of hopelessness and solitude of having to life forever inside the ring jumps off the page. Immortality combined with unending solitude is a fate worse than death for Hal. I can’t wait to see how Hal gets out of this mess.

I loved the scene with all the JLA members assembled at the Fortress of Solitude. This scene is probably my favorite. This scene symbolizes the hope and power that the JLA embodies. They are more than just a team and when working together there is nothing that they can’t handle.

The scene with J’onn and Zatanna at Doom Patrol’s headquarters was great. First, I dig the Doom Patrol and always like it when they get some panel time. Second, I liked how Krueger is making Aquaman so much more than just a guy who can breathe under water and talk to fish. I did not expect to find out that Aquaman had the ability to regenerate his cell structure. Very cool.

The final scene with Aqua Lad, under the mind control of Black Manta, punching out Mera and taking Aquaman’s son is a nice ending that hooks the reader. Just what are Brainiac’s plans for Aquaman’s son? What does the son have that the father did not? We know Brainiac failed to find what he was looking for inside Aquaman’s brain. Just what was Brainiac looking for? This is a pretty interesting plotline and I’m interested to see where Krueger is going with this plotline.

Krueger has spent the first six issues employing a slower pace while he tore apart the JLA. Now, with Justice #7, we see the JLA regrouping and beginning to launch their counter-strike. I have a feeling that the rest of this mini-series is going to be a fast paced wild ride.

Krueger has a wonderful handle of these silver age JLA characters. Krueger is writing one of the more interesting versions of the JLA that I have read. The chemistry between the characters is superb. The character development has been impressive. Krueger has given each character their own voice and this lends to some very nice dialogue.

I love Alex Ross’ artwork. Absolutely incredible. The entire issue is beautiful; however, there are certain panels that really stand out. The two page splash shot of the interior of the Fortress of Solitude is simply stunning. There are also plenty of little touches like the panel where Zatanna and J’onn are in the Doom Patrol’s headquarters. You see Beast Boy in the form of a cat rubbing himself up against Zatanna’s leg. Nice. Ross’ realistic and detailed style pulls the reader into the story and doesn’t let go until the end. It is very captivating and full of emotion.

The Bad: The bi-monthly format of this title is the only negative. It breaks up the flow of this story and makes it a bit hard to get into this mini-series as much as I would if it were on a monthly schedule.

Overall: Justice has been a nice blend of excellent character development and quality action all wrapped up in a pretty engaging storyline. I think Krueger is delivering a solid story that is boosted by Alex Ross’ incredible artwork. If you don’t like silver age characters or you don’t enjoy Alex Ross’ art, then this is definitely not a comic book that you will enjoy. However, for the rest of you, I would definitely recommend giving this title a look. Or, at least wait for the trade paperback that is sure to be released once this mini-series is concluded. And given the bi-monthly status of this title, it probably will be a more enjoyable read as a trade paperback.