Justice League Odyssey #3 Comic Review
Writer: Joshua Williamson
Artist: Philippe Briones
Cover: Stjepan Sejic
Letterer: Deron Bennett
Variant Cover: Terry & Rachel Dodson
Ghost Sector Part Three
“If the Old Gods are here to save us…then a War Will Follow”
What You Need to Know
The makeshift team of Cyborg, Starfire, Jessica Cruz, and Azrael continue their adventures in the Ghost Sector as they try to unravel the mystery surrounding their status as the “Old Gods”. Starfire has been given the opportunity to gain insight into the worlds of the Ghost Sector and why she, Cyborg, and Azrael are worshipped. Unfortunately there seems to be some unsightly consequences to the knowledge she was able to obtain. On top of all of this, new followers emerge, and Darkseid is behind the scenes pulling the team’s strings.
What Just Happened
The issue starts with a flashback to events that occur prior to the team’s adventures in the Ghost Sector. This issue reveals the events leading up to Starfire and Cyborg stealing Braniac’s ship from the Hall of Justice and their motivations behind it. Starfire wants to continue her quest of finding her home planet Tamaran, and Cyborg wants to follow the voice calling him to the Ghost Sector while helping his friend Starfire.
The issue then shifts to the present and picks up right where last issue left off. Starfire’s powers are malfunctioning, and the planet seems to be crumbling apart. Cyborg makes a last ditch effort to save Starfire, that puts her more at risk but remedies the situation for the time being. Jessica Cruz then shows why she is becoming a powerful Green Lantern in her own right by single handedly using her willpower to launch Brainiac’s ship into space saving the team in the process. The team then notices that the planet was not being destroyed; it was being cocooned in some kind of energy field.
The issue next focuses on another planet in the Ghost Sector where its inhabitants are fleeing some unseen force. One of the beings on the planet is captured, and interrogated by someone unknown. When the captive reveals he knows nothing regarding the Old Gods returning, his captor kills him. The captor reveals himself to be follower of Azrael named Rapture.
With Brainiac’s ship being damaged, the team follows a signal to another planet in the sector to gather Coluan parts to repair it. On the planet, Jessica Cruz and Azrael search for the parts, while Cyborg stays behind on the ship to care for Starfire. Cyborg and Starfire are surprised by an attempted stowaway who claims he can heal Starfire. Jessica and Azrael encounter a being named Vulg who claims to have Coluan tech. Vulg reveals that he has captured some Coluan refugees and enslaved them in retaliation for his planet being bottled by Brainiac. Azrael, Jessica, Cyborg, and a newly healed Starfire battle and defeat Vulg and his minions, freeing the Coluans. Unbeknownst to the team, the medic who healed Starfire, is revealed to be Darkseid in disguise. The newly freed Coluans then bow and worship Cyborg as “The Machine”.
Vulg contacts Rapture and informs him that he has encountered the Old Gods on his planet. Rapture replies surprised that Cyborg did not return to his “home planet”. It is revealed that the planet Rapture is on worships Cyborg, evidenced by a giant Cyborg monument.
This issue featured some interesting reveals, but overall I felt it was a slight step back in quality. I was happy to see the cliffhanger from last issue was resolved relatively quickly this issue. There were also some interesting plot threads left unresolved that I’m interested in seeing developed more in the future. The planet the team escaped being cocooned in an energy being a plot point I’d like to see resolved in the future. I’m also curious about Rapture. Is he Azrael’s only follower? He seems to be every bit as brutal as Azrael can be; with the only difference being that Rapture seems to enjoy the brutality. The Coluan refugees seemed to only be inserted in the story to allow for some action in this issue with the team fighting their captors. The refugees also advanced the plot somewhat by revealing what happened to some of the Coluans after their home planet was destroyed, and they also worshipped Cyborg as a God, adding to the mystery of the Old Gods in the Ghost Sector. The biggest question I have is why is Darkseid helping this team, and what does he have to gain from it. It seems that Darkseid is invested in this team working together. Maybe the answers reside with Rapture and the Cyborg worshipping planet he is currently on. Williamson has created just enough intrigue to keep me interested.
This issue suffers some from the absence of Stjepan Sejic. Philippe Briones is up to the challenge this issue, with some great character models, and beautiful backgrounds, however some of the characters faces look strange during close up looks. Hopefully this book does not rely on fill-in artists.