Justice League #57
Writer: Joshua Williamson
Colorist: Romulo Fajardo Jr.
Letterer: Tom Napolitano
The Justice League ends its Death Metal crossover this week. This new League as been on a globe trotting adventure trying to take on Perpetua’s Omega Knight and free The Legion of Doom, as they power her throne. The League consists of Nightwing, Detective Chimp, Starfire, Cyborg, Hawkgirl, and Lex Luthor. In the last issue Hawkgirl was able to free Martian Manhunter from The Mindhunter (and dark Batman with the powers of Martian Manhunter) and free The Legion of Doom from the throne. The issue ended with the freed super villains turning on the heroes, in a fairly predictable manner.
The Justice League are done with The Mindhunter, but are now fighting off both The Legion of Doom and The Omega Knight. The Legion of Doom is not very happy that Lex Luthor turned them in to Perpetua, so he could become an Apex species. And of course these villains have no love for the heroes either. However, the more pressing issue of a giant Omega Knight looming overhead is able to get everyone together to form a temporary alliance. That is essentially the story, a simple battle between everyone on the ground and The Omega Knight. If you want a conclusion to the story, you better have also picked up Death Metal #5 as the issue ends requiring the reader to continue over there.
This arc started off with so much promise. Joshua Williamson seemed to be taking over the book for the long run, and apparently he is not. Regardless he is a writer that can craft a great world and was able to do so within this tie in arc. It was a book that was part of Death Metal, but stood on its own. Everything extraneous, was part of earlier Justice League books or explained within the issue itself. It was a post apocalyptic romp with a new rag tag Justice League team. The book was fun and exciting. This all stops here. His arc ends as a big ad for a different comic on the shelf today. It even references material from other tie ins, and asks the reader to catch up over there. While this is a trope in comic crossover storytelling, it is one that has always fallen flat and fatigued the reader. This arc seemed to have the best of both worlds, playing in the universe while being self contained. Instead we now have a tie in issue that sufferers from all the pitfalls that make tie ins inessential and frustrating. There isn’t even an ending to this book and The Justice League (once a premier book in the DC Universe) yet again feels like an unnecessary fill in. This title has been spinning its wheels for far too long. I really hope that whatever happens after “Future State” is better than this. This book needs a reboot. Also the next issue is apparently part 5 of some arc we have not heard of from a team that has not worked on the book, this has to be a mistake. Regardless, it is proof of the mess that DC has on their hands right now.
The art is amazing. Xermancio is drawing the hell out of a fairly dull book. It is the only reason to own this issue, as his art alone is worth the price of purchase. I have gushed about his art and design on this title and the Grant Morrison Black Stars spin off. He is an artist I will happily follow to any title, and I really hope he is given a better script to work on in the future.