The latest version of the League seems to be coming apart at the seams and thanks to the evil manipulations of Batman foe Prometheus that division is about to get the League in serious trouble. Posing as a documentary filmmaker with special access to the Justice League and the Watchtower Prometheus approaches each member of the League in turn and questions their position within the group and the non-existent leadership of an absent Batman. This line of questioning leads to the departure of The Ray and Xenos.
The team is already divided by the time that Prometheus makes his calculated strike against the remaining members of the League. One by one the JLA falls. Could this be the end of the League? (Sorry, I couldn’t help myself)
This offering by Orlando is a standard superhero comic that offers little in the way of surprises. The plot is stale and well-worn. The only thing that stands out is the dialogue; that has always been Orlando’s strength. Otherwise we are left with a roster of what could arguably be the most vanilla line-up in years.
Is anyone really clamoring for a team that includes the new Atom, Black Canary, The Ray and Vixen? And let’s not forget Lobo. Lobo is so out-of-place in the standard DCU that anyone trying to handle this character that is not named Simon Bisley just comes off writing a Wolverine knock off. Steve Orlando is not the only writer guilty of this.
The artwork is the saving grace on this title. The Petrus style is a hybrid of famed League artist Kevin Mcguire and Daniel Acuna. There is a smooth and sleek design to his figures; each facial expression is a focus for the reader which is a great addition to any comic. Petrus is a name that comic fans will see on more and more mainstream titles as time passes.
This is a middle of the road book that is going through the motions. It’s interesting that this is the line-up is going with while the Justice League movie is just days away. This book could use any of the main players. Without Batman, Supes, or WW this title is left to the second/third tier characters and it doesn’t have the chops to keep readers coming back.
Final Score: 2 ½ out of 5 stars
Justice League of America #18
Story: Steve Orlando
Art: Hugo PetrusColors: Hi-Fi
Letters: Clayton CowlesPublisher: DC Comics