Column...for JUSTICE! #3: The Justice SOCIETY of America
SDCC 09 VIDEO: Mike Carlin Takks JSA
Before I open our regular look at the titles bearing the name of “Justice” in the DCU, it ought to bear mention that a couple of related books hit this week. Those would be: Magog #1, spinning off the JSA character; Cry for Justice #3; Justice Society of America Volume 5: Black Adam and Isis hardcover; and DC Comics Classics Library: The Justice League of America by George Perez Volume 1 hardcover. That last one lends itself to either a future installment here (or a Friday Flashback, given that I have all of the collected issues in question), and I’m sure we’ll be talking about the two individual issues soon.
For now, let’s turn our focus to the original “Justice” team of the DCU. The seeds have been planted for the split between the regular book and the forthcoming All-Stars. At this point, how do you feel about that? In your mind, as a reader, is it better to separate the large cast into two book? Does the generational make sense to you, or does it strike a false note with you as a reason to split squads. Tell us what you think.
I’d have to say that there’s more in play than just the generation gap. While that was a solid rationale for the original Infinity Inc., it feels rather strange when the younger characters of the JSA are used to working alongside the older characters. Granted, there have been rough spots with Magog and Damage, but frankly, I have a hard time believing that too many of the JSAers would follow after Magog after the events of “Thy Kingdom Come”. (However, the lead up and throw-down with Wildcat make perfect sense as Magog heads to his solo title.)
It was also excellent to see the return of Dr. Fate. The best home for the character is probably in JSA for reasons of history and legacy, and it was good to see him there. There are ways to involve him in the plot without him eclipsing everyone else. Hopefully, with the split squads coming, Fate will stick around the main book and get some use.
With that, here’s another point for discussion: which JSA character deserves more spotlight or inclusion? I’d say that there’s a fair number of team members that need a little more time up front, but my preferences may not be yours. For my part, I’d like to see a bit more Dr. Mid-Nite in combat situations (he always seems to be racing back to the lab), and I’d definitely like to see Obsidian in the field.
That having been said: should the JLA and JSA entertain co-features? Granted, we had separate spotlight titles for the books that folded in the past. Now, though, with DC’s emphasis on this approach, would you want to see a co-feature in each issue that spotlights different team members? I realize that some fans might resist the higher price point, but it would actually represent a richer reading experience in some ways.
I do want to be clear on one thing: when I picture that space, I don’t envision it as being used for the characters that already have their own books or prominent roles. A co-feature with Power Girl, for example, would be silly. A co-feature with Judomaster or Cyclone, or something delving into the personal lives of the characters . . . that would be interesting. What say you?