Justice League #2
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Tony S. Daniel, Sandu Florea and Tomeu Morey
Lettering by Richard Starkings and Comicraft
Published by DC Comics
'Rama Rating: 7 out of 10
“Seems the world’s in trouble again,” quips Superman in the final pages of this issue, acknowledging the constant state of peril the world is in. Bryan Hitch wasted little time in bringing a potentially world-ending event to the rebirth of Justice League, and this second issue firmly continues in the same pattern. Rather than being a case of wash-rinse-repeat, Hitch takes the opportunity to touch on the character dynamics of this new version of the team.
With extinction-level earthquakes making literal waves around the world, Hitch’s Justice League never feels anything less than global in its scope. In addition to the resolution to the power-draining cliffhangers that we were left with last issue, there’s a fair bit of foreshadowing about the things that are coming for the Earth, a revelation that ups the ante for our heroes.
Underlying everything in this issue is a pervading sense of doubt, and it’s a bold move for Hitch to do this just as his blockbuster is kicking off. New Green Lantern Jessica Cruz looks to Simon Baz for guidance, feeling she’ll never achieve the same level of willpower he does. Meanwhile, Batman doesn’t fully trust the “new” Superman yet, but has to rely on him for what is coming. It makes for an interesting dynamic between a different League configuration, even if it keeps the issue in a minor holding pattern.
Tony S. Daniel, Sandu Florea and Tomeu Morey bring a big art style to this epic, with even the most conversational of panels framed against the backdrop of nothing less than the entire Earth. Opening with some impressively complex constructs from Baz’s ring, Daniel’s pencils maintain that same level of detail throughout the entire issue. It’s not just a series of static splashes either, with a dynamic flow created out of the Flash’s movements as he fights alongside Batman. When splash pages are used judiciously, it’s for the revelation of the invading forces or a mysterious entity in Atlantis. In a glorious mixture of colors and shading, both of those moments are showstoppers, forcing the reader to pause for breath along the way.
While the first issue in this series may have struggled to find the team’s dynamic, Hitch is slowly bringing it together here. There’s a genuine sense of threat, and that lack of team cohesion creates a war being fought on two fronts for the fledgling team. It’s inevitably leading a climax where the separate parts become a whole, but for the moment leaves the reader with an odd sense of foreboding.