The hunt for Max Lord takes a back seat this issue as the threat to the League comes from one of their own. Trauma has dialled Ice several notches up on the power scale and she’s lost her mind. Can Fire and Rocket Red stop her, or will they be transformed into the Justice Popsicles?
While Bea and Gavril fight for their friend’s, and their own, lives, writer Judd Winick gives us a parallel tale, the secret history of Ice. It seems that Tora Olafsdottir isn’t actually an ice goddess born, she’s from a Roma family with criminal ways. How her true background became hidden is the crux of an emotional tale which suggests there’s a good reason for Ice’s traditionally gentle manner.
With efficiency and style, Winick gives Ice a makeover in the looks and powers department; how far the change will extend to her personality remains to be seen, but ‘The Cold Truth’ is an entertaining tangent from the Max Lord storyline that’s given this book its purpose. Fire does speculate that the psychic Lord is behind the scarier Ice, but the JLA’s former organiser is strictly a backstage presence this issue, seen neither in the main storyline, nor the few pages devoted to Captain Atom, Blue Beetle and Booster Gold.
Fernando Dagnino is in the pencilling chair, providing suitably intense layouts for the action scenes. Ice’s harsher look works, while the rest of the heroes pulsate with power. And the quieter flashbacks benefit from Dagnino’s talent for imbuing characters with emotion. Inker Raul Fernando does himself credit, while colour house Hi-Fi and letterer Travis Lanham weave their own magic. A thoroughly enjoyable superhero comic is topped off by another attractive Cliff Chiang cover.
Two weeks to the next issue, featuring the tedious Magog, but with the form this comic regularly finds, I’m almost certain to enjoy even him.