A quiet dinner for Superman and Lois Lane has been rudely interrupted – by Overman, a super-bully from an earth ruled by Nazis. But the Kryptonian doppelgängers don’t meet – as Overman appears, Superman is transported to his homeworld…
… while Overman learns that you don’t mess with the Man of Steel’s gal.
Unfortunately, the Green K doesn’t have the desired effect, meaning Overman is free to attempt a takeover of this new world.
Across the planet, former Justice League member J’onn J’onzz is finding retirement less mellow than he’d hoped for.
Even further away, the android Amazo – former puppet of Lex Luthor – searches for meaning.
What is it with super-folk and soul searching? Green Lantern and Green Arrow drive across the US on a massive guilt trip. Superman walks across the country because flying would mean being out of touch with the people. Captain America becomes a Nomad… and now it’s Amazo and J’onn J’onzz turning their back on the fireworks, fun and sheer fabulousness of the super life to think really hard about stuff. Do non-fictional people step away from family, friends and responsibilities to find out ‘who they are’ as often as people in comics?
I can just about see why an artificially created person would wonder about such things, but J’onn has had a whole life – he’s a son, brother, husband, father, teammate, leader, he must know ‘who’ he is… why on Earth does he want to live as an elderly lady?
I expect the two searches for self will tie into the Overman business… J’onn certainly steps up this issue, while the chapter’s ending certainly sees Amazo’s story blow up.
I’ve only watched a couple of episodes of Justice League Unlimited – I’m not a big telly cartoon watcher, and every time I try, that po-faced opening scene puts me off – but I am a big JM DeMatteis fan, and he’s co-writing this spin off, set firmly in the animated universe… editor’s notes even refer to specific episodes. Having read so many DeMatteis books, I really shouldn’t be surprised by the focus on spirituality here – it’s been a recurring motif, explored in such classics as Moonshadow and Dr Fate. And nobody does it better, though I must give credit to this series’ co-writer James Tucker, producer, writer and director of scads of DC TV projects. I’ve no idea where one talent ends and the other begins so far as Justice League Infinity goes, but I like the result
A lot. While this issue seems more a Superman tale than a Justice League story – he’s even narrating it to an unseen audience – it’s very entertaining. Lois is smart and fiery, Overman is terrifying, while Superman is inspirational.
I’ve read dozens of Super-speeches in my time, and this is one of the best. Lois’s description of Overman’s aura is excellent. And the sheer humanity of the characters, good and bad, impresses.
As does the art of Ethen Beavers who, you won’t be surprised to learn, was a JLU storyboard person. The characters are totally on model, the action scenes dynamic and convincing, there’s a real enthusiasm to the pages. The only thing I dislike in the art is the boring TV redesign of Amazo, but that’s established, so even if that was Beavers’ doing (wags finger), it’s a tad late to protest.
Nick Filardi’s colours complement the visuals well, with every location having a distinctive palette – I’d happily step into that Indian scene. Tom Napolitano’s letters are always a treat, with the friendly font – and colour scheme – for Superman’s captions especially nice.
The story continues next time, and I’m hoping the title of the arc – The Crack’d Mirror – will truly link up to Agatha Christie beyond Amazo being in a space hall of shattered mirrors. The writers are cleverer than that.
Last issue’s cover was by Francis Manapul, this time it’s illustrator Jorge Corana with colourist Matheus Lopes; both pieces are good, but I’d really like Beavers or another JLU artist to do the honours, keep the look consistent.
This series has got off to a great start, I hope it sticks around awhile – heck, we haven’t even been told yet how the team is going from Unlimited to Infinity… and beyond?