Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Justice League of America #52

“D.C. Challenge” is the third part of “Omega” by James Robinson and artist Mark Bagley.  The League is isolated in Washington D.C. battling not only the Crime Syndicate of Amerika and the menace known only as Omega Man.

I know that most fans have a problem with James Robinson’s writing of this title, and after “Cry for Justice” I did too, especially for his treatment of the characters and lack of knowledge of their histories, which editors are also to blame for; however, his run on this title has not been a complete train wreck.

This arc has a silver age feeling with all its impending inevitability and campiness -which I really want to believe is intentional.- I like the inner dialog we see with each character which is used as a tool for development, while the action takes place in the forefront.  The cast in this adventure is large –the League, the Syndicate, the Tangent Green Lantern, Blue Jay, Omega Man, but despite that it does not feel crowded and everyone has been able to participate.

Speaking of Blue Jay, I had never had any exposure to him before, but I really like him; I hope he sticks around after “Omega” or that we get to see him again somewhere else; I just fell in love with the character design.

I also like Mark Bagley’s art.  While it is a little on the comical side at times, he makes great use of the space and as a result you feel like a lot happens in just one issue; he does not struggle in scenes with multiple characters, and the action sequences are very detailed.

Variant by David Mack
Going back to my initial objection, the biggest problem with this title is the fact that Robinson does not know his history.  The story started with the Syndicate taking the body of Alexander Luthor “their worst enemy”, which is incorrect, that was not him but his father; this is a huge mistake that should have been caught by editorial; and in many ways is a shame that a reader knows this and not the creators.  It is not the first mistake in Robinson’s run, and will not be the last one, and this takes a lot away from the story and credibility from the writer.

Supergirl is also a kind of liability at this point.  In the relatively short life of this character, her continuity is pretty messed up and confusing.  To me, one of the lowest points was the whole “Dark Supergirl” thing, and bringing the subject back just does not help.

All in all, the “Omega” arc is not bad if you look at it as its own thing, forget about continuity, and enjoy campy adventures a la Silver Age.  Don’t see it as a story featuring the Justice League -because let’s admit it, they are nice people, but they are not the JLA- but as an interim team fighting your typical baddie of the quarter.

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