Saturday, December 31, 2011

"The End" Week: Justice Society #10!


Well, I suppose it's more accurately "Justice Society of America," but they went with the short form on the last issue: from 1993, Justice Society of America #10, "J.S.A. No More?" Written by Len Strazewski, pencils by Mike Parobeck, inks by Mike Machlan.

While Parobeck's cartoony style was the big draw for me in this incarnation of the JSA, I did enjoy how Strazewski made the old guard of the DCU seem old; like the elderly gentlemen they were. (Actually, Hawkwoman's in there as well, but looks great; while Carter is noticeably older.) They weren't senile or incontinent or decrepit or anything (because they had cheated aging at least a couple of times) but had a different mindset than even a slightly younger team like the JLA.

Still, the book didn't find a market--which really isn't that surprising, since about a second of research shows this came out about the same time as the first batch of Image Comics. Did DC think this would compete with the first year or so of Spawn or WildC.A.T.s?

Anyway, the last issue or so featured people turning on the Justice Society en masse; to the point they were marching in the streets with torches, signs, and possibly pitchforks. A pair of hit men try to kill Ted Knight, the original Starman, who stops them easily. (How they, and the mob outside, knew where he lived is another question.) Ted suits up and heads to Gotham City to help out his friends, who are hip-deep in battle with Kulak the Sorceror. For his part, Kulak has enslaved the Hawks, been broadcasting his hypnotic message on late-night cable, and has impaled Johnny Thunder's Thunderbolt for use as a battery. Oh, and he licks Hawkwoman.

Eww.

Kulak fought the JSA a bazillion years ago in All-Star Comics #2 (mentioned in the editorial footnote) and ended up sucked into ancient Egypt. He tells a cock-and-bull story about being the Pharaoh Cheops; Wildcat and Atom don't buy it, since Vandal Savage said he was Cheops, and seems a bit more credible. Johnny Thunder provokes Kulak, who summons his...Legion of the Dead! (He had the same dramatic pause!) Although it takes a lot of his power, all he gets are a bunch of incompetent zombies, who smash up a bit of his stuff as well. Kulak's reeling by the time Starman arrives and zaps him so hard his third eye falls out, and Kulak is sucked back into hell.

The series ends with future member Jesse Chambers finishing her dissertation on the JSA; as the team gets together for another meeting. I'm not sure how many more they had, since several of them would be killed or retire during Zero Hour to make way for younger heroes. Yeah, that didn't really take, either.

2 comments:

SallyP said...

God, I love the old farts in the JSA. They may be a tad ancient, but they can still make those whippersnappers in the JLA sit down and shut up!

Dale Bagwell said...

I used too love this series too! I remember buying up some of these @ my then local Wal-mart in Florida when I was 11 and 12. This series really did end too soon, not to mention how sadly missed Mike P is.