Yeah, it seemed like a bad idea, when in the first issue, the United Nations slapped this team together, put the typically ineffectual Booster Gold in charge and shipped them off into battle just moments after they’d all met. This proves that it was, indeed, a bad idea. Booster’s lack of leadership skill and pure ignorance of his team’s capabilities prove disastrous against the giant robot that the team discovered at the end of issue #1. One member is gravely wounded and Booster makes a most surprising battlefield decision. The team nearly falls apart by the book’s end. And the giant robot proves an even bigger threat than everyone realized. (Psst, he has friends!)
I enjoyed the first issue of this book more than that of the other ‘Justice League’ book. It was nice to just have a fun, light super hero book and that continues here. Heck, even Batman comes across lighter than I think I’ve ever seen him, outside of ‘Batman: The Brave & the Bold.’ There are several surprises, most notably the team’s sheer inability to function! It’s almost painful to watch, in a ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ kind of way.
Booster was an alarmingly poor choice for leader, but he continues to grow and develop here. Several other characters are also fleshed out, like Rocket Red and August General In Iron. As expected, Guy Gardner returns in this issue and he mentions his former relationship with Ice, so that’s at least in some respect, still canon. The dialogue is snappy. Not J.M. DeMatteis/Kieth Giffen “Bwah ha ha” but lighter than you’ll find in other books. The plot felt a little scattered and anticlimactic, but it’s just the second act in the story arc, so I’ll remain patient. It’s just with giant robots, you kind of expect more action, but I think the inaction displayed served its purpose.
Back to the characters for a second, as you’ve probably noticed, I’m partial to female super heroes. (I hate the word, “heroine.” It sounds antiquated.) This book has three of my favorites; Vixen, Fire and Ice, and all three are handled decently enough, although they haven’t really done much yet. But Godiva bugs me. She’s written as this shallow party girl, solely interested in shagging Booster, even when she’s tumbling from the sky with a giant robot inches away! How about instead of pick up lines, she shouts something like “Help me! I’m falling from the sky!” I get that you need different personalities to make a team work and she’s got her schtick, but it’s layed on too heavily for me here. (Also, how about adding Kimiyo Hoshi/Doctor Light to the roster? Doesn’t Japan need a representative?)
Aaron Lopresti’s art is perfectly suited, clean and attractive. It’s one of my favorite things about this book. And once again, I want to give credit where it’s due, to Travis Lanham for his lettering, in particular August General In Iron’s dialogue balloons.
All in all, this book is good, clean, old school super hero fun! The industry and fans are aware that there need to be more people reading comics for the artform to continue and this book is one that you could actually give to a child and not have to worry about anyone’s face getting sliced off and hung on the wall. And though I have reservations about Godiva, with such a large number of female characters, this is a comic you could actually give to a little girl! More female readers! Ta daa!
JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL #2
Written by Dan Jurgens
Pencilled by Aaron Lopresti
Cover by Lopresti and HIFI