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Justice League #23.4

by mahargen on September 28, 2013

Writers - Geoff Johns, Sterling Gates

Art - Szymon Kudranski, John Kalisz


Get Caught Up...


This is Villains Month.  Some stories are set nite, some stories are set then.  This installment, dealing with the Outsider and the Secret Society is set in both.  You remember the Secret Society, right?  They unleashed the Crime Syndicate upon the world and aided in the "death" of the Justice League?  Thought so.


What's Good?


Johns definitely saved the biggest for last, but it wasn't necessarily the best.  The writing team brings us a chance into the twisted past of Earth-3 which seems to be a dark mirror of the New 52 universe.  I'm a sucker for a good alternate reality story.  The glimpse we get into Earth-3 here focuses mainly on Owlman and Alfred.  There is an interesting soon on their dynamic I really wish we could have further examined.  Alas, the plot needs to move forward.


The art is a stand-out here.  Kudranski and Kalisz really make the characters from Earth-3 come alive.  I feel the bleakness that saturates that reality, and the colors compliment the art very well.  It’s easy to talk about art when the team is firing on both cylinders like this.  My only request would be a larger focus on backgrounds to set the scene.


What’s Not So Good?


There wasn't a lot of set-up here, just some characterization which was nice.  Motivations are teased, but nothing major occurs.  That is both a positive and a negative, though.  I consider this issue the crescendo of Villains Month.  This leads directly into the events of the next issue of Forever Evil, but things didn't sit well with me.  I wanted more backstory between when things came apart on Earth-3 and Alfred arrival in the New 52.  A lot of that exposition never happened.


I've been vocal about my displeasure with Villains Month titles taking place in the character's past.  From this issue I wanted a lot more of the past that I didn't get. Hopefully we get further glimpses into the past of Earth-3.


The Verdict...



I wanted a lot out of this issue.  Some things were delivered on, but there are a lot of unanswered questions still.  A decent outing overall that I'm happy to have spent time with, especially considering how pretty it is.

Our Score:

7/10

A Look Inside