Random Retrospective #31 – Justice League Task Force #34

JUSTICE LEAGUE TASK FORCE was a spin-off from JUSTICE LEAGUE AMERICA when the latter title was riding high in terms of popularity and sales. Got something good? Milk the hell out of it seems to be the way companies work, so alongside the original title, we also had this one and JUSTICE LEAGUE EXTREME. TASK FORCE originally started out as something of an anthology title with different writers and artists doing three or four issue adventures with the hook being that the membership of the team would be fluid and chosen by the United Nations (who were running the team) for the task at hand. After a year or so of that take, things shifted and it became a book led by Martian Manhunter who was training some rookie heroes, among them Gypsy from JL Detroit.

By the time we find the team here, lost in Skataris and trying to find their way home, we’re almost at the end of the run and things are looking to get wrapped up. Needless to say, there’s the obligatory disagreement with the locals.

The team’s ship is blown up, partly caused by the Ray and Triumph fooling around, but Gypsy was still on board. Thankfully she was able to get out in time and school both Ray and Triumph in why they should have warned her about the impending explosion.

The rest of the issue is them trying to find some way home out of Skataris while explaining to the now friendly locals how they arrived in Skataris in the first place, before the inevitable guest appearance by

Because he’s everywhere in Skataris.

I know Priest (the writer on this run) has been lauded for his work on more recent titles but here he seems a bit bored and doing things by the numbers; his apathy toward the series seems to come through, at least to me, and it was a relief once the thing came to an end.

Mash-Up #199 Dr Strange and Justice League Detroit

Long time readers will know of my affection for Justice League Detroit, a much maligned iteration of the League from the early to mid 80s. Sure, they had some problems, but I still like those folks. And throw in Dr Strange and who knows what might happen.

100 Issues Ago August 2011

I came across this “100 Issues Ago” panel in an old JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA and thought I’d tidy it up and re-purpose it. If one month = one issue, what was I reading 100 Issues Ago?

With FLASHPOINT almost over (issue #4 was out this month) the rest of DC’s output was either the FLASHPOINT tie-in miniseries, regular series winding up their run or a handful of specials like this one, where creators from classic runs of titles were given the opportunity to tell new stories using their characters.

The Detroit League doesn’t get a lot of love, generally, but I’ve always had a fondness for them, so having a new story set in that era of the League was a nice treat.

The plot’s straightforward enough: Felix Faust attacks the Detroit base of the League, trapping the heroes and a visiting group of children within the base. Steel and Aquaman butt heads, Steel convinced the older hero looks down on the League, before they make a final, doomed to failure stand. Gypsy manages to save the day by disobeying an order from Aquaman, and a young boy tells them they have nothing to fear as they’re the Justice League.

It’s a simple tale from a simpler time and works for me, though Conway’s insistence that the Detroit League matter and that they were heroes despite what the fans said is a little heavy handed.

Next month, it’s the launch of the New 52 and a bunch of new #1s.

Mash-Up #60

Twice a week I randomly generate two dates and then compare the titles I own from both of them, trying to find some covers that, with a little basic photoshopping, I can mash together, and then I force the results on you lovely people.

By the way, I admit to being HUGELY influenced by the wonderful Super-Team Family blog which has been doing this for years (and a lot better) on an almost daily basis.

One of my favourite League incarnations going up against one of my favourite characters!

Was quite pleased with how this one turned out.