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.

New Justice League Titles

In recent news, Scott Snyder will be taking over Justice League and starting up a whole bunch of different titles. From the article:

Justice League: No Justice will be written by Scott Snyder, Josh Williamson, and James Tynion IV with art from Frances Manapul, and will run weekly in May. In No Justice, Brainiac arrives on Earth with a warning for DC’s heroes about an impending threat that can only be stopped if the Justice League joins forces with some of DC’s worst villains.

Who’s teaming with whom? Here’s some concept art from Frances Manapul to answer that very question:

I’m calling this team JLAliens (which is completely a call back to the Justice Leagues mini event from 2001) and while it’s nice to see Martian Manhunter back with the League . . . Starro? Really?!

JLMagic (or maybe JLDark again?) with what looks to be Raven on the left, though I may be mistaken.

JLMoney (because they’re all wealthy – wasn’t Changeling/Beast Boy the adopted son of Steve Dayton at some point?). As I don’t keep up with the Superman titles, I hadn’t realised Luthor was still wearing the S-shield.

JLScience? JLNerds? And I guess they had to shoehorn Harley Quinn in there somewhere.

First impression – 5 women out of team of 20? That’s not a brilliant score, is it? Why not Batgirl instead of Robin? Scandal Savage instead of Deathstroke? Soranik Natu instead of Sinestro? Literally any female character instead of Starro?

Second impression – no Green Lantern or Aquaman? Are they not in the League any longer?

Third impression – the uniforms. Because that worked out so well the last time the League went in for that look:

Just saying . . .

Reservations aside, I will, of course, be buying these, as I’m a sucker for the Justice League.

Which is why I own a complete run of Justice League Task Force.