Justice League #40 (Comics Review)

As I’ve mentioned before, Geoff Johns’ Justice League found a new lease on life following the Forever Evil crossover and that it returned to its previous levels of awesome, especially with artists Jason Fabok and Brad Anderson coming on-scene to provide the other half of the team. The AMAZO virus storyline was definitely all kinds of awesome, and I really enjoyed getting back into such an involved and moving story after the (almost) dead beats of Forever Evil. But now it is time for something different yet again, and recent experience seems to hold up well in the new arc.

With the recent Justice League #40, Geoff Johns is kicking off yet another new phase in the title, this one titled “Darkseid War“. The issue itself is told through the viewpoint of the being known as Metron, a universal entity far above the ken of even such mighty beings as superheroes. The entire issue is pretty much his monologue, and we learn some startling things about the DC universe, as well as the true nature of the being known as the Anti-Monitor and how the ongoing Convergence event fits into the whole tapestry that Geoff and others at DC have been working on of late.

One of the central aspects of the identity of the DC universe has long been that each “setting” is actually a different Earth in a multiverse of Earths where they are all related to each other in some way and that there are often either minute differences between them, or minute similarities. Such variance gives birth to an incredible diversity of “worlds” and “setting”, spanning almost everything that you can dream of, and what this new issue does is establish that the entire DC history to date is canon. That all the reboots over the years have actually been part of a greater whole that we are only just learning to understand.

You see, in the Convergence event, the supervillain Brainiac has pitted the champions of different cities from across the different Earths of the Multiverse against each other. It has given rise to situations where many dead characters are alive again, or we have different timelines in conflict with each other, or Batman in Metropolis or Superman in Gotham, or the Flashpoint characters fighting against the Infinite Crisis characters or what have you. It is a complex model that Geoff Johns says in Justice League #40 is all connected to each other. And I find that fascinating.

Through Metron, we learn a great deal about the worlds of the Metroverse, their history as seen through his eyes, and some of the most defining moments as well, such as when the Crisis on Infinite Earths happened, or when Hal Jordan gave into the power of the being known as Parallax or when the Flash changed history by going back in time to save his mother or the seeming truce between the Highfather and Darkseid.

And all of it comes back to the present day state of the Multiverse, which is fracturing and at risk of annihilation once again because of all these events, and because the Anti-Monitor is gathering his powers once again, setting himself on course for a really epic clash against none other than Darkseid himself. It is epic, seriously epic. This is a really dense issue with all the monologue and the dialogue, and there is a real kicker of a twist at the end too, something that really makes you sit up and take notice of what is going on. Geoff at his masterful best is what we have here.

The artist credits for this issue are really long. We have Kevin Maguire, Phil Jimenez, Dan Jurgens, Jerry Ordway, Scott Kolins, Jason Fabok, Jim Lee, Brad Anderson and Alex Sinclair on various duties, with Rob Leigh bringing up the rear with the letters, and the dynamic duo of Jason and Brad doing that chilling, villainous cover. The art in here is seriously good, and I say that without any attempts at exaggeration. The best of them all definitely has to be the huge splash page by Phil Jimenez, which is a call back to Crisis on Infinite Earths if I’m not mistaken and features dozens of superheroes superimposed on a fight between the Anti-Monitor of old and the Spectre. Mind-blowing stuff all the way.

With all the new stuff that the creative team brings in here, and also the callbacks to all the old stuff, Justice League #40 is definitely among the best the series has to offer.

Rating: 9.5/10

More Justice League: #1-6, #7-12, #13-15, #22-23, #23.1, #23.2, #23.4, #24, #25, #26, #27, #28, #37, #38, #39.

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Posted on May 13, 2015, in Comics Reviews, Review Central and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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