As Booster splits the team up, we manage to spend sometime with our heroes.
Justice League International #3
With this issue Dan Jurgens slows down the action and produces a script focused on character development. It is about time that we manage to get a clear picture of the characters in this book, especially the female trio of Ice, Vixen and Fire. It was a consistent problem in the first two issues and Jurgens manages to at least give these three some dialogue. Splitting the teams down to deal with the world spanning threat is a good idea as it allows for some interesting pairings and character interaction.
The most unlikely pairing is Batman and Booster Gold. Batman continues his role as Booster’s reassuring back up. As before it continues to be an interesting take on a character who is always considered more of a leader than a follower. Although he may have a plan and helps guide Booster, he never takes away from Booster’s attempt at leadership. Booster is more confident and you can tell that this crisis will me the making of him. Jurgens, much like Booster, seems to becoming more confident in his writing. He has always been somewhat of a classical superhero writer and this is exactly what this book is all about.
Continuing with the pairings, Ice and Rocket Red have a more humorous slant to there encounter. It isn’t laugh out loud funny but it’s playful enough not to annoy. Fire and Vixen essentially make friends and learn about each other. Again it isn’t a revelation, but it does give some much needed exposition. As we learn a bit about their reasons for joining the team and also a much needed definition of Vixen’s power set for the new readers. However the most interesting pairing is Godiva and August General In Iron. Godiva has flung her fun sex kitten persona away for a woman out of her depth. This type of sultry characterisation isn’t usually played up as a façade in the DC universe as most flirty women are either badass or evil. But it does seem slightly refreshing, if not original, to have her admit she only joined the team for a PR stunt. Also August General finally ditches the humour for a more stoic portrayal of a warrior. There seems to be a distinct, and intentional, tenderness to August General’s actions towards Godiva. Jurgens decision to have these two characters come together is a unusual choice, but if their interactions are nurtured the right way it could become a compelling coupling.
However there are still a few characters that don’t work quite as well. Guy Gardner has a mission, but his solo antics don’t give him much to do in the way of character building. He merely seems to serve as a way to show how deadly the coming threat is. Andre Briggs and Emerson Esposito are given a fair few panels. But Briggs hasn’t managed to capture the same intrigue he had in the first issue. As a result they are drowned out by the more appealing character work done here.
Also even though the plot fits in with the colourful superhero storytelling Jurgens is doing. In this issue it feels a little flat. It is probably due to the focus on character, but even though they have a mission it really doesn’t seem all that interesting. The villain of the piece has yet to be truly defined and although he can take out a Green Lantern with ease, there is no sense of threat.
Aaron Lopresti and Matt Ryan continue to create a colourful and classical superhero look for book. The art is so in sync with how jurgens writes that it’s no surprise that it all comes together nicely. Lopresti is clearly having fun exploring how each character interacts and uses their powers. This fun is evident on the pages, especially with Ice and Red Rockets interlude. The action is clean and clear and the art team doesn’t falter. However there are no real stand out artistic high points, but it doesn’t detract from the solid work being done here.
As we finally get an issue that looks at these characters it is a shame that the plot begins to show it’s weaknesses. However Jurgens delivers some great character moments which are backed up by some fun art by Lopresti. It may not be the best book in the 52, but it is doing something different with it’s light hearted tone. Although it has some minor problems it is still the most fun iteration of the Justice League franchise.
A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING
|Some solid Character work and it continues to be bright and fun||The plot isn’t that compelling|
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