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Formerly Known As the Justice League Paperback – April 1, 2004

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics (April 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401203051
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401203054
  • Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 0.3 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,157,879 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Andy A on June 15, 2005
Format: Paperback
As mentioned by a previous reviewer, this series is written by Keith Giffen and JM DeMatteis who did the 80's campy series JUSTICE LEAGUE. These two comedic masters, with the amazingly humorous pencils of Kevin Maguire, renovated the JLA in the 80s and added something that comics needed at that time: humor. Sometime between 1986 and 1987, comics became overwhelmingly grim. Wolverine was staking his claim as a hardened good guy. Batman became known as the Dark Knight properly thanks to Frank Miller. The X-Men became more about their inabilities and personality weaknesses than about their mutant powers. Comics were becoming less fun and more "realistic" incorporating the all-heroes-have-miserable-life-issues motif into issue after issue. So the trio of Giffen, DeMatteis, and Maguire gave popular comics a slap in the face and fans responded by slapping their knees (while laughing, of course).

So now almost 20 years later, the "Unholy Trio" prove that they still have it. Back in '87, they took unloved characters like Booster Gold, Blue Beetle, Mister Miracle, and Guy Gardner (to name a few) and made them lovable fan favorites. This time around, Booster and Blue Beetle are still around, but added to the mix of heroes are Mary Marvel, Elongated Man (and wife Sue), Fire, and Captain Atom.

I was initially afraid that the writers would not be able to keep their flavor fresh with humor. I was wrong. Giffen and DeMatteis are still funny and still love the characters they write. This series is about the characters, not mainly about what the characters' actions. The characters are well-written and lovable, and so what they do is just a product of their personalities with humorous and clever results.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Hizon on May 26, 2004
Format: Paperback
I'm a sucker for B-level heroes, and a series using my favorite second stringers trying to revive their lost glory is something I can't miss. The book has a number of laugh out loud moments, although sometimes I tend to get bogged down by the numerous exchanges of dialogue, sometimes it crowds out the art inside the panels. The addition of Mary Marvel is perfect, it's a wonder why she wasn't there in the previous series. I'm actually looking forward to the next book (which I hope becomes a TPB soon) where Guy Gardner makes a return, rumored to be using his old yellow power ring.
Although Giffen and DeMatteis JL is more about the characters, as stated by the previous reviewer, I would've loved to see them in a "serious" fight, meaning, facing them against a legit DC villain (No more Manga Khan please). Again, my bias for second stringers saving the day shows here.
Nevertheless, it's a fun book worth picking up.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By C. Woodruff on June 12, 2005
Format: Paperback
It would be wise to ignore the review below. The reviewer states that there's no point in reading the book, as the DC universe shake up negates the story. However, that doesn't change the fact that the book is wonderfully written and penciled, with hilarious dialogue and characterizations. The back and forth between Booster Gold and the Blue Beetle is priceless. Mary Marvel doesn't want to get close to Captain Atom because of fertility issues. Beetle can't remember the phone number to the headquarters. Booster is married to a 65 year old plastic surgery addict. It goes on and on...

Just because the book may be rendered "out of canon" doesn't make it any less meaningul or well done.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Evan Waters on April 19, 2004
Format: Paperback
A year or so ago, I rediscovered my brother's collection of JUSTICE LEAGUE comics from throughout the Giffen/DeMatteis run. I'd read them before, and re-reading them so many years later, I appreciated their unique style of humor- both urbane and extremely corny- as well as the extremely strong characterizations. I was more interested in the stories of Blue Beetle, Fire, Guy Gardner et. al. than I was in the endless death struggles of Superman and the like. I heard about an upcoming revival, but missed most of the run of this limited series. I only recently received this TPB collection and had a chance to go over the whole story.
Is it as good as the old days? Yes and no. As a limited series, it only has so much time to set things up, and some of the ensemble has changed (Ice, who was killed some time after Giffen and De Matteis' departure, is sorely missed), but the characters who do return are as recognizable as ever. What's more, they've grown. Beetle and Booster don't get along so well, the former having "grown up" in his own words, Bea is slightly more abrasive, and Max is no longer a big shot (though he talks like one.) A new addition, the naive Mary Marvel (the Cap's kid sister) fits very well into the group dynamic.
Oh, yes, the plot- Max decides to set up a small franchise of "people's heroes", summonable by 800 number, unwisely called "Superbuddies." He rounds up some of his old pals- L-Ron, Beetle, Booster, Captain Atom, Fire, Elongated Man and Sue Dibny- and persuades them to move into a shoddy storefront and open for business. Needless to say, carnage ensues before they can even get a phone call.
A lot of events are jammed into six issues, and I was disappointed in the rather swift (and not entirely convincing) resolution to #6.
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