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Justice League of America Vol. 1: The Extremists (Rebirth) Paperback – Illustrated, August 15, 2017
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“A classic origin story, but nevertheless feels fresh and accessible for both new and old audiences.”
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About the Author
- Item Weight : 10.7 ounces
- Paperback : 168 pages
- ISBN-10 : 140127353X
- ISBN-13 : 978-1401273538
- Product Dimensions : 6.6 x 0.2 x 10.1 inches
- Publisher : DC Comics; Illustrated Edition (August 15, 2017)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,014,172 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Story: Spinning out of Justice League vs. Suicide Squad, Batman decides that he wants to put together his own JL team made up of "mortals, not gods", so that the general population can see heroes who are just like them, flawed but fighting for justice. I have to stop here and say that this seems to be an attempt, either by Steve Orlando or DC, to "Marvelize" some heroes. Any time DC or Marvel try to be the other company, it goes wrong. Maybe not a total disaster, but both publishers should stick to what they do best in my opinion. But, this particular aspect of the book wasn't a total turnoff for me. I figured it could work with interesting characters, but I don't think the envelope was pushed when it came to the overall concept. This book was supposed to have a team made up of human (metaphorical in one sense) characters who we could relate to as we witness them going through their struggles, but I never thought Orlando wrote a story where those supposed flaws are explored. Killer Frost had some phenomenal character development in JL vs. SS, but then she kinda doesn't go anywhere here. She does mess up at one point, and we'll see how that plays out in the future, but there was a lot of room for further development with her. How about more narrative revolving around the public distrust of Killer Frost even though she's proving herself as a hero? This was my first comic with The Ray, and in Vixen, at least in such a major capacity. I'm familiar with Vixen, but The Ray for me is an entirely new character. The one shot that opens this book is your typical leader going to multiple cities to recruit the team members kinda thing. We see them all act heroically before someone recruits them. With this kind of opening, it is crucial to establish character, motivation, quirks, and especially flaws, if that is indeed what is to be emphasized with this "mortals over gods" team. We do get some explanation as to why Batman is recruiting the members he is. He promised Killer Frost a second chance. So that's what she represents. Lobo is promised something by Batman as well as representing atonement for all the lives he's taken. Black Canary is the team's conscience. She's supposed to keep them honest, something that was explored with Green Arrow in the JLU cartoon. Vixen is a woman who will never stop being Vixen, even though the public wants more of her civilian side. So Vixen represents the heart of the team, the member who will hold the team together and keep them going. All that is great, but I felt as though we never got to see that put into action. We never get a moment where Canary has to have the team have a truth epiphany. We never have a moment where Vixen inspires to team to push forward. We don't have a moment where the general public forgives Frost or Lobo for their actions because of a heroic act. As I stated, so much untapped potential. I'm not too familiar with The Extremists. They look very interesting (some more than others), and they look very cool when drawn by Ivan Reis. But, I kinda feel they were just hamstringed in as a bad guy team for the JLA to face. We are given a motive from them. They want to save our world from the chaos that has permeated its way into every aspect of our lives. They want to take over and rule by force. It's basically the same motive as the Empire from Star Wars. Safety, security, at the cost of freedom and liberty. Orlando has no problem being overt with this message. Lord Havok is abundantly clear about wanting to rule and have total control with an "obey or die" system of law. We're told that the Extremists lost their world to chaos, but we're shown so little of what actually caused it. We also don't learn too much about the members of the Extremists themselves. It takes forever to learn their names (and this was my first comic featuring them) because they're not immediately named off when they appear. I was most interested in Dreamslayer, the guy who looks like he has an explosion for a head. He's the only Extremist member that we really learn anything about besides Lord Havok. Each member of the JLA gets to fight one of the Extremists in the final battle, and we get to see Lobo taking on Tracer, which is cool, but we don't see enough of it! I wanted more. We move onto a second arc involving the JLA liberating a town from an arms dealer who sells modern weapons with mythical upgrades. There's a cool bit with Lobo just running through guys and it feels like a perfect moment for him. I was glad to see The Atom, in this book it's Ryan Choi, actually be useful for a change. I've been talking a lot about what I didn't like about this book, but there is a lot to love as well. I loved the idea of Batman leading his own team. We at least understand what each member represents for the team. The cast is an interesting collection of new heroes, experienced heroes, and former villains. This book uses obscure characters AND villains and gives them a platform to shine. It's full of mayhem, and big battles, and it's fun!
Art: Ivan Reis is one of the best comics artists in the world. I'm so glad DC put him on a title as a main artist. I wouldn't say this is his best work, but the art is great. He really shines because of the detail in his penciling. The other pencilers here do fine as well. Killer Frost has about 4 different hairstyles in this book. Part of me says, "Oh no!" when I see a female character have a partly shaved head. I'm always so afraid they're going to go down the "Carl Manvers" route, if you know what I'm talking about. At least the women in this title look like women instead of men. Reis just draws everyone so nicely, though I don't know how I feel about him blacking out Batman's eyes and giving him just some white spots where his eyes should be. Kinda gives him a more vampiric look, but Reis is the only one who draws Batman's face that way. Overall, art is well above average.
Overall: So, what we have here is a book involving a team of bad guys who couldn't save their world from total destruction, they've come to our world to take it over, and a new team of heroes mixed with villains is the only thing that can stop them! Face it, this book is a poor man's "Forever Evil". Geoff Johns is certainly a more talented writer than Steve Orlando, but Orlando does fine here. It's a pretty straightforward story. We really don't explore our heroes enough in my opinion. A lot of people may be reading these characters for the first time (like me), and we need to get more inside the mind of our main cast if we're to connect to this "mortal over gods" team. Pick it up if you're interested in the main cast members. It's a solid book, but I wasn't blown away like I was hoping to be.
Batman wants to create a super team that has "normal" superheroes on it and not gods. But the presence of Lobo doesn't seem to make sense to me. Then there are the two story arcs in which super powered beings take over a country or a city and it's up to this newly formed team (at least one of which is new to the superhero business) to sort things out.
I like Batman with a team of Outsiders, so I had hopes for this one, but it just didn't work for me. The team is a weird hybrid that all seem to suddenly be fine working together. The back to back dictator stories seemed like political fodder (and why do the normal humans just bow down and accept these tyrants?). The art and color is overkill to the point of being blah. When it was all over, I just didn't care about any of it.
I received a review copy of this graphic novel from DC Entertainment and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for allowing me to review this graphic novel.
Art: The art was nice it had one awesome two page spread. I love how Frost and Vixen were drawn, and even though I don’t like Lobo he was drawn pretty well.
Review: After first reading it I really liked it but going back to it now I find it a little lacking Justice League vs. Suicide Squad was massive and non-stop and unfortunately JLA did get dry in some spots. I liked the characters (except Lobo) and I like them working together; this was a great idea but finished product it just okay.