Superman Through the Ages! Forum

The Superman Family! => Other Superfriends => Topic started by: NotSuper on May 14, 2004, 12:55:23 AM

Title: Favorite JLA team
Post by: NotSuper on May 14, 2004, 12:55:23 AM
What was everyone's favorite version of the JLA?

Here's my favorite version:

Wonder Woman
Green Lantern
Martian Manhunter
The Flash
Green Arrow
The Atom

Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: pocketmego on May 14, 2004, 04:39:41 AM
I have to go with Morrison's 14 Man JLA team. It was a great set of characters and truly made for a powerful Justice League.


Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: Spaceman Spiff on May 16, 2004, 05:19:37 AM
I'm only familiar with the Silver/Bronze Age version.  My favorite line-up was the team from issues 145-160 (1977-78).  It had everyone NotSuper mentioned except Martian Manhunter, and also included Hawkman, Black Canary, Elongated Man, Red Tornado, and Hawkgirl.  This was soon after the return of Wonder Woman (who had been missing far too long) and the acceptance of Hawkgirl (who had been overlooked far too long).

I never really warmed up to Martian Manhunter.  He seemed like a nice guy in the old Gardner Fox JLA stories, but he was never interesting to me.

Top five things I didn't like about Martian Manhunter:
5. J'onn J'onzz? Manhunter from Mars? Martian Manhunter? What's your name this issue?
4. Secret id chosen by Captain Obvious (Cap sez: It's really easy to remember!)
3. What exactly is "Martian vision", anyway?
2. Stranded on Earth, huh?  Why don't you ask Superman, GL, or Hawkman to take you home?
...and the number one reason...
1. Three words: allergic to fire!  C'mon, wouldn't that be Aquaman's excuse?

Seriously, though, MM just seemed to be a cheap imitation of Superman, but with a really lame weakness.  In the new Justice League cartoon, he does have other powers, but the character still doesn't interest me.

Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: Just a fan on May 16, 2004, 02:40:16 PM
I always wondered was it the flame or the heat MM was vunerable to? and he wasn't a cheap knock off of Superman after all MM is green (that's a joke before you all flame me)[/quote]

Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: Spaceman Spiff on May 16, 2004, 05:22:39 PM
I think the forum should be a "flame-free zone", and I'm sure MM would appreciate that  :lol: .  Express your opinions, agree or disagree with other posters, live and let live.

IIRC, MM cannot take exposure to an "open flame".  Back in JLA #114, Snapper Carr says "...we all know that the Martian Manhunter turns pink at the gills at the very sight of a lit match!"  Pink?  :roll:

Lest anyone think I'm a MM-hater, I'm not.  I really enjoy the Gardner Fox JLA stories (and MM was a member that whole time). But MM always seemed redundant as a JLA member.  I recall several times that Superman says "I'll use my Super-vision..." and MM says "And I'll use my Martian vision!".

Now, before someone says "You think MM is too much like Superman, but you want Hawkgirl and Hawkman in the JLA?!", let me explain.  Hawkman and Hawkgirl were a team as well as a married couple.  It always seemed ridiculous that the JLA would invite only Hawkman as a member (but this was the 1960's).  Besides, Hawkgirl is prettier than MM.

Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: Just a fan on May 16, 2004, 06:46:27 PM
as far as MM being a cheap knock off of Superman, I guess it depends on how you look at it,  you could say the same thing about the Flash, (gee he only has super speed) or the Hawks, (wow they can fly and are strong) or Wonder Woman and Supergirl (wow super powers just like his but they are women) Bottom line is a lot of characters are inspired or based on other characters, but it's the writers and the fans that bring them to light in new and different ways.

Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: Spaceman Spiff on May 17, 2004, 12:34:23 AM
Quote from: "Just a fan"
it's the writers and the fans that bring them to light in new and different ways.

Agreed!  So: What's your favorite JLA team?

Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: India Ink on May 17, 2004, 07:48:30 PM
Thing I liked about the original line-up of seven or eight in the Wolfman and Perez NEW Teen Titans is that it allowed Marv and George to tell stories about different parts of the whole DC empire.

They had a connection to Batman (Robin), connections to myth and legend and Wonder Woman (Wonder Girl), a connection to the Doom Patrol (Changeling), a connection to the Schwartz "Silver Age" continuity (Kid Flash, connected to Flash and thus to all those other "Silver Age" heroes), a connection to STAR labs (Cyborg--indirectly connected to Superman), a connection to Green Arrow (Speedy--and thereby early seventies Neal Adams comics like Green Lantern/Green Arrow), a connection to the Omega Men and all that other NEW science fiction stuff that Wolfman was starting to explore (Starfire), and a connection to a not very well-conceived mystery oriented realm (Raven--the least successful of these--but there was at least the potential to approach Joe Orlando's mystery titles, though that was never realized to any degree).

So bringing this back to the Justice League, who preceded the Titans, what I like about the original line-up (plus Green Arrow, Atom, and Hawkman) is that while Schwartz may have been the prime architect there's other parts of the DC empire in there.  So the League becomes the centrepoint of DC which never before then had a centrepoint.

Before then, DC was broken up into all these small groups of titles.  There were a few rare crossovers (mostly Superman, distributing his promotional power to other titles), but by and large the groups of titles were limited to specific characters and overseen by specific editors.

Batman kept to his little eastern seaboard town in the Schiff part of the empire--except when Schiff was allowed to pair him with Superman in World's Finest.  Superman strode like a king surveying his lands in the north of the empire.  Wonder Woman stayed on her tropical island at the extreme south of the empire.  Stetson hatted cowboys rode the plains in the wild west of the empire.  Space rangers looked down from their planetoids upon the surface of the empire.  Jerry Lewis and Bob Hope laughed out loud from their Beverly Hills mansions on the coast of the empire.

Now the Justice League didn't unite the entire empire, but it did bring together several characters that otherwise would never have had anything to do with each other.

This is important in understanding Martian Manhunter and the part he played in the empire.  John is a back-up character.  The name J'Onn J'Onzz arrives out of the idea of taking the conventional name and a conventional detective--John Jones--and putting it in the typical alien/science fiction blender.  It's Detective Comics that's his home.  So all the characters in that book are detectives--but with some twist.  The twist in John's case is that he's from another planet.

Given the distance between Detective and any Superman comics, there was no reason to think about the similarities between the two characters (which arrive from them both being concepts derivative of John Carter of Mars, by Edgar Rice Burroughs).  It's only when they're forced together, that the similarities now become apparent in the pages of Justice League--and since they're not in their own towns with their own secret identities, a lot of the differences fall away.

The biggest problem with the early Justice League is that they didn't spend enough time exploring each others personal mythologies.  They all inhabited this no-man's land of story, where they could all get along (without Aquaman's Atlantis bumping up against Superman's Atlantis or Wonder Woman's Atlantis; or Wonder Woman's Mars in conjunction with Martian Manhunter's Mars; or The Flash's glimpses of the future contradicting Superman's glimpses of the future; or Hawkman's perceptions of the universe undermining Batman's perceptions of the universe).

It would have been more interesting if like Wolfman & Perez there had been an attempt to include all the empire in the League's story.  But then that happened in the seventies (when Schwartz, at one time or another, was editing virtually every members' stories) and it probably hastened the Crisis.

Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: Aldous on June 02, 2004, 11:45:35 PM
My favourite JLA is the Gardner Fox-Mike Sekowsky-Bernard Sachs JLA.

I've never read a JLA comic by any other creative team that could match these ones. Later versions of the JLA, while I enjoyed them as a kid, don't stand up so well, with the exception of some of Len Wein's stories that I really like.

I don't think the JLA members could spend any time at all exploring each other's personal mythologies. If they did, or if the creative team examined the individual personalities to any great degree (or even invented personality "quirks" like in later years), it all would have fallen down.

In some ways, this makes "realistic" sense. There is a crisis that springs up... Someone finds out about it... That someone alerts the rest of the JLA... Now is the time they leave their respective "mythologies", their home-cities, their undersea kingdoms and day-to-day relationships, and answer the call to arms. The JLA responded to the crisis like a well-oiled combat unit. They did not drift together because no one had a date for Saturday night.

I imagine, from a "realistic" or Marvel viewpoint, that the JLA members, being the experienced and intelligent souls they were, simply avoided, for the most part, delving too deeply into each other's cultures. This makes sense from a practical aspect (concentration on the problems at hand). The JLA members obviously believed a team is composed of separate and strong individuals -- not like we have in today's cultural era, where "teams" and "gangs" and "committees" and whatnot come together because individually they are weak and seek to lean on each other.

Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: taz_16127 on August 23, 2004, 09:44:08 AM
The first comic book I ever bought was JLA #137 the 3rd part of the annual team-up with the JSA alongwith the Fawcett heroes thrown in. I was 12 going on 13 at the time... I was hooked. I took a long time to find the first 2 parts to that story.

My favorite JLA line-up is and has always been that era of heroes. However I have never said that any of the others line-ups were bad.

So my favorite line-up would include:

Wonder Woman
Black Canary
Green Lantern
Green Arrow
Elongated Man
Phantom Stranger
Red Tornado

That is the line-up I loved the most.


Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: nightwing on August 24, 2004, 08:07:57 AM
I have to chip in a vote for the Englehart-era Justice League.  Nothing tops the "satellite era."

Returning to Martian Manhunter for a moment, I agree fire is a lame weakness for any superhero to have (though not as lame as Future-Superman's vulnerability to sea water!  Not so handy on a world that's 75% water, eh?).

I don't know what "negative" properties fire could have other than excessive heat.  I suppose you could argue that as Mars is further from the sun, it would be a cooler environment and thus Martians would have little resistance to heat.  But then, if that were the case a simple move to Earth and its warmer climes should be enough to weaken J'onn.  Combine this increased warmth with Earth's greater gravity, and by all logic J'onn should be the weakest being on our world, not one of the strongest.  

If memory serves, one of those horrid mini-series of the 90s delved into this old chestnut and "revealed" that the weakness to fire was illusory...some psychological hang-up J'onn had saddled himself with.  In other words, fire didn't hurt him, but he thought it did and that was good enough.  Maybe someone here remembers that better than I?  Anyway it would seem to be non-canon, since the first JLA story arc had Batman defeating other Martians with fire.

Title: Re: Favorite JLA team
Post by: Gernot on May 25, 2005, 02:21:04 PM
Nightwing, I remember that mini-series.  It was revealed that a plague was wiping out the Martian population thousands and thousands of years ago.  The Martians disposed of their dead by burning, instead of burying them.  Professor Erksine's (sp?) teleport machine not only brought J'onn from another planet, but from another time!  By the time period Earth was in when J'onnz came here, HE was the sole-surviving Martian!  

J'onn's weakness to fire came from a DREAD of fire, what it represented to him, as opposed to its making him weaker or anything else.