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Author Topic: Alex Ross on his new comic: Justice  (Read 10205 times)
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Super Monkey
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« on: August 08, 2005, 04:06:28 PM »



Highlights:

“I’m not interested in Wolverine. A guy with claws that slaughters people is not high morality. I love the purity of the great heroes and what they represent. That’s why I do this.”

The Justice series is a departure from the current Justice League storyline, which shows the league torn apart by super-hero mistakes, mistrust and murder.

“This is the classic Justice League, the league I grew up with,” he said. “And my Flash is Barry Allen (who was killed in 1985) and my Green Lantern is Hal Jordan (who turned evil, died but recently returned to life). It’s the Super-Friends versus the Legion Of Doom.”

The villains are the classic DC bad guys: Luthor, Brainiac, Gorilla Grodd, Sinestro, Captain Cold and “the scariest Bizarro ever presented.”

Read the whole thing here: http://www.newsarama.com/forums/showthread.php?s=09e9385d9bf56f422759a2db8e3020a2&threadid=40011
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« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2005, 12:45:31 AM »

I'm glad someone started this thread. I LOVED the first issue of Justice. My only real regret is that the series is bi-monthly (one issue every two months).

Also, did anyone else get the feeling that the Luthor in Justice was similar to the one from Luthor's Gift and Birthright? Look at the evidence: He was once a friend of Superman; he didn't hate Superman until the hero appeared in Metropolis; he's a scientist; and he's rich.
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« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2005, 05:05:56 AM »

I'm sure the artwork will be astonishing, but how many readers will follow this limited series to the end?  This is a 12-issue BIMONTHLY, so the last book would ship in June 2007!

And isn't it interesting that DC is releasing this "classic continuity" tale right during Infinite Crisis?  Perhaps like the All Star titles, Justice is deliberate "counter programming" to retain old DC fans who are repulsed by Infinite Crisis?  Sorta like DC Challenge! running during the same time period as Crisis on Infinite Earths -- at least at the end of the DC Challenge! "crisis" Supergirl and Barry survived.

Hmm... it's been said that DC Challenge! occurred on Earth-B, the home of Pre-Crisis "out of continuity" stories.  Perhaps DC Challenge WAS Earth-B's version of the Crisis... and Earth-B still exists somewhere?   :wink:
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DTO
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« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2005, 06:49:42 AM »

What is all this Infinite Crisis people are going on about?
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« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2005, 06:50:06 AM »

I read it. Well, it looked good. Strike that...it looked astonishing. Aquaman, a character deserving a good writer and artist but who has never received one, never was more regal or magnificent, his world more beautiful...for the Love of Poseidon, he even rides a sea horse.

But really, how much story WAS there in the first issue? I feel like a jerk for asking because I really, really, really want to like this series and I find that I can't. What happens? Aquaman got captured and it seems the Legion of Doom is reforming. Those are the only plot points that we see. There is more story in an eight page Jonni Future backup story by Steve Moore than here. Mostly it wastes our time with the usual, tired, done-to-death Marvels/Kingdom Come/Squadron Supreme cliche of treating heroes like mythological deities and two-dimensional marketing icons. This is a dull trend used to justify grotesque and obvious plagiarism (how can you plagiarize an "archetype?"), and de-emphasizes characterization in favor of "stock types," like sitcoms.

I am also appalled by these creators and their catastrophic misuse of the term "archetype." An archetype is a recurring pattern in the collective unconscious that appears over and over in stories around the world, like for example, the idea of the Unhealable Wound (usually an eye or hand), or the Wise Old Man. Superman is no more an archetype than Popeye or Rhoda, the Nutty Upstairs Lady. He is an original character with a definite starting point with a solid, consistent history and a three-dimensional, emotionally engaging personality.

Ross's Justice series bothers me for another reason. He's obviously using the Legion of Doom and Justice League from the SUPERFRIENDS cartoon. Now, who doesn't love the SUPERFRIENDS cartoon? I know I do. But this mentality of having the comics reflect portrayals of characters and concepts in other media instead of vice-versa is irksome. For one simple reason:

1) It's a reversal of how the situation ought to be. Comics are where these characters appeared first, and where their characterizations should be constant.

2) it makes characters with long-term histories trapped by the consequences of passing fads (Superman got married in the comics because he was getting married on the now-cancelled Lois and Clark Show)

The X-Men in the movie wore leather jackets, so by gum, we've got to have them wear them in the comics, too! Incidentally, I always thought the Morrison X-Men comic jackets make them look like a cross between candy ravers and school crossing guards. Electra's brought back just in time for her movie. And so on, and so forth, ad nauseum, ad absurdum.
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« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2005, 07:16:48 AM »

Quote from: "dto"
I'm sure the artwork will be astonishing, but how many readers will follow this limited series to the end?  This is a 12-issue BIMONTHLY, so the last book would ship in June 2007!

And isn't it interesting that DC is releasing this "classic continuity" tale right during Infinite Crisis?  Perhaps like the All Star titles, Justice is deliberate "counter programming" to retain old DC fans who are repulsed by Infinite Crisis?

I don't think it's counter-programming at all. In fact, Ross was even concerned that Justice might be too similar to Villians United (a mini-series leading up to Infinite Crisis) and the last season of Justice League Unlimited. If anything, the concepts are the same--heroes stagnating human growth and failing to stop the world from ending--but with different approaches.

It really is a good time to be a DC fan (and a comic fan in general). We have Justice, Infinite Crisis, Superman/Batman, Supergirl, the All Star line, Green Lantern, and many other things coming down the road. I've heard from many fans that creatively, DC is beating Marvel right now. And I agree with them.
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« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2005, 07:22:30 AM »

Quote from: "JulianPerez"
I am also appalled by these creators and their catastrophic misuse of the term "archetype." An archetype is a recurring pattern in the collective unconscious that appears over and over in stories around the world, like for example, the idea of the Unhealable Wound (usually an eye or hand), or the Wise Old Man. Superman is no more an archetype than Popeye or Rhoda, the Nutty Upstairs Lady. He is an original character with a definite starting point with a solid, consistent history and a three-dimensional, emotionally engaging personality.

I'm afraid that I disagree. Superman certainly IS the archetypical super-hero.

Here's the definition of "archetype":

1. "An original model or type after which other similar things are patterned; a prototype: “‘Frankenstein’... ‘Dracula’... ‘Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde’... the archetypes that have influenced all subsequent horror stories” (New York Times).
2. An ideal example of a type; quintessence: an archetype of the successful entrepreneur.
3. In Jungian psychology, an inherited pattern of thought or symbolic imagery derived from the past collective experience and present in the individual unconscious."

Superman, being the hero from which all others spring, is an archetype. He's affected the creation of every hero from Captain Marvel to Spider-Man.
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« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2005, 08:57:09 AM »

Quote from: "NotSuper"
If anything, the concepts are the same--heroes stagnating human growth and failing to stop the world from ending--but with different approaches.


A concept that's been done approximately 4.5 billion times by better writers. Usually, this shallow, regurgitated concept takes the form of some inane speech by a character (usually either Batman or a Batman-clone character) something to the effect of, "Despite having near-infinite power, it's unlikely we can change anything at all for the better in any way. So, let's go back to what we do best: finding a guy with a cold gun and punching him!"

Going back and forth about definitions like "archetype" can be fun, especially for a dictionary-loving guy like me, but it doesn't change the fact that these themes have been done to death. From Alan Moore's MIRACLEMAN to KINGDOM COME to RED SON, to SQUADRON SUPREME to God, I can't even think of them all. Saying a "concept" is "archetypal" doesn't change the fact it's a blatant act of intellectual theft, and a boring, overdone one at that, especially when you have nothing new to say or add. Superheroes wondering if they're stagnating human growth has become the comic book equivalent of the Hollywood car chase. Perhaps even worse: car chases aren't insufferably, aggrivatingly pretentious.

Quote from: "NotSuper"
It really is a good time to be a DC fan (and a comic fan in general).


Considering there are only six good writers writing now (Alan Moore, Kurt Busiek, Dan Slott, Neil Gaiman, Tom Peyer, and Christopher Priest) and only one of these (Slott) is doing anything right now (and that's for Marvel), after reading that sentence I'm not sure whether to laugh or cry.

Quote from: "NotSuper"
We have Justice, Infinite Crisis, Superman/Batman, Supergirl, the All Star line, Green Lantern, and many other things coming down the road. I've heard from many fans that creatively, DC is beating Marvel right now. And I agree with them.


You mean the Superman/Batman coloring book? I thought art-driven "storytelling" died with Rob Liefeld's career. If this is an example of the highbrow new DC that's beating Marvel, I say more power to them. The thing about the Special Olympics is, even if you win, you're still retarded.

Though kudos to DC for bringing back Hal Jordan at long last. His return could have been drawn on a cocktail napkin for all I care; the point is, we've got Hal back! In the words of Einstein, "Wahoo!"
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