Past Times


They’re BACK, BACK, BACK !!!!!!!!!

Its the `80’s all over again as DC let the maniacs back onto the JLA.

Believe it or not, the eighties were a great time. Don’t listen to most of the media who deride it,most of them were too young to remember (cue most of those I Love The ……………., the talking heads on these shows were just kids at the time. What would they know), and like all people not actually part of it just don’t get it.
I had a decent job, money in my pocket, some of the best music going ( before it degenerated into a repetitive beat), and the comic scene was exploding with innovative and challenging stuff. And then there was the JLA.

The JLA at this time was moribund. B-list heros that nobody cared about and the lack of the big guns showed. The decision was made to return the JLA to its glory years with a re-launch from the Legends mini-series. Unfortunately (or fortunately) for DC it didn’t turn out that way. The writers decided to go for something not seen very often in comics, humor :o.

The mixture of heros that really don’t get on with others (Bat-Man), with egos the size of planets (Guy Gardener) and those out for a quick buck (Booster Gold and Blue Beetle) was just too much of a temptation not to put in one liners, situations that made the cast look silly (except for The Bat-Man) and take villains to another level ( the comic was the first to point out that villains like to shout very loudly, tell all their plans in advance and relate to themselves in the third person).

The art by Kevin Maguire was gorgeous, even on the crappy newsprint. A nice clean line that was one of the first to resemble the Japanese manga style.

The book was an instant hit and brought the JLA back to its previous heights. Unfortunately all good things must come to end and with the loss of Maguire and DeMatteis plus DC diluting the formula with JLA Europe and International it fell back into standard heroics that proved that certain teams make a comic work. Grant Morrisons next revamp of the JLA proved this again when, after he left, it just wasn’t the same :'( .

Ok, humour is subjective, but it was a revelation to see heros not being taken seriously and it could be said that it was a fore-runner for titles like Marvels and Kingdom Come in the fact that it was semi-realistic look at how super-heroes (and villains) could act, rather than being the Über-people on the moon.
And now the original team is back, with a 6 part mini series called Formerly Known as The Justice League. It brought back fond memories and had me laughing on the first page. By the way, DC have only reprinted one volume of the previous comic so the villain in the latest series may not be familiar to new readers. It felt like slipping on an old New Order t-shirt and getting out a Thompson Twins 12-inch vinyl ( an old fashioned method of playing music. Ask your grandparents).

Get it now or wait for the inevitable graphic, priced £1.80 at all good comic-book shops

Now,if only the Justice League Antarctica will make an appearance

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