Monday, February 13, 2006

Earth-2 JSA, Kal-L and Donna Troy

FanBoyWonder continues to play catch up following our work-related incarceration at Walt Disney Hell last week so FBW, accompanied by Brianna the Girl Wonder, finally made it to the comics store. Here’s FBW’s pics for the week of Feb. 8.

JSA #82
This critical Infinite Crisis crossover features Power Girl as she copes with her newly restored memories of her past life on Earth-2, as well as the contents of the Earth-2 Lois Lane’s Journal.

Written by Paul Levitz, now a big shot vice president at DC Comics, he once was the Earth-2 JSA writer from the 1970s. The art is by FBW favorite George Perez, with Bob Wiacek.

It was nice to see a JSA story with the Golden Age Superman and Batman and Wonder Woman as part of the team again. Perez’s visuals are top shelf as usual. What we like most is a continuation of what he did during the original CRISIS on Infinite Earths—in drawing the Earth-2 Superman, as well as Wonder Woman and Batman—Perez doesn’t draw a carbon-copy of the current/modern/Earth-1 characters with a slightly different symbol but the reader can see these are different individuals.

Example: The Earth-1 Superman drawn as a lean, body-builder type; Earth-2 Superman is built like a circus-strongman.

What we also liked about JSA #82 that unlike Infinite Crisis so far, this issue of JSA actually let us get to know (again) the Earth-2 Lois Lane. During Infinite Crisis so far, Lois has been wall paper with virtually no speaking parts but here we get to see a three-dimensional character..

Superman #226

Part 1 of "This Is Your Life, Superman," a 3-part tale running through all three Superman titles in February! Witness the arrival of Kal-L, the Last Son of Krypton! Learn how he grew up to be the greatest hero of Earth-2. This issue includes a special origin album by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale, the creative team behind SUPERMAN FOR ALL SEASONS! This is the origin of Kal-L with an Infinite Crisis twist.

JLA #125

The “astounding” conclusion of the 6-part “World Without Justice League” also brings to an end the 10-year-run of this Justice League title—not a moment too soon.

This book has always been hit or miss depending upon the story arc and the creative team, just as it s always been a showcase for DC’s big guns without a lot of character development. During the last few years in particular, with the exception for the recent “Crisis of Conscience” story arc by Geoff Johns—the quasi sequel to 2004’s Identity Crisis, this title has been sucking wind.

Just like the Flash last month, this current and last JLA story arc has been handed off to the junior varsity simply to mark time until the culmination of Infinite Crisis and the start of One Year Later.

We are looking forward with guarded optimism to the Justice League of America re-launch (the third in two decades) by Identity Crisis writer Brad Meltzer this summer.

So why is JLA #125 one of our pics? Two reasons: 1) To complete our continuous collection of 125 issues. 2) To watch Batman and Green Arrow beat the crap out of one another.

Titans/Outsiders: The Death and Return of Donna Troy

The upshot: This trade paper back (TPB) collects the separate mini-series TITANS/YOUNG JUSTICE: GRADUATION DAY #1-3 and DC SPECIAL: THE RETURN OF DONNA TROY #1-4 Written by Phil Jimenez and Judd Winick; Art by José Luis García-Lopez, Alé Garza, George Pérez, Phil Jimenez, Andy Lanning and others.

Following the original CRISIS on Infinite Earths, no character in the DC Universe has been abused, misused or recast more than Donna Troy—the original Wonder Girl, founding Teen Titan, one-time Darkstar and heroine once known as Troia.

Power Girl and Hawkman could tie for a close second in the most fracked-up post-CRISIS treatment, but hands down, the Donna Troy character has been taken apart and reassembled more than the engine of a ’69 Charger.

In pre-Crisis history, Donna had been rescued by Wonder Woman and raised as her adopted sister. Her powers had been given to her by the Amazons of Paradise Island. Following the post-CRISIS re-boot of Wonder Woman, Wonder Girl had appeared before Wonder Woman, so Titans team creators Marv Wolfman and George Perez have Donna Troy a new origin in the classic “Who is Wonder Girl” in New Titans #50-55.

John Byrne’s run on Wonder Woman in the late 1990s went and screwed things up even more. Donna was actually a doppelganger of young Diana as a child. She was magically created to be the young Wonder Woman’s twin, but kidnapped by Dark Angel, who had abandoned her master and escaped the Crisis. Donna lived hundreds of lives, and Dark Angel would appear at the lowest ebb of each and send her back to live the next.

The first half of the TPB featuring the “death” of Donna Troy is an amusing waste of time but even then, we knew Donna wouldn’t be dead forever. It’s the half of the book featuring Donna’s return….particularly issue 4 that makes it all worthwhile as writer Phil Jimenez settles the question of Donna Troy’s origin one and for all—All of her origins are true. She remembers the multiverse and for all of the Countdown issues, this stealth prelude to Infinite Crisis was the best run up of all.


Anonymous Capitol Ideas said...

Congrats, man.
The 'blog is looking better and better all the time.

1:29 PM, February 16, 2006  

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