JLA (Vol 1) Imaginary Stories Review By Deffinition
After the disappointing ‘Fire In The Sky‘ Storyline I’m really low on anticipation levels for the upcoming Justice League tales. I know Morrisson can do a lot better so it was sad to see his potential not lived up to in a middling arc. Of course as with all runs (bar Scott Snyder it seems) there are going to be hit and miss moments.
The previous book ended on an interesting climax that I am ready to see full filled in this book.
Can this chapter in the JLA run redeem it or will this be another issue that I will put in the plant pot? Refer to the last review to get that joke.
Let’s find out!
The book opens with Green Arrow arriving at the Justice League Watchtower to find it deserted. Unbeknownst to him, the league are under hypnosis, trapped in a simulation. Hallucinating imaginary lives. Superman is Green Lantern, Batman is an old, almost Alfred like guardian to the new dynamic duo and Aquaman lives on a drowned planet.
They are being watched over by the nefarious Keyman. A devilish villain who wishes to open doors within his own mind using the power of the League’s thoughts.
Whilst normally ‘dream’ scenarios lack a feeling of weight, Morrisson has done a brilliant job at adding stakes to the imaginary scenarios. Each world has it’s own crisis that if left unchecked with not only destroy the Leaguer but also grant the Keyman with more power. I wish they were slightly more developed, it would have been gripping to see what Batman truly imagines as his greatest fear, however what we have is enjoyable if not substantial.
A dream within a dream
On the surface Green Arrow tirelessly battles Keyman’s forces and there are some cool (and interesting) call backs to the others who donned the costume before him. Mainly the boxing glove Arrow. YES! It’s back!
As an introduction to Connor Queen I found this really enjoyable. He is cool and cunning whilst also vulnerable. The best heroes are the ones that are easiest to relate to and the new Green Arrow is no different. When he eventually gets added to the League’s roster it is a triumphant moment that I’m sure will have many brilliant stories because of it.
The heroes awaken in what is one of the best Batman moments thus far. The Caped Crusader soon realises that whilst he appears in his 60’s, his blood pressure and heart rate are that of someone possessing a much younger body. It’s always been clear that Morisson regards Batman very highly and the intelligence he awards him with in almost every story subtly conveys that he wants the Dark Knight to be one of the stand out members of the team.
The book wraps up nicely with the league awakening to discover that Green Arrow has managed to take the Keyman down, foiling his plan to achieve a higher state of being. It’s a satisfying end that packs a punch and finishes off a well rounded story in an enjoyable way.
JLA imaginary stories really rescued the run for me. After a stellar opening chapter I felt that the stories had some what lost their way. However this beautifully recaptured the momentum that Morrisson had built in the opening arc.
Whilst short lived and slightly under developed, there is still a lot to like and this superhero story should definitely be seen as a must read for Justice League fans. The art tops the prior entries and overall I feel that the pacing really showed Morrisson had a great understanding for the way that comics at the time were enjoyed. This is worth every comic book fan’s time.
That’s why it gets a…
Leave a comment whether you agree with my ranking or not.