- April 27, 2022
Death of the Justice League Review
Written by: Joshua Williamson
Art by: Rafa Sandoval
Inking by: Jordi Tarragona
Coloring by: Matt Herms
Lettering by: Josh Reed
Will the Death of the Justice League, a collection of some of the best superheroes to grace comics, open room for new superheroes to step up? Yes. Will it lead to better stories? Possibly. Does it stand up as a good comic on its own? Eh.
The Death of the Justice League is trying to evoke the emotional turmoil and fear-inducing tension that the Death of Superman inspired back in 1992. The world’s greatest hero fell to an unstoppable menace, and then the world felt ever more dangerous. Back then, we didn’t have this huge problem where heroes never stay dead. Back then, characters like Barry Allen (the Flash) and Kara Zor-El (Supergirl) had been dead for decades. Now, a character can die, and still appear in their own solo title like nothing happened because events happen “a few months into the future.” Then magically the timeline lines up for when the characters return.
Now, we don’t believe the Justice League will stay dead, we thought this before the book even released. This means the stakes are all gone before the comic is even out. Of course, the comic could fix that issue itself, but its doesn’t. The characters die in a flash, reminiscent of House of M. They don’t go down one-by-one in a valiant brawl for the universe, save for one.
Despite the fact that they were going up against a team of supervillains who are world-ending events in themselves, only one villain took out a Justice Leaguer before they all got magically zapped. That makes it it all feel cheap.
I’m not saying I need to see Doomsday rip somebody’s arms off, or Darkseid beat one of them to death, but let them die fighting. We should see each Leaguer fall, with Superman the last one to give up before he definitively dies. Otherwise, don’t call it the Death of the Justice League, and just admit that its a story that moves the team off the board to add stakes.
This story might have been better if we included the reactions to the League’s deaths, even to each other. But we have to wait for Dark Crisis to get that.
That’s not even the worst part. The worst part is just how many characters died, who couldn’t afford to. There are characters like Zatanna, Martian Manhunter, Aquaman, Black Canary, Green Arrow, and all of Justice League Incarnate who have been floundering at DC. They deserve the spotlight and haven’t been getting it with the Trinity hogging it all. DC only closes off stories by killing these characters, some of which weren’t on the Justice League until this issue.
The Death of the Justice League would have been better served being the death of the Trinity and Green Lanterns. Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and the two biggest Green Lanterns have been sucking up all the space at DC. Bruce Wayne, Clark Kent, Diana Prince, Hal Jordan, and yes, even admittedly John Stewart, could use a break. It’s good that their proteges and successors are going to get the chance to shine, but truly, I can’t think of anything good coming from anyone else dying except for these five guys.
And for the love of god, why wasn’t Hal Jordan on this mission? Why couldn’t DC have given me one thing and gotten rid of the worst Green Lantern?
This has been less of a review, and more my reactions to this comic, but I hope it has still given everyone an idea on what to expect. The Death of the Justice League is an okay comic, that is hopefully setting up better stuff to come. Here’s hoping the deaths at least last longer than the event. What do you think of this issue?