Innovatively written by Geoff Johns (Green Lantern, Flashpoint) and beautifully illustrated by Jim Lee (Batman: Hush, Uncanny X-Men).
While volume one detailed the conventional gathering of DC’s heroes, the second volume jumps ahead five years, giving us our first look at the Justice League of today; a team that can, relatively, work well together. More importantly, the story arc focuses on the development of a new villain named David Graves, whose powers are indefinable as it is not quite expressed what his limits are.
No matter how powerful Graves appeared to be, following a villain like Darkseid, whose arrival and war on Earth dominated the issues of volume one, was a challenge for Graves to surpass.
Graves’ “journey” into becoming a villain was a difficult one and I was in a bit of distaste upon reading the first couple issues, but I will admit that the villain was developed quite well over time. I understand what Johns was trying to do by focusing on the villain and his emotional, human-side and back-story, but in today’s comics it’s hard to introduce a new, major adversary and make him as successful as the classics.
On a positive note, the actual Justice League was fantastic to read, and Jim Lee’s art was as great as it’s ever been. The variant covers featured in the back of the book are outstanding and very detailed. Plus, they’re a good bonus feature for buying the issues in one collected edition. I only wish that there would have been more preliminary sketches of characters like there were at the end of volume one, but I guess you can’t get everything. Getting back to the League, the team chemistry was highlighted by the emergence of the partnership/friendship development of Batman and Superman, and as always, Green Lantern and the Flash were fun to read about.
Johns is great at creating a balance among the team that other writers have failed to. Batman is serious, but is able to have humorous banter with Lantern or Superman; Wonderwoman is able to be serious with the Flash taking her every comment as a joke, and so on. Johns has done a great job developing the team and it becomes even clearer how good of a team they can be in these six issues.
Overall, it is a good collection of stories, underlined by the birth of a new supervillain and the collective teamwork of a now veteran Justice League. Unfortunately, Graves was unable to capture the same essence or flare of past, classic villains, but was an interesting foe nonetheless.
I give this volume two:
8.0 / 10
Check back for more New 52 Reviews as the second wave of volumes continue to release. Thanks for reading!