Graphic Mythology: Justice

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Although it was written by Jim Krueger and penciled by Doug Broithwaite, I purchased and read Justice (DC Comics), well, because it was painted by Alex Ross. Having said this, I can say that the artwork, as usual, is impressive. Since it is a Justice League story, it features a pantheon of superheroes including Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman, Flash, Aquaman, Captain Marvel, Green Lantern, Martian Manhunter, and many more.

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But there is an additional selling point to the story: the existence of an anti-Justice League of supervillains such as Lex Luthor, Joker, Brainiac, Cheetah, and Poison Ivy. There are more characters from the extensive history of DC Comics than I care to mention here lest it become tedious.

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The splash panels of fight scenes are profuse and typically busy, as would be expected given this cast. The story is intriguing but choppy in places. There were a number of developments that were not explained to my satisfaction (visually or in writing), which made for some awkward transitions. I had more trouble following the plot than would a veteran DC Comics fan, but overall, I was able to get the gist of it. I therefore think it is worth reading but perhaps not as much as Kingdom Come or The World’s Greatest Super-Heroes, which I personally regard as more outstanding efforts. The tone of Justice is also noticeably darker.

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Some of the more interesting sequences for me involved Captain Marvel. He’s a character I’m interested in learning more about. I like the extensive use of mythology in his backstory. The same can be said for Aquaman, with whom I am less familiar.

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Two themes emerged which especially interested me. Owing to my Christian upbringing, I am well acquainted with the argument of why God doesn’t intervene more openly if he truly does exist. The first theme appears early in the story and it deals with the question of whether or not the intervention of powerful beings threatens to stunt the development of their intended beneficiaries.

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The next theme is minor but related to the first, and it involves the restraint that must be exercised by powerful beings when weaker beings turn against them. I can crush ants, but I can’t control them. The God in whom I believe could both control and crush us, but he exercises restraint in spite of our many transgressions. Rather than blaming God for not intervening when human beings commit atrocities, I see more good in requiring human beings to be accountable for their own behavior. Pardon the mini sermon. I couldn’t resist, and I recognize that this is my opinion and not necessarily that of the creators of this graphic novel. At any rate, I would have liked to see these two themes explored more fully in this medium (regardless of whether or not I would have agreed with the conclusions), but I was at least glad to see them included in the story.

If you’re looking for another graphic novel with plenty of pages of artwork by Alex Ross, this might be a gratifying read for you. All illustration credits go to DC Comics and the aforementioned artists.

 

 

14 thoughts on “Graphic Mythology: Justice”

      1. Hi, ho. i found you because I follow Dawn ‘s blog. She cross references you. I started a new blog this week that’s a serialized recollection of the Short ridge March to the finals our freshman year, 50 years ago! It’s called Echoes of The Mighty Blue Devils. Take a peak. More to follow.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Why be accountable when I can conveniently blame God for all that is wrong with the world. That appears to be the philosophy of the day. It’s easy because it avoids personal and social responsibility. God help us all! We are called to something greater than blame shifting.
    Thanks for your post.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Comics are not, but I learn and enjoy reading your art and myth stories. I find them often enough to check in when I see that you are writing. If I weren’t finding some fodder I can eat I wouldn’t check. πŸ˜€ Besides I need to be reminded to get to my kindle and order Farmer… I am smart enough for The Kraken so I plan to understand Farmer…You can easily understand which of us is the primary grade teacher.

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  2. Yes, Robert, I remembered last night to check. I saw it was only in paperback, however the price was very affordable. I got to thinking about The Kraken and realized I would have missed much if it had been on kindle. The font size on The Kraken was comfortable for me, so it is wise to not make it available on kindle. Advantage would have been that I wanted to read last night, but I put it off again. Did you see I mentioned you on my blog today?

    Liked by 1 person

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