Judd Winick, Dan Jurgens, I can’t decide who’s better! Winick wrote the one of the best comic book miniseries I’ve ever read, Generation Lost, and now Dan Jurgens is continuing the quality work started by Winick when the mini completed its task. Of course, I was initially upset by the fact that Jurgens wasn’t continuing with the story Winick had set up, but I’m sure his hand was forced as well. Seven issues into the rebooted series, however, and I’m starting to get into the grove Jurgens has set with Booster and his Government snactioned League.
I’m certain Booster was ready to bask in the glory of UN and civilian acceptance on the steps of the White House, especially after defeating a threat as deadly as the Signal men, but this is clearly not going to be a title that defines itself by certainty. All 20 pages of this issue present new challenges and struggles the League is going to have to fight through and learn from. (Is it strange that I thrive off of stories that cause so much pain and anguish for its characters?)
#7 starts off with a gorgeous, yellow and orange tinted opening page, with Booster carrying Beatriz out of the fire, smoke, and damage done by the bomb. It’s funny isn’t it? They were able to stop one of the most dangerous threats Earth has ever faced, yet they were taken by surprise and disarmed by one measly bomb – which starts the angst driven script.
What follows is a series of trials and tribulations, hell bent on breaking up the League; Mari has a life threatening spinal injury, Tora’s entire skeleton is on the verge of breaking completely, and Gavril is seemingly dead. In addition, the faith each member has in the League seems to be faltering, with Batman leaving and Guy Gardner taking care of his own needs instead of helping Booster clean things up. It seems, as well, that the government is regretting their decision of sanctioning the JLI, as after only a few short hours of being instated, Chairwoman Bao confronts Booster with an order of Cease and Desist. Not only have has the “still-walking” members lost a team mate, with several others critically injured, but now can’t legally save the lives of others. Talk about tension!
The story is great, and certainly one that will keep me coming back for more. Even more so, the art, provided by Aaron Lopresti and Richard Friend. Ever since his work on Wonder Woman, I’ve always said Lopresti is my favorite penciller of all time. However, there is a minor defect that irks me. Lightweaver seems to be a potentially great villain for the League for future arcs. However, I’d think with constructs such as his, Guy shouldn’t have a lick of trouble taking them out. It’s also kind of difficult to MAKE OUT the lightweaver’s constructs. Yes, they light constructs are all throughout the beginning of the book, but it’s hard to make them out…
I never would have noticed them in the first place, but a second reading of this isse allowed for me to see things I didn’t notice the first time. Initially I thought Guys was chatting with himself and not some light construct. But this is a minor complaint.
I enjoy how Jurgens is giving each character, with exception of Mari, an important role in the series. Each hero’s purpose in the title is clear and straight forward. Without a doubt, however, this series is making way for the legitimization of Booster Gold, giving him a much more serious purpose in the DC Universe. I’ll admit, as I have before, I’ve never liked Booster as a hero. He was always a bumbling idiot who was so focused on his own fame that it hindered so many of the story lines staring him. And while Booster still retains some of those qualities, at the same time he seems to be much more focused and less self-indulgent. Booster is certainly being given a fresh start, a chance to have a legitimate and interesting role as a DC superhero.
JLI is certainly delivering on the classic title. I’m happy with what Jurgens is doing with it and suspect it will only get from here.
9 out of 10 stars