Sunday, 30 September 2018

Justice League Odyssey #1 - DC Comics

Supposedly “spinning out of Justice League: No Justice” Joshua Williamson’s script for “Ghost Sector” may well have initially bamboozled and befuddled its audience as a result of it presenting plenty of Stjepan Sejic pencilled panels packed full of guilt-ridden gobbledegook concerning mysterious subliminal voices warning not to “befriend the machine and the alien”, the Omega Titans previously destroying Colu, and a bizarre assortment of super-heroes desperately trying “to break about 3,458 galactic regulations” simply because Cyborg has an irrational feeling that he needs to do so. But whilst this twenty-page periodical’s narrative undoubtedly contains plenty of head-scratching dialogue and unsettling sequences, such as Victor Stone’s apparent regret at ‘breaking the universe’ and Darkseid’s suggestion that he can give the likes of Starfire and Azrael “answers to your purpose in the universe”, the comic’s central plot is basically built upon the premise that the Justice Leaguers have been called to the maelstrom’s “Wild West” by the son of King Yuga Khan to simply “try to stop Despero from slave-trading Coluan refugees…”

Fortunately though, the American author’s over-complication of so straightforward a story-line shouldn’t stop this book’s readers from enjoying some of its cast’s sense-shattering shenanigans, with Topal’s desperately doomed attempt to reach the Guardians of Oa and let them “know why these worlds were hidden” arguably being one of this publication’s highlights, especially when the impotent Green Lantern is torn asunder by a giant clawed space dragon whilst reciting her corps’ famous oath: “In brightest day… in blackest night… no evil -- what is… No! The Guardians need to know! They have to stop them! The old gods can never -- Aaahhhhhh!” This scene genuinely pains the heart as the horned law enforcement officer’s beloved helplessly watches her die from the surface of the planet below, and initiates an aura of deadly desperation which permeates throughout the rest of the adventure.

Sadly, Williamson’s penmanship behind the sector’s subsequent Green Lantern, Jessica Cruz, doesn’t debatably produce anywhere near the sense of depth her ill-fated colleague created, with the volunteer appearing to be immaturely desperate to battle the likes of Kanjar Ro, Despero or Lobo simply to stop her from being bored. Such a deadly desire to tweak the nose of fate is always going to be answered, so it comes as absolutely no surprise whatsoever that within seconds of making such a wish, “Power Ring” spies Braniac’s ship tearing towards the Ghost Sector and unwisely attempts to intercept it despite her solid light forcefield being highly susceptible to the region’s radiation. However, whereas Kov Mal’s previously depicted dearly departed comes across as being courageously foolish, the efforts of Simon Baz’s former partner disapprovingly portrays the “only member of the Justice League permitted to serve as sentry” as an impulsively reckless disagreeable individual, overly eager to play the hero and rather too keen to arrest the very people who have literally just saved her from a gruesomely painful death in outer space…
Writer:Joshua Williamson, Artist & Cover: Stjepan Sejic, and Letters: Deron Bennett

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