Review: JUSTICE LEAGUE: LAST RIDE #5
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Chip Zdarsky
Artist: Miguel Mendonca
Colours: Enrica Design
Letters: Andworld Design
Reviewed By: Derek McNeil
Justice League: Last Ride #5: Apokolips – not as safe a place to hide a war criminal as you’d think! The Justice League has been tasked with bringing the master of war crimes, your one and only Lobo, to trial in order to account for a life of treachery. But while the League thought Apokolips would be the safest place to store a wanted murderer, there are others out on the hunt for Lobo…
In Justice League: Last Ride #5, Chip Zdarsky’s story reaches fever pitch as their battle to protect Lobo begins. Like the previous issues, Zdarsky also reveals a more of the events leading up to the League’s having disbanded.
We see two notable events in that past timeline. One is the confrontation between Superman and Batman immediately following the death of Martian Manhunter. Last issue we found that Bruce reluctantly allowed J’onn to sacrifice himself to stop Darkseid’s attack on Earth. For once, Bruce was unable to come up with a better plan. And Clark is unable to forgive him for that. However, I believe that Clark is projecting. I think Clark is really angry with himself for being unable to save J’onn.
The other event is Darkseid’s attempt to seize control of the Green Lanterns’ Central Power Battery on Oa. Hal is forced to attack Darkseid with the Power Battery, apparently destroying it. As Darkseid appears to be dead in the present timeline, it appears this is how he died – that is if he died.
I have the feeling this is related to a bizarre discovery Batman and Hal make in the present timeline. They discover a lab full of Darkseid clones kept in stasis. Did Darkseid plan for a clone to carry on in his place? Or are these clone bodies husks that the essence of Darkseid could inhabit to live again? In either case, I feel that the League will be facing the evil god again very soon.
I was somewhat intrigued by the forces that Superman and the Flash find themselves facing. It appears that Brainiac has merged with or possessed the Cyborg Superman. And he has brought an army of Manhunters with him, as well as a number of bounty hunters. But one interesting face is Vril Dox II from L.E.G.I.O.N., Brainiac’s son. This makes me wonder how the younger Coluan came under the sway of his estranged father. I sense there’s an interesting story there. But unfortunately one we likely won’t get to read.
Once again, Miguel Mendonca has done a superb job with the artwork in this issue. The artwork fully conveys the epic scale of both the present and past battles. Mendonca’s art shows the League pushing themselves to the limit as they struggle to save the day. And this allows Mendonca the a great opportunity to show them at their iconic best.
There is really very to complain about in this story. However, I wish there was more room to explore some of untold events that are implied or hinted at in this story. There have to be some fascinating stories that took place between the current day DCU and the future in which this story is set. I have a feeling that Zdarsky has some great Justice League stories to tell. And honestly, I’d rather read them than what’s being offered in the current Justice League ongoing title.
Zdarsky and Mendonca have done a superb job in Justice League: Last Ride #5. It’s a shame that this is a miniseries, as I would love to see an ongoing series from this creative team. But at least we have two more issues of this mini to look forward to.