Review: Justice Society of America #4
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Geoff Johns
Art: Mikel Janin and Jerry Ordway
Colors: Jordie Bellaire and John Kalisz
Letters: Rob Leigh
Reviewed by: Matthew B. Lloyd
Helena finds a chink in Per Degaton’s armor as continues to convince the JSA of the veracity of her story. Plus, Helena and Power Girl sit down for the first time time…again!
The first page of Justice of America #4 immediately takes on back to Mikel Janin’s time on Justice League Dark during the New 52. Janin’s art looks incredible as always and his way with faces comes through on his depiction of Madame Xanadu, one of the players also in Justice League Dark. Madame X is one of those characters who could always benefit from more exposure. Though, she did have a solo Vertigo series by Matt Wagner, Amy Reeder and Michael Kaluta that ran from 2008-2011, she’s generally seen in team books. She also appeared in Demon Knights concurrently with her time in the New 52 on Justice League Dark.
Both Madame Xanadu’s role and Helena’s ability to wound Degaton prove to be interesting plot points as they both are rooted in the same weakness in Degaton’s plan. It shouldn’t be a surprise that Degaton will be stopped, but the journey should be interesting and this issue’s development proves as such. The fact that Helena figures out the clues that gives her the momentary upper hand should be no surprise as she is the Dark Knight’s daughter.
Justice Society of America #4 takes some time for character as well. In the pre-Crisis on Infinite Earths days of the original Earth-Two, Helena and Power Girl were best friends. It was one of the strongest elements of the development of the original Earth-Two during the Bronze Age of Comics. Not coincidentally, they were the first legacy heroes on Earth -Two, and re-contextualizing their friendship in the modern era of DC Comics is something that’s been a long time coming. The New Golden Age #1 certainly teased that there would be familiar circumstances and we get the first one-on-one conversation between the two iconic heroines. Again, it’s a tease, but it’s a tease of something that should result in a fulfilling payoff down the line.
Outside of the obvious more-than-a-month (more than two months!) since last issue Justice Society of America #4 doesn’t seem to have a real punch or “wow” moment. It just seems to hold the issue back from being as good as the previous issues in this series.
Justice Society of America #4 is a solid issue that moves things forward with an interesting discovery by Helena. The tease of the friendship to come between her and Power Girl is welcome as it promises what we know from the past will now come to pass in the future.