Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Justice League Annual #1 Review

Fixing a Hole

Written by: James Tynion IV
Story by: Scott Snyder and James Tynion IV
Art by: Daniel Sampere, Juan Albarran, Adriano Lucas, and Tom Napolitano
Cover Price: $4.99
Release Date: January 30, 2019

I need answers and what better time to get them than Annuals Week, right?  Snyder and Tynion are going big and while that means they don't have to go home, I really need some footing so I can enjoy these huge moments they are dishing out.  Does this Annual give me what I'm looking for?  Let's find out...

The issue opens with a bit of the long-winded narration that James Tynion has been dishing out in this book lately.  It's not half bad...if you don't care about a bit of continuity fudging (Lost Army...Edge of Oblivion...), but what really drives me nuts it's another example of a bunch of words, but not much substance.  It feels like it is trying to be deep and profound, but failing pretty bad at it.  With that said, I love that we are seeing our heroes heading to the Source Wall and boy, there are a ton of heroes in this issue!

Kyle Rayner, Ms. Martian, Starman, New Gods...yep, even New Gods have shown up for the party at the End of the Universe!  As we start getting some answers in the form of Titans and portals, we head back a couple of weeks to see a little sit down between Kendra and Will Payton.  We get a little catchup of the what's what with the two and then get some more answers and why Kendra is so important to all of what is going on.

Back in the present, the Heroes begin fixing the Source Wall with the Omega Titans and if you are a Hawkgirl fan, this part may excite you or really upset you...or both.  I like the idea of Kendra being the hero, but Snyder and Tynion went just a bit too far here, in my opinion.  It's only for a second, though, as Brainiac shows up and as he begins an assault on the good guys, we jump back two weeks ago to see what he's been up to as well.

I love seeing Brainiac throw shade at Lex, but when he says he is going to dumb down what is going on and then precedes to confuse me, I felt like the trash talk was directed at me!  Again, things pick up as the two sides battle it out in the present and then things go horribly wrong for the good guys.  You didn't think this whole thing was just going to end in this Annual, did you?!?

The issue ends with the tension ramping up until it all explodes and we see the immediate reaction of the rest of the DCU especially the books most closely associated with this one.  The cliffhanger really sets up this book as the place to be when it comes to the future of the DCU and possibly the beginnings of what people expected from the ending of the Doomsday Clock.

This issue is pretty damn huge.  We do get some answers and even if we don't get them all, this Annual sets the book up to go forward with the solid footing I've been asking for.  My only real complaint is the over exposition of the Tynion script.  The overall pacing in this issue is fine, but it does slow down a bit too much at points when Tynion decides to get fancy and ends up telling rather than showing and sometimes not even telling.  At times it seems like we are reading a story told second-hand and I really, really want a Snyder script to break things up a bit.  Still, this is a good issue that I can recommend to anyone who has enjoyed the book up until now.

The art is a big reason for that recommendation.  Daniel Sampere and the whole art team kicks ass and I have to say, in an issue with a ton of characters, all of them look great.  The transitions were smooth and the art complements the story well.

Bits and Pieces:

This Annual gives fans some answers before tearing it all down and setting this book up for a crazy future.  It feels a bit like a coming out party for this book as Snyder and Tynion announce that the future of the DCU is running through the Justice League books starting now!




  1. Kendra and j'onn??? No.. no... no..... this is all wrong... ive been freakingly waiting for kendra and carter reuniting in hawkman's comic or in any other comic especially after the darkest night green lantern story. I loved the hawkman hawkgirl team up in the past where carter and kendra were together (before roy decided to get in the mix in justice league of america, that was just stupid). Then this kind of shit pops up?? I give up. Im tired of giving dc a chance. The decline of quality in comics is just unbearable. This is the kind of shit why marvel really beats the shit outta dc, in movies, comics, merchandise, etc. Sorry for the rant guys, its just my own opinion.

    1. that's what I meant in the review about loving and hating it...I was excited that Kendra was going to be the big hero and then they go and have her with J'onn??!!???!! I still liked the big things happening in the book, but that bit with J'onn and Kendra (which started a couple issues ago at the dance on thanagar prime) lessens both characters is was a really bad decision.

    2. Calm down people Kendra is not Shayera Hol the real Hawkwoman. Kendra is a new 52 construct of Dr. Manhattan like Fauxlly West kid flash, pc clones with no significance. Classic DC will emerge victorious once the publishing stooges overruling logic and legacy will be kicked out once and for all.

  2. I loved this annual, finally some answers. I hear there are going to be more answers next week, it's really coming together.

  3. I agree Jim, this book should be extremely deep and profound but it’s not giving me the feels. Perhaps it’s with the Source Wall which is so damn ambiguous. Always thought it to be at the edge of the entire universe protecting it from whatever but if it’s just a WALL can’t they just go over or under it. If it does protect our entire universe shouldn’t it be more of a shell than just a wall. Now it seems that this Source Wall is just a gate to this other “whatever’s going on”. I used to be in awe of the Source Wall back in Relic’s days but now it’s so damn confusing... aaaaaaaaah!