I love how the cover of this issue can be seen as having a double meaning: either a character has passed away, or this is the final nail on the coffin for this series. But the creative team are adamant to keep the team together with a bunch of clichés and more blatant missteps for a finale.
After a terrorist attack left several teammates in comas and one dead, the JLI were officially disbanded. Now, they reunited one last time for the funeral of Rocket Red – with several members attending virtually from the hospital. But the funeral doesn't go as planned when Lightweaver's brother makes an appearance. He sees the JLI as the people responsible for his brother's death. And now, with Lightweaver's powers he plans on taking his revenge.
The only people who really seem to want the team to be together are the team themselves. Writer Judd Winick constantly assures the readers that the team is not being disbanded, through both the team's dialogue, a plot point and a mention to the upcoming Justice League International Annual. However, the creative team are the only ones here who want the team to stay afloat. The problem with this comic is just how mediocre and boring it's been. In this issue, we're treated to an assortment of characters whose relationships towards each other are well-defined, but whose characteristics seem like dull versions of their popular counterparts. The only exception may be August General in Iron, who has some good dialogue. Everyone else barely speaks.
The story and dialogue are littered with clichés. A brother back for revenge who easily takes down most of the team? By the end, he's easily persuaded to stop, then let off the hook. The least they could have done was offer him a spot on the team that he took down. Though the setting of a graveyard, while cliché, does give the issue a darker feel... Then the dialogue between characters has some moments that feel like they belong in an episode of Super Friends because of their cheesy nature, usually involving Booster spouting out lines about how the team must stay together. With so much cheese, Booster's never as funny as he should be. Godiva cracks funnier jokes than him, and she's not even trying to be funny...
The narrator chosen for the final issue of the JLI isn't even an official member. Batman does the final narration, and he does it poorly. He starts to give his analysis of the members of the JLI, which would be a great way to show their worth as characters for the final issue, but stops after only two people. Then he says "They need the preparedness lecture I gave Robin." Not only does Batman fail to show us why this team is great, but he also says they're less prepared than a teenage boy – because he was trained by the "brilliance" that is part of the arrogance the Dark Knight gives off in this issue. His only use was the money and strings I'm sure he pulled to get the JLI a base.
Penciler Aaron Lopresti and inker Matt Ryan continue to do nothing spectacular. All their images are presented in a well-drawn way, along with the backgrounds, with the exceptions being over lining and overshadowing. When the artwork isn't plagued by that, they're just well-drawn – nothing more, nothing less. Nothing awe-inspiring, but nothing gag-worthy either. The artwork is as bland as the story and the dull characters. After twelve issues, I have seen how boring the team is and how boring the stories have been. But with a new creative team there are a slew of possibilities, and I have liked the bonds forming between some characters, not including the spontaneous relationship but the one between Godiva and Booster, but the friendship between August General and Godiva and the grudging friendship between Booster and Guy, even if I felt it wasn't as funny as it should have been. This issue has done nothing to raise my morale, which is what I think the writers were trying to create.
The only thing that was nice to see at the end of this issue (other than the words "The End," of course) is that Batman and Batwing will finally be leaving the team they clearly did not belong on.
Want to know more about why this series was so boring? Click on any of the reviews below.
An all-around nerdette, I’m a comic book connoisseur, horror aficionado, video game addict, anime enthusiast and an aspiring novelist/comic book writer. I am the head of the comic book department and the editor-in-chief of Entertainment Fuse. I also write and edit articles for Comic Frontline. I am also an intern at Action Lab Entertainment, a comic book publisher at which I edit comic book scripts, help work on images in solicitations and help with other comic book related project. My own personal website is comicmaven.com.