Justice League of America #3 - Writer - Brad Meltzler, Artists - Ed Benes, Inkers - Sandra Hope & Mariah Benes, Colorist - Alex Sinclair
Premise - The Justice League is reforming, separate story lines are slowing converging and we are apparently reforming the Justice League of America.
What I Liked:
1) The art. Ed Benes is rapidly becoming one of the premier artist in all of comics. DC does not over promote their artists like Marvel and that maybe a mistake, because Benes is as good as any other super-hero artist out there. Strong layouts, good emotion, sexy woman, barrel chested male heroes, he has all the tools and is a superior draftsman. The inking is well done as it compliment's Ed's pencils. The color is dead on for this book. I wish I had a better appreciation of who does what, because I know some inkers and colorist can save the day, but I think Ed Benes is just getting better and better and he was very good to start with.
2) A few small bits. The Phantom Stranger showing up; Arsenal, Canary and GL fighting the duplicate tornadoes; and the little Starro on the back of the bad guys neck.
What I didn't Like:
1) The writing. Brad Meltzer appears to be a very good writer and I'm sure his novels are great reading, but he still is struggling with writing a good or great comic. The pace of this story is laborious and I wonder if it will be issue #12 before the JLA actually has a meeting. Then Meltzer leaves and the new guy comes on and has to deal with Brad's team or shuffle the deck. If Brad can only do 12 issues, then make it a mini-series.
The structure of the story is also poorly done. We have the Black Lighting story (now adding Hawkgirl), the red Tornado story, the Arsenal, Green Lantern and Black Canary story, the Vixen story (only one page this issue) and Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman holding a meeting (that is going on forever) to decide who is in the new JLA. On one hand having separate arcs all coming together is fine. The different heroes are working on cases unaware they are related and ultimately team-up and save the day. Great stuff, classic team type story telling, if well done they are some of the best team stories around. We also have the impending crisis and a team is pulled together to save the day and they decide to stay together to fight major problems when they occur. Again classic concept for a team and if well done great stuff. Here we have these story lines going on and BSWW (Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman) choosing a team. Apparently the team is already pre-determined so what is with them picking out the pictures. In this issue we show Hawkgirl and Black Lighting running into each other and then Black Lighting takes the bad guy and Hawkgirl to Batman's cave interrupt the meeting where BSWW are choosing the team. What the frell? This is confused as hell. Are they choosing a team or is the team being pulled together by circumstances? Brad wants it both ways it seems and is still trying to tell his heartfelt Red Tornado story. Time to get on with the story and have a team. We are on issue #3 and still have no team or no rhyme or reason to why these various storylines are going on. Maybe this will be better as a trade as Meltzer seems to be stuck with novel pacing as oppossed to monthly comic book pacing.