#19 "The Justice Rangers Ride again" by Adam Beechen & Gordn Purcell
#36 "Wild Geese“ by Matteo Casali & Scott Cohn
Wowsers! Its comics, but for kids!
OK, so Action Ash is always going on at me for only liking “Adult Comics” full of shadows and misery, so I thought I’d buck the trend and pick up some shiny happy comics the whole family could enjoy. What I’ve gone for is a few randomly selected issues of Justice League Unlimited, the spin off from the superb Warner Brothers animated series. My scientific method of choosing the issues involved two factors; which ones are in the comic shop I’m in? and Which one’s have characters I like?
As I’ve probably mentioned before and will no doubt do again, my contact with the DC Universe of characters is mostly through the animations, but I’ve never thought to read the comics based in the Animated Universe. Why? Well, they tend to look a bit shit. Are they? Yes and no.
I went with “Wild Geese”, an issue that highlights The Question and “The Justice Rangers Ride again”, a time-travel romp which features a load of DC’s groovy western characters such as the legend that is Jonah Hex, alongside regular allies Bat Lash and El Diablo (the Ugly, the Bad and the Zorro Knock-Off).
They’re fast-paced 22 page rides featuring little or no continuity, which is a nice change, and although aimed squarely at the younger reader, they are definitely very enjoyable. The writing isn’t quite on par with the TV series though and it does feel kind of rushed and overly goofy in places. The art is by-the-numbers DCAU, which is no bad thing, but it could be a bit more adventurous.
The characterisation differences from DC Proper is noticeable; Jonah Hex is a far cry from the tough-as-shit, hard-as-Hellfire, motherless, son of a son-selling-bitch I’ve come to love in Gray and Palmiotti’s superlative current series, and The Question is very much Rorschach(extra)Lite rather than Vic Sage.
Three and a half cans of soda out of a possible Old No 7.