Justice League #30

Story by
Art by
Scott Hanna, Doug Mahnke, Ivan Reis
Colors by
Rod Reis
Letters by
Dezi Sienty
Cover by
DC Comics

The "Injustice League" storyline launches the first chapter, "Kicking Down Doors" in "Justice League" #30 from writer Geoff Johns and artists Ivan Reis, Doug Mahnke and Scott Hanna with colors from Rod Reis and letters by Dezi Sienty. In this post-"Forever Evil" world, Lex Luthor is being hailed as a hero and the Justice League are taking the rap for allowing the Crime Syndicate to take over the world.

Geoff Johns spreads the love around in "Justice League" #30, giving all of the League members chunks of dialog as well as breaking them down into pairs -- whether they're more traditional, like Clark and Bruce having a phone conversation about Luthor's new status; or more dynamic and lively, such as Flash and Wonder Woman trying to squeeze information from Metallo. All of the Leaguers come together in the Batcave in lieu of their destroyed Watchtower to discuss the recent happenings. As they're checking in, Aquaman and Cyborg return from their expedition, illustrating that Johns' League is busy beyond the action shown on-panel. Johns rounds out the issue by setting up subplots (which may or may not blossom into full plots) involving the Doom Patrol, Captain Cold and Power Ring.

The art on "Justice League" #30 is solid, with regular artist Ivan Reis and fill-in extraordinaire Doug Mahnke both credited. This isn't the most glorious issue of "Justice League" from a visual standpoint, but with these two pencilers onboard, any book is going to look good. Surprisingly the two blend nicely together. I'm not sure if that's planned, part of the process or to be attributed to inker Scott Hanna. Mahnke's style peeks through a couple times, most notably as Luthor and the League are conversing in the satellite Luthor presents to them. Colorist Ivan Reis does a fantastic job of helping to keep the visuals consistent with a solid coat of brilliance. There is a lot to take in here. While having twenty-two pages of story helps, especially when the art demands to be wide-screen or full-page, the artistic team really fills the pages nicely.

"Justice League" #30 feels more like a Justice League book than many of the issues of this series have, especially with the Leaguers beating up criminals and developing a plan for how to adjust to the future they see coming. That said, Johns is still using this book as a test lab for new ideas, giving a pair of pages to the quest for a new Power Ring and squeezing in a shadowed appearance by the mysterious new Doom Patrol. If one title were to be at the heart of the DC Universe, it should be "Justice League." Johns has made that apparent in his run, specifically in this issue, but he needs to make sure the book stays balanced between the team and the rest of the DC Universe. "Justice League" #30 is a nice start.

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