Justice League of America #41

I think it was awfully nice for DC Comics to provide a friend for "Captain America: Reborn" #6. In case you missed it, "Reborn" ended up running late (and over-length), with the end result being that its conclusion got spoiled in several different other, on-time books at Marvel. Here, "Justice League: Cry for Justice" running late has resulted in "Justice League of America" spoiling that mini-series' ending. Oops!

All joking aside, Robinson's starting to put together his new team for "Justice League of America" with this issue, but at a slow-enough pace that it's a little frustrating. The membership being revealed months ago in interviews doesn't help matters, but even then this comes across almost plodding. Donna Troy gets a four-page sequence complete with internal monologue that comes across as a little trite and silly, and it's hard to reconcile this being the same author who wrote the excellent "Starman" #81 last week. The best pieces of the script involve a menace from colonial times, and it made me wish we had less, "Hey, want to join the team?" scenes and more movement towards this new story. Lines like, "How dare you, harlot," are so unintentionally bad and funny that it just made me shake my head a lot.

I've enjoyed Mark Bagley's pencils a lot in the past, but his take on the characters in "Justice League of America" isn't my speed at all. It's hard to ignore Donna Troy's ludicrously large and round chest (you'd think she could find an outfit that was in her own size), and for a character who's drawn in skimpy outfits normally, Starfire's uniform has never seemed quite so stripperish as it does here. The worst, though, is the page where Donna Troy and Batman fist-bump. Not just because of the first-bump (although we'll let that one lie for now), but how Donna Troy has the face of an old woman, while Robin's head appears to have gotten swapped out for a balloon that is over-inflated and about to pop. With three inkers once again assigned to Bagley's pencils, I'm wondering if there's something else going on behind the scenes. Comparing Bagley's art here to what he and inker Art Thibert did together on "Trinity" is night and day levels of different.

I wanted to like "Justice League of America" again, now that it was free of "Blackest Night," and after how enjoyable "Starman" was last week. But for now, at least, it appears we're getting more of the same. That's a pity.

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