Review: Justice League Vol. 2 - The Villain's Journey / Writer: Geoff Johns / Artist: Jim Lee / Publisher: DC Comics / Release Date: January 30th
When DC relaunched their line of superhero comic books, the hope was that it would inject a shot of inspiration and fresh ideas into some of the staler lines. Alas, Justice League Vol. 2: The Villain's Journey does not deliver anything new or fresh, instead wasting the potential of having a lot of A-list characters in one book to give us nothing special.
The plot involves the Justice League’s growing fame and the inevitable collapse of public support. One of the league’s greatest proponents loses faith in the team, and he takes the path of villainy in order to take them down using supernatural methods to do so. You would think that a tale in which Superman, Batman, The Flash, Wonder Woman and the Green Lantern tackle the notion of dead gods would be a great way to explore the mythology and the modern concept of fame, but this opportunity is missed, giving us a very formulaic and dull super hero tale instead.
There are some nice Easter eggs – a character who looks a lot like Jonathan Ross turns up and asks inappropriate questions about Wonder Woman, and Geoff Johns still hasn’t got over the popularity of long gone comic book The Authority, as yet again he brings up the theme of superheroes ruling the world, only to dismiss it immediately. The big idea in this book is that Wonder Woman is naive, fickle and happens to be a woman. This may turn out to be a brilliant bluff which pays off later, but in this book, it just looks like Johns has no idea how to write the character.
The problem is that all of this has been done before, and more intelligently. Grant Morrison did the JLA as a god-like pantheon much better, and Kurt Busiek has dealt with the Superman/Wonder Woman relationship with a lighter touch and wiser hand. Overall, a disappointing effort.