Thursday, January 10, 2008

Justice League of America #63 - June 1968

sgThis what I think Superman's dreams are like sometimes.

The Story: "Time Signs a Death Warrant for the Justice League!" by Gardner Fox, Mike Sekowsky, and George Roussos. This story opens with a bunch of people from the future spying on a May, 1968 meeting of the Justice League!

Turns out that lockpick of licentiousness, the Key, has found a way to have complete mental control over the JLA! He sends a command to them in their Secret Sanctuary instructing them they are trapped, and in one hour they will all fight one another! For some reason, Superman, Wonder Woman, and Green Lantern are the least concerned.

Turns out a future Superman is in this meeting, not the "current day" one, so he...man, does this get complicated. Suffice it to say, Superman fights off the rest of the JLA, escapes the Sanctuary, and they go all fight the Key. Whew!

Roll Call: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Flash, Green Lantern, Green Arrow, Atom, Hawkman

Notable Moments: Another time when there's no appearance--of even mention--of the Martian Manhunter. Weird.

The time travelling historians plot is cute, and was homaged by Gerry Conway fifteen years later, in JLA #206. But that's a little ways away...

This is Mike Sekowksy's last issue as penciller of the Justice League of America. Sixty-three(plus three Brave and the Bolds) straight issues, an amazing run, even moreso considering how dense a lot of these issues were. Sekowsky may not have had the polish and the brilliance of a Jack Kirby(who does?), but I think the sheer consistency gave the JLA a solid identity that helped establish the team and the book as one of the mainstays of the DCU.

Of course, sixty-three issues would look like nothing compared to what was next...

6 comments:

russell said...

You neglected to mention that Snapper Carr plays a pivotal role in this story....the last time that happens, if memory serves. I remember thinking to myself when I read it, "The Key had a pretty cool plan." :-)

Earth 2 Chris said...

I always though the Superman on this cover had a twinge of Neal Adams about him. he's leaner than Sekowsky's Superman, and his body posture screams Adams. Maybe Adams did a rough layout of the cover? Then again I could be totally wrong.

Chris

rob! said...

there is a Neal Adams-ish feeling to Superman, good eyes E2 chris. but on Neal Adams' website, he specifically lists this cover as NOT being by him, so...

russell said...

I always that that the Batman pose screams Sekowsky, and Aquaman screams "inks by Dick Ayers!" All Ayers' people looked the same.

BentonGrey said...

That's an awesome cover right there. You know, the Key has a lot of potential as a villain.

Earth 2 Chris said...

Maybe it's a VERY early case of Adams influence being felt at DC. As soon as Infantino noticed him, many DC artists began to emulate him somewhat.

Chris

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