Writer: Dan Jurgens Artists: Aaron Lopresti and Matt Ryan
At the Hall of Justice, Andre Briggs (head of United Nations intelligence) and his assistant Emerson Esposito are in a teleconference with the ambassadors of Great Britain, Russia, and China. He’s once again trying to convince the UN to green light their own version of the Justice League to deal with the “numerous threats to mankind that conventional armies and law enforcement agencies are ill equipped to handle”. They finally agree to his idea and create the JLI. They run through a number of candidates including Plastic Man (too whacko), Green Arrow (too likely to cross the line) and Blue Beetle (too green). The line up they settle on is Booster Gold, Fire, Green Lantern Guy Gardner, Ice, Rocket Red, Godiva, August General in Iron, and Vixen. Just in time too because a group of UN geologists have gone missing while investigating a mysterious series of earthquakes in Peru.
The first is what you’d expect out of JLI#1. It’s a “getting the band together” issue with a lot of personality clashes and bruised egos. The set up is very vast and breezy, the core group dynamic is set up within one or two pages. You’d think Booster Gold wouldn’t make a great leader and that’s kinda why Briggs chose Booster to lead the team. Booster is a PR guru who can sell the JLI to the public, and boy are they going to need his marketing prowess if what the protesters do to the Hall of Justice is any indication. Guy is Guy (i.e. a dick), he’s angry because Booster was chosen as the leader over him. The rest of the group is given some minor characterization moments that gives you a somewhat good impression of who they are. Aaron Lopresti’s art is sharp and has a lighthearted quality to it that fits the tone of JLI well. Dan Jurgens’ writing is good for a first issue if a little generic. He has a lot of set-up to get through and hopefully some deeper characterization will be thrown to the cast in future issues.
Live or Die Scale: Live. There’s enough familiarity/nostalgia for fans of the original JLI and an all ages feel that could win over new and younger comic book readers.
Recommendation: Borrow It! Read the first issue on Comixology, I’d wait for the trade to get a hard copy.