Posts tagged ‘Merlyn’

Action 443 – Superman saves the Justice League

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Maggin, Swan and Blaisdel give Superman a big line up of allies and enemies in Action 443 (Jan. 75).

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The story opens in a very disorienting way, with Superman as a nebbishy newscaster, picked on by Steve Lombard and rejected by Lois Lane.

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While Clark Kent is the one leaping into heroic action against Queen Bee and her drones.

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Queen Bee is leading a host of villains against the Justice League of America.  Most of them are regularly appearing big names – Chronos, Sinestro, Ocean Mchroaster, Grodd and Brainiac.  Matt Hagen makes his first appearance in over a decade as Clayface.  Merlyn and the Harpy are both newcomers. Harpy, the villain assigned to Black Canary, had appeared in Green Lantern, while Merlyn, who would go on to become a regular Green Arrow enemy, had only debuted recently in Justice League of America.

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The assembled villains had already triumphed over the rest of the Justice League, and in flashback we see them taking down Batman, Green Lantern, Green Arrow, Aquaman, Black Canary, Elongated Man, Aquaman, Atom and Red Tornado.  At this point, Wonder Woman and Hawkman were not members of the JLA.

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Superman has used a Kandorian machine to reverse people’s perceptions of Superman and Clark Kent, simply to puzzle the villains.  They bring him aboard their ship, which is what he wants.  As he struggles with Grodd and Clayface, his heat vision pierces the capsule the Flash is being held in, and the Flash exploits this, and frees himself, and the rest of the League.

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A lot of characters.  The story is fun, but I cannot honestly say it makes the most of its cast.

 

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Detective 839 – The Resurrection of Ra’s Al Ghul ends

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Paul Dini works with both art teams, Kramer and Faucher, and Benjamin and Crawford, on the big finale to the Resurrection of Ra’s Al Ghul, in Detective 839 (Feb. 08).

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It’s an awful lot of fighting, as many finales are, as everyone converges in Nanda Parbat.  Batman, Robin, Nightwing, and even Alfred are on one side, with Ra’s Al Ghul, Merlyn, and the League of Assassins on the other, and Talia and Damian in the balance.

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Talia is appalled to see Damian in a Robin outfit, when she has been training him to become Batman’s successor, not his sidekick.  But Damian wants to prove himself to his father.

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Ra’s Al Ghul is restored to what he considers healthy, after consuming his son, the White Ghost.  From the outset of this storyline, Ra’s knew he needed the body of someone of his own bloodline to revive, and White Ghost has been hanging around, begging to be of use.  Sad that it took seven issue to accomplish what was obviously going to be the resolution.

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With Ra’s back in action, Talia knocks out Damian and takes him away, to safety, and back into her control.

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Batman and crew are only faring moderately well against Ra’s, Merlyn and the Assassins.

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But the residents of Nanda Parbat have had enough.  Ra’s has befouled their peaceful hidden city, and they cause the earth to split, to drive all of them away.  Also puts an end to the fight, which Ra’s wants to continue, but Batman is smart enough to pull his troops out.

The story does continue, with an epilogue in the next issue.

 

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