All-Star Comics #3 (Winter 1940):

1)I expect that if you've only read one Golden Age adventure of the JSA, this is the one.  It's not bad, but this first issue is more like an anthology than a team book, per se.

 

2)Line-Up: The Atom (Al Pratt), Doctor Fate (Kent Nelson), the Flash (Jay Garrick), the Green Lantern (Alan Scott), the Hawkman (Carter Hall), the  Hour Man (Rex Tyler), the Sandman (Wesley Dodds) and the Spectre (Jim Corrigan), with gate-crasher Johnny Thunder and the Red Tornado (Ma Hunkle), to whom Hourman says "Why, we meant to inviite you but we heard you were busy!" All white guys, of cours,e but only to be expected in those less progressive days. Nowadays, things are much different, since when the Justice League was recently revamped, the founding members were just mostly white guys. That aside, I have no real beef with the membership except the inclusion of Johnny Thunder, a character I've always loathed. If they had to have a "comedy" character on the team, I would've much preferred the Red Tornado.

 

3)The JSA gathers for a dinner. Johnny Thunder crashes the party and offers the suggestion that they each narrate an adventure to pass the time. During the dinner, the Flash is summoned to Washington, DC, to meet with Madam Fatal the head of the FBI.

 

4)No origin is given for the team - they all just sort of seem to know each other, already. Johnny Thunder is aware of the meeting, but the Sandman later says that the meeting is a secret. Although knocking out everyone in the lobby actually seems like it be more likely to draw attention than discourage it.

 

5)Doctor Fate: ""The Spectre and I do not touch food." Just as well, Doc, I wouldn't want to see you try to eat with that helmet on.

 

6)Superman, Batman and Robin and the Tornado are described as being "busy".  I find I don't miss Supes and Bats from the team.

 

7)The art is generally OK - nothing exceptionally good or exceptionally bad.

 

8)The Flash tells how he battled some pirates. A light-hearted story, particularly his encounter with a shark. Comics are far too serious these days to have a scene like that in it.

 

9)Hawkman tells of his battle with some fire people. Moldoff draws his wings REALLY HUGE.

 

10)The Spectre tells of his battle with Oom the Mighty, the goofiest demon ever.

 

11)Hourman tells of his battle with jewel thieves who all dress as Hourman.  Amusing because in the end, everyone thinks Rex Tyler was posing as Hourman when he actually was Hourman!

 

12)We have a brief interval where the Red Tornado drops by long enough for it to be revealed that she tore her pants. The Flash is aware of her as a comics character.

 

13)The Sandman tells of his battle of a mad doctor who creates giants in a particularly creepy tale.  I notice alot of these guys, their girlfirends know their secret ID's, with out it being the end of the world.

 

14)Doctor Fate introduces himself thusly:  " I am not human...I never was a child...I had no youth. The elder gods created me just as I am now, and placed me here on Earth to fight evil sorcery!"  I'm pretty sure this is the only place I remember the character's provenance being set out in this manner. anyhow, Fate tells of his battle with an evil sorceror.  Probably the most distinctive art style on this one.

 

15)Johnny Thunder, having suggested story-telling, says he's too shy to do it, "So the editors have written a story about something that happened to me."  So, he knows he's a comic book character, too. Anyhow, his adventure is a text pice about some silly damn thing he did.

 

16)The Atom battles a gang of gold thieves.  Whenever I see the Golden Age Atom's original costume I wonder why the crooks don't all just laugh themselves to death.

 

17)Green Lantern tells of his battle with some racketeers.

 

18)Cliffhanger: The Flash returns with the message that the head of the FBI wants to meet with them all!

 

Overall: This first issue holds up pretty well, all things considered. I still find it a fun read.

 

Views: 31309

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

JSA #51 (October 2003): "Princes of Darkness Coda: Justice Eternity"

1)Line-Up: The Air Wave, the Black Canary, the Black Condor, Captain Marvel, Damage, Doctor Fate, Doctor Occult, Dove, the Flash, the Green Lantern, Hawkgirl, Hawkman, Hourman, the Human Bomb, "Iron" Munro, Jade, Jakeem Thunder,  Nemesis, the Phantom Lady, Power Girl, the Ray, the Shining Knight, the Star-Spangled Kid, S.T.R.I.P.E., Uncle Sam, the Vigilante, Wildcat.

 

2)Hector demoralizes Mordru by confronting him with his own future: In a thousand years' time, he will be regularly beaten up by a gang of teenagers and will have taken to wearing a really silly hat. Then he seals him in the Rock of Eternity.'' The JSA celebrates.

 

3)Meanwhile, Atom-Smasher, Black Adam, Brain Wave and Northwind corner Kobra. Al holds Kobra whilst Adam tears Kobra's heart out in a scene that's fairly damned graphic.  Sure hope nobody saw "JSA" on the corner and assumed "This will surely be a safe book to hand to a ten year-old.

 

Overall: The battle against Mordru was fairly anticlimactic. The interesting bit was the bit at the end where Al becomes an accessory to murder. Kobra was - at least in his presentation here - a fairly one-dimensional character, but even one-dimensional, unlikable types ought not to have their hearts ripped out without due process, surely?

Sure hope nobody saw "JSA" on the corner and assumed "This will surely be a safe book to hand to a ten year-old.

I think that shipped sailed on mainstream comics 20? 25 year ago?

The interesting bit was the bit at the end where Al becomes an accessory to murder. Kobra was - at least in his presentation here - a fairly one-dimensional character, but even one-dimensional, unlikable types ought not to have their hearts ripped out without due process, surely?

I dunno, how many death was Kobra responsible for at that point?

I'm not saying that Kobra didn't necessarily deserve t, just that maybe it wasn't Adam and Al's place to take it upon themselves to kill him.

The Baron said:

3)Meanwhile, Atom-Smasher, Black Adam, Brain Wave and Northwind corner Kobra. Al holds Kobra whilst Adam tears Kobra's heart out in a scene that's fairly damned graphic. Sure hope nobody saw "JSA" on the corner and assumed "This will surely be a safe book to hand to a ten year-old.

As I think I've said before, I'm reading this thread with interest, but haven't read the actual comics. The event you describe made me realize that JSA never carried the Comics Code seal. I think it's better today that they have ratings/recommendations on the covers rather than just the presence or absence of the Code seal, which was fairly inconsistently applied anyway.

This really soured me on Atom-Smasher, who went from confused whiner (bad enugh) to out-and-out bad guy in my eyes.

JSA All-Stars #4 of 8 (October 2003): "A Star is Born"

1)Pat helps Courtney seek out her biological father, who turns out to be a low-level jerk who alternately tries to sweet talk her and then deride her.

 

2)Pat Dugan has re-tooled the Cosmic Rod. It looks a bit more like a magic wand.

 

3)This is where Courtney adopts the name "Stargirl", which is much easier to type than "The Star-Spangled Kid".

 

4)The back-up this time out has the Golden Age Starman dealing with Nazi spies posing as G-Men. We meet real G-Man Woodley Allen, whom I belive someone mentioned a few pages ago.

 

Overall: Not bad. Courntey's story added a new layer to the character. The back-up was OK, too.

I recall that there was the mystery of Courtney's real father being hinted at in Stars & STRIPE with readers hoping that he wouldn't show up as a super-villain!

Courtney; "Oh no! My father really is......

  • KITE MAN! I am so ashamed on so many levels!
  • THE FISHERMAN! I can't believe that Mom fell for you hook, line and sinker!
  • THE TATTOOED MAN! Any ship in a port! Really, Mom??
  • LEX LUTHOR!! Wait, is he still filthy rich?
  • GORILLA GRODD!!! Mom, what is wrong with you??? Is that why I have had to shave my legs EVERY day since I was nine??

 

See, I never read any of Courtney's own title, so I only really know of her from the JSA titles.


Philip Portelli said:

 

  • THE TATTOOED MAN! Any ship in a port! Really, Mom??

Humorous interlude.

A true exchange from my dashing young lieutenant days, while out on a date:

HER:  "So, Mister Navy Man, I suppose you have a girl in every port."

ME:    "Nonsense!  I haven't been to every port."

(Rimshot!)

Stars & STRIPE was a really good book, Baron. Courtney seemed more "real" there instead of slowly becoming DC's Britney Spears.
 
The Baron said:

See, I never read any of Courtney's own title, so I only really know of her from the JSA titles.

LOL!

Commander Benson said:


Philip Portelli said:

 

  • THE TATTOOED MAN! Any ship in a port! Really, Mom??

Humorous interlude.

A true exchange from my dashing young lieutenant days, while out on a date:

HER:  "So, Mister Navy Man, I suppose you have a girl in every port."

ME:    "Nonsense!  I haven't been to every port."

(Rimshot!)

Thankfully, the changes to the cosmic rod were quickly forgotten.

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Welcome!

No flame wars. No trolls. But a lot of really smart people.The Captain Comics Round Table tries to be the friendliest and most accurate comics website on the Internet.

SOME ESSENTIALS:

RULES OF THE ROUND TABLE

MODERATORS

SMILIES FOLDER

TIPS ON USING THE BOARD

FOLLOW US:

OUR COLUMNISTS:

Groups

© 2021   Captain Comics, board content ©2013 Andrew Smith   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service