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.


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Here are my comments on JLA #113.

There were also comparisons to this story and the Nuklo one in Giant-Size Avengers #1.

As in the Invaders thread, when a Golden Age hero suddenly reappears, there never seems to be a happy ever after!

Anyway, this story does seem to be Kirby's fault! ;-)

Wasn't the Nuklo story in Avengers Annual #6? Or was there more than one of them?

Aha! An Avengers question! I can do this one..!
Yes. Actually, three - Giant-size Avengers 1, Avengers Annual 6 ... ...and......the first Vision & Scarlet Witch 4- parter..!

(I AM SO PROUD! I feel like a legitimate member now!!)

Awesome. Thanks.  Avengers Annual #6 was the only one I've read. It was one of the first Avenger stories I ever read.

Justice League of America #123 (October  1975): "Where on Earth Am I?"

Justice League of America #124 (November 1975): "Avenging Ghosts of the Justice Society!"

1)JLA Line-Up:  Aquaman, Batman, the BlackCanary, the Flash, the Green Arrow, Hawkman.


2)JSA Line-Up: Doctor Mid-Nite, Hourman, Johnny Thunder, Robin, the Spectre, Wildcat, Wonder Woman.


3)ISW Line-Up: The Gambler, the Huntress, the Icicle, the Shade, the SPortsmaster, the Wizard.


4)DC Comics Line-Up:  Cary Bates, Carmine Infantino, Elliott S! Maggin, Julius Schwartz.


5)What is there to say?  Making yourself the main character in a JLA/JSA crossover  - and setting yourself up as killing off the JSA - takes a fair amount of chutzpah, but you need to back it up with a much better story than this one.  This "inside baseball" stuff can be done well (See Fantatsic Four #176), but this is really clunky.


6)"This Earth rotates at a slower speed -- time passes less quickly than on our Earth!"  "The idea is that Earth-Two is some twenty years behind because of some time-flux!"  Utter nonsense, of course.


7)The bickering between the Green Arrow and Hawkman gets real tedious real fast.


8)Why did the Wizard chose Bates? How did he know about him?  If he can just give people super-powers, why not just create an army of super-villains and overwhelm the heroes? Do the villains know about Earth-Prime? I always thought DC should do a story where a villain stumbled across Earth-Prime and learned all the heroes' secret IDs by reading some comics.


9)And so the Spectre begs God to bring them all back, like a little kid begging for a puppy.


Overall: Meh. Lame and self-indulgent.


NEXT:  An All-Star is re-born!

DC used to have tours of their offices. If you were in New York, you could go up to their floor and sometimes you'd get a tour by Julie Schwartz himself. How I envied those readers who got to do that. But I never went to New York--not at this time in my life anyway. The closest I ever came was these two comics. And it's the closest I will ever come now to my everlasting regret. Worth my 50 cents. Self-indulgent maybe but I'd rather spend a few panels with Carmine, Julie, Cary and Elliot than any number of pages with Grant Morrison or Al Capp.

I didn't realize it before, but apparently the timing of the annual event shifted, although not as much as the cover-dates would suggest. October-November seems like a big shift from August-September. But in the '60s there was only a two month difference between the on sale date and the cover date--so the JLA/JSA events happened at the height of summer in June and July. But by the mid-70s there was a three month difference between on sale and cover date. So the October and November issues would have been on sale in July and August.

Oddly enough, I really enjoyed the story with the DC creators as characters. Was it a good story? Nope. Was it fun? Yup, at least for me.

Randy Jackson said:

 Was it fun? Yup, at least for me.



Well, that's what counts in the end.


All-Star Comics #58 February 1976)

1)Line-Up: Doctor Fate, Doctor Mid-Nite, the Flash, the Green Lantern, Hawkman, Power Girl, Robin, the Star-Spangled Kid, Wildcat.


2)Even as a kid I thought the "Super-Squad" name was kind of goofy and unnecessary.


3)Adding the Star-Spangled Kid to the team was an interesting idea - not one I would have thought of.  Giving him Starman's cosmic rod was also an interesting idea - it keeps him from being just another brawler.  Really, Wildcat's all the brawler a team needs.  Stripresy retired, and the kid is feeling a little time-lost - shame he couldn't sit down for a chat with Captain America.


4)Robin is shown as working for the UN in South Africa in some capacity.



5)We get the debut of Power Girl, who is said to have been kept under wraps longer than Supergirl was. We see also the beginnings of conflict between her and Wildcat.  I always liked Power Girl as a character, although too often  writers haven't done what I thought was right by her.  "Outspoken" doesn't have to equal "strident". It's interesting that Power Girl is really the only one of the characters that still exists in current continuity in anything like her original form.


6)We get the usual breaking up into teams to deal with various disasters:

  • Doctor Mid-Nite, Hakwman and the Star-Spangled Kid deal with an earthquake in Seattle.
  • Doctor Fate, the Green Lantern and Robin deal with an explosion in Cape Town.
  • The Flash, Wildcat and Power Girl dela with a volcano in Peking.


7)In the end, we discover that the heel behind al this is the Brain Wave, who appears to have gotten an extreme make-over. Although if that's a look that he chose for himself, then why'd he choose to look so bug-eyed? 


Overall: A good start, with a mixture of new characters and an old villain. I liked the art on this - Power Girl particularly never looked better than she did here in her first appearance.

I found it a good mixture of personalities - but the 'promise' here of being headlined by Power Girl, Star Spangled Kid AND Robin is never really delivered. Robin is an outsider from the start - I'm not sure he even 'officially' joins - but , certainly from the cover - it looks like they started out with him an equal player...I'd have liked him to stay around.



Well, I figured Robin was technically still a member from when he was inducted during one of the JLA/JSA crossovers. 

Actually, thinking about it, if Robin was 13 in 1940, then by 1976 he'd by 49 - not exactly a young hero, except by comparison to the older JSAers.

Yeah, But with this relaunch - 'Super Squad' - it looked like we'd get Power Girl, Star Spangled Kid (with new powers) and Robin as headliners - we didn't,

The Baron said:

Well, I figured Robin was technically still a member from when he was inducted during one of the JLA/JSA crossovers. 

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