I was going to do a thread on my FIVE favorite Justice League/Justice Society team-ups when I discovered that I couldn't pick just five! So I'm going to write about all of them. These won't be synopses since I am assuming that everyone is familar with them, thanks to the Justice League Archives and the Crisis On Multiple Earths TPBs. This will just be my personal recollections and observations with a few facts. I'll start in the Mister Silver Age sub-heading then continue in my Fan of Bronze.

The first seven team-ups were written, of course, by Gardner Fox and the first six illustrated by Mike Sekowsky.

JUSTICE LEAGUE #21-22 (Au-S'63): The Crisis on Earth One & The Crisis on Earth Two

The JLA: This was the only JLA/JSA meeting that the Martian Manhunter played a part in the Silver Age.

Green Arrow meets his future love interest, the Black Canary. Naturally no reaction.

Both Flashes are taken out of the story early since they already had three team-ups in Flash.

 

The JSA: Instead of including Wonder Woman and Doctor Mid-Nite, Fox revived Doctor Fate and Hourman, neither seen since WWII.

Doctor Fate-restored with his full golden helmet, something that Silver Age readers would not know or even Bronze Age ones since DC would only reprint one Dr.Fate story with his half-helmet! But his gloves would be missing for awhile.

Hawkman-was revived wearing a hawk helmet in Flash #137 yet returned to wearing his yellow cowl. He appeared in Justice League before his Silver Age counterpart, even though he was mentioned in #3.

Black Canary-her marital arts skills and amulet devices are highlighted.

Hourman and the Atom--neither's super-strength is mentioned.

Green Lantern-seemed to hit it off with Hal Jordan right away.

The Villains: The Crime Champions are a great idea but...

Chronos takes on Batman, Green Lantern and Wonder Woman!

The Icicle goes one-on-one with Doctor Fate!

The Fiddler is bald and wears a wig. Take that, Luthor!

The Icicle looks like Groucho Marx! "Last night, I shot Green Lantern in my pajamas. How he got in my pajamas, I'll never know!"

The Crime Champions have a HQ between the Earths in "a great sphere of vibratory energy" that is multi-leveled and tastely furnished. Their civvies however leave a lot to be desired!

Some Notes: The golden, chained cages that the two teams are trapped in #22 was ripped off inspired by Mystery In Space #18 from 1954!

While the two groups meet, they do not team-up until the end when sixteen heroes gang up on six villains.

The Crime Champions do not return until the 80s!

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Re: Justice League #75-- Superman's insistance that Black Canary be immediately voted in was given more meaning when

**************************************SPOILER ALERT IS GO!!!******************************************************************************

the Black Canary was ret-conned into being the daughter of the original Blonde Bombshell with the mother's memories, how she grew up unconscious in the Thunderbolt dimension because the Wizard cursed her as a small child with ultra-sonic powers that she could not control, and the Golden Age BC died due to exposure to the Aquarius radiation on her way to Earth-One and, as her last request, found a way for her daughter to finally experience life. This was kept secret from her by the Justice Society and the E-1 Superman. He pushed her into joining the JLA as compensation? to keep an eye on her? Guilt? Post-Crisis, this was retconned retconned out but it was weird while it lasted, in order to explain her lasting youth/rejuvenation.

The Destructers, green evil duplicates of the JLA, at first thoroughly demoralized them into inaction. Superman, again playing God, painted a Superman robot green and smashed that to motivate the others to battle their twisted twins. The robot claimed to be as powerful as Zeus or Thor but the Man of Steel wasn't impressed.

Hawkman encountered his duplicate who boasted as being as strong as iron, how he can repulse the Feathered Fury and was as modern as a transistor just he was knocked out with one punch.

Batman cornered his clone who shielded himself with a trash can lid. It almost made Bats laugh!

The Atom tricked his mirror-image into a test of shrinking, then growing, causing the Not-Atom to brag about being a giant, a veritable Goliath before banging his head.

The Squadron Sinister were far more impressive!

Mister Silver Age said:

 

Many of the early JLAs were more focused on solving puzzles--bringing pieces together, working in small teams and then coming together to figure things out. Those kinds of challenges can't be solved with a green boxing glove.

But those are harder to think up, even if they're way more plausible for stumpers of a team of such powerful heroes.


That's a good point. I've just been reading some early Adam Strange. The clever way he solves problems, and the cleverness of the writer in thinking them up in the first place are a huge part of the fun.

Fox was indeed as clever as a ... feral red canine creature. I don't think O'Neill compares at all, on that level.

It's strange that almost every story has the obligatory "Here's how Superman gets excluded from this adventure" sequence. The strangest one was possibly the legal barring order against him! (I think in the issue where GA gets framed.)

 

Ah Philip!  How I dearly wish I could unread that bit about Black Canary being her own daughter.

 

I declare the Destructors/Avengers connection to be clever and silly in about equal measures.  I'll have to read it again.

OLD BUSINESS: I kept getting “interrupted” last week and never did get around to posting why I prefer the Fox/Sekowsky JLA. I used to equate the DC’s JLA with Marvel’s Avengers, but more recently I have come to associate it with the FF. First of all, there’s the (possibly apocryphal) meeting of Harry Donenfeld and Martin Goodman on the links, but more importantly, both titles had lengthy runs by the same team. I think the Fox/Sekowsky JLA epitomized Silver Age DC just as Lee/Kirby FF epitomized Silver Age Marvel.

NEW BUSINESS: Many, many people on this board (the previous version of it, anyway) were creeped out by Avengers #200, but it’s JLA #219-220 that does it for me. Ick!
When I was 10, I was greatly impressed with Avengers #200. It all seemed very grown-up and mature to me then, but I was mistaken about many things when I was 10!

Very good point about the JLA. In the absence of Marvels entertwining continuities, the JLA was the spine that united the different editorial 'fiefdoms'.

Anyway, JLA# 82-83 brings us to the end of my overly ponderous look at JL Showcase Vol V. I certainly enjoyed it. Of course I didn't get it that the Destructors were green, as Philip mentioned above!

Regarding Creator(squared)'s nefarious scheme, Dr Fate calls it "this unspeakable evil" but O'Neill has already shown us he's just a businessman trying to maximise his profits.

Considering that we've been told many times that Earths 1 and 2 occupy the same space, but with different vibrations, the visual of the two planets coming together physically, with the Spectre being ground between them, is a bit odd. It's another example of things happening in this DCU on some kind of metaphorical/imaginitive plane, rather than literal.

The E1 Spectre's tearful release from his curse kinda comes in outta left field narratively speaking.

Now we return to our regularly scheduled programming...
JLA #91-92.

So now we are onto my library copy of Crisis on Multiple Earths vol III. In colour, too, which allows me to admire the garish, clashing awfulness of Neal Adams' new Robin costume. Maybe the design is ok, but thats a lot of different colours. As my sisters used to advise me: Blue and green should never be seen!

This is indeed a fairly weak entry. A-rym and Teppy continue the (O'Neill?) tradition of misguided and suffering foes rather than being simply nasty.

There's not a lot to add to what's already been said, but its fun for me to note, on the way to the key Seven Soldiers team-up that, weak as this story is, there is a lot here that Morrison drew on for HIS Seven Soldiers epic, particularly the Klarion mini-within-a-maxi. More Grundies, reconfigured cleverly, and Slaughter Swamp figure large in it, and Klarion and his people all have the same symbiotic relationship with their familiars as A-Rym's folk have with Teppy's species. Klarion's whole story is about an adolescent's painful wanderings in utterly alien worlds too, as A-Rym's is.

These connections are thematic rather than a direct use of the continuity in this story, but it's fascinating to see how Morrison mined and transformed the stories of his own 'Golden Age'. As we'll see in the next JSA team-up some of the references were very conscious, but as here sometimes he uses story elements less consciously.

Having said all that, I have to say that I'm very excited about reading the original Seven Soldiers/JSA/JLA team-up now that I've got those leading up to it -and my wander 'off the path' to O'Neill's JLA - out of the way. I'll read it later today and head over to the 'Fan of Bronze' thread. Yippee!

I must confess that I had to read Avengers Annual #10 to realize how ill-conceived (pardon the pun) Avengers #200 was. It has taken decades for Ms. Marvel/Carol Danvers to recover, though she may never. I find it hard to believe that Jim Shooter was so adamant about Phoenix paying for her crimes yet let this be published.

So I don't think the "I'm my own daughter" plot twist was as severe, just weird but then the Black Canary did debut in 1947 so by the 80s she'd be pushing sixty so they had to do something! At least they used something already established and tried to make it semi-coherent. Of course they had to throw in the Earth-One Johnny Thunder, too and Sargon the Sorcerer!

Fox was indeed as clever as a ... feral red canine creature. I don't think O'Neill compares at all, on that level.

To be fair, I think O'Neill was given the assignments he was, and was encouraged to take the style he did, because he could duplicate the Marvel magic. He was supposed to play up emotional conflict rather than concoct elaborate mysteries. Marvel comics had that witty banter and personality conflict, but they also had long, drawn-out slugfests when Stan provided a short plot and the artist didn't want to do more plotting. A slugfest with the JLA doesn't look very plausible.

They both had advantages, but DC trying to play Marvel's game was a losing proposition, especially with existing properties where it was a huge change of direction.

-- MSA

I was just re-reading JLA issues 100-103 and you can see this in the SP edition as well, but apparently the Earth-One Batman and Earth-Two Wonder Woman got a little something going on based on the eyes they are making at each other on that great Cardy cover. Bats is a playa! LOL!

First of all, a belated welcome to the board, John.

 

Second of all - well observed!

 

That's a pretty intense look!

 

Next of all - It's a great cover with nice linework, but somehow the artist has made the rock Supes is standing on the focal point of it.  Shomething wrong, Shurely?

 

Finally of all - Philip continued his JSA/JLA team-ups into a different thread for the 70's issues, of which this storyline is first.  Any and all extra commentary will be enjoyed and discussed over there... 


Edited to add: Oops, I see you've already posted there. Sorry.
That's a great cover. Why oh why didn't they think to put Nick Cardy on the the interiors too!

John Moret said:
I was just re-reading JLA issues 100-103 and you can see this in the SP edition as well, but apparently the Earth-One Batman and Earth-Two Wonder Woman got a little something going on based on the eyes they are making at each other on that great Cardy cover. Bats is a playa! LOL!

JLA 121, featuring the wedding of Adam Strange and Alanna, shows Wonder Woman has shifted her attention elsewhere.

This is as poorly a laid out cover as anything I've seen outside of Rich Buckler, with the backs of the bride and groom to the reader. Also, there's not way that Batman would be the best man instead of Hawkman.

 

Hoy

It seems to me the backs of the bride and groom are to the reader in a weak bid to gin up some suspense, re the headline: "What Marriage Would Bring Earth's Greatest Super-Heroes to Another World 25 Trillion Miles Away?"

 

Of course, if you don't know who's getting married here, you haven't been paying attention.

 

Also, there's no way that Batman would be the best man instead of Hawkman. Even though this was before the "Bat-Psycho" days, he was never that tight with Adam Strange.

 

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