It’s A Hobson’s Choice For The Batman And Buddies In Justice League #21

by Olly MacNamee

Over the years we’ve witnessed many a future Superman, but not one who’s been such an asshat as the bearded boy in blue in Justice League #21. Happy to leave Superman – one of many he’s entrapped and left to die in this pocket universe he’s created – to rot away on this faraway mud ball in the belief he’s saving the multiverse. The rest of the League, visiting this seemingly utopian future, are oblivious to Kal-El’s fate as they catch up with future versions of themselves and their loved ones. Or so they think. Nothing is ever too good to be true and with the warnings of Kendra and J’onn J’onzz’s future son, Shayne, ringing in our ears from last issue – as well as Luthor’s revelation that they have their very own impish guardian – the JL really should be more vigilant.

While Scott Snyder continues to amaze and astound readers with his scripting and vision of the future, it is Jorge Jimenez who weaves his magic – thanks to Snyder’s words – into magic. The expansive future geography and architecture Jimenez blew us all away with last issue is developed further in this issue, offering up oversized panels and widescreen shots to better establish this future landscape and continue to wow us all. Hell, even Batman sits in awe at these grandiose spectacles. But, if Batman’s happy, then you know something is definitely wrong. Especially when Asshat Superman turns up only to reveal himself to be something very, very different, and very, very powerful; God-level powers to say the least.

Meanwhile, back on Earth, the remaining band of Leaguers have to contend with a Kaiju-sized Mr Mxyzptlk and an absolutely fantastic one page rendition of Mxy thinking the DCU out of existence in a very metatextual kinda way. Is it a spoiler? I don’t think so, but either way, it’s too good NOT to share in this review. Furthermore, it stands as a great example of the top flight artist Jorge was always destined to become.

 

How Snyder manages to up the ante each and every time, offering the Justice League the most dreadful of Hobson’s choices, still amazes me. After 21 intense issues, this title continues to get better and better as layer upon layer of players and complexities are added all in order to further the narrative step-by-step closer to the ultimate showdown that could well see the DCU replaced (again) by another reality. And I thought Dr Manhattan was bad enough. Seems he’s got some competition.

Where this will all end for the DCU is still up in the air, with many a comic book blogger still wildly speculating on the future of the DCU. Doom for all? If Luthor gets his way, then yes. But, its safe to say our heroes will go down fighting whatever comes their way. All I know is that this is a book that continues to impress and that’s some feat in an ever increasingly stunning array of fantastic comics on the shelves these days. And, once again, in the last page reveal, Snyder stuns one last time and leaves us all baying for more, Than the News Gods this is fortnightly shipped book. I don’t think I could wait a whole month for my next fix!

Justice League #21 is out now from DC Comics.

Olly MacNamee

A unashamed DC Comics fan and sometime teacher for over 20 years! I got lucky and found the escape hatch. Now, I just read and write about comics all day long. Co-host of the ICE-Cast podcast and one third of the brains behind Birmingham's street art and graffiti festival High Vis Fest.

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