The last issue of the Justice League was eye-catching to say the least, with incredibly detailed art by Xermanico. It also featured a lot of great moments for the characters to shine as Robert Venditti revealed a new threat that may be tied to Wonder Woman. Oh yeah, then Spectre showed up! In Justice League #45, the second part of the “Cold War” storyline kicks off with the Justice League attempting to to kill…each other!
The first half of this issue is basically every fanboy’s daydream as we watch hero fight hero in creative ways. There is a formula here with the characters saying things they might mean a little bit, almost waking from their mind control, and then fighting on further. There are creative things afoot here, from Green Lantern’s construct to Batman’s comment about bulletproof skin. Eddy Barrows continues the highly detailed trend from the last issue and does a bang-up job articulating some tricky visual ideas.
The second half of this book is filled with answers and then finally a hook for the next issue. Fans of Spectre should pick this up just to see what DC is doing with him of late and it lends an interesting concept to the character being “whole.” Props to where the story is going from here, too, as it’s a rarity for the team to travel to this location.
I was a bit hungry for more once I put this book down, though. I think many will speed through this, especially since each battle in the first half follows a similar formula, and the decompression of the story is obviously a case of it being written for trade paperback reading. The artist change is a bit of a surprise too — the last issue was incredible in so many ways — but Barrows does a good enough job picking up the reigns.
The second part of the latest story arc is a bit formulaic, but still a fun superhero action ride. It looks good, offers an interesting cliffhanger, and even plays around with the higher powers in the DCU.