Adventure awaits at every turn in any good odyssey, which is apparent in Justice League Odyssey #22. I’m not sure where the story may go next issue, but issue #22 is a great done-in-one story that’s a space adventure worth reading. Jessica Cruz must save the universe, but how does she do it when she’s not even in the right time? That’s what creators Dan Abnett and Cliff Richards aim to resolve.
This issue opens on a Space Ranger attempting to arrest some aliens who have done a lot of bad things. In a lot of ways, Abnett and Richards drop us into this adventure as if this mysterious character is the main focus. In a way they are, as we’ll find out by the end of the issue, but it’s fun to see the series shift to a grungy sci-fi story not unlike Star Wars. As the tale plays out, answers do come (I won’t spoil them for you), and adventure awaits. There’s even a plucky robot sidekick to enjoy, too.
I will reveal Jessica Cruz is the main hero you’ll be familiar with this story. I admire DC Comics giving this relatively new character more attention and it’s clear by this series she’s playing a huge part in keeping the universe intact. Back when I was reading Green Lanterns, Jessica Cruz was very much still coming into her own, but the way Abnett writes her she’s in the full force of her abilities as a superhero. I love that.
Rain Berado’s colors and Richards’ gritty style works well for this story. We’re focusing on a time where DC Comics and its superheroes were at their darkest, so it makes thematic sense. It also gives this story a nice one-shot feel apart from the rest. Cruz gets to shine more than once — usually punching stuff — and there’s a poster-worthy full-page splash you won’t want to miss. I love the grime on things, like the Space Ranger’s spaceship, which seems to be covered in goo, or the refuse and squalor all around Cruz when she’s beside the ship. You get a feel for this strange dark world in every panel thanks to the colors and lines.
I liked this story for how easily accessible it was to the series. Cruz may be on a mission that involves many previous issues, but it’s easily enjoyable thanks to it dropping us in a strange world and making us figure it out. This book also has strong Star Wars vibes with a lot of grungy space pirate aspects you won’t want to miss.
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