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Justice League vs. Godzilla vs. Kong #1
DC Comics

Comic Books

‘Justice League vs. Godzilla vs. Kong’ #1 gives the blockbuster a heartfelt yet rocky start

…there goes Metropolis, go go Godzilla!

“These majestic titans are perfect for us…they’re the ultimate toys!”

Even superheroes need a day off, and Superman is no different, especially with love in the air. Supergirl is filling in for him on the Justice League while he readies himself to propose to Lois Lane. Surely nothing will throw the Man of Steel’s day off. Not even titanic monsters attacking Metropolis. Right? Right???

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Who am I kidding, that’s just Tuesday for him. Nonetheless, these are not his typical monsters.

In an age of comics where inter-property crossovers are few and far in-between, the aptly titled Justice League vs. Godzilla vs. Kong hits the stands this week; with a script by Brian Buccellato, pencils by Christian Duce, and colors by Luis Guerrero. It is also worth noting that this story is likely not canon to the main timeline, but I personally think it would be pretty awesome to canonize Godzilla being a factor in Superman and Lois’ marriage.

Justice League vs. Godzilla vs. Kong #1
Godzilla rocks Metropolis, courtesy of DC Comics.

The Legion of Doom are (again) looking for a way to take Superman and the Justice League off the board, but an unexpected snag throws a wrench into everyone’s day…a kaiju-sized wrench. Unfortunately, this crossover with Legendary’s Monsterverse is off to a bit of a rocky start.

With a premise that absolutely screams “blockbuster event,” it is refreshing that character relationships are front and center in the narrative. As Superman works overtime leading up to taking a much-needed vacation, much of the issue is keen on showing the chemistry between the Leaguers and the nuances of their dynamics. This is particularly prevalent between Barry Allen and Hal Jordan, who charm their way through each panel they’re in.

Tangentially to the Superfriends, the Legion work together but alas have little to no chemistry, and it is to be believed that they always lose against the League because of this. Contrasting the two teams is a fitting–if not overly simple–play on a narrative to sell us on the League’s cohesiveness in the face of danger and disaster, however the contrast is glaring to the point of the Legion as an entity carrying little intrigue in their favor, save for how Gorilla Grodd and Toyman are effectively incorporated.

Justice League vs. Godzilla vs. Kong #1
Flash and Green Lantern make small talk with Supergirl, courtesy of DC Comics.

Though there is certainly intent and a motive for the Legion baked into the narrative, the waters are a tad murky in that respect save for Toyman. Despite their humorously bitter bickering, the team feels as though they’re just going through the motions, which begs the question as to how core they’ll be to the rest of the story. There is definitely a degree of going through the motions needed to sell the kaiju as the primary threat, but it would be a waste to use these characters solely to bring in the bigger fish.

On the Titan (no, not the team) side of things, the Monsterverse is integrated fairly standardly yet effectively. Duce’s sharp pencil layouts paired with Guerrero’s stark coloring realize our favorite radioactive lizard and giant ape in all their kaiju glory; having said that, they are not the main focus of the issue. Moreover, I would like to iterate that the nature of their integration into the DC Universe as of now makes them almost feel like generic DC monsters for both better and worse. But having said THAT, that confused integration is saved by the notion of setting up Superman going head to head with Legendary’s Godzilla while the former is eating dinner with his future wife on the roof of the Daily Planet. And with that being the crux of the narrative thus far, the appeal of that notion makes the setup worth it.

There is definitely heart in the craft of this issue, however Justice League vs. Godzilla vs. Kong #1 narrowly gets this legendary crossover off the ground. It is a clever setup that is served by its understanding and appreciation of Justice League dynamics and well-paced confrontation buildup, but is lacking with its mostly generic approach to the main antagonists. These shortcomings are redeemed with a sense of awareness that is not quite fully realized yet, but still has more than enough room to grow. All the pieces are laid, they just need a bit of a push. All in all, it makes for a very fun read that does exactly what it set out to do.

Justice League vs. Godzilla vs. Kong #1
‘Justice League vs. Godzilla vs. Kong’ #1 gives the blockbuster a heartfelt yet rocky start
Justice League vs. Godzilla vs. Kong #1
Though it's a rocky start to a blockbuster event, it's a fun and unexpectedly heartfelt stage setter that builds up to a confrontation with just enough nuance to save it.
Reader Rating1 Votes
8.8
Superman and Lois being at the center of the narrative adds an unexpected layer of heart.
The Justice League dynamics sell the value of their relationships to one another.
Buccellato's balance of heartfelt and humorous dialogue makes the narrative flow by breezily.
Duce and Guerrero's visuals integrate the kaiju seamlessly into the DC Universe without losing the scale they carry with them, even if they're now in a world of superheroes and villains.
The narrative integration of the Monsterverse is quite simplistic here.
The Legion of Doom feel overly generic and dysfunctional to a fault, as though they're going through the motions for most of the issue.
7
Good
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