This week marked the release of No Justice Issue #1, written by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, and Joshua Williamson, with art by Francis Manapul and colours by Hi-Fi,- the much anticipated Justice League event that was promised to follow up from the events of Dark Knights: Metal. Be warned, the following article contains spoilers for both Dark Knights: Metal, and No Justice Issue #1.
We open the issue with the Green Lantern Corps in space, out at the source wall, attempting to close a crack which occurred during the finale of Metal, during which Guy Gardner reveals that the Justice League “Broke the Universe”, and goes on to suggest that from here onwards, the Status Quo of the entire DCU is changing, which is evident not just throughout this book, but in solicitations for future JL books.
We then cut to earth, where the Suicide Squad, Titans, Teen Titans, and Justice League are all fighting Brainiac, whilst Amanda Waller monitors the situation. Eventually, the teams (With the exception of the Justice League) are taken down, and we cut to Harley, Zatanna, Beast Boy and Starfire waking up in Brainiac’s ship, heading to Colu. After some jokes, they move into the next room, where the other heroes, Martian Manhunter, Raven, Robin, Doctor Fate, and Atom are assessing the ship, soon to be joined by Brainiac and the Justice League, who explains the premise of the rest of the book- That breaking the Source Wall effectively set 4 ancient beings- The Omega Titans- into motion, and now they’re gonna destroy the universe, starting with Brainiac’s homeworld Colu, which is why he abducted the heroes, to help him defeat them, at which point he reveals he also has a group of villains working for him, consisting of Lex Luthor, Starro, Sinestro, Deathstroke and Etrigan.
Meanwhile, Amanda Waller is on earth with a group of the world’s most powerful psychics, attempting to “hack” Brainiac from earth. After a bit of infighting (It’s a superhero comic- of course there’s infighting) the gangs (or gangs) of heroes and villains arrive at Colu, only for Brainiac to reveal that he would lure the Omega Titans to Earth if the heroes failed to stop them, just as he’s seemingly destroyed by Waller last minute. And that’s pretty much where the issue ends, the heroes face to face with one of the Omega Titans, just as Brainiac dies before telling them exactly what they needed to do to stop them.
Overall, this was a pretty decent issue. There was a lot of exhibition, but that’s fine, it’s better to get it out of the way at the start than have the story draw to a stop at the end and have everything explained. There’s a lot of characters being juggled by the writers, but between the three of them, they manage to give pretty much every character a moment or two. These big team books often fall short when writers focus on 2 or 3 characters, having everyone else act as backup extras, but fortunately, this didn’t really happen in No Justice.
Additionally, I might have said it before, but Francis Manapul is one of, if not the best artist in comics at the moment, I loved him on Flash, then again on Justice League during the Darkseid War and on Trinity, and his art has that beautiful dynamic that really suits these cosmic epics, he handles teams really well, letting each character stand out, but not so much the page becomes a mess of dozens of clashing elements. I’m not entirely sure why Cyborg is red, I mean, I get that it’s to indicate which team he’s on, but also, I’m still not 100% sure if it’s a good look for him or not, otherwise, I don’t have much else to complain about.
I will be honest, I’m not entirely sold on Amanda Waller’s involvement, I get that given her role in the DCU, this is something that’d interest her, and I know that her inclusion here means she’ll have a reasonable part in the future of this arc, and possibly the other JL books that follow, but I’m not entirely sure what her role is in this specific comic, other than to kill Brainiac, thus adding a complication to the Justice League(s)
It was a great issue, I loved the art, and the writing was on point.
Every character got their moment to shine, despite the fact that there were 20+, it didn’t feel like one character, and all their backup
The book leaves me wanting more- You can be sure I’ll be picking up next week’s issue.
I’m not sold on Red Cyborg. I just don’t think it works, though I’ll probably get used to that by the end of the book.
I know Amanda Waller has some role in the future of this story, I’m not sure what it will be, or if it’ll be necessary, though I want to keep an open mind, so it’s not a full downside just yet.
I hope the Source wall stays broken, to be totally honest. I want to know what’s beyond it, and I hope that plays a part in JL books moving forward (I feel like it might come into play with Justice League: Odyssey especially)