Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Pérez/Ross on Justice League Detroit in Crisis On Infinite Earths!

Welcome to Justice League Detroit's first ever inter-blog crossover event! Masterminded by The Irredeemable Shag of Once Upon a Geek, this is likely the first salvo in his pipe dream plot to form a DC Blogger's League. He'd also like to direct you to his own blog, Firestorm Fan, dedicated to the sorta/kinda honorary member of the JLD. There you'll find the Nuclear Man as drawn by George Pérez and painted over by Alex Ross. The piece was produced for the 1998 Crisis On Infinite Earths Hardcover, which I discussed at the link.

Aside for my crumby J'Onn J'Onzz-related jam piece above (hi Jemm!,) Shag provided me with all of the scans to follow. They did not include Detroit Leaguer Aquaman, who will be far better represented at Rob Kelly's The Aquaman Shrine. Also, because of the length of this post, I moved commentary for Martian Manhunter & Gypsy to my other Detroit-related blog, The Idol-Head of Diabolu. I don't know if anyone will be handling short-term member Batman, but peppered throughout this post are links to the other blogs featuring portions of the Pérez/Ross artwork.

We'll start with Steel, who's a walking crisis of his own. You see, he's pictured in his very busy original costume, which was shredded during Crisis On Infinite Earths and replaced with a more open model. However, artists couldn't keep the suit straight, so Steel goes back and forth between outfits for much of the mega-crossover. Thankfully, Pérez and Ross nailed the character by having him crying and flailing about, as Hank Henshaw Jr. was emo when emo wasn't kewl.

Steel II and his World War II-era grandpappy Commander Steel are among the favorite super-heroes of Luke, who hosts a blog for their fellow right-winger Hawkman called Being Carter Hall.

Let me just say first off that I'm really glad it's Rip Hunter: Time Master in the grip of a tentacle monster, because I'm just not prepared for Zatanna hentai. Second. I miss C'hp. Third, even though I know it made her look like a Scarlet Witch knock-off, I really miss this George Pérez designed costume for Zee. It was what she was wearing when I first met her, and in the immortal words of Blue Devil, "Y'know, there aren't many women who could get away with wearing a bug on their head... but on you it looks terrific." I also dig the gigantic Shaniqua "Z" earrings. I do wish Zee looked less frightened though, as she's usually so well composed.

Fans of Zatanna should already be familiar with DC Comics' great legacy of sorcerous beings, including the one spotlighted at Rob Kelly's I am the Phantom Stranger blog, whom Zee infrequently teams up with... usually in group shots during crossovers, where the writer wimps out and shorthands "and here's what the mystics did to help in the crisis!"

Just look at that headshot of Vibe-- as smug as ever in the presence of far greater heroes... and by that I mean Steel, The Indestructible Man and the flippin' Viking Commando! Is it any wonder Ollie Queen always wanted to slap Paco's soul patch off? Speaking of Green Arrow, there's part of him just below here, though you can get a better view at Adama's Dispatches from the Arrow Cave!

I can't say for certain, but I suspect Sue Dibney was especially "pleased" by the visual of her husband being ridden by a sword-bearing Travis Morgan, the loincloth wearing Warlord of Skartaris! As opposed to Zatanna, I prefer this purple and white costume, rather than the classic red and blue suit most know him from. The latter color scheme is WAY overused for super-heroes, while this one is fairly unique. Plus, the Elongated Man was never dynamic enough to rate such a forceful scheme, which is too closely associated with a certain Scarlet Speedster he co-starred with for years. Spectral redundancy, ya'll! I'm sure we can all agree both these costumes are better than the the number with the domino mask, though. Define "drab"?

For more on E-Man's pal the Flash, check out Kelson's Speed Force blog, featuring a Crisis On Earth Blog Entry! Also, did you know Julius Schwartz once stated that, had he known DC Comics owned Plastic Man, he'd have never bothered to oversee the creation of Elongated Man? To follow the original stretchable hero, see Rick's Plastic Man Platitudes. Also, there's a a "red skies" crossover at Daniel Taylor's not-quite-E-Man-specific "An Ear -- in the Fireplace!"

We'll close out with my favorite female Detroit member, the vivacious Vixen! She comes off a bit more feral than was true of the character here. Even though Mari always seemed intended as the "Wolverine" of the group, in truth she was more like the flirtatious Tigra from the Avengers. However, Vixen was a much deeper and plain better character overall, in my opinion. The problem is, modern writers have gone so far the other way as to make her downright sedate, ala the X-Men's Storm. Could someone please offer these people copies of Vixen's wonderful appearances on Justice League Unlimited?

Playing nine degrees of separation to close things out, some of Vixen's very few solo guest appearances ever were in Animal Man, an oddball super-hero title written by Grant Morrison. Even stranger was Morrison's take on the Doom Patrol, for whom Doug has recently started a blog. Rick's also got something brewing at Mail it to Team-up, and is responsible for the promotional video below!


The Irredeemable Shag said...

Great post! I love the way you wove all the other blogs into your narrative!

And I totally agree about Zatanna. I love that costume, and I always think of that Blue Devil line too!

Thanks for joining in the crossover!

The Irredeemable Shag

Diabolu Frank said...

...Fingers crossed on Green Arrow...

Luke said...

We'll start with Steel, who's a walking crisis of his own.


Truer words, my friend, have never been spoken.

Doug said...

If only more writers truly understood Vixen. . .

Diabolu Frank said...

I thought you'd agree, Luke. ;)

Doug, hopefully you'll help Mari out in the future?