Justice League #3
Scott Snyder and Jorge Jimenez continue building their DC Universe-sized epic in Justice League #3. John Stewart shows the Justice League what he’s made of. Lex Luthor gets in Superman’s head. The seven mysterious forces in the universe continue to come to light as the mystery of the Totality becomes more and more enthralling. There’s only one question this issue will force you to ask: if there’s this much content in the first three issues, what more does Snyder have up his sleeve?
Scott Snyder, along with Jorge Jimenez, both are becoming masters of grand storytelling. One of the subtlest but most effective skills Snyder has is the ability to balance the story’s many different characters. It never feels as if a character is neglected and even when a character isn’t the focus of the story they’re given something memorable to do. Readers are introduced to the first of the seven hidden forces of the universe and Snyder expertly uses the reader’s understanding of the League’s individual powers to segue into a simple explanation of what could’ve been a very convoluted concept. He’s also able to do this without ever sacrificing the action or the breakneck pace of the issue. Snyder’s Justice League is also just so freaking cool.
I genuinely love and love reading about every one of these characters under Snyder’s pen. His Superman is perfectly humble and compassionate. His Flash is appropriately energetic. His Cyborg actually feels like a competent and capable hero who should stand shoulder to shoulder with giants. This doesn’t even get into how interesting the Invisible Spectrum is, how credible Snyder’s Legion of Doom is, how deep his mastery of the DC Universe goes, and how cool all of the plot threads you don’t know about are.
The only problem I have with the issue is that the story continues the thematic idea Snyder drafted in No Justice that the basic energy of humanity is entropy. This doesn’t make sense in the context of the world we’ve seen. Spending all our time with the Justice League and the Legion of Doom constantly shows readers the wisdom, wonder, and mystery in the world, but does very little to make humanity’s entropy seem like a noticeably larger force.
Jorge Jimenez is, in my opinion, the best artist working in the industry today. No one across history draws a better Superman. His art just has all the things that a Justice League artist needs. It’s bright, dynamic, and hopeful! He constructs a believable superhero world and he draws everyone from Lex Luthor to Aquaman uniquely and perfectly. Each face he draws has such a distinct look, which when compared to other masters of the craft like Greg Capullo, seems to be a hard thing to master. His action is amazing and fluid while never being confusing or hard to follow.
One of the coolest things he does is direct where the reader’s eye should go. You can see it specifically in his larger images that his positioning of form, the direction of movement, and use of shadow all create a pathway for the reader to follow. This marks the sign of a great artist when they’re doing things with their art that make it better without the reader even noticing.
Scott Snyder has been a great writer for a while, but Justice League is really just a credit to his growth as a creator. His ability to direct the entire DC Universe is, at this time, unparalleled. Jorge Jimenez is his perfect partner in this, so much so that I’ll be sad to see Jim Cheung return. This is the Justice League book readers have been waiting for since Grant Morrison left JLA. Through these first three issues, this issue has in every way topped Geoff Johns’ New 52 run. You’re doing yourself a disservice not reading this book as it’s everything the Justice League should be.
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