“For No Better Reason part four”
Writer: Gail Simone
Artists: Dan Jurgens (breakdowns), Andy Smith (finishes)
Our beleaguered heroes rally (for real this time), and manage to reverse the effects of the technology-inhibiting attack.
This final arc didn’t really live up to expectations, but I’m going easy on it because it was a wise plan I think to involve our established heroes in one last, serviceable adventure tale before the respite leading up to the future reboot.
Simone hasn’t done anything revelatory to the characters in this arc, but to those who disliked the alternately cataclysmic and re-iterative nature of the DnA years, it was a welcome return to straightforward action storytelling. In other words, rather than destroy everything or homage old stories, Simone chose to tell a new story featuring the established characters acting as we’d expect they might in a crisis that, while serious, was limited in scope.
Keeping the scale small allowed for some important character highlights, and Dream Girl, Karate Kid, LeViathan and Timber Wolf all came in for definitive moments showing off their special skills. To a lesser extent, so did Umbra, Braniac 5, and Chameleon. Nura, especially, evinces the hardening she received during the Robotica war, willing to scar herself in a brave action that turns the tide of this skirmish and ends the threat.
We never really learn what motivated these JLA clones, or where they got their abilities. The given explanation is unconvincingly delivered by the team’s weakest link. Supporting characters such as the Persuader and Pinter the organ-bandit are far more memorable than the main villains, who are easily disposed of by Cadet Infectious Lass after all.
The art by Jurgens and Smith is more than serviceable, bringing a nice clarity to these young adult heroes. The ceremonial dress from the first issue shifts to conventional costumes by story’s end, fitting for an epilogue that comments on the cyclical nature of these adventures. Kevin Nowlan’s excellent cover finds a wary team regrouping for final battle.
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