Review:Justice League Dark #1

Published on October 6th, 2011

Justice League Dark is yet another new comic offered by DC this month in the “New 52.” Written by Peter Milligan, with art by Mikel Janin, this book offers the reader something entirely new for a Justice-League-type of team book. The basic idea of this team is that they are all based in some form of magic, which is great because when it comes to magic baddies, Superman isn’t the most qualified to come in and rough them up – nor is The Justice League. Enter Justice League Dark. Does this book cast a spell on its reader or just seem like a really bad magic trick where you see the card hanging out of the magician’s sleeve? Read on to find out!

I have joked many times that this book was going to be like The Dark Avengers, but I knew the two were really not similar at all. In fact,
they are worlds apart in what they are trying to accomplish with this title. Most people understand that The BIG Three of DC’s universe
(Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman) are really no match against any sort of magical foe. With that in mind, DC made a wise decision to not only give us anjustice-league-dark-1 extremely well written magical team, but a beautifully drawn one as well! This book has a fantastically diverse cast and there’s an interesting road ahead of us, but for now let’s take a peek into issue #1 of Justice League Dark!

Issue #1 opens with a BEAUTIFULLY drawn Madame Xanadu as she contacts Shade The Changing Man and tells him she requires his assistance in an urgent matter. We are then thrown into an emergency that the Justice League are called into, bringing Superman, Cyborg and Wonder Woman to a small farm house. It is revealed that The Enchantress is up to something big and she proceeds to rip these three powerhouses to shreds with dead teeth! You heard me right: the teeth of the dead! This all but sends the members of the Justice League running scared! I have to mention again at this point that Mikel Janin’s work on this book is PHENOMENAL! I sincerely hope they keep this team of artist and writer together, as they are 100% giving me a story I have never read in the DC Universe, as well as art that is top-tier in my book! I would also like to add that the colorist Ulises Arreola does A LOT to add to the atmosphere that writer Milligan has skillfully crafted.

Ok, enough gushing, now back to the book! After the initial takedown of the Justice League, we are then introduced to John Constantine, Deadman and finally Zatanna, as she stops Batman from joining the rest of The Justice League, knowing that only magic can stop this insanity! The story then ends with Madame Xanadu looking into the possible future in which sits a pile of dead bodies containing all the would-be members

This is why DC rebooted! This is the breath of fresh air and reorganization DC needed in order to make a book interesting. Milligan has succeeded in leaps and bounds in the same way Morrison has on Action Comics. It shows a more realistic version of these heroes in a different light. It adjusts the power rankings of the whole DC Universe and sorts out the GODlike superheroes. Little to no capes needed, but one hell of a fun ride ahead! I really hope this team stays together for the next 100 issues to continue to bring us magic in Justice League Dark!

Final Verdict: Justice League Dark is not only one of the BEST “New 52” but possibly one of the best new comics to have come out period! I hope to see Milligan and Janin bringing magic to this title for a long time to come!

Sheldon Lee

Sheldon@comicimpact.com