JLA: Justice League of America #9
“Power & Glory,” Part 8
Writer: Bryan Hitch
Inks: Daniel Henriques
Colors: Alex Sinclair
Letters: Chris Eliopoulos
Assists: Amedeo Turturro
Edits: Brian Cunningham
Cover: Bryan Hitch & Alex Sinclair
Variant Cover: Jim Lee & Alex Sinclair
Some Spoilers Ahead
At long last, JLA: Justice League of America returns! Bryan Hitch and creative team bring us Part 8 of the “Power & Glory” story arch. If you’ve missed the last few issues, or simply don’t remember. It might be worth checking out issue #8 and reading my review here.
JLA: Justice League of America #8 left readers on quite the proverbial cliff. The League scrambled to fight the Kryptonian deity, Rao, and eventually succeeded in breaking his hold over “converted” followers. With the life of a major character hanging in the balance, the flow of issues was paused as “Rebirth” took precedent.
Now, readers are returned to the story in JLA: Justice League of America #9. The story simultaneously picks up where it left off, but also feels like a new start. This portion of the story focuses on the mysterious Life Stones and Stones of Forever. Rao can hear their song and seeks their power. Rao of future and past collide, making for an interesting storytelling mechanism where the emotional reactions of one Rao at the actions of another.
The characters in this issue displayed a vast array of emotions. The depth of the spectrum was felt in this issue as the poignant and joyful played well off each other. The story continues to have a huge scope as entire worlds collide. Vintage Bryan Hitch. I am curious as to the influence of songs in Hitch’s writing. Both here in the pages of JLA: Justice League of America and in his Justice League title songs of the universe are prominent. In JLA, it’s the stones; in Justice League, it’s an ancient, elemental song.
Artistically, JLA: Justice League of America #9 is beautiful. As in many Justice League titles, the colors are vitally important as they set the stage for readers to know which character is primary in the panel. Their inner dialogue is cast in different colored boxes as well, which helps differentiate thoughts of characters – a significant contribution for readers. I enjoy how the artists continue to depict Rao with the halo typically assigned to ancient paintings of Christian saints. The pacing is appropriate and well rendered, helping move the eye of readers through the issue.
It took some revisiting of past issues to reclaim the ground lost in the time between issues. However, the effort was worth it. This is an epic story arch, and I am happy to see it continuing despite attention shifting to other titles. There were a few surprises in this issue, ones I believe will prove to be integral to the ongoing story. In all, it’s nice to have this story back and moving toward its conclusion.
Photos courtesy of DC Entertainment.