Review: Justice Society of America #9

“Recruitment Drive”
Writer: Geoff Johns
Artist: Mikel Janín
Color Artist: Jordie Bellaire
Letterer: Rob Leigh
Review by Kendra Smart

Justice Society of America #9 is finally in our hands and what a rush of information it brings. When last we left our crew, Helena was still trying to restore her purpose by gaining the trust and loyalty of the would-be villains whose good sides she’d already witnessed.

Last month we got the wonder that is Ruby Sokov, but for this issue, I dare say that Geoff Johns, Mikel Janín, and Jordie Bellaire have given us even more to ponder on as we edge closer to issue #12.

Let’s start with Mikel Janín’s cover. This brilliant piece of art features Mr. Terrific looking at spheres representing persons of interest and their respective statuses. It’s a wonderful representation of all the focal points we get to see in the issue, and as a cover, it takes us directly into the story. Mikel did a masterful job of drawing the eye and steering the narrative. Great work.

Character And Story Progression

As stated above, the issue begins with a recap of how far Helena Wayne’s plans have progressed. While there is indeed a focus on recruitment for her to prove to the JSA that some criminals can be reformed, there are also the children Stargirl saved who are finding their places, too. Play Fair comes to Mr. Terrific and gives him a gift, not only is it a reminder of what the meaning of what “Fair Play” truly means, but a Q-Sphere with a very specific search engine.

Meanwhile, the current focus for Stargirl and some of the gang is their trying to procure Michael Mayne, The Harlequin’s Son. Of course, he’s proving to be a harder catch than expected. Not only does he masterfully evade them, but he also gives them a history lesson on his mother’s prowess and forgotten genius. That is until he runs into someone who also wants to join the JSA… but we don’t do spoilers.

The Man In The Iron Mask

Geoff Johns has given us such a great story in this issue, as he calls on the heroes to remember why they became heroes in the first place. Mikel and Jordie help to achieve this by bringing such wonderful imagery to life. We also get a solid reminder that, while helping other caped heroes out in their time of need, isn’t their only purpose. The real role of a hero is to help all those who need it, particularly those who need it most or can’t usually get it. It’s to help even the playing field for everyone.

There are a lot of different messages that come through with comics but this one rings a most solemn bell. This is a remembrance of what the Justice Society of America stands for… their purpose. One could even equate it as their core. It’s a trope we see quite often in comics, but it’s even more powerful on this stage. Given what Helena’s trying to accomplish with her attempts at rehabilitation and understanding, and lost heroes coming back to the fold, this is a critical time for the Society. It’s not about just one timeline but the very heart of the JSA.

Conclusion

Justice Society of America #9 provides us with a launch into what to expect in the next issue and I, for one, cannot wait to see the reactions from the rest of the team. We’re turning a corner for this story arc and I can’t wait to see what’s next for Helena and the rest of the team, as the next part of the saga unfolds.

See you next issue!

Images Courtesy of DC Entertainment


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