Combating Dystopia.

Friday, November 19, 2010


Ahhh, the warm and slightly sleazy buzz of nostalgia. I'm not sure whats inspired me to wax absurdly reminiscent about my time as a comic book store clerk twice in one week, but watching the footage of the imminent "Justice League Jr." series has me retreading those dorktastic steps.

The ultimate perk of working at a comic book store? Unlimited reading material. I, for the first time ever, had hours to pour over the entire bodies of work of the major publishers and indie labels...and I made something of a study of it. And one of the books that stuck out the most in that somewhat bizarre period of the late 90s was Peter A David's
Young Justice. The first thing that jumped out at me was the art of Todd Nauck, which had this cartoonish vibrancy while at the same time conveying a lot of dynamic action and characterization. A club made up of sidekicks: Sure, Robin III was cool (Tim Drake was both confident and comfortably nerdy and studious and yet enjoyably different than Dick Grayson) and Impulse was something of a moppy haired, adorable, spastic idiot savant with superpowers and Superboy came off as the cocky big kid on campus. The first several issues came off as a super hero buddy comedy with all the bad jokes and goofy set ups to boot. ("Young. Just, us." ) But it also skirted some real darkness, Secret, a mysterious girl the trio liberates is a possibly dead-but-resurrected government lab experiment with no real memory of her former self (but she's cute as a button, minus the dead stuff) and she's being pursued by her possible brother who killed her as a bid to gain demonic powers through a cult ritual. See? Plenty dark. And somehow it managed to be fun and comical at the same time.

When I saw that the Cartoon Network was producing a show by the same name a few months back, I was immediately skeptical. Young Justice ran for quite a while, and was for much of this time the only DC comic I read. When the Teen Titans cartoon was near launch, the characters of use to the cartoon were hastily excised from Young Justice, the comic cancelled and a new Teen Titans book was thrown together to profit from the loose association of the show. Needless to say it didn't sit well. So now, ten years later we have a Young Justice cartoon that might possibly get most of the spirit of YJ right... It might be karmic. Who knows? But it looks pretty sodding sweet so far. No word on whether or not we can expect to see the likes of the Secret (or Wonder Girl), and the new Aqualad is completely made for tv (but looks cool) but ...feeling more optimistic than not about the potential. Color me temporarily stoked, and watch a 6 minute opener for the series which is looking more badass than I'd expected. This could be interesting, fanboys and girls.

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