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Justice League International Vol. 1 [Kindle Edition]

Keith Giffen , J.M. DeMatties , KEVIN MAGUIRE

Print List Price: £13.50
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Book Description

In the late 1980s, writers Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis redefined the Justice League of America with these unique, humorous tales, collected for the first time since their original comic-book publication.

With Batman, Green Lantern Guy Gardner, Blue Beetle, Booster Gold and other quirky heroes of the DC Universe, the team battles the colony of spaceships known only as the Cluster, then must track their missing comrade, Mister Miracle to the dread planet Apokolips. And when our heroes arrive back on Earth, they must contend with the new Queen Bee and the return of Lobo. Collects issues #1-6.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 86882 KB
  • Print Length: 192 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics (10 Jun. 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00K7EIXA8
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
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  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #574,175 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars  10 reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best version of the Justice League, ever 4 Sept. 2009
By Thomas Veil - Published on
I grew up with the Silver Age version of the Justice League: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Arrow, Green Lantern, Aquaman, etc. As I recall, they were good stories. But in the light of what was to come, they were also somewhat straightforward and uninspired.

Enter Keith Giffen and J. M. DeMatteis, two writers destined to shake up not only the Justice League, but the nature of comic books in general. In an era when comics were going for "grim-and-gritty", they decided to opt for jokes and slapstick.

Giffen and DeMatteis didn't have access to Superman, Wonder Woman and Flash. Those characters were undergoing editorial renovation. Their solution? Populate the League with second-rank heroes, those guys nobody seemed to really love, like Black Canary, Blue Beetle, Mister Miracle and (later) Captain Atom, Power Girl and others. Giffen and DeMatteis not only rescued these characters from their fates as perpetual walk-on players...they actually endowed each of them with recognizable personalities. They took a bunch of backup heroes and breathed life into them.

This is the story of how that League came together, from its formation to the day it became officially sanctioned by the UN as an international peacekeeping force. It starts at the first meeting which, with Guy Gardner there, turns into a brawl, and follows it through as the enigmatic millionaire Maxwell Lord maneuvers and manipulates the League into a position of power. (What's his hidden agenda? Ah, that's for Vol. 2.)

Fans of serious stories needn't fear. There are plenty of legitimate challenges to the League here, from the Grey Man to a group of superheroes from another dimension who want to rid Earth of all its nuclear weapons. But the action is leavened with verbal gags and physical humor, the highlight of which -- hell, it's probably a highlight of the entire Justice League series! -- is a long-brewing fight between the no-nonsense Batman and the obnoxious Guy Gardner. I won't give it away, but let's just say that the fight leaves sideline observer Blue Beetle in a state of hysterical laughter, and you may have the same reaction as well.

If you avoid comics because of the constant fight scenes and the pretentious dialogue ("Kneel before the power that is [insert villain's third-person reference to himself here]!") then you will greatly appreciate the realism, humanity, quirkiness and plain old fun that Giffen and DeMatteis bring to their version of the greatest superhero team of all time, the Justice League.

(Note: the Amazon product description for this book appears to be incorrect, and describes Volume 3, not this volume.)
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Justice League: The Comedic Years 15 Jan. 2012
By para - Published on
This trade collects the first 7 issues of Giffen and DeMatteis's Justice League (Justice League 1-6 and Justice League International 7. I'll refer to the series as JLI from here on).

JLI was a completely new take on DC's flagship team when it came out. As explained by editor Andrew Helfer in the forward, in the early planning stages he was forbidden from using a lot of DC's top names (due to what was unfolding in their own series at the time) and had to come up with the framework for the series without knowing what his final lineup would be. These obstacles proved serendipitous as they led him and Giffen to the idea of presenting the Justice League as a club as much as a team and focus on how the members interacted and learned to work together.

The concept worked wonderfully. With Batman anchoring a team of "second stringers" (similar to classic The Brave and the Bold stories) JLI became high adventure series with a lot of humor. Add in Guy Gardner as a perpetual thorn in Batman's side and the potential was limitless.

The idea also helps JLI hold up surprisingly well, not feeling dated or irrelevant. Again, with the character interactions at the heart of the story everything still resonates. These issues contain events with long lasting effects, including the beginning of the Blue Beetle / Booster Gold friendship and a conflict between Batman and Guy that is paid homage to in scenes to this day.

Light-hearted and fun, JLI is an easy recommendation for anyone looking for a change of pace from the more series tone of most of today's comics.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly Good!! 22 Nov. 2009
By R. Lehmann - Published on
The quirky humor and fast pacing really pay off. For those old enough to remember it's like a mini time capsule of the year 1987 in many ways. Giffen and Dematteis somehow took a bunch of heroes no one cares about (minus batman) and some typically bland 80's art style and made a REALLY enjoyable comic. And that's even before Booster Gold shows up who is always entertaining. This volume includes the first 7 issues (Justice League #1-6 & Justice League International #7). If you can pick up a cheap copy, do so you will not regret it. This one is staying on my shelf.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Just once, I'd like to rush off to save the world - and have it be a gay, madcap escapade!" 10 Sept. 2010
By H. Bala - Published on
So, this lighthearted take on the Justice League ranks as a personal favorite. And, despite the few grumpies who denounced it, this particular incarnation of DC's flagship title, from 1987 and on to the '90s, was an overwhelming success. Cherry picking from the roster of the Legends: The Collection mini-series, plotter Keith Giffen, scripter J.M. DeMatteis, and artists Kevin Maguire, Al Gordon, and Terry Austin (for one issue) were able to inject big new life into this flagging title. Flagging? JLA had actually been canceled after issue #261 (after the dismal Detroit arc), only to be re-started with this version. Giffen and DeMatteis weren't able to use Superman, Wonder Woman, or the Flash as these characters were undergoing their own revamping. So, with Batman, the Martian Manhunter, and the Black Canary representing the old guard, the cast is mostly made up of capes new to the League.

JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL Vol. 1 collects the first seven issues of Giffen and DeMatteis's run. Their first few stories were actually about as conventional as they'd get as, in these pages, the new, untested team faces off against terrorists holding the United Nations hostage, three otherworldly beings bent on destroying the world's entire nuclear weaponry, the mystical and frightening Gray Man, and the Royal Flush Gang. Also weaving in and out of the picture is the mysterious Maxwell Lord, who seems to be pulling some serious strings in the shadows. A drastic upgrading to the team's status on the world stage would be reflected with a title change as JUSTICE LEAGUE would become JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL with issue #7. But, even with these somber story arcs, Giffen and DeMatteis were already peppering in tidbits of what would become their trademark humor.

The characters draw you in right away. Of them all, my favorite is Ted Kord, the Blue Beetle (I liked his comic book series, too). His partner in farce isn't bad, either - Booster Gold, who'd show up by the 3rd issue. Then there's the gee-whizzy, aw-shucksy Captain Marvel and that fun-to-root-against nutjob Guy Gardner. In fact, one early highlight is the much anticipated showdown between the brash ugly Gardner and the domineering Batman. In their subversive portrayal of the Justice League, Giffen and DeMatteis have gone on record (in a Silver Bullet Comics interview) that they weren't doing a superhero spoof as much as basing their characters' playful interactions on how camaraderie in real life would play out. Whatever the case, the squabbling character dynamics would be ripe for comedy plunder for years to come.

It all wouldn't have worked as well, of course, without Kevin Maguire's wonderful artwork. Maguire, back in 1987, was an unknown artist, so DC's decision makers really took a chance by giving him the pencilling gig. But it pays off huge. Kevin is a great all-around artist but he really excels in drawing the most expressive facial expressions. He's also very good at rendering the most natural or the most heroic of poses.

So, yeah, so many things to like about this run. There's an energy here, and a freshness. And, while, soon enough, the madcap comedy would become tone-setting, there were still enough character driven stories and solid, straightforward action that I never got the feeling that the series became reduced to a parody book. At least, not until the much later issues (I wince at L-Ron and the doggy Green Lantern). JUSTICE LEAGUE (INTERNATIONAL) proved to be so popular it spawned several spinoffs: JUSTICE LEAGUE EUROPE, JUSTICE LEAGUE QUARTERLY, and JUSTICE LEAGUE TASK FORCE. But it all starts with JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL Volume 1. Give it a shot, and see if this brand of Justice League can't tickle you in the "Bwah-ha-ha!"

(In the Must-Be-Said Department: I don't know about anyone else who's read these issues before, but, for me, it feels a bit weird and even bittersweet, nowadays, to re-read the Giffen/DeMatteis Justice League, given the events in Identity Crisis (DC Comics) and, specifically, to the Blue Beetle story leading in to Infinite Crisis. I'll just go on record as a non-fan of Maxwell Lord.)

And if you're wondering what else Giffen and DeMatteis have collaborated in, then also check out their DEFENDERS (with Maguire), Hero Squared Vol. 1 and Giffen and Dematteis' Planetary Brigade mini-series. These too have some good yucks.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best series in comic history!!! 20 Oct. 2011
By L. Henry Dowell-Playwright - Published on
It's interesting to read the reviews here and elsewhere for this particular series. Most people seem to love this series, and in fact, have written some well thought out reviews for why it was so good. In fact, I couldn't put it any better than some of the Amazon reviewers already have. I'll just sing my praises and leave it at that.

Some people really hate JLI. AT least that's what they say. They refer to it as the worst version of the League ever, but usually give little reason, other than the humor. Sometimes their posts lead me to believe they've never actually read the books at all, let alone these first seven issues. But you see, to really appreciate what JLI meant, I think you had to be there.

1987. Comic books had gotten so morose and over the top with violence and darkness that Justice League, and later Justice League International, was a breath of fresh air. And listen to this KIDS, the book sold like hotcakes. The first issues were equal parts action and humor.

This series was so well written and drawn that it put characters like Guy Gardner on the map. These writers made Guy Gardner the lovable hothead he is. They created a Buddy team in Blue Beetle and Booster Gold that still ranks up there with the greatest. Did anyone care about Mr. Miracle before JLI? These are just a few examples of the impact JLI had on a generation of characters and their readers. Check the all time lists of favorite characters and you'll see a fair number of JLI members on that list. B listers. C listers. Sure, but beloved characters none the less.

I use comic books and graphic novels to teach writing and acting. I use The Killing Joke and this first volume of Justice League International as examples of how to marry writing with visuals. This book in particular is written as well as ANY Broadway comedy.
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