Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Comic Book Review: Justice League Generation Lost #18

Written By: Judd Winick
Artist: Aaron Lopresti
Inker: Matt Ryan
Colorist: Hi-Fi
Cover Artist: Aaron Lopresti & Hi-Fi
Letterer: John J. Hill
Editor: Rex Ogle & Brian Cunningham

My Awe-Inspiring Opinion
Good God I missed having Aaron Lopresti pulling the artistic duties of comics.  Having him work on Power Girl and the rest of the JLI is nothing less than a dream come true.  But now I’m faced with a major problem!  I picked up this issue of Justice League: Generation Lost because it ties in with the current arc running in Power Girl’s own title.  And after reading it, I’m regretting not following this miniseries when it started 18 issues ago.  Damn me and my ability to not spend shit tons of money on comics!

Power Girl is out for vengeance, but only because Maxwell Lord is sending false images into PG’s brain.  To her, Captain Atom looks like a psycho Superman who killed Magog.  This false imagery, provided by Maxy, also extends towards the rest of the JLI; giving Booster, Rocket Red, Ice and Fire a different look and personality in Power Girl’s brain.  It’s one of the deadliest and most intense hero on hero violence any comic has ever contained!  Will Power Girl kill her friends? Will Maxy succeed in his mind manipulation?  I’m sure you’ll be able to figure it out.

As most of you know, I love Judd Winick; his Batman arcs have been far superior to Grant Morrison’s, yet DC keeps hiring him to write for Batman more and more!  Judd Winick’s genius has been under rated by DC for as long as I can remember.  But here in Generation Lost #18, Winick once again proves that not even Morrison can keep him at bay!

We all know that Maxwell Lord is the bad guy (or one of the bad guys) within Brightest Day, but what his role is within the story has yet to be determined.  Winick, however, throws a monkey wrench in the works by causing us to rethink Maxy’s diabolical intentions.  Is he a bad guy or a good guy?  You can ask this question but you’ll never come to any solid conclusion because Winick leaves the playing field wide open!  Is Max really reforming or is he suffering from a misguided sense of justice? 

Within the last few years, DC has really utilized the sepia-toned flashback sequences to help set up a story.  Calling back to the friendship shared by PG and Captain Atom was the perfect Segway into the fight of fights between the two.  This led into a wonderfully angst-driven brawl where Power Girl was ready to pummel Captain Atom to the grave, and the JLI torn between killing Power Girl to save Atom, or going easy on her while Cappy shuffles off this mortal coil.  There was so much power put into this whole conflict, something very few writers are able to do in just 19 pages.

As stated above, Aaron Lopresti is one of my all-time favorite comic book artists.  I didn’t even realize he was sketching this book out until I opened up to the first page.  The panel toggle from What Power Girl was seeing to what was actually there was excellently executed.  Panels with the Max-vision goggles were typically darker while the reality shots were much more soaked in cooler, blue colors, helping me to understand the emotional impact of Power Girl’s dilemma.  Hi-Fi (Who names their kid Hi-Fi?) brought the colors together quite nicely and intelligently, never wavering in quality.

My only complaint with this issue is purely based around the fact that I had to buy an issue of Generation Lost in order to stay up to speed with Power Girl’s title.  Sure, it makes sense to do it this way, but why couldn’t they have kept it in Power girl?  I guess this sentiment follows along with my frustration with Brightest Day in general as it seems to be slapped on every comic book cover these days.  Or, who knows, maybe this is a hint that Generation Lost will be making it’s way into a on-going series.

My Majestically Climactic Conclusion
I really enjoyed this issue, and my highly developed nerd brain tells me you will too.  But you might want to catch up on the events of Brightest Day if you aren’t too familiar with its goings on.

Rating: 9 out of 10

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