Friday, January 18, 2013

JL #25 "The Ice Age Cometh!" AFTERWARD

So, what did you think?

Re-reading it today I can see a few mistakes and problems, but overall, especially compared to some of my other stories, I think this one holds up pretty well.

Above is the original splash page to the source material by Dick Dillin, with inks by Frank McLaughlin. You can see right away that I kept the general look of the page while making my own subtle changes. For instance, I never introduced Wonder Woman's invisible jet, and I always colored in Green Lantern's bubbles. The Atom is of course not on Superman's shoulder in my version.
Hawkgirl was not a member of the JLA at this time, so did not participate in the original story. It was easy to keep "my" Hawkwoman on the satellite on monitor duty per my earlier established Justice League by-laws.
I liked how I featured all of the members, but then showcased only half of them. I would do the same next issue, when the story continued but then shifted the focus on the six who did not have all that much to do in this issue. This type of thing was difficult to juggle; it was much easier to simply have six heroes in one story and then the other six in another, but I liked the idea of everyone appearing if/when it was an actual A-1 Emergency Signal.

Speaking of the entire membership, here they all are in a wonderfully composed and drawn shot. Note the falling snow as well as Batman's breath. Besides the execution of this scene, I liked how Batman and Elongated Man would prefer to investigate the problem, and not try to cure the symptoms. Wonder Woman over-rules them for the time being. 

The reason Wonder Woman is put in charge in this story is because I had to have her join the group going after the bad guys. However, since "her" bad guy Minister Blizzard has been replaced by Mr. Freeze or Weather Wizard, I needed a better reason for her to go along. So as Field Leader she was going to take Batman and The Flash (whose villains were at large). In reality, it should have been The Elongated Man or Green Arrow, whose powers were ill-fitted for dealing with a disaster of this magnitude. (Although I thought my adding of the scenes with the JLAers rescuing people were well done, and were not in the original story.)  Notice also that Aquaman's hair is wet and now beginning to freeze....another nice touch, I thought. (Although I've stopped the snow, haha!)

Later, in the original story The Atom is feeling useless and invites himself along with Hawkman when the JL goes after the criminals again. So, I had my surrogate Atom, the Martian Manhunter, invite himself along. He really didn't need to go; in fact, he should have stayed. But it seemed logical at the time and for characters who don't know the outcome of the adventure, it made sense for him to go. He doesn't really do anything, and I regret that I had *him* capture Mr. Freeze instead of Wonder Woman.  

This is probably my favorite panel in all of my comics. Hawkman is looking kick-ass, and yet The Shadow Thief is literally right behind him making a fool out of him.

And now we come to the biggest change from the source material. In the original story, The Phantom Stranger shows up and captures The Shadow Thief for them. However, I had just had the Phantom Stranger appear last issue in their battle against Felix Faust. Also, I needed The Red Tornado to re-appear. In the original comics The Red Tornado does do this "deus ex machina" type appearance (JLA #105) so I was following the feeling of the stories, if not the specifics. And I don't know, but I kind of liked the logic of "shadows can't exist in tornadoes!"
 All in all, I thought this issue was great. Sure, the art sucks in places, but like I've said before, I think of myself as similar to Fred Hembeck or Frank Robbins; not necessarily great "artists," but more than capable to tell a great story.

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