Rating: 2.5/5 – A Team-Up Mired in the Middle of the Road.
by guest reviewer Kevyn Knox.
Part one of a six issue limited series, Justice Inc. #1, teams up three of Dynamite’s old school characters in 1939 America. The three characters in question are Doc Savage, The Shadow, and The Avenger. This first issue revolves mostly around Doc Savage, as the Man of Bronze travels back in time after an experiment gone awry. The Shadow only creeps in near the end, and The Avenger seems to be talked about more than shown – at least outside of his mild-mannered civilian guise. And even though much of this first issue revolves around airplanes and flight, the story never really got off the ground for me in this debut issue.
Justice #1 is written by Michael Uslan, who is well known for being the producer of every Batman movie since Tim Burton first got into the game. As a writer of this issue, he gives us a Doc Savage and The Avenger who seem to have nothing but stock personalities. One-dimensional non-personalities, if you will. The character of the Shadow shows a sense of intrigue, but he is not used enough here to save the otherwise middling story. The story felt mired with a choppy clichéd narrative that seemed to have been ripped from the first few pages of a high school textbook on writing. It isn’t necessarily bad writing, so much as just very basic boilerplate stuff. The artwork of Giovanni Timpano, someone I was not familiar with until reading this issue, had good lines and all the artistic basics, but was nothing that would ever make me say “Wow!” like I did for the cover by Alex Ross.
Justice Inc. #1 lays the groundwork for a potentially intriguing story, but doesn’t delve any deeper than the surface. This is an introductory issue and therefore is bound to have the usual explanatory stuff, something that goes with the territory for a #1 issue. The story never strays outside of a basic constricting narrative box that defines it as “let’s lay the groundwork”. It didn’t show me anything I haven’t seen before. Perhaps the story will get better and bolder as the series goes on, but it is not looking good so far.
Reviewed by: Kevyn Knox