GRAPHIC CONTENT PICK OF THE WEEK: Lonmonster – ‘Justice League Dark’ #1

Milligan has gained quite the loyal fan base with his work on the ‘Hellblazer’ hero, John Constantine, over at Vertigo. Now Milligan spreads his seed into a totally different universe, placing an altered version of Constantine on a team of misfits. This strange new team, known as ‘Justice League Dark’, serves to deal with the supernatural business that the regular heroes just can’t handle. The team is comprised of some of the most lovable, albeit minor, characters in the DCU. Aside from Constantine, the JLD team includes of Deadman, Mindwarp, Madame Xanadu, Shade the Changing Man, Enchantress, and Zatanna. With such an incredible cast of supernatural characters, JLD looks to win over the hearts of horror fans. Read on for the skinny…

WRITTEN BY: Peter Milligan
ILLUSTRATIONS BY: Mikel Janin

“The witch known as the Enchantress has gone mad, unleashing forces that not even the combined powers of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and Cyborg can stop. And if those heroes can’t handle the job, who will stand against this mystical madness? Shade the Changing Man, Madame Xanadu, Deadman, Zatanna and John Constantine may be our only hope!”

After the reboot was announced, many fans feared that some of the less popular characters would be forgotten, lost in the abyss that is the DC vault. Luckily, DC thought of it all, and though these heroes may not be getting their own titles, they shine together as the first ever Justice League Dark. Some of these heroes have extremely loyal enthusiasts such as Deadman, Madame Xanadu, and Constantine. Others are more offbeat, such as Mindwarp who was only created on Flashpoint. Regardless of which dark hero you empathize with, the thought of them being together on one team is absolutely amazing. When was the last time a mainstream group of heroes battled with dark forces? (Cough B.P.R.D. cough)

Many of these heroes aren’t the type to work in teams. For starters most people can’t see Deadman. Constantine isn’t the friendliest of men, and Enchantress has questionable motives at best. I really hope this series finds room to build relationships between the heroes rather than simply focusing on the action sequences. With the regular JLA we’ve seen deep relationships form between Superman and Batman, and I can only imagine what farfetched bonds could emerge from the heroes of JLD.

Milligan is best known for his recent work on ’Hellblazer’, ‘Greek Street’ and his Flashpoint tie-in, ‘Secret Seven’. Some of his work has been hit or miss, but without a doubt his Constantine characterization has been a blast. If his Vertigo work is a sign of things to come for JLD we’re all in for a very dark and emotional ride.

One question is probably looming at the back of your mind right now: how the hell is Constantine going to exist in two completely separate universes simultaneously? Yes, this is baffling, but answer is simple. They are two distinct versions of Constantine. The JLD version is younger and takes off from the original DC character, while the Vertigo version will remain as is. Although a strange choice to make, Constantine is an asset to the team and they just wouldn’t be the same without him. Plus we’ve already seen the character work in ‘The Search for Swamp Thing’.

This is the third Justice League title to come from the relaunch, and it seems as if there are too damn many JL squads. Then again, think of how many Bat-Books there are. This is one of the only real unique ideas to come out of the reboot, not just another character rebirth, but an entirely new crew of dark heroes banding together for the first time.

‘Justice League Dark’ #1 Drops Wednesday September 28th From DC Comics! (MSRP $2.99)