Justice League International #6
(Jurgens. Castiello. Acunzo.)
PREVIOUSLY… Earth was attacked by an Alien named Peraxxus. The UN set up a team to fight them led by a publicity hound named Booster Gold. The JLI kicked the monster’s ass!
One of the better ideas that DC came up with after Infinite Crisis was instilling Booster Gold with a character upgrade. Where once he was a pure joke character, Geoff Johns and Dan Jurgens switched him into the unsung leader of the DC universe, saving the world repeatedly while acting a fool so as not to interfere with the timeline. He earned Batman’s respect, starred in some cracking arcs, and even played a starring role in Flashpoint.
Then came the DC reboot.
Booster Gold has more as a character to lose than anyone. He had no solo title for one thing, and he was shifted back into the JLI. On the surface there’s nothing wrong with a JLI title, as Justice League: Generation Lost was a surprisingly fantastic comic-book. But beneath that, fans started to worry that Booster Gold would become a joke character again. Even with trust in Dan Jurgens the possibility was there that it’d go haywire.
Well, it hasn’t.
And this is all down to Dan Jurgens, whose love for Booster Gold shines through from every page. From page one where, I assume, Batman bows out of the title and tells Booster to take charge, through to Booster yelling at the UN and making them see that the JLI is needed, the comic-book radiates with the belief that Booster Gold is an A-List character. And in doing so, pairs him with a bunch of fantastic characters, like Fire, who deserve their due.
The only snag?
Well, the stories don’t feel epic enough for a start. The problem with rebooting JLI is that you lose out on the team dynamics that make things great. JL: Generation Lost had the sense of a team united by history, of rising to the occassion to stop Maxwell Lord. Sure it wasn’t a classic every week, but it was filled with cracking moments (like Jamie Reyes Scarab saving his life from Maxwell Lord) that made it a must-read. This does a great job of making Booster Gold relevant to a new audience, but… as with Johns JL… one gets the sense a leap five years ahead would merit the genuinely excellent stuff.
So hopefully, in arc 2, it shifts into high gear. At the moment, it’s great characters striving for truly epic material.