Hawkgirl, John Stewart and J’onn J’onzz AKA The Martian Manhunter take centre stage in Justice League #14, as this issue kicks off a brand new arc titled: Escape from Hawkworld. But before we take a look, lets checkout the covers.
The regular cover for this issue is by Jim Cheung. In my opinion has a real Edgar Rice Burroughs feel to it, as our heroes take centre stage in a quintessential attack formation on a planet far from home as the Wingmen of Hawkworld fill the sky’s above. This cover is quintessential science fiction / fantasy and I love it.
The variant cover is by Stjepan Sejic and sees the entire current Justice League lineup fill the cover in their most iconic poses. Stjepan Sejic is one of my favourite artists of the moment, and creates facial expressions like no other. The leagues facial expressions on this cover really capture their individual and unique personalities. Diana in particular, who has a real determined yet joyous look on her face while facing the possibility of battle.
Even though Justice League #14 is kicking off a brand new story arc, we are still very much dealing with events that have taken place in previous arcs such as Dark Knights Metal and All Star Batman. This issue opens with Batman seeking to learn truths behind the appearance of Starman at this stage by any means necessary, very much to Superman’ chagrin. This segment of the issue is drawn masterfully by Jim Cheung and features Will Payton AKA Starman who hasn’t been seen in DC for a long while. To me, this characters emergence signifies yet another deep dive into DC’s dense mythology that Scott Snyder seems to be an expert in exploring and cultivating.
As the story moves forward the art seamlessly shifts over to Stephen Segovia. This issue continues to be extremely dialogue heavy and dense as our heroes look for answers on Thanagar Prime, specifically from its leader Shayera Hol. These answers are to questions that are deeply ingrained within the cosmic side of the DC Universe that Scott Snyder has been ushering in within the pages of books such as Dark Knights Metal and No Justice. In terms of DC Comics mythology, the mere fact that Kendra Hall AKA Hawkgirl and Shayera Hol are able to converse while sharing the same space as individuals signifies just how deep the fans are diving into DC Comics lore. Hawkgirl is another character who has been seemingly resurrected by Scott Snyder. The character of Hawkgirl played a prominent role in the Justice League animated series, which Scott Snyder seems to be somewhat influenced by. However her appearance in the books has been lacking in recent years. As a fan of Justice League the Animated series, I’m thrilled to see Hawkgirl back in the ranks of the league.
As the story progresses, we get some really nice character interaction between J’onn and Kendra, which playfully highlighted Kendra’ love of dancing. To me this was very much needed and came just at the right time considering just how much dialogue there has been up to this point in regards to pushing the narrative forward. This issue isn’t without action as our heroes friendly reception on Thanagar comes to an abrupt end with the arrival of The Savage Hawkman, another vestige from the New 52 era, whose presence can be considered a major mystery considering the fact that we are currently as fans enjoying a comic series based on Hawkman within continuity.
For this issue Scott Snyder and James Tynion IV work in perfect synchronous harmony in delivering a compelling, dense yet highly story driven issue. It is cosmic in proportions and really feels inspired by the fan favourite Justice League Animated series. The characters of Thanagar along with Hawkman and Shayera Hol are very complex characters who fit into DC Continuity within a very specific manner. I’m so pleased this creative team have found the right formula for that to work and see these characters flourish.
Artists Jim Cheung and Stephan Sergovia really complement each others styles seamlessly. The artwork definitely supports the in depth exchanges between characters but definitely kicks up a gear when the action kicks in especially when concerning flight.
This issue ends with a bang on multiple fronts and I can’t wait to see what happens next. Justice League #14 is a must read and really covers extensively the cosmic aspects of DC Continuity.