Justice League #17
For the first time in this new Rebirth era, Justice League is starting to feel like it’s on track. Not only has Timeless been a great read, it’s playing out like the epic arcs Grant Morrison regularly delivered on JLA. That’s high praise, but issue #17 deserved it.
Splintered through the past and future, the Justice League is trying to stop a time onslaught from unraveling the multiverse. Superman may have confronted the cause of the problem, but this is too big a job for the Man of Steel to handle alone.
Writer Bryan Hitch still has to deliver on the Timeless payoff, but this has easily been his shining moment of both this title and his previous JLA run. Hitch seems more comfortable splitting the team up, but I’m hoping he starts experimenting with various combinations now that he’s getting the characters’ voices down better.
Hitch even slyly works in a glimpse for some vital moments in the history of the Legion of Superheroes.
Hitch’s writing has improved, but it’s artist Fernando Pasarin that’s taking this storyline to the next level. With apologies to Phil Jimenez, Pasarin is quickly becoming the closest modern day equivalent to George Perez. Pasarin packs an incredible amount of detail into every panel and his perspective choices wonderfully convey the scope of this task for the Justice League. Faces has been the one area Pasarin could stand improving and this issue suggests he’s almost there. Once he softens Superman and Aquaman’s faces, he’ll have the team down.
There’s a certain spark Pasarin puts onto every page making for a spectacular visual treat. Inker Matt Ryan is doing a stellar job keeping the action focused and breaking down the details while colorist Brad Anderson gives the panels an extra oomph of energy.
Hitch fully captured the sense of urgency and race against the clock feel. This looks and reads like a whole different title from the one that kicked off in Rebirth. Maybe Hitch feels challenged from the Justice League of America title? Either way, the readers are benefiting from this significant enhancement of quality. Through this Timeless arc, Justice League is finally starting to feel like a prominent A-list title again.
Rating: 9.5 out of 10