Let me first accentuate the positive by saying that all three volumes of Justice have absolutely brilliant art and are plain and simply fun to read. Seeing all of our favorite heroes and villains together in mostly their “Silver Age” glory with a modern twist is a fun trip for an old guy like me.
That being said, all three volumes of Justice have some glaring weaknesses as well. First of all, the overall plot is poorly conveyed and, at times, muddled beyond clear comprehension. I’m not going to say the plot was poorly conceived because I don’t know the exact intended storyline, so I say “conveyed” because I’m basing it upon what I read. Secondly, the narration sometimes tends to shift from character to character without an apparent signal. This shift fails in come cases because the “voice” of the narrator alone is not strong enough to help the reader figure out which character’s perspective we’re getting. I noticed this to be particularly the case in Volume III when the colors of the narration boxes were not enough to convey the viewpoint.
Finally, Volume III in particular got a bit heavy-handed with the heroes donning armor in order to face their foes. This felt a bit like a promotional toy move than anything, and furthermore it was difficult to figure out who was who beneath the armor in some cases.
All in all, I think Volume II was the strongest in terms of story, narration, and dialogue, but all three volumes had astronomical art with very cool interpretations of character’s designs. If you’re a fan of Alex Ross, Jim Krueger, Doug Braithwaite, the Silver Age, or the old Super Friends cartoon, you’ll probably enjoy this work. Just be ready for a convoluted storyline and (at times) confusing narration.
Justice: Volume I is a good start to what seems to be an interesting story. The artwork is captivating and the writing is adequate enough to keep me looking forward to the conclusion. This story line is not contingent upon the current DC Universe continuity, so we have a lot of heroes in their Silver Age composition but set in modern times. The villains’ interpretations are more eclectic.
I’ve heard some people compare the general cast of heroes and villains to that of the old cartoon Challenge of the Superfriends. I can certainly see the validity of such a statement in terms of who is being used and the costumes, but otherwise this story is far grittier, mature, and complex.
Again, the story in Justice is not anything groundbreaking, but the art and the interpretations of characters, especially the villains, make it an entertaining read.