“Justice League Family” seems to just be a catch-all for everyone they wanted to use but couldn’t be shoved into Gotham City or Metropolis. While there is a Justice League comic (with a Justice League Dark back-up) the rest are just the other heroes. So we won’t even be discussing the League itself until the end as we set up who else besides Superman Jon Kent and Batman Unknown. Seriously, the solicit has [REDACTED], making me now wonder if there was a last-minute character change since all the previous 5G reports said it would be Luke Fox and neither the press release nor the solicits for Future State seem to counter that except the Justice League January solicitation.
So we get to see what the rest of the world is like outside of Gotham and Metropolis, and if you think this is going to be any better than the fascist state and the city in a bottle you forgot this was Dan DiDio’s brainchild. What I’m hoping is the last gasp of DiDio’s Darker DC makes me wonder if there was any coordination at all, the problem that’s plagued DC since at least the New 52, because I don’t think a lot of these fates for the outside world mesh very well. There has to be some kind of joint incident that created the Future State timeline but darned if I know what it is.
First off there’s Swamp Thing. Apparently he’s conquered the world, which the press release claims was its goal all along, another hero turned villain. Yet none of the other solicits even acknowledge this. Maybe that’s what Suicide Squad is going to have Amanda Waller try to do, though the solicit claims she also wants to remake the world in her image. However, I’m making that connection because the information isn’t. The Swamp Thing logo isn’t all that different and the cover just has Swampy as the Statue Of Liberty.And since I don’t care about the Suicide Squad (not like the logo is any different that rest of these bland “futuristic” logos) let’s move on.
Aquaman has a would-be interesting plot, but so far I’ve been concerned by the execution. Apparently there’s a something called the One Big Ocean that connects all the waters of the universe (probably the most creative thing in this event so I’m guessing it was created elsewhere). Jackson, the bisexual black Aqualad they created for Young Justice the TV show (yes, I know he’s gay in DC comics but he was in love with a girl first on the show and apparently comics don’t like bi characters for reasons we can speculate on but I don’t want to insult anyone with the unproven), is the current Aquaman and trainer to Arthur and Mera’s teen daughter Andy Curry, who gets lost somewhere in the Ocean while Aquaman is in prison for whatever reason. Andy is the “Aquawoman” that will be joining the FS Justice League. The logo isn’t changed all that much so let’s meet Andy.
Apparently getting her fashion sense from Starfire but a bit more conservative, it kind of makes sense as someone who lives in the water. I’m not sure what she’s surfing on there but I don’t think it likes being a surfboard. I’m guessing she won’t be a teen when Jackson sees her again because (A) she’s called Aquawoman and not Aquagirl and (B) even the Teen Titans aren’t going to be teens in this event. Also Jackson can fly apparently since we clearly see an island behind him. Unless this plan runs on Spongebob Squarepants rules, he’s flying.
Speaking of the Titans here’s an idea that would have been more interesting than we’re getting. In the Future State timeline the Titans open a school for young superheroes. I know, this idea has existed since at least Hero High on the Kid Super Power Hour with Shazam! show. However I always like watching heroes who have been established for a long time with few mentors training the new generation. Too bad the place is destroyed by some evil force. Could it be Swamp Thing? No, my money’s on Wally West, because in The Flash he’s apparently turned evil…again! Can we stop evilizing Wally West please? Actually, the cover has Nightwing picking up Slade’s Deathstroke mask so odds are he’s the villain in this tale. The logo is the current one, no new costumes. The Flash just have a neon outline of the current logo (which is okay but following the tradition not very exciting or eye catching outside of the lightning bolt) and just shows Wally killing Barry with other dead speedsters behind him. This is going to be lighter on covers I think.
So while that’s going on we have Shazam!, since we just mentioned the former and still TRUE Captain Marvel. (That’s not me slamming Carol, that’s me slamming Marvel Comics for being copyright jerks.) I don’t even know what the current Shazam! logo is because I don’t care about Geoff Johns’ bratty Billy Batson but it should be noted that he apparently disappeared trying to lock away some other dark force, because apparently we don’t have enough in this event. Magistrate, evil Swamp Thing and Wally, Amanda Waller, whatever A-Day is and whatever sent Superman off to planet Mortal Kombat, and this guy. This timeline sucks eggs! This story is set after the Teen Titans story and tells whatever happened to Billy. Meanwhile, Black Adam shows up in other comics in a story set in the future where he has to save the multiverse. I remember when Black Adam was evil. I also remember when he died in his first appearance but that didn’t stop The Shredder, did it?
As for the Green Lanterns, same cast among those still alive. Apparently (I’m using that word a lot this week but I am going by one month’s worth of solicitations) their battery is dying and they’re having a bunch of problems all over the universe. There’s also side-stories I haven’t touched on from the oversized books with Midnighter (another WildStorm transplant people care less about that Grifter–I know I don’t care), some new Black Racer, and some other stuff I don’t care about so let’s check out the Justice League of this Future State.
Well what do you know, a logo that doesn’t entirely suck! I still prefer the shield-shaped logos but since the New 52 cover is usually my go-to example of lazy comic logos this stands out. Whether or not it stands out on the store shelf is another question but I’ll take what I can get from these boring logos. There’s an attempt to do more than slap a font on, turn it into a raster or vector layer and play with it for five minutes and call it good. We’ve got the Hall Of Justice, which I used to find nostalgic but since LEGO and Imaginext are the only ones making DC superhero stories that don’t involve destroying the place I’m happy just to see it standing. That won’t last when we get to the summary but again, taking what I can get. I’m not sure who the new Flash and Green Lantern are. They don’t look like any of the ones mentioned in the solicitations and they’re all keeping their identities a secret from each other. We don’t even know who this Batman is, or we do but they’re being coy anyway. I wonder if this one also involves the multiverse given all the Earths on the cover?
Witness the start of a new era for the Justice League starring Jonathan Kent as Superman, Yara Flor as Wonder Woman, Jo Mullein as Green Lantern, Andy Curry as Aquawoman, a new Flash from the Multiverse, and [REDACTED] as Batman! Together, they protect the future, yet apart, their identities are secret even from one another—but why? When their greatest adversaries wind up murdered in an abandoned Hall of Justice, all clues point to…the Justice League! The new team’s adventures begin here!
Confirming the multiverse theory and that explains the Flash I don’t recognize, though he/she is going unnamed. Jo Mllein hasn’t been mentioned elsewhere so she might be another multiverse plant. It’s going to suck for her when she has to recharge given the Battery is supposedly dead in the Green Lantern comic, current Earth Lantern Jessica Cruz is in trouble, and Guy’s just opening Warriors back up. Oh, and dead villain pile in the Hall Of Justice. Thanks, DC. You know how to keep punching my childhood in the face. There’s also a Justice League Dark story, but I was never into that and shouldn’t they be part of the rebellion to deal with Swamp Thing?
So my overall analysis of Future State given what we know? I don’t really care. I want to care. DC is…WAS my comic book universe since I was a child. Whether or not 5G was intended to be the new direction this hopefully last artifact of DiDio’s Darker DC shows just why the DC we know and love has disappeared. Hopelessness, heroes turning evil, villains saving the day, forced legacy and diversity changes rather than having the guts to try a new character without tossing out the iconic (and failing to do it right or give it time to find an audience when they do…I liked Sideways and the Silencer’s concepts, and Sideways was a DiDio co-creation)…it’s all on display here along with unoriginality, boring logos, and not very creative costume changes. I just hope that DC Comics can course correct again and this time stay that way without Didio’s influence, but that depends on who’s doing his job now and what direction Jim Lee takes DC as publisher and chief creative officer. As far as the 5G Future State this is not the direction they should be going even when continuity resets…however they’re going to pull that off with so many unconnected stories with no noticeable way to hit the reset button.