Young Justice #1
DC Comics (September, 1998; as posted to comiXology)
“Young, Just Us”
WRITER: Peter David
PENCILER: Todd Nauck
INKER: Lary Stucker
COLORIST: Jason Wright
SEPARATIONS: Digital Chameleon
LETTERER: Ken Lopez
EDITOR: Eddie Berganza
Tim “Robin” Drake, Impulse, and Superboy (the clone) are hanging out at the cave that used to be the Justice League’s headquarters, discussing whether or not to form a team. They also find out that what Impulse thought was a statue is the actual Red Tornado, who was here because he thought he was losing his humanity…until the urge to smack Impulse for painting graffiti on him. This nonsense is interrupted by more nonsense when they get a report of a strange find at a nearby archaeological dig site. They find crazy government agents, an archeologist transformed by a cocoon into a woman with breasts so big she can’t stand up, and a mysterious vehicle that essentially kidnaps the trio and flies off.
What they got right: Theoretically, having DC’s three biggest 90s teen hero creations joining forces must have made sense at the time. The plot itself has potential, as our trio travels around in what I think is the Forever People‘s transport vehicle.
What they got wrong: There isn’t a single page where something stupid doesn’t happen. Impulse especially comes off as a parody of himself, and Superboy isn’t far behind. Red Tornado does pretty much nothing here but be messed with by Impulse (who apparently hates Hanson for some reason). There are two government agents who seem to be part of every bureau in the DC universe and they’re very violent for no apparent reason. The origin for the team’s name is really, really dumb (some dip reporter at the dig site hears Impulse say “we’re young, just us” and assumes the team name is Young Justice), archaeologist Ms. Dodd being transformed into Mighty Endowed because the cocoon gave her that large chest (which the artist opted to obscure until their top heaviness dragged her to the ground), Impulse calling out Superboy about always mentioning his tactile telekinesis, Superboy always mentioning his tactile telekinesis…I get the impression Peter David really didn’t want to write this book because if it’s supposed to be a hit piece on 90s comics or these three characters it’s one that isn’t the least bit funny.
What did I think overall: This is not Peter David at his best and I really do think the writing was some kind of protest to be working on it or even wondering why the comic existed (which Superboy calls out the reason for this team-up). This is a series that became popular despite the first issue, not because of it. You may want to avoid this one.