Hal Pictures Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!: Waaay back when, in the Justice League...

Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!

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Saturday, April 28, 2007

Waaay back when, in the Justice League...

Come with me, boys and girls, to those hallowed days of old, when Second Stringers ruled the Justice League. Yes, it is again, Giffen and DeMatteis, my absolute favorite incarnation of the League. I mean, I enjoy it now of course, but still...!

I'm pawing through my boxes, and came across #24 of the old JLI. It has one of those lovely Maguire covers, with a sneering Guy Gardner in the middle foreground (and when isn't Guy sneering?) flanked by Fire, and Wally as the Flash. There are also Blue Beetle, Animal Man, Metamorpho, Capt. Atom, Power Girl, Ice, Wonder Woman, Batman, Mr. Miracle, Martian Manhunter, Booster Gold, Elongated Man and Rocket Red. Whew!

This was actually a super-sized issue, consisting of three short stories. The first one concerns mainly Max Lord, who is having a crises of concious, and how Beetle and Fire end up saving him from a cave-in, which is nice. Then there is an amusing story with Max getting kidnapped, and the kidnappers having to deal with Booster and Beetle. It ends with the kidnapers PAYING to have them take Max back, so Beetle and Booster buy a wide-screen television, which seems exactly the sort of thing that Beetle and Booster would do.

The third story however, is quite my favorite. It's called "Across a Crowded Room" and boy howdy is THAT an accurate title! Max and Oberon are trying to drum up some additional members, so they have EVERYBODY at a party at the JLI headquarters, and the interaction and dialogue, as you might have expected is a hoot and a half.

Hawkman is being just impossible, he's rude and keeps unfavorably comparing the present League with the OLD League, and just won't shut up about it.

Everyone is fawning over Hal Jordan...the REAL Green Lantern, to Guy's displeasure. They also keep making wisecracks about the REAL Flash, to poor Wally's chagrin.

Animal Man hasn't got a clue why he's even there, Batman is being grumpy, and Barda is trying to ditch G'nort. Beetle is REALLY trying to pick up Wonder Woman, who is doing her best to let him down gently, but it isn't sinking in.

Meanwhile, J'onn is hanging out upstairs with Oberon and Max, and trying NOT to get involved. Oberon does eventually go downstairs, and is helped out in the kitchen by Ice, getting more refreshments. As they leave, however, you hear strange sounds coming from a pair of Roach Motels. Cue the ominous music.

Upstairs, is Fire, who is stuck in bed, and having a tantrum because she wants to go down and party. And downstairs, Oberon is circulating through the guests, trying to get them to answer the questions on his entry form. Needless to say, some of the questions don't go over particularly well...such as "Are you now or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?" It turns out that Dmitri thought that was a good one. The Creeper isn't sure if he's actually been convicted of a crime, Firestorm wants to know what his sexual orientation has to do with anything, Major Force is upset that he needs references, and Wally bursts into hysterical laughter at the thought of providing an annual yearly income.

Carter has finally had enough, and tells Beetle to stop slobbering over Wonder Woman. Ted responds of course, telling Carter to wake up and smell the coffee...this isn't the old League anymore.

Sooo....back in the kitchen, the Roach Motels fall on the floor, there is a Rriipppp...and a flash of light! Khunds! Khunds that have been shrunken and imprisoned since a couple of issues before! Now they are free and ready to wreak their vengeance! They bust down the kitchen door...!

...And there is an entire room FULL of Super Heroes giving them the eye. It really is a very funny panel, nobody seems particularly surprised, and they certainly don't feel threatened, there is a feeling of mild surprise. The Khunds give a gulp, and try to back out inconspicuously...apologizing for having bothered them...

...when out from behind Batman, Guy pops up yelling "Heyyy...Those are Khunds!"

Of course all hell immediately breaks loose. Max is mildy concerned with the mayhem going on downstairs, but J'onn refuses to get involved. All the heroes are trying to get into the kitchen to kick some Khund butt, but they get stuck in the bottleneck caused by the narrow door. Power Girl does get to throw the refridgerator at them, which busts another hole in the wall, through which the Khunds make their escape to the teleporter tubes. The rest of the heroes thunder after them in hot pursuit, but are juuuuust too late to prevent their escape. It is at this precise moment that Carter goes up to J'onn, saying he has an announcement to make...HE QUITS! J'onn just sighs.

The rest of the guys are all pretty mad that the Khunds got away, until Mr. Miracle points out that the setting on the tubes hadn't been changed since the Aliens first came through from the Australian Embassy...which doesn't exist anymore, so the Khunds have, unfortunately for them, "transformed themselves into a mass of quickly-scattering atoms".

And THIS is how they came up with the membership for the Justice League, Europe! It's a very silly romp, but the art is so expressive, and the dialogue is so funny. I miss stuff like this.


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