Wednesday, April 27, 2016

JSA Opposite: Injustice Society Additions Part 1

The Injustice Society of the World was the evil opposite of the Justice Society of America, made up of members of the individual heroes Rogues' Galleries.  The first team faced the JSA back in All-Star Comics #37 (October-November, 1947) with the Wizard escaping....

...and returning with some new villains to start a new ISW in All-Star Comics #41 (June-July, 1948) in "The Case Of The Patriotic Crimes" by writer John Broome and artists including Alex Toth, Carmine Infantino, Arthur Peddy and Irwin Hasen, and inkers Frank Giacoia and Bernard Sachs.

Here's a few of the new foes....


Joar Mahkent first appeared as a foreign physicist with a new freezing weapon, to make trouble for the Golden Age Green Lantern in All-American Comics #90 (October, 1947), in the story "The Icicle" by Robert Kanigher, Irwin Hasen and John Belfi (thought to have perished, but later revealed to be saved by Johnny Sorrow).  The Icicle quickly returned trying to make things cold for a South American dictator in All-American Comics #92 (December, 1947) to face Green Lantern again, in "The Icicle Goes South" by Robert Kanigher and Alex Toth.  Then, Icicle joined up with the ISW.....which influenced much of the rest of his career.

The Icicle first returned after joining the Injustice Society in Justice League of America #21 and #22 (August and September, 1963), as a member of the Crime Champions (which included the Wizard and Fiddler from Earth-2, and new villains of Chronos, Felix Faust and Dr. Alchemy, all to take on the Justice League and Justice Society, in the beginnings of annual team-up of the two heroic teams, as they'd face a Crisis every year for some time....).  Icicle next returned in Justice League of America #123 and #124 (October and November, 1975), as the Injustice Society was using Earth-Prime writers Cary Bates and Elliot S! Maggin in a plot to cause Crisis for the JLA and JSA.

The Icicle then worked with the ISW at home on Earth-2, in All-Star Comics #63 to #66 (in 1976 and 1977), as a plan to finish off the JSA (which almost worked).  Icicle switched over to Earth-1, working with Wonder Woman foe Minister Blizzard, Flash Rogue Captain Cold (and, secretly, Hawkman's foe, the Shadow-Thief) in Justice League of America #139 (February, 1977).  Icicle worked with fellow ISWers of the Shade and the Fiddler to help the gods of Apokolips revive Darkseid in Justice League of America #183 to #185 (October to December, 1980), then rejoined the Crime Champions at the direction of the Johnny Thunder of Earth-1 in Justice League of America #219 and #220 (October and November, 1983), before getting involved in the Crisis on Infinite Earths (issues #9 and #10), and perishing in Krona's lab in Crisis On Infinite Earths #10 (January, 1986).

This didn't keep a good villain down, as his spirit menaced Hawk and the second Dove and the Titans West in the Hawk and Dove Annual #1 of 1990 (along with a few other villains condemned to hell, which might have been enough to keep him away from the Black Lantern Corps during Blackest Night), as well as a flashback to soon after joining the ISW, facing Starman and planning retirement (and for his son) in Starman #46 (September, 1988) and facing the Star-Spangled Kid before the Crisis on Infinite Earths in a flashback in Stars and S.T.R.I.P.E. #0 (July, 1999).

Even better, Icicle had a legacy, his son, Cameron, who had ice-generating powers (likely thanks to his dad's exposure to his own ice gun), and the second Icicle was a part of the Wizard's Injustice, Unlimited as of Infinity, Inc. #34 (January, 1987) and later, a member of an updated Injustice Society of the World.

There was also the case of the ghost of the Icicle in Flash #56 and #57 (November and December, 1991), facing off against Flash (Wally West), but didn't hear much about that part of the Mahkent legacy after those issues...

...and while there was a villain involved, there also rose a hero!


Crusher Crock was a sportish brute, who first faced the Golden Age Green Lantern in All-American Comics #85 (May, 1947) in "The Rise and Fall of Crusher Crock" by John Broome, Irwin Hasen and John Belfi, after being barred from all sports due to misconduct.  Crusher wanted revenge, and to prove himself better than anyone in any game at the time, but failed after sparring with the Green Lantern (though using wooden sports equipment like bats and hockey sticks caused quite a bit of trouble for GL, as his weakness was wood).  Crusher Crock returned with the moniker of the Sportsmaster in Green Lantern #28 (October-November, 1947) with "The Tricks Of The Sportsmaster" by John Broome, Irwin Hasen and Alex Toth, and then again with "The End Of Sports" in All-American Comics #98 (June, 1948) by Robert Kanigher and Alex Toth (where he sabotaged a hockey game in Gotham City), after which, Sportsmaster joined the Injustice Society, which would forever alter his life.

After the JSA disbanded, Sportsmaster was captured by Argent,  a secret government organization, (detailed in Secret Origins #14 of May, 1987, revealing how Crusher was stopped in the early 1950s)..

....or was he stopped by Mr. and Mrs. Superman, with help from the Golden Age Green Lantern and Harlequin in Superman Family #206 (March-April, 1981)? 

Either way, Crusher took a little sporting hiatus....

...but he came back, this time with his new wife in tow, the Huntress (more on her later on down), looking for revenge on Wildcat (but also facing Starman and Black Canary) in Brave and the Bold #62 (October-November, 1965).

The husband and wife villains returned in Justice League of America #123 and #124 (October and November, 1975) with the rest of the ISW.

The couple might have stayed on Earth-1, as they faced Batgirl and Robin in Batman Family #7 (September-October, 1976)...

....and a group of DC heroes in DC Super-Stars #10 (December, 1976, with Sportsmaster leading the villains, and Huntress leading the heroes in a game of baseball!).
The heroes won out in both cases...and it either convinced the villains to return to Earth-2 (or we just never heard of their Earth-1 counterparts again). 

Sportsmaster was there to attack the JSA again as a part of the Injustice Society in All-Star Comics #72 and #73 in 1978, but was quickly defeated...

...(Flash foe, the Thorn, and the Huntress were also attacking at that time, each for their own reasons).  Thankfully for the JSA, the villains didn't fair well no matter how hard they tried!

Sportsmaster came back one last time with Huntress, as they worked with the evil opposites of Infinity, Inc., the Injustice, Unlimited (made up of children and proteges of ISW members), and Huntress and Sportsmaster had a representative there as well (more on Tigress....soon!), as told in Infinity, Inc. #35 and #36 (February and March, 1987).

Sportsmaster had perished at some point (an alternate Earth version died in The Golden Age Elseworlds mini-series),  and the Council (a group of nefarious businessmen) who had cloned Paul Kirk (the Manhunter of the Golden Age) then had used clones of Sportsmaster to vex the JSA in JSA Secret Files #1 (August, 1999, which also introduced Kendra as Hawkgirl) and #2 (September, 2001), and in JSA Annual #1 (2000), keeping the Sportsmaster's villainy alive in the 21st Century.


Paula Brooks was her name, but it took a long time before anyone hunted that fact down.  The Huntress began her career hunting Wildcat, starting in Sensation Comics #68 (August, 1947) in "Wildcat -- Former Crime Fighter" with art by Mort Meskin.  The hunt continued in Sensation Comics #69 (September, 1947) and "Follow The Leader" with Huntress robbing the U.S. Mail (also drawn by Mort, with no identified writer), kidnapping Wildcat's friend, Stretch Skinner in Sensation Comics #71 (November, 1947) in "The Count That Never Ended", this time by Robert Kanigher and Gil Kane, kidnapping Ted Grant to get to Wildcat in "Murder Masquerade" in Sensation Comics #73 (January, 1948), with art by Gil Kane (a problem, as Ted is Wildcat), using a phony Wildcat in a crime in Sensation Comics #75 (March, 1948) in "The Snare That Backfired" with art by Arthur Peddy and Bernard Sachs, going on a rollercoaster ride in "The Wildcat Ride" in Sensation Comics #76 (April, 1948), with art also by Peddy and Sachs...

....before joining up with the ISW (and never making a cover, as the book was dominated by Wonder Woman!).

An unpublished Golden Age story appeared in the DC 100-page Super-Spectacular #6 of 1971, with Wildcat facing Huntress one last time alone, when "Crime Wore A Costume" by Robert Kanigher and Jon C. Kozlak (and the book also reprinted the first JLA/JSA Crisis as well!).

Huntress returned, now married to the Sportsmaster, and looking for revenge on Wildcat (but also facing Starman and Black Canary) in Brave and the Bold #62 (October-November, 1965). 

The husband and wife villains returned in Justice League of America #123 and #124 (October and November, 1975) with the rest of the ISW, and may or may not have faced Robin and Batgirl in Batman Family #7 (September-October, 1976) and played baseball in DC Super-Stars #10 (December, 1976).

The pair returned again, with All-Star Comics #72 and #73 in 1978, along with the Golden Age Flash's foe, the Thorn, with the Huntress facing the new heroine who had taken that name (more on her, here....).  The female hero won (which made the villainess quite angry, but as later revealed, she had switched names anyway....).

The heroine formerly known as Huntress appeared helping villains, during the Crisis On Infinite Earths #9 and #10 in the 1980s, and returned as well to be helped by Injustice, Unlimited in Infinity, Inc. #35 and #36 (February and March, 1986), as among the team's members were former ISW members, the Wizard, the Fiddler and the Shade, and the son of Icicle, the daughter of the Gambler, and the Tigress, who was Artemis Crock, the daughter of the Sportsmaster and the Huntress!

Soon after this, in stories set in the 1940s, the Huntress' past was revealed, as she was Paula Brooks, a young woman who became fascinated with big game hunter, Paul Kirk, trailed him to learn more about his life (including his identity as the mystery man, the Manhunter), and Paula joined the Young All-Stars as the Tigress to be "a hunter of men".  This worked for a while, until the Tigress was killed by Gudra, the Valkyrie, and while Paula came back, she had a darker personality then (see Young All-Stars comics from the late 1980s, issues #6 to #26 to see how this all played out as Roy Thomas filled in character back story with his retroactive continuity).  The Tigress was even involved in a secret JSA case, fighting the Stalker with Hawkman and Wildcat alongside the Manhunter in Thrilling Comics #1 (May, 1999) and with the whole JSA plus a few in All-Star Comics #2 (Late May, 1999), and it was soon after this that she appeared as the Huntress fighting Wildcat in Sensation Comics.

Back in the present, with a full history behind her, Paula Brooks even came out to support her daughter, the Tigress, when she competed in the Olympics as a member of the Zandian team, along with other super-villains, like Green Arrow's foe, Merlyn, in Young Justice #25 (November, 2000), and the new Tigress has continued along with the Injustice Society of the World with her boyfriend, the new Icicle, as that team has popped up, as well as facing the new Hawkgirl, Kendra, for a time...proving, like a good hero, it's hard to keep a good villain down....and more ISW member facts are coming soon, with info on the Fiddler, the Harlequin, the Shade, Solomon Grundy and more!


  1. I just so happened to pick up a reprint of DC 100-page Super-Spectacular #6 at "Dawn of the Collector's Show" two weeks ago, where my husband and I chatted with you for a bit. Some good stories in there, especially the Johnny Quick one.

    If you're interested, I have a Blogspot page of my own, partly about Jonah Hex and partly about my own writing. You can check it out at

    1. Thanks, Susan! Glad you found that issue, and I'm a fan of Jonah Hex too....I'll be sure to check your stuff out and look forward to seeing you two at conventions again!