Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Giant Justice League Of America The Third

Continuing our look back at the early reprints of the Justice League of America, with this 80 Page Giant (G-41) which was the third featuring the team, which was also labeled as the regular issue of Justice League of America #58 (November-December, 1967).

This time, the group gathers under a cover by Carmine Infantino and Sid Greene, and two of the three stories feature not only the charter members of the Justice League (Martian Manhunter, Flash, Green Lantern, Aquaman, Wonder Woman, Batman and Superman), but also their recent addition, Green Arrow!

Let's see what adventures they got up to, which seem to have a gaming theme!

Justice League of America 1

First up is Justice League of America #1 (October-November, 1960) with the charter members of the Justice League going up against Despero for the first time, in "The World Of No Return" by Gardner Fox, Mike Sekowsky and Bernard Sachs, under this classic chess playing cover by Murphy Anderson.

This issue, along with being the first dedicated to the Justice League of America, was the first appearance of one of their most tenacious foes, Despero, a three-eyed mutant from the planet Kalanor.  Jasonar, a scientist from Kalanor, escapes to Earth, hoping to recruit the JLA to stop Despero, meets the Flash, but Despero puts the rest of the team in a hypnotic trance....forcing Flash to play chess with the lives of his teammates!

Even worse, the Flash loses, and the seven members of the JLA are exiled to other worlds....thankfully, the JLA had an honorary member, Snapper Carr, who is able to save the day!

Justice League of America 6

Taking a spin with "The Wheel Of Misfortune" from Justice League of America #6 (August-September, 1961) by Gardner Fox, Mike Sekowsky and Bernard Sachs, with a cover by Mike Sekowsky and Murphy Anderson (inspired by All-Star Comics #42 with the Justice Society), in a story featuring only these six JLAers, with Superman and Batman sitting it out (and the reprint misses pages 2 through 6 of the original story).

One of many issues of the Justice League of America that centers around luck, as in the team having it and it being bad.  The JLA cross some superstitions and can't seem to be effective after that....but that was due to Professor Amos Fortune, a villain here in his first appearance, using the luck stolen from the JLA to successfully commit crimes.

But, Fortune didn't count on the Martian Manhunter, and his alien physique....which made him immune to Fortune's machine (and his earlier bad luck, had just been a coincidence....).

Justice League of America 8

Now, if you gamble and lose, you might have to sell your stuff, and this reprint finds "For Sale - The Justice League", from Justice League of America #8 (December-January, 1961/1962) by Gardner Fox, Mike Sekowsky and Bernard Sachs, with a Mike Sekowsky/Murphy Anderson cover, with Superman and Batman sitting out this story in Dimension X.

This time, small-time crook, Pete Ricketts, gets his hands on a Cyberniray, which allows him to control minds.  Pete uses the device to hypnotize the JLAers, and sends them on crime sprees in least until Snapper Carr gets wind of the problem, and, using anti-gravity devices that Dr. Destiny used (as you might remember from the first JLA Giant), helps free the team and bring Pete Ricketts to justice.

The 80 Page Giants have a rich history, with and beyond the Justice League of America, and more of it will be covered, so check back to see what's next.....

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