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Top Five Zero Hour #0 Issues

TOP FIVE WEEK CONTINUES (check here to see an archive of all the top five lists featured so far)!!

I did a Top Five Zero Hour crossover issues last year, and my pal Loren wanted a follow-up piece, so here it is, a year and a half later!

Enjoy!

Honestly, I think DC did a very nice job with their #0 issues as a whole. The Batman titles were enjoyable, as were the Superman titles. Superboy was fun, too. Sure, there were some stinkers mixed in, but overall, they were a lot of fun. I wish One Year Later was half as good.

Honorable Mentions

Robin #0

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A nice look at Tim and Dick’s relationship, and as a result of the Bat schedule of the time (where Robin was the last book of the month), it contained the beginning of the story with Dick Grayson becoming Batman for awhile.

Green Lantern #0

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Interesting fight between Kyle and Hal.

Spectre #0

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Good look at the Spectre’s ACTUAL origin. I forgot to mention this one initially, but it certainly is worth a read.

5. Justice League Task Force #0

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A strong introduction to the new team by Mark Waid and Christopher Priest. All the oddness and humor that the run would maintain even when Waid left (which was quite quickly, if I recall correctly).

4. Legion of Superheroes #0/Legionnaires #0

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I count these two as one issue, as they were the intro to the post-ZH Legion, and Mark Waid did a marvelous job here on the reboot.

Waid needed to be note perfect, and he was.

If I only could pick one, I’d go with the Legion of Superheroes issue, as it was a better script, and also had stunning Immonen artwork.

3. R.E.B.E.L.S. #0

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Tom Peyer’s revamp on L.E.G.I.O.N. was a load of fun right off the bat. This was a really fun series.

2. Starman #0

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James Robinson’s Starman was a good series, and the first issue opened up with a bam! Almost quite literally…

1. Flash #0

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This was one of Waid’s best issues on a Flash run that was really quite good (at least the first three years worth).

This is a touching trip through Wally West’s life.

Very nice work by Waid and the late, great Mike Wieringo.

Those are my picks!

Agree? Disagree? Let me know!

24 Comments

Hells yes, well, at least for the ones that I read. I loved the Robin issue, the GL one, Starman, and Flash #0 is my favourite Flash story of all-time. In comparison, One Year Later looks really, really piss-poor.

For all that people crap on Zero Hour, I really liked the single issue stories surrounding it, both during and after, and you raise some great points about the level of quality that DC was maintaining at the time.

Tom Fitzpatrick

October 24, 2007 at 8:39 pm

Huh! I would’ve said that STARMAN # 0 would have been the top one, since Robinson did such an excellent 6 1/2 years run on this title.

THE SPECTRE should have made the list. Great done-in-one issue that also had long-term ramifications (introduced the concept of Spectres before Jim Corrigan and set the groundwork for the origin of Spec’s greatest enemy).

Ostrander’s SPECTRE being the greatest superhero series of all-time is another thing in this issue’s favour.

When I saw the title of the post, Flash and Starman were the two that came to mind. Terrific comics, both of them.

The Flash issue, Starman, and Legion all got me back into DC after a 5 year hiatus from super hero stuff. I also recall enjoying the Batman issue drawn in the styles of multiple eras- John Bogdanove drew that one?

The GL and Robin issues look familiar, but I don’t remember the stories.

Starman 0 was the first issue of what may be the best super-hero comic to emerge in the ’90s. Flash 0 was a good issue, but did not have a comparable impact. A good, even great comic vs. a great comic that took everyone by surprise, and began a series that built the fanbases of Robinson & Harris, introduced one of the few recent characters to gain a fanbase, revitalized interest in DC’s Golden Age, and led to the successful JSA revival? No comparison. Starman 0 should be #1.

I’ll second the Spectre 0 love.

I’ll second that nomination for Starman as best superhero book of the ’90s. Of all the new series that were launched by post-Zero Hour, that’s the one that “stuck.”

If it had to get beaten out on this list, at least it was by a Waid-Wieringo Flash issue.

Starman #0 is #1 on MY list.

FunkyGreenJerusalem

October 25, 2007 at 12:09 am

No love for Anima #0?

Those Legion issues made me a fan. That whole first year of the Reboot was excellent (even Kid Quantum’s death, which had repercussions for many years afterwards).

Lobo #0 wasn’t bad, either. A done in one tale that recapped his origin, as some generic mooks heard it. Whereas Justice League America #0 failed to do much of anything to attract new readers. Everything about that team was ugly.

Great picks. These issues were the only worthwhile thing to come out of Zero Hour. The Big Two need to do stuff like this more regularly. I mean, you can give almost any of the #0 issues to a civilian and they’ll understand who’s who. Even with ‘jumping on points’ today that’s not always the case. One of the few highlights of the 90s.

I wasn’t buying much in comics in those days, mostly mooching off my roommates comics, but Starman blew me away. I went out and bought that first arc even though my roommate already had it. Well worth it, even if I did eat Ramen for a week because of it.

Starman and Flash deserve their nods, but I’ll go with the others and say that Spectre deserves a place on the list. Amazingly underrated book that should have more than one trade.

The Legion issues were fine too, but I remember looking for some books to drop at the time and I found the reboot of LOSH to be the perfect Jumping OFF point. I only recently got back into LOSH with the Waid/Kitson version.

I would put the Robin issue in the top 5, and I’m surprised you left out the Batman issue where he encounters all the different versions of himself over the years. It was great seeing the carefree Batman of the 60′s rub shoulders with Frank Miller’s version from Dark Knight Returns.

That issue, Adam, wasn’t a #0 issue. And it WAS in the previous Top Five Zero Hour crossover issues I linked to at the top! :)

It really is amazing how big the gap was between the quality of the core miniseries and the quality of the stuff around it on both sides. I remember it as one of the most exciting times to read DC– marred by the stinker of a storyline in the middle.

I really miss Jeff Moy’s LSH art.

That’s really all I had to say aside from ‘man, did I love just about everything on this list’

I hated this period of all the “extreme” Justice League spinoffs and couldn’t stand the post-Zero Hour “Legion Babies” reboot, but Starman was a terrific series that also looked at first glance like it might be a really bad idea, and Waid had a great run with Wally.

Starman came out of the zero hour crossover? Huh. And I concur that Starman was one of the best 90s comics. It was the one that got me into comics to begin with.

The GL #0 issue is one of the first GL issues I ever read, and ever since I haven’t been able to warm up to the idea of a Hal Jordan that isn’t evil. (I have gotten over my youthful assumption that Kyle Rayner was a good character, though.)

Maybe when my generation of readers is writing comics, he’ll spontaneously revert to Parallax and we’ll find out that the yellow fear demon never really existed after all!

On the flip side of the question asked above, what were the worst 5 ZH #0 issues and why did you choose them?

Hi. Can I get an answer to my 2 year old question?

‘Hi. Can I get an answer to my 2 year old question?’
^Reposted this.

I’m surprised that The Demon #0 wasn’t on the list. Ennis & McCrea’s run on The Demon was the predecessor to Hitman, and their zero issue, with the origin of Jason & Etrigan’s bonding was as good as anything in Preacher.

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