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CSBG Archive

A Year of Cool Comics – Day 221

Here is the latest in our year-long look at one cool comic (whether it be a self-contained work, an ongoing comic or a run on a long-running title that featured multiple creative teams on it over the years) a day (in no particular order whatsoever)! Here‘s the archive of the comics posted so far!

Today we look at the opening story arc in JLA Classified, by Grant Morrison and Ed McGuinness…


So, the story opens with the Ultra-Marines fighting with Gorilla Grodd then being taken over by the villain, Neh-Buh-Loh and his mind-controlling army of sheeda.

The only member of the team left is the youngest member of the team, Squire (the sidekick to the British version of the Batman, the Knight).

Things were not looking good for her, so she calls the only person she knows can help – Batman!

He comes to help…

I won’t spoil what Batman is doing (it involves robots, though). Damn, McGuinness really killed the heck out of that sequence, didn’t he? The sequencing, the framing, it was stunning.

Okay, so Batman has to deal with Gorilla Grodd while the JLA is in the world of Neh-Buh-Loh and return in issue #3 to mix it up with the Ultra-Marines, who are controlled by the bad guys (this is all a lead-in to Morrison’s Seven Soldiers storyline).

Morrison gives the JLA some pretty impressive moments, particularly Aquaman…

and Martian MAnhunter…

Perhaps the most famous part of the story, though, is when Morrison gets a little meta with Superman and the Ultra-Marines…

What an awesome speech.

This was a great opener to what turned out to be a pretty darn good comic book series (great while it lasted!).


I want more Morrison Justice League stories, and they REALLY ought to get McGuinness back.

“So, the story opens with the Ultra-Marines fighting with Gorilla Grodd then being sucked into another world…”

Um…no, that’s not at all what happens in the story. In fact, you’ve got it backwards. The JLA are on another world (inside the infant universe of Qwewq) as the story opens, and the Ultramarine Corps are fighting Grodd in their absence, only to be defeated and captured by Grodd and his new allies. It’s the JLA who are on another world, not the Ultramarines. When the JLA are called back by Squire…well, you’ve covered that above.


Wow, you look at the sequence you show above, and it is AWESOME. That’s why we love superhero comics, man.

I’ve got to read this again. I read it when I finally read all of Seven Soldiers, but I think I only read it the one time. And with the new Knight and Squire series coming up, this is the important first appearance. (Right? At least modern version appearance? With this, Club of Heroes, RIP and in B&R, has Morrison been the only one so far to use these Club of Heroes characters? Am I missing an appearance?)

Hm, will you feature the next JLA Classified arc, the “I Can’t Believe it’s not the Justice League”? With that devastating departure from Hell sequence? That’s good stuff too.

My pleasure, Brian — this is one of my favorite comics. Truly an apt choice for this series. :-)

This series was really good for the first coupe story arcs. The Warren Ellis run was particularly interesting. Unfortunately the series kinda just fell by the wayside, and once the they had the Detroit League story with the Royal Flush Gang, I just couldn’t read it any more.

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