web stats

CSBG Archive

A Year of Cool Comics – Day 288

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 a neat two-part crossover between Justice League International and Suicide Squad, beginning in the 13th issue of the former title and finishing in the 13th issue of the latter title.


In Suicide Squad, one of the members (Nemesis) was tragically left behind on a mission to Russia. He was naturally disavowed and was now sitting in a prison cell in Russia.

As Justice League International #13 begins (plotted and penciled by Keith Giffen, scripted by JM DeMatteis and inked by Al Gordon), Batman (who had had a few notable team-ups with Nemesis) is not pleased that Nemesis is locked up and being treated like a criminal. However, what he doesn’t know (or doesn’t care about) is that the Russian authorities leaked the info that he was captured in an attempt to lure the Suicide Squad in after him, which is exactly what Colonel Rick Flag wants to do.

Batman has a great exchange with Rocket Red, the JLI’s Russian member (who should still be alive in modern DC continuity – his death was so lame)….

However, Batman is shocked that after trying to get the JLI to go with him to rescue Nemesis, they instead are told by Maxwell Lord (who has made a deal with Amanda Waller) that they ARE going to Nemesis’ jail, but to STOP the Suicide Squad!

In Russia, the Rocket Red Brigade learn of a possible enemy attempt to rescue Nemesis (this is a cute scene by Giffen and DeMatteis)…

This of course ends up with the JLI and the Squad opposed each other in Suicide Squad #13 (written by John Ostrander, penciled by Luke McDonnell and inked by Bob Lewis)…

The combatants have a lot of shared history.

Batman just recently tried to expose the Squad (but Amanda Waller outfoxed him – I should featured that issue for Cool Comics), Vixen and Martian Manhunter were teammates and Nightshade and Captain Atom secretly work together for the US military.

Vixen and Manhunter have a great moment…

Flag thinks he can work with Batman, but he is not prepared for how stubborn Batman can be…

Really, the whole fight scene is well developed, as all of the characters get pretty good moments (some better than others).

Eventually, Rocket Red decides that Nemesis HAS been unfairly held and the teams call a truce, but is it too late to tell Batman and Flag to stop fighting?

I won’t spoil the ending. This two-parter is well worth seeking out. The art by Giffen and McDonnell was good, the story was compelling (and a very natural reason for the characters to interact)…just an overall very satisfying comic book story. It was one of the better usages of the shared universe concept that you’ll see.

Also, the covers were cool – they were sort of mirror images of each other. I forgot to include them when I began (which is weird, because I even uploaded them on to the server but just forgot to insert the images), but I’ll add them now…

Click on either cover to enlarge!


That Nemesis Batman fight had one of the best endings of a fight ever,
I recently bought issue 2-35 of Suicide Squad for 5p each and what a great series it was. Enough has been said about how great JLI was but Suicide squad doesn’t get the love it deserves.

I love that Giffen drew the inside of Belle Reve to look like Legion HQ.

Kudos to DC for putting both issues in the JLI TPB (Volume 2, I think?). I recently re-read those, and remembered how good this two-parter was. The interaction between Waller and Max Lord is great.

Tom Fitzpatrick

October 16, 2010 at 7:04 am

A classic cross-over between two DC books that I’d also been reading during that era. (GAWD, I’m old!)

I love Boomerang’s face in that last page.

Damn, why aren’t there trade issues of Suicide Squad?

These are the two original issues of JLI and SS that I still have. Hopefully we get Suicide Squad in tpb or Showcase soon!

Yeah, I loved this crossover. Of course, as history goes, hooboy do Batman and Bronze Tiger have a thorny history, what with the murder of Kathy Kane and all. Also, Giffen’s Nightshade really reminds me a lot of his Shrinking Violet.

lol @ Rocket Red watching Rocky & Bullwinkle.

Boris, Natasha!

Does anyone else remember that the covers were the exact same fight scene, but from different angles? The JLI was from their pov and the SS cover was from their view. Great gimmick that really works with the story [& helps to sell both issues!]

loved that story of suicide squad from obertron and rick thinking both bats and amanda need a shrink to rick and batman winding up fighting each other even when a truce betweet the two is called. though surprised the sucide squad where amanda out foxes batman has not shown up yet for this feature.

Citizen Scribbler

October 16, 2010 at 6:55 pm

Awwww. I was hoping we’d get to see the panel that reveals what became of the “bat-ear” which Flag knocks off on that last page. It has to be, hands down, one of Blue Beetle’s funniest moments. I believe Ostrander also wrote Ted Kord when the JLI appeared in a Firestorm annual around that time and I thought he had a terrific take on the character for only having scripted him in a few issues. Seriously, in that Firestorm story, Ted Kord essentially calls BS on Batman and tells him to go fly a kite. It’s worth checking out if you’re hungry for a rare JLI adventure.

-Citizen Scribbler

Gotta laugh at the bit with Blue Beetle and Batman’s missing ear, or Batman interacting with Deadshot. Both issues of the crossover were really good, but seeing JLI’s humor mixed with the darkness of Suicide Squad in the latter’s side of the story was the best part.

This is a great two-parter. I especially laugh everytime I see Captain Atom and Nightshade pretending to “fight” by tickling each other. More superhero comics should have tickle fights in them…

Ostrander’s attempt at JLI humour fell completely flat for me, but that fight scene between Batman and Flagg was great.

Lest anyone say Batman was out of Flag’s league, the state of the characters at the end of the fight is appropriate and very well handled.

The crossover was great in that it really forwarded a lot of the plot points in both books and certainly wasn’t “filler”, with each team coming out of the encountered changed a bit.

I also loved some of the face-offs we got that aren’t shown here.

“Good God!”

“God, Alexei?”

“I mean—Lenin’s Ghost!!!”

bwahahaha! That era of the Justice League is still one of the best.

Sounds like you all would like the new Suicide Squad blog site that went up almost a month ago.

Leave a Comment



Review Copies

Comics Should Be Good accepts review copies. Anything sent to us will (for better or for worse) end up reviewed on the blog. See where to send the review copies.

Browse the Archives