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CSBG Archive

Almost Hidden – Justice League International vs. Starro!

Even with this large amount of comic books that have been collected in trade paperbacks, there are still a number of great comic books that have never been reprinted (I’d say roughly 60% of them are DC Comics from the 1980s through the mid-1990s). So every day this month I will spotlight a different cool comic book that is only available as a back issue. Here is an archive of the comic books featured so far.

I want you folks to e-mail me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com with your suggestions for comics that I should feature this month. I’d like to see what you all would like to see get more attention.

Two different readers asked for a variety of Justice League Europe uncollected stories, so let’s finish with the entire Justice League International against Starro from Justice League Europe #26-28 by Keith Giffen, Gerard Jones and Bart Sears.

At the end of Justice League Europe #25, a man shows up at the JLE’s door with a starfish stuck to his face. Apparently Starro has gotten stuck on the English countryside and he wants the Justice League’s help to leave Earth and get some peace in his life.

The League agrees to help (as apparently the villagers with the starfish on their faces have come to actually like Starro and feel bad for him).

Killowog designed the spaceship taking Starro to not be able to return, but before it even hits the atmosphere…

So begins a taut, psychological thriller by Keith Giffen and Gerry Jones, as the only three “immune” members of the JLE (Captain Atom, Rocket Red and Metamorpho, all of whom had protective shielding over their faces) find themselves pretty much the only non-possessed people in England (and soon, all of Europe).

They head to New York, where they gain assistance from the New York branch of the Justice League, as the leader of the JLA, Martian Manhunter, comes back to England with them to stop his old foe, Starro.

However, well, things don’t go so well…

Sears’ art particularly suits dynamic action stories like these.

In an especially strong character movement, Starro forces Atom and Rocket Red to give themselves in…

Very clever work by Giffen/Jones there.

And it all ends up in a clever ending in JLE #28, an ending I won’t spoil for you.

This was a really fun three-part tale filled with strong character work and a great use of guest stars (I suppose it helps when the guest stars are from the other book Giffen was plotting, Justice League America).

Hopefully some day this story can be reprinted!


The Crazed Spruce

August 19, 2011 at 1:45 pm

I loved JLE back in the day, and this was by far the best story from the series. Much better ending than The Extremist Vector had, that’s for sure.

Hey Brian,

i think that this isn’t what you meant to type:

so let’s finish with The Extremist Vector from Justice League Europe #15-19

i think you wanted to reference the Starro story starting in Justice League Europe #25


I know this seems made up if you read my post at the JLA vs Despero, but I actually met Bart Sears about the time this run came out at a different convention again in Dover, DE. He was nice enough to critique my portfolio and doodle in my sketchbook. True story.

Bart Sears should’ve drawn the Hulk. He drew Superman like someone had inflated every single muscle on his body. I remember thinking that was excessive and not the right approach to every character (you paying attention David Finch? Haha), but liked that he knew how to draw like that, and immediately thought he should draw the Hulk. He doing weird indie stuff now, which is cool. But I still think he needs to do a Hulk story. Right before he took on his short-lived Warlord book a few years ago, after all the CrossGen stuff, he mentioned being in talks with Marvel about doing some Hulk, but dropped out for reasons I forget. Scheduling, most likely. He would have been great during the Bruce Jones run.

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