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Thursday, April 26, 2018 

Ray Palmer's still being marginalized in favor of the SJW-pandering successor

Comics Beat wrote up a fawning review of the last issue of the current Justice League America volume, and again, we have a case of the Asian Atom being forced down the readers' throats at Ray Palmer's expense:
There are some new players in The Ray, The Atom, and Aztek (a later addition). Each in their own way, these heroes are learning the ropes and trying to prove themselves worthy to be on a team with such a rich and weighty history. The original Atom, Ray Palmer, makes some appearances and gives Ryan Choi his full confidence and encouragement to go make a name for himself, and then gets out of the way so Ryan can shine. The Ray and Aztek have a turf war of sorts as they work out how to share being defenders of their hometown, Vanity City. These younger heroes lend the book a feeling of openness and possibility that Superman and Wonder Woman could never give.
Hmm, we seem to have a case here of a jerk who's claiming fictional characters couldn't be written to serve the purpose he speaks of because they're major. I don't buy that. And this is just another insult to Ray Palmer, who's been virtually marginalized and kicked to the curb for nearly 15 years already, all for the sake of a "diverse" protagonist whom they think will lead to massive sales based on that factor alone, not good writing. If that's how they're going to handle this and deny Ray a return to the career he once had as the Mighty Mite, then I'm not sorry it's being cancelled.

There's even some paragraphs preceding the above that're worth scrutiny:
Now try to stick with me here: Justice League lasted only six issues until it was rebranded as Justice League International in issue #7, bringing in multicultural heroes like the Russian Rocket Red and the Brazilian Fire. The publisher was playing with the notion that America isn’t the only place that needs defending. Nineteen issues later (1989), the concept expanded as the book was rebranded again as Justice League America while simultaneously a second title was spun up called Justice League Europe. This European book was eventually rebranded as Justice League International — no relation to the previous title & numbering. Somewhere in the middle of that shuffling, DC launched a Justice League Quarterly book (1990) that featured some of the same cast members of the other two series. Wait, did I mention the Justice League Task Force (1994) or Extreme Justice (1995)?

As a comics collector with completionist syndrome and mild OCD, this was all exhausting to keep track of. But as a comics lover, it was exhilarating. In the early 1990’s we had FIVE different ongoing Justice League titles that featured over fifty different heroes throughout. This period will be forever referred to as “the good old days”.
I'm afraid, thanks to the repellent behavior of Gerard Jones behind the scenes, some of it won't be referred to as such; not for a long time. He first co-wrote JLE with the 14th issue, taking over as sole writer in 1992, and even worked on JLA in 1994 until the volume was cancelled 2 years later, and after the crimes he was discovered pulling, that's why the 2 books he wrote are bound to be remembered more in infamy. I checked some material from the books he wrote, and had to reevaluate, concluding they weren't so great at all. There's a lesson to be learned in this whole affair, that sometimes, being a completionist doesn't always pay off.

At this point, it's enough to wonder if the Justice League's collapsed as a series/franchise, especially after the abortive movie last year. The volume now being cancelled, IIRC, is written by Steve Orlando, who also co-scripted the recent Supergirl issue with a social justice agenda, and as far as I'm concerned, he's one of quite a few modern "auteurs" whose works are best forgotten.

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