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Thursday, August 16, 2007

Goodbye JLA

That's it...13 issues...well over 300 pages...11 members...and yes, despite Grundy, Amazo, Professor Ivo, Felix Faust, Dr. Impossible, Parasite, Electrocutioner, Plastique, Cavalier, Starro and others, plus the return of the "true" Legion of Super-Heroes, and Wally West, there wasn't enough action, fistfights or villains.

And so, let me answer the most asked questions:

Any regrets?

I wish I would've had Cyborg join. (Wanted to do it, but once 11 and 12 were planned out, just didn't have the room to make it happen).

What was the story with the older versions of Degaton, Despero, and Ultra Humanite?

As you can tell, The Lightning Saga is a smaller story within a bigger story (and it was our story -- Geoff and mine -- not a story that DC pushed on us). Geoff and I talked about whether to leave the villains in or pull them out entirely. Admittedly, this got a bit crunched for space (which is what happens when you have two writers and four different artists working simultaneously to make sure it all comes out on time), but this has clearly not been forgotten and was never meant to be a silly tease. Look at who the third team was. Time travel is a game of dominos.

What about Vixen's powers/Geo-Force/Deathstroke/etc?

Let me say this about all the so-called open threads: for each one, I asked DC: Do you want me to close this? Or would you rather build on it, in which case, I'll keep it open? The ones that are open, they said they wanted open. So check out JSA, and Geoff's Legion story, and the Green Arrow/Black Canary wedding special and, of course, JLA. Is that a ploy to get your money? Only if it doesn't involve great story. So, yes, the last thing I want is to be party to some fake "event" tie-in that simply has red skies in the background. But I feel these stories are in incredible hands, from Reddy to Vixen to Black Lightning to the rest. Even more important, this comic isn't a miniseries that was just for me. It's the Justice League of America, and it's ongoing, and at its best, its consequences should spill over into every part of the DCU.

When are you coming back to comics?

Buffy is next. But right now (and actually for the past year), it's been new novel full-time.

Anything you would change?

Every single story I write, the moment it comes out, I find new flaws/mistakes/words that I can't believe I didn't catch the first fifty times we went over it. But as a whole, each writer should only ever write the story that they have to tell. And these were the stories I had to tell: not about the giant menace (and believe me, I love giant menace stories), but about what makes the hero within. Issue zero, The Tornado's Path, The Lightning Saga, Walls, and Monitor Duty all deal with that same issue head-on. I don't love these heroes for their super-powers. I love them for their greatness within (which is just another way to say their humanity). I love that every day, even though they can die, they keep fighting forward. I love that Red Tornado would risk everything to be closer to his wife. I love that the Legion and JLA and JSA will risk it all to save their universe. I love that Red Arrow doesn't give up even when he should. And I love that the League will exist long after we're all gone. That is what greatness means: to keep never let anyone stop you from what you love doing...even when the most impossible odds stand in your way.

I believe there is greatness in all of us. And especially in the smallest of us. Every single story I write is about that. Every story -- from JLA, to my novels, to Jack & Bobby -- is about fighting the fight for what you love (whether it's your wife, your universe, your family, yourself, or your team). And the best fights are the ones where you're fighting for who you are. The odds never matter. What matters is who we are underneath. What matters is that we're true to what we love. And what matters is never ever ever changing to be anything but who you are. And that's what I -- again -- learned from the Justice League.

See you on monitor duty. And can't wait to see Dwayne's run. It's gonna be beautiful, and best of all, it's just beginning.


Anonymous said...

Just finished your final issue. Great job Brad, the League you left us should be interesting for years to come. Thanks for the great year of JLA. Please post more info on BUFFY, I didn't know about that.

frank said...

It was a great last ish and the whole run was great. I hope they do pick up on those beats, especially Black Lightning/Luthor. I love Black Lightning!

Anonymous said...

Even though you didnt have to, thanks for answering your critics. Your comments reflect what those of us familiar with your work and who have gotten to know you through the site have come to know and expect about you. Your talented writing, your love and respect for comics, the DC characters, and the continuing legend that is the DC Universe are part of what make you great.

Martin Maenza said...

Brad, your love for these characters showed - thank you for that. It doesn't always have to be about the mega-threats; sometimes it is about the people behind the masks and how they interact.

Anonymous said...


You completely inspire me! I love what you said about greatness. In fact, I love it so much, I quoted you on my blog in the post titled "Quotes that inspire me."