JLI Podcast #9 – Justice League International #9 (Jan 1988)

JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL: BWAH-HA-HA PODCAST and The Irredeemable Shag welcome guest host Chad Bokelman to discuss Justice League International #9 (Jan 1988)! No Man Escapes the Manhunters! The JLI are betrayed by one of their own in this Millennium tie-in issue! Chad and Shag recap and discuss the JLI issue, and we cover YOUR listener feedback!

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24 responses to “JLI Podcast #9 – Justice League International #9 (Jan 1988)

  1. Irish Embassy calling – can someone please get G’Nort as someone has given him a bone and he is now digging up the Embassy gardens to bury it!

    To be honest, I’m not sure about the hate for Millennium – sure, its no “Angels” but it is a good Robbie Williams song and I love the use of the James Bond arrangement in it and…….oh, you are not talking about the song? Well, I haven’t seen the series but I enjoyed Chris Carter’s X-Files and I heard that it was in a similar but darker vein and…oh, it’s not the TV Series you are talking about? It’s the comic series?

    Oh.

    Well, despite being attached to the Millennium crossover, this was still a fun issue to read. Given the choices, Rocket Red #7 was probably the best option for the traitor within. It is a pity that there was no lead in to allow us to know RR7 before he was revealed as the traitor, but at least it sped up the introduction of Dmitri to the team!

    There was some minor nitpicking issues I picked up in the issue:

    1. In Millennium, both Captain Atom and Oberon, for some strange reason, was with the JLI when they met the Guardian and the Zamoran at the Green Lantern Corps HQ. However, for some reason, they did not stay with the team when they left and were in New York. Did the team drop them off in New York before heading to Europe? Or was Captain Atom sent home to fix the mess with the electrical wiring he made in the last issue? And speaking of going to Europe…

    2. Why was the JLI going to Europe? They had just heard the news about the Millenium project and J’onn decided that it was the right time to check out the Embassy? You would have thought it better to go back to New York and wait for instructions on protecting the Chosen? Also, what flight path were they traveling to get to Europe? It looks like they were going over the desert for most of their flight!

    Minor quibbles aside, I enjoyed the issue and Shagg and Chad gave a great account of the story. No complaints about the Bwa-ha-ha moment, but I would give special mention to when Rocket Red locked the JLI in and Scott is trying to get the door open. Batman barks at Scott: “we hired you because you can work miracles, mister – so get to it!”; to which Scott replied “Was that a play on words?”. Batman, for all his grim and grittiness, had some great lines in this series.

    Next issue, someone is going to defend Millennium? Well, I just read through the series recently and that person has his work cut out to convince me, but it should be fun to listen to!

  2. As usual I loved the episode, but that’s not much of a surprise because once again the check clear…I mean it was done by Shag, who is awesome.

    In all seriousness the format of this show is great and I love the many and varied guests. Chad’s perspective was great and I liked that while you had some bad things to say about Millennium it didn’t turn into a vicious beat down of an episode. I think Millennium is one of those crossovers where the issues dealing with the story are better than the main series.

    At least I hope that is the case…especially at the start of next year.

    Anyway, great episode as always and keep up the amazing work. At this point I really don’t want to make something of it.

  3. Agreed that while Millennium is pretty bad as far as crossovers go, the concept of the “sleeper” agents was solid. Now in some cases, shoehorning them into the title’s mythos was a bit rough (Lana Lang and the ENTIRE town of Smallville, anyone?), but this JLI issue was one of the best. The Rocket Red actually attempting to get the JLI to see his point of view was a truly refreshing take as well.

    The end where Max’s secretary shoots him, and then nonchalantly pops her bubble gum…well that blew my young mind! Talk about a shocker!!!

    Great episode as always!

    Chris

    1. Millenium is really cool in theory, but like much of Englehart’s late-eighties work, it is not executed well. And Staton is just in full Hanna Barbera as viewed through a crack pipe mode at that point. His art is both cartoony and creepy. In his defense, though, he would change his style dramatically in the near future for the underrated Huntress series.

  4. Shagg and Chad,
    Another great episode! I honestly think that the JLI Millenium issues are the best part of the crossover. I would have liked more of an exploration of the Manhunter viewpoint on the issue. When Rocket Red calmly announces that he is a Manhunter, I was hoping for a Denny O’Neil Question-esque dive into the philosophy behind their actions. But fighty-fight-fight was cool too.

    I have to side with Shagg on the Bwha-ha-ha moment. The fogged up window bit from Beetle is classic! That’s some top notch Ted Kord strategy right there.

    Did you see that Kevin McGuire did the art for the most recent issue of Guardians of the Galaxy (issue 14)? He even drew Peter Quill with an “O face”.

    I thought the bit with Guy’s personality switch was funny when I was a kid, but now it just feels mean. Did the members of the JLI not know that guy had brain damage (see earlier GL issues)? This mouse episode might be a brain bleed and they are Bwha-ha-ha-ing him all the way to the ICU. Messed up, man. Like it wasn’t enough that Guy had to watch Hal steal his girl while he was trapped in the Phantom Zone.

    Hey, since Millenium came out every week, how about you do a run of weekly JLI episodes? Asking too much?

    Sean (Dead Robin)
    Pulp2pixel

  5. Everything is coming up Millennium right now! Shag, you may not know this but Jay and Roy covered the Captain Atom chapter over at their Silver and Gold podcast.

    1. I know, I know! Unfortunately, this episode with Chad was recorded ages ago. Long before I recorded with the Silver & Gold guys for Millennium. However, the feedback section… yeah, I just plain forgot because I wasn’t talking about Millennium. It will get pimped in the next feedback section! Sorry Jay & Roy (not that you listen to this show anyway). :)

  6. The “Help” bit was another example of acting brilliance by Maguire and company! And you know what this book did? It made me look up the work of Nikolai Gogol and Pavlovian responses. See? You can learn from comics!

    Also, Shag, how old was this cohost? He sells cars, but can he even drive?

    1. I can’t drive a stick, but I can drive. Which, now that I look back on it, is unfortunate. I grew up out in the Texas Hill Country while it was still the country. I really SHOULD have been taught how to drive a stick. On my neighbors tractor or something at least. I blame my dad. When I first started at my job, on the Cadillac side, a co-worker offered to teach me on a brand new Cadillac CTS-V but I declined as I didn’t want to be responsible to tearing up the clutch on a $80,000+ vehicle.

      Oh, did I ruin your jest with a serious response? Whew, what was I thinking? 😉

  7. Shag, I have just recently discovered your podcasts and am playing some serious catch-up. I am very much enjoying Fire and Water and Who’s Who, but your JLI podcast has hit me where my heart is! I have been reading and collecting comics (almost exclusively DC) since the mid-70s. My secret origin is sort of unique in that I was first exposed to comics because my uncle, who worked at the World Color Press plant in Sparta, Illinois, where all comic books were printed for decades, used to bring my brother and I a stack of comics every couple of months! He must have brought me mostly DC because that it what I really gravitated to as got old enough to start buying my own comics. It was a wonderful time! I cut my teeth on the original Justice League of America series, eventually collecting them all. Of course the Silver and Bronze Ages were great for what they were, but by the time the 80s came around, I was a teenager and learned from titles such as New Teen Titans, Swamp Thing and others, just how sophisticated comics could be. So when Crisis hit the stands, and the subsequent Legends mini-series, my collecting was in full stride. However, my original love of the JLA had waned. I loved Gerry Conway’s earlier work in the JLA (and of course in Firestorm :)), but the Detroit era didn’t do much for me, so when I seen the first add for the Justice League inviting me to see their Return to Greatness, I literally got goosebumps! Their proclamation “We’re the Tough, We’re the Proud, We’re the All-New Justice League” was music to my ears! What is really amazing, is that it did absolutely nothing to prepare me for the humor that was in store for me…and as you have said, it wasn’t just Giffen and DeMatteis’ humor and McGuire’s awesome facial expressions and postures, it was the perfect balance of humor and drama. As I said in my iTunes comments, JLI epitomized the Camelot years that the 80s was for me in comic reading. You and your co-hosts do a great job…you are thorough, the recordings are well-produced, and your are no slouches in the humor department yourselves. It makes my many hours of travel for work pleasurable. Thank you very much!

    Something else I would like to share with you…Def Leppard’s Hysteria album also came out in 1987 and their song “Rocket” was one of my favorites…mostly because in my head I was hearing “Rocket…Red” when the lyrics were actually “Rocket…Yeah”! so to this day, Rocket Red and the Justice League come to mind when I hear that song…and yes, I still sing “Rocket…Red”. Thanks again for such a great podcast!

  8. Shag, I have just recently discovered your podcasts and am playing some serious catch-up. I am very much enjoying Fire and Water and Who’s Who, but your JLI podcast has hit me where my heart is! I have been reading and collecting comics (almost exclusively DC) since the mid-70s. My secret origin is sort of unique in that I was first exposed to comics because my uncle, who worked at the World Color Press plant in Sparta, Illinois, where all comic books were printed for decades, used to bring my brother and I a stack of comics every couple of months! He must have brought me mostly DC because that it what I really gravitated to as got old enough to start buying my own comics. It was a wonderful time! I cut my teeth on the original Justice League of America series, eventually collecting them all. Of course the Silver and Bronze Ages were great for what they were, but by the time the 80s came around, I was a teenager and learned from titles such as New Teen Titans, Swamp Thing and others, just how sophisticated comics could be. So when Crisis hit the stands, and the subsequent Legends mini-series, my collecting was in full stride. However, my original love of the JLA had waned. I loved Gerry Conway’s earlier work in the JLA (and of course in Firestorm :)), but the Detroit era didn’t do much for me, so when I seen the first add for the Justice League inviting me to see their Return to Greatness, I literally got goosebumps! Their proclamation “We’re the Tough, We’re the Proud, We’re the All-New Justice League” was music to my ears! What is really amazing, is that it did absolutely nothing to prepare me for the humor that was in store for me…and as you have said, it wasn’t just Giffen and DeMatteis’ humor and McGuire’s awesome facial expressions and postures, it was the perfect balance of humor and drama. As I said in my iTunes comments, JLI epitomized the Camelot years that the 80s was for me in comic reading. You and your co-hosts do a great job…you are thorough, the recordings are well-produced, and your are no slouches in the humor department yourselves. It makes my many hours of travel for work pleasurable. Thank you very much!
    Something else I would like to share with you…Def Leppard’s Hysteria album also came out in 1987 and their song “Rocket” was one of my favorites…mostly because in my head I was hearing “Rocket…Red” when the lyrics were actually “Rocket…Yeah”! so to this day, Rocket Red and the Justice League come to mind when I hear that song…and yes, I still sing “Rocket…Red”. Thanks again for such a great podcast!

  9. Millennium may have disappointed, but this podcast sure didn’t. Another great job, Shagg! I must admit, I wasn’t sure how it’d go with a JLI newbie, but Chad obviously knows his stuff, and it was fun to hear a new reader’s perspective. Thanks for taking the risk, Chad, because NO MAN ESCAPES THE MANHUN-i mean-THE JLI!

    This show continues to be a great trip down memory lane, or more accurately, remembering lane, since I’m finding things even I’d forgotten. Like issue #9 being just one week after #8. No wonder Maguire needed help catching up!

    Speaking of Maguire, I have give extra praise to his work this issue. The “HELP” message. Fantastic! All of the points noted before, but there’s one panel I never understood, until now! In the fight with the Rocket Red, after Canary kicks him, the panel on the next page has a kind of awkward pose with Red’s hand on Canary’s neck, which is a weird way to knock her out. But that’s not the goal. It finally clicked “He’s cuffing her throat to disable her Canary Cry!” They didn’t make a big deal about it, just part of the fight! How many years have I been re-reading this book, and didn’t quite put that together? Is it just me that didn’t realize that? Oh, I hope not.

    I also love that Maguire makes the hair of his characters move. It’s probably been noted before that it’s common for hair to be like a helmet and never change. But oh no, Guy’s hair is always moving, especially with all the flying he does this issue. Love it!

    Here’s a strange thought. Rocket Red. The name evokes “and the rockets’ red glare” from “The Star Spangled Banner”. Why would the Soviets name these soldiers after the US National Anthem? Even marginally? Don’t get me wrong, it’s a cool name. Red is *the* color for the USSR, Communism, and all that. But that just don’t add up. Or maybe I’m missing something. It’s happened before. (*cough* 2 paragraphs back *cough*)

    Ohmygosh! Almost forgot! Shagg, Blue Devil? Oh man, I’ll have to dig out issue #2 signed by Cohn and Cullins!

    Looking forward to episode 10, where Millenniyuck finishes, but G’Nort! And we reach the halfway point for Maguire’s art. Wait, what? Really? Let’s break it down. 1-12, 16-18, 23-25, and 60. 19 issues. THAT’S ALL??????? Oh god, now I’m depressed.

  10. With the shooting of Maxwell Lord in issue #9 I’m reminded how complicated this character is. At first he’s the antagonist, then he becomes a bad guy and then becomes sort of a good guy. After awhile we get used to the character and his back and forth demeanor and even come to like him. Flash forward 2006. Did we see this coming? I suppose if you really follow Max from the beginning some may not be surprised as to the direction DC took him. But does knowing this outcome effect the way you read this series. I say no. We have to remember Infinite Crisis was twenty years away something that wouldn’t even be a glimmer until the early 2000’s. This Maxwell Lord I believe was never meant to go in the very dark direction that he went in. Re reading these books I put the future Max far to the back of my mind and just enjoy the awesomeness. As far as Millennium…uh gotta go see ya.

  11. Great episode, Chad. Although I think you let your cohost talk too much.

    On a serious note, that’s like three episodes in a row you’ve mentioned Wild Dog, Shag. Time for you to unclassify him a mort and give him his due credit. He’s a bad-ass who won’t stay down. I don’t see your nuclear man in a regular monthly series…

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