JLI Podcast #43 – Justice League America #43 & Justice League Europe #19

Pat Sampson joins The Irredeemable Shag to chat about Justice League America #43 in which a washed-up reporter plays poker... with a bunch of super-villains?!? Then Jason R. Lady stops by to discuss Justice League Europe #19 and the final confrontation between the JLE and the Extremists! Plus YOUR listener feedback!

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26 responses to “JLI Podcast #43 – Justice League America #43 & Justice League Europe #19

  1. Great episode, as usual.
    I have this whole era of JLA (“the forties”) pegged as sub-par and not really my thing. I usually stop any re reads just when Despero is finishing, and yet the podcast reminded me of this quite enjoyable issue. To begin with, asked point blank I would have told you it was a fill-in and not Hughes, and many of the details that would have come with re-reads I never got to, because, well, I never re-read.
    The character find here is Moish, cannot believe I did not notice the lower body details. I was out looking for queer signals all over the place, yet I missed out on this one. I did see him (they?) in the Pride special, but did not do the math.
    As for JLE, a great case study against padding: the payoff is really good, but came far too late after at least two issues that were filler, mistakes and unnecessary stuff.

    1. Your dad sounds awesome! So cool he was so supportive. Listening to this podcast and talking to Shagg has made me realize how rare it was to have a dad like mine who collected comics with me and enjoyed them as much, if not more, than me.

  2. Just as a guess but for quake Master I’d guess the T stands for tectonic
    Such as the tectonic plates whose movement causes earthquakes and also as tectonic comes from the Greek tektonikós meaning of a carpenter or builder

  3. The JLA issue is a pretty solid and fun issue looking at things from the villain’s point of view, am I wrong in thinking by now this had already been set up as the norm for the Flash rogues? I’m also disappointed, again, in Shag missing another wait staff dressed as Phantom Lady on the splash page for the Dark Side.

    As for the JLE, I’m still in the camp that the two fights should have been closer, the League shouldn’t have lost so easily in the first and Extremis in the second, though at least you can explain the second fight as something to do with there programming I guess. As you can guess I’m squarely in the camp that they stretched the story out a couple of issues too much, which left all their weird little odds and ends that just don’t work once you have the whole thing.

    1. With the JLE vs. the Extremists, it’s interesting because in those first two fights, Dreamslayer is the deciding factor. In the Moscow fight he knocks out the whole JLE with one giant magical blast. In the second fight he teleports them to Angor. It’s of course a trope of the genre that Dreamslayer doesn’t simply kill them all because they are the main characters–but it sure seems like Dreamslayer (the one non-robot member of the Extremists) didn’t want to kill them for some reason.

  4. I’ll comment in two parts this time, as I may not be able to listen to the second half of the show for a couple of days. But Let It Be Known, I enjoyed Pat’s contributions immensely.

    Pat’s cover description was obviously a reference to something, Shag mentioned KFC – is it a TV ad?

    Oh Shag, you said the villains this time are the kind of characters we would skip over in Who’s Who? As if. I know you never skipped over anybody. In fact, this is a literal Who’s Who of bad guys – Blackrock, Black Mass, Brainwave, Calculator, Calendar man, Cadre, Brainwave… you must see it, Shag even mentions Calculator and Calendar Man sharing a page in Who’s Who. Looking at the way so many names are all from one part of the alphabet, would you bet against Keith Giffen having flicked through just a couple of editions to pick this month’s guest cast?

    There is a Fire and Water connection to Quakemaster (who sounds like something you’d order from Ronco); his first appearance was inked by Tex Blaisdell, former teacher of the network is very own Rob Kelly (John Calnan pencilled).

    How fascinating that Moish turned up again, great spot Shagg. Maybe Shagg could ask JMD to unlock the Myshtery of Moisht? In case anyone doesn’t know, the Time in a Bottle pub first appeared in the superb Knight and Squire mini-series by Paul Cornell and Jimmy Broxton, minus Moisht. The collection would be a great bonus book recommendation for this episode.

    1. Matrin,

      Thanks for the kind words on my part of the show. To answer your question about the cover description, I was referencing lyrics from the Kenny Rogers song “The Gambler”. Your not to far off about KFC being apart of Shagg’s mention as Kenny Rogers Roasters is a chain of chicken-based restaurants founded in 1991 by country musician Kenny Rogers and former KFC CEO John Y. Brown Jr. (I had to look that up so I learned something new).

      Thanks again for the kind words on my segment. Means alot to me .

  5. A couple of great issues and great guests, plus Shagg! Who could ask for more?

    JLA #43: on this reread, Wally being blacklisted isn’t sitting well with me. He’s a reporter, doing his job (or “job”), and Vivian ruins his career? Is that really a heroic move, solely to protect “not so secret” identities, since most of the team have public identities or at least don’t really work to protect them? They’ve left the embassy lots of times in civilian clothes, just asking for paparazzi to catch their comings and goings. The bigger thing is Wally’s story is embarrassing to the league, but it’s one thing to kill a story, quite another to keep Wally from being able to support himself. It just doesn’t feel good, ya know?

    But Wally and Bito are great, love them being the stars of this issue. And all of the D-list villains in the “Dark Side” are fun. A nice “other side of the tracks” story. I knew all of them first from Who’s Who, with one exception. Brainstorm. I first found him in a giant-size coloring book when I was a kid, featuring Superman, Wonder Woman, and Batman. He had to be a big deal to take on the big 3, right? Oh, what did I know, I was 8. I remember making his costume purple and green, because the heroes were using up all of my red and blue crayons. Oh, if only I could embarrass myself today sharing my efforts, but it’s long gone.

    I can’t believe Shagg didn’t note that the waitress dressed as Wonder Woman is a redhead. You’re slipping, my friend. And she had a great though balloon. “Gawd, now they’re letting in *normal* weirdos.” An oxymoron to be sure, which makes it even better.

    Oh and obviously, Quakemaster’s “T” stands for … Tremors. You’re welcome, Paul!

    JLE #19: The twist upon twist at the end were the best parts of this story, and rewarding on re-reads. Crimson Fox not being foxy in the final battle was one clue, but also Dreamslayer was still floating while the other villains bowed to Mitch, so a little clue there of what’s to come. (yes, there was the Dreamslayer robot, too, but important to follow thru in that moment.) And can I just say, when ‘Slayer blasts Mitch and furiously monologues at the team, I still find that panel pretty terrifying! Very effective by the whole creative team!

    I hope this isn’t offensive to the artificial intelligences out there, but it threw me to see thought balloons for the Extremist robots. They’ve had them for the entire storyline, and I somehow think this should have been contradicted them being robots. But on reflection, that’s silly. Red Tornado and Vision each have had thought balloons, to capture internal contemplation, and shouldn’t matter if they’re biological or technological beings. Soooo, never mind.

    Thanks for another great episode. Sorry the show will be wrapping up soon, since it’s been 5 years since it started … oh it has 3 more years? YAY!!!!!

  6. Impressive podcast most impressive.This is Liz Anne Oswalt. The cover looks pretty cool. But that is the weirdest looking helmet I have ever seen. It looks like the Bishop piece from chess with circles around. Still this will drawn. And the characters fit who they are well enough. Yet that’s a pretty good hand. Unless one of the other players as a book of spades with the same lineup. Oroin on taking out sonar makes sense. And I’m sure they would’ve been busy with the glass. Though I do doubt sonar would’ve gotten up from being backhanded that hard by Oroin, but it could happen. The stories decent enough. And following the side character works well enough. It was kind of a entertaining story. The colors on oh Oroin’s costume are pretty much what he normally wears anyway. So that works even if the costume is the ugliest thing I’ve seen in a while. Did he lose a bet to light ray and now he has to wear this thing?

    Kind of strange seeing calendar man as part of the Mort crew. Having seen how well he was used in the Batman books recently. Well and long Halloween. I haven’t read new comics in a long time. Moish is decent enough. Though the original look was better in my opinion. He seems to have lost lots of weight since his first appearance. And I’m not sure the bone structure would be that different between the two appearances for the same guy. Still looks like he replaced Ira as the bartender. I mostly know bug eyed bandit from their appearance in the flash. Whom was a female hacker that went up against Felicity smoke in that episode. She was guest starring on the flash. For that episode. Though his fight was kite man is comical. Should be fun to see where the next issue goes. The silver sorceress looks better without her headgear. The Walt Disney stand in character works well enough.

    Silver sorceress pretending to be the Crimson Fox so she could defeat dream slayer was kind of a good idea. And worked well enough. Is kind of like a RPG. The way this worked out. Speaking of that I mentioned Zeb Oswalt does a doctor who RPG on Facebook. The doctor is still open. Since no one has taken any of the versions of the doctor. Though it’s mostly been short stories where he’s using the foreman. As the main character. Whom has changed their name. And is now a male Time Lord. Under third life. It’s pretty obvious whom the character is. But since the foreman is hiding identity from the doctor. Obvious is the best choice. After all make it difficult to figure out the minute. Make it simple and the doctor will take forever to figure it out. See the 50th anniversary where he used his three screwdrivers. To figure out how they could run a process that would go through these three lifetimes. So that he could get over the weakness to wood so he could get out of a prison, but he forgot to see if the door was unlocked first . At any rate in the current story the main villain is Sil.
    Zeb had already done a story with their master and the great intelligence. So when I continue on with this character? And the Gangers are involved to. Back to the comic. It is kind of fun to see Wally and Catherine at the Museum. Kind of shocked she didn’t go with Capt. atom. Ah well. Was interesting to find out that most of the bad guys were robots. Weight didn’t they return in later issues? Did someone reactivate these robots? Sorry I only know them from their Who’s Who entry. Still this seems like a fun enough story. Can’t wait to hear the next podcast. Also Merry Christmas. Seasons greetings. Happy Hanukkah. And er… happy Kwanzaa.

    1. I agree, if there had to be an epilogue with Catherine at the museum, it should have been with Captain Atom. It was really random to have it be Wally. I think Shagg and I called that out in our discussion. You are right, the Extremist robots do return, in the Breakdowns crossover.

  7. I still get to hear fifteen more minutes of comments from the Dan Jurgens interview, but I’ll go ahead and post a new comment now. I don’t have much to add to your coverage of the comics, so I’ll rave about your guests.

    Pat Sampson, AKA DJ Kristados! It’s so great to hear your Longbox Crusade wackiness here on the Fire & Water Network! This is like a Marvel / DC crossover, or when your favorite people from two different parts of your life meet! I mean, I know you’ve known each other for a long time, and I had nothing to do with your introduction. But, people are always telling me to stop letting facts get in the way of their point, so now I will say the same. Pat, I really enjoyed hearing you work in your catchphrase and some of the Longbox segments on the show. I also appreciated seeing the heroes trying to stop Sonar and making mistakes — not ridiculous mistakes that would have made me think less of them, but reasonable ones that show the hero business can be trial and error. The Dark Side was super fun for all the reasons you said. And Shagg, I heard you mention the blonde Phantom Lady cosworker (I just made up that term, I don’t care if it already existed), so I know you didn’t miss it.

    Jason, I don’t know you as well, but you did a great job on the climax of JLE’s dimension-hopping saga. Also, I have mad respect for your dad for spending THIRTY-THREE YEARS in the U.S. Army, especially while wearing a name tag that said “Lady.” Honestly, each of his years should have counted double. And I have mad respect for you for writing two novels! Clearly, sticktoitiveness runs in the family. Honestly, the only thing that could have made this segment better was puns about the name of The Extremists’ planet, but I’m not Angor-y about the missed opportunity.

    Oh, you did all right, too, Shagg. Actually, you always do a great job, but it always hurts to say it. Let’s do this again soon!

    1. Thank you for your kind words, Captain Entropy! Doing the podcast was a blast, it was an honor to do the ending of such an epic and fondly-remembered saga. Yeah, my family is super proud of my dad, he accomplished a lot in his life and was quite a guy. He could be commanding tanks in his day job, then helping me bag and board comics at home. 🙂 We miss him a lot! It’s funny, the last name Lady seems normal to me, and every once in a while I’m reminded how odd it is! I think for my dad the jokes trickled off as he rose in the ranks—he ended his army career as a sergeant major, someone they wouldn’t mock for his last name, lol. Thanks for the kind words on my books Monster Problems and Super Problems! If you know any kids in the 8-12 year old age range, spread the word.

      1. Wilco, Jason! Monster Problems and Super Problems, copy all. And I’m sure you’re right. Nobody messes with a sergeant major.

    2. Captain Entropy, Thanks for the kind words! It really means alot to me. I would love to be a guest on more shows if anyone will have me on. It was definitly worth the 4 year wait to be able to talk with Shagg about JLI. It was such a fun time and a fun story to cover.

      1. Pat, I feel you. So far I’ve guested on one, and loved it. I’m grateful to be slotted for other appearances, but it’s a long wait.

        Of course, I think that people like you with your own podcasts or blogs to promote have more reason to be on. There’s a lot of mutual support in this community, and I’ve legitimately found other podcasts that bring me joy (like yours, for example) because Fire & Water does great service as a gateway drug. I’m glad F&W uses opportunities to call attention to the work you and others do producing great FREE content for our enjoyment.

        I currently have nothing to promote. That might eventually change in my other identity, and then maybe I’d get to do an “I am Iron Man” scene. But there’s a lot of armor to build between now and then. I’m barely out of the cave, ya know? (Now, where’s that cheeseburger?)

  8. Hi Shag.

    I was wondering if DC should bring back Jean-Jean De Jean. He could team up with Abdul Abdullah Abdul and together they can be the big bass for the next big crossover event. What do you think?

  9. JLA
    I always wish they’d revisit the Dark Side Bar in DC comics specials over the years! On the other hand, we’ll get a variation on the idea over in Justice League Unlimited in the episode “Flash and Substance!
    So the bad guys take over the world and sit around bored?!?….. Wait! I’ve seen that movie before! (Superman II)
    As to the Extremist robots being put right on display in a museum…… DCU museums all have this really bad habit of putting Dangerous items on display (Hello Flash Museum!! Looking at you with all your Rogue weapons and Cosmic Treadmill out in the middle of the floor!)
    I’m guessing the conceit is that the Museum goers believe that no one would ever put genuine functioning weapons of mass destruction on display, and that these are all just non-Firing replicas!

    1. Very true about the museums! Our guy Booster Gold got his entire batch of equipment from one of these museums, in addition to a functioning (!) time machine. You gotta wonder about museums in the DCU. If the superhero and supervillain stuff is just put on display “as is”, you have to wonder about other things like airplanes and tanks, lol! Or, at a car museum in the DCU, can you just hop in any car and zoom away? Full tank of gas and everything?

      1. This discussion will not stand. Next you’ll tell me trade shows *don’t* have fully functional gigantic props like typewriters or mouse traps!

  10. Well done everyone! Pat and Jason were fantastic guests and brought a lot of joy and love talking about these comics. Pat, I loved your cover description. If there was only a way to work in a musical key change in the middle of the description, it would have nailed the homage! Jason, like others mentioned, that was an awesome and touching story about your dad. Comics are a connection I love sharing with my boys and hoping, one day, they will also enjoy the ridiculous monologuing of Manga Khan!

    JLA – Because of Who’s Who, like Shag mentioned, I always had it my kid head that Calendar Man and Calculator were a duo. So it was great to see them chatting it up in this issue. I love everything about this issue with all the morts gathered in one place. There was nothing else on the stands like this at the time and it was the main reason this was my favourite comic.

    JLE – Because this storyline had less and less jokes, I was starting to tune out JLE at the time. Good thing next issue has the Beefeater!

    This was a treat as always. Keep up the great work!

  11. The biggest surprise for me with this podcast has been how much it has made me reassess JLE. I wasn’t thrilled with JLE for the most part when it came out but the recaps made me pull those books from the long boxes and give them another look (because they are NOT on DC Infinite for some reason. New Guardians is being put on DCI and not the rest of JLE???)
    Keep up the great work Shag

  12. Coming in late to the party, but this was a fun episode, with some great guests. I remember really enjoying these issues of JLA.

    Moish…hmmm. I hate to say this, but I think the whole bit with him was that you see him up top in panel 1 as a gruff, if very low-level super villain type. Even bold enough to rip off Superman’s brand.. Then in panel 2, he has on a skirt and fishnets. That was the gag. It was the 90s, and cross-dressing was fair game for comedy. At least he wasn’t treated unfairly by the characters because of this, but I do think it may have been intended as a joke for the readers of the time to pick up on. Obviously, this didn’t age well, but it looks like something positive is being done with him now. Good on DC for bringing him back in a completely positive light.

    I caught Pat’s wonderful Kenny Rogers gag right away, and I did remember those Roasters restaurants. They cut their chicken with scissors! It was weird, but actually pretty tasty!

    The Extremist storyline…hoo boy. Yeah, the stakes were just too high in this one for a non-crossover event, and then the ending was clever, but kind of…underwhelming. When you escalate the threat level like this, you have to assume other characters are going to do something. Showing them sitting on their hands is actually worse than not showing them at all.

    I did enjoy hearing about Jason’s interesting childhood. Sounded like a lot of fun, and you obviously had a very cool dad. I wish my kids were a bit younger too to check out your books!



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