Justice Society Presents – Crisis: Justice League of America #113


Shag and Rob return to discuss another classic JSA/JLA team-up, "The Creature in the Velvet Cage!" by Len Wein, Dick Dillin, and Dick Giordano from JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #113!

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15 responses to “Justice Society Presents – Crisis: Justice League of America #113

  1. Good show. Didn’t think I’d have too much to add today. I do have one correction for Shag. Jimmy “Tick Tock” Martin from the New Golden Age/Stargirl series is not, in fact, a new character. He is one of a whole gang of kid sidekicks Hourman had. They were called the Minutemen of America, if memory serves. The two best known ones are the aforementioned Jimmy and Thorndyke. In fact, Thorndyke was mentioned in Stargirl.
    Mr. Terriffic set up a series of boys clubs called the Fair Play Club, who helped him out from time to time, but I don’t believe any of them stood out. And the JSA had the similare Junior Justice Society, who played a major role in the classic “Plight of a Nation” story. But none of them actually wore costumes, but were instead your generic kid gang of Forties Comics.

    1. Hi Hal – Thanks for the feedback. Good point about Tick Tock and the Minutemen, but I was thinking costumed sidekicks. As I recall, Tick didn’t get a unique costume until the recent mini-series.

  2. Nice conversation, gentlemen. Always nice to see one of the annual JLA/JSA team-ups get some love, even one in which they don’t bust a guy – that jerk Wesley Dodds – for wrongful confinement and restraint.
    I’m wondering, though, at all of the puzzlement over the Sandy rock monster’s trunks. Have you guys never read an issue of Fantastic Four? Rock monsters and trunks go together like peanut butter and chocolate. And – as per Fin Fang Foom – there is an argument to be made that trunks are also de rigueur for kaiju as well.
    You might be interested in knowing that the Hooters eventually gave up their life of crime and instead opted to become a rock band. They had a pretty respectable tour schedule and a few top 40 radio hits in the 1980s.
    And by the way, depending on whether you consider the original (*real*) Red Tornado, Ma Hunkel, a full-fledged JSAer, she also had two kid sidekicks, the Cyclone Kids (her daughter Sisty Hunkel and Dinky Jibbet, the next-door neighbor’s kid).

  3. Rob! Be kind to yourself and read JSA/Justice Society of America by mostly Geoff Johns. You will appreciate all the homages to the Golden Age. It’s wonderful. I have read it no fewer than 3 times through.

    If you ever decide to read anything post-Crisis, which seemed constitutionally abhorrent to you, this is what you should read.

  4. I’ve never read this story but I have read the DC Comics Presents backup “Whatever Happened to Sandy the Golden Boy?” and I was a big fan of the Geoff Johns era of JSA featuring Sanderson Hawkins as Sand. Putting him in a cage for decades was pretty awful. When E. Nelson Bridwell decided that TNT and Dyna-Mite had to be consigned to lead-lined bunkers for decades because of radioactivity, they at least got books, food, etc.

    My initial exposure to the JSA was the Paul Levitz/Joe Staton All-Star Comics in the late 1970s. My first Justice League comic was #159 “Crisis from Yesterday”. So JSA Presents is near and dear to my heart. Can’t wait for the JSA in the 90s and whatever else y’all have cooked up.

  5. Thanks for telling me about the solo series about Allen Scott and Jay , and sand man I’ll have check them out I already told friend and he’s excited about new jsa stories .

  6. Dad would call the 2000s show “JSA in the Naughties”, which would be apt given the host…

  7. Great episode gentleman. It’s always entertaining to hear you two together. When I was putting together a complete run of JLA vol 1, the last ones I found were the 100 page issues110-116. And the last of those I found 113. I guess people just didn’t want to let go of their Sandy the Golden Boy revamp!
    The “velvet cage” likely refers to the “Man in the Iron Mask”. The historical figure that Dumas based his famous story on was actually forced to wear a velvet mask.
    Since the legendary All-Star Squadron Annual 3 which explains the KSA’s longevity, there have been several other explanations as well.
    1. Their years spent fighting Ragnarok in limbo. Each member of the JSA merged with a Norse god. When they came back from limbo, each JSA member was imbued with “some of the immortality” of the god they merged with.
    2. Before the 90s JSA series there was a mini-series where the JSAers battled an inter dimensional demon. They fall out of the battle decelerated their aging. This was basically an update of the All-Star Squadron annual.
    3. Jay Garrick’s connection to the Speed Force keeps him young.
    4. Alan Scott’s connection with the Starheart keeps him young.
    5. Wildcat has nine lives… wait… what? Yes, at one point it was decided Ted Grant had nine lives. This wasn’t very popular and it was almost immediately done away with. Wildcat was repeatedly killed until he had only 1 life left.

  8. Love these episodes guys. We need more!

    Shag missed the perfect opportunity to pounce on Rob when he slipped up and said the creators could have used Aquaman as a character who didn’t have an Earth-Two counterpart. Now, of course, Aquaman does, even if at this publication point, that hasn’t been established. We didn’t know Sandy was a sand creature for 3 decades until this issue, but that is accepted as canon, and moves forward to the post-Crisis era ,even!

    I read this story for the first time when the original Crisis on Multiple Earths trades came out around 20 years ago. I knew of Sandy’s fate from his Who’s Who entry, but reading this was still quite a shocker. Wasn’t Sandy the ward of Wesley Dodds? So did Wes fake Sandy’s death? Lie to his friends, Sandy’s school, child services, etc? If you think about this too hard, it gets worse and worse! And as you mentioned, Sandy was established as Dian Belmont’s nephew. In post-Crisis continuity, at least by the 90s, Dian lived, and her and Wes stayed together until Wes’ death, so…how did she feel about this? Was she in on the coverup?

    I did really like Sand in the 2000s JSA, and his initial outfit of a ballcap, ribbed turtleneck and small gasmask was a nice update to the Sandman outfit. His later look was fine too. He even shows up in the background on JLU!

  9. Great show. I think it the 60s and early 70s, the JSA weren’t so much the wiser and more experienced heroes but the more incompetent ones. Sandman imprisons his sidekick for decades. Alan Scott decides to wipe out all evil and everyone on Earth-Two vanishes.

    They were screwing up to make Earth-One heroes look good.

  10. The Grand Comics Database lists John Calnan as the Freedom Train artist, with Robert Kanigher as scripter.
    I actually went to the Freedom Train as a kid, and barely remember it, other than just another dumb museum, except we had to stand in line for hours in the sun.

    Sandy was also supposed to be a member of Infinity, Inc., but that didn’t work out for whatever reason.

  11. I have never read this comic. I knew the story from Who’s Who and other DC books but I really need to go back read more 60s/70s JLA and JSA – not just for the crossovers.

    I now look forward to reading it after this great coverage of the book.

    I love that we still have the JSA around in modern day DCU – but I do find it crazy we don’t have a JL ongoing on the shelves – how did that happen? I blame Batman overkill. But we’ve not got Legion or JL around and we might as well not have JSA based on the long long drawn out saga of getting that book on the shelves on a timely manner.

    When the JSA and JL eventually do come back I really hope we get to have more of these crossover type stores as they are wonderful fun.

    I’ll leave my feedback short as I’m well well behind on my podcast listening.

    Kudos to both Shag and Rob thank you

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