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Saturday, December 03, 2011

Young Justice #9 - Dec 2011

"Cold Case" by Kevin Hopps, Greg Weisman, Christopher Jones, and Dan Davis.

Hey everyone, Andy Luckett here with a review of Young Justice #9, featuring Captain Atom!

Our story opens in a classroom within YJ's headquarters, where Captain Atom is teaching the group about "Espionage 101". Sadly, for the most part his words are falling on very deaf (and bored) ears:


Taking the hint that he's putting the team to sleep, Atom decides to give them a real case to solve, a cold case from the Vietnam War. Captain Nathaniel Adam was convicted and sentenced to prison for the murder of General Clement Lemar. He died in prison, but later evidence suggests he may have been the victim of a frame-up. Atom asks the team to investigate the situation and definitively prove or disprove his framing theory.

Miss Martian (with Robin tagging along for surveillance) takes off for the Pentagon to question General Wade Eiling about the case, while disguised as a young Air Force Captain. Eiling reveals that he was the judge who sentenced Adams to life in prison after he was caught red-handed:


Meanwhile, Superboy and Kid Flash (who rarely team up together) head to Vegas to see Henry Yarrow, Adam's lawyer and friend, who tells a much different tale:



Not only does Yarrow claim that Adams wasn't guilty of the murder, but also says that General Eiling married Adam's widow after his death, and raised his kids! Whoa, bogus!

Back at the Pentagon, Robin and Miss Martian make a grim discovery: the newly dead body of the medical examiner from Adam's case, Shirley Mason. Ruh-roh, Scoob, this mystery just got serious! The duo find a photograph in her hand, showing Mason, Adam, Yarrow and others. After matching Mason to the photo, they resolve to find the others.

Aqualad and Artemis draw the good straw, journeying out to Honolulu to meet with Adam's children. The son, Randy, is bitter that his father became, in his view, a murderer and traitor, but his sister does not believe in her father's guilt. After the meeting, Aqualad and Artemis take a walk on the beach, having a deep discussion about parental figures. After Artemis alludes to her parents' dishonesty, Kaldur reveals his heritage:


Miss Martian and Robin, having matched facial recognition from the photograph to a North Vietnamese General named Trang, have tracked him to his mansion in Annapolis, Maryland, where they are joined by Superboy and Kid Flash. Superboy, using his x-ray vision, notices someone else in the house with Trang, someone carrying a sword. Realizing that Shirley Mason was killed by a sword, Superboy and KF (being creatures of impulse) want to charge in, but Robin states that they were ordered by Captain Atom to investigate covertly and report back. To get a closer look, Miss Martian goes immaterial and approaches the house.

When she arrives, she is able to interrupt the swordsman from killing Trang, but he is able to see her in her invisible state! After attacking her, the assassin faces an angry Superboy:



To be continued (of course)!

Well, I enjoyed the first part of this new story, a definite change-up from former stories. We get a chance to see the team tackle a mission that requires detective work rather than physical action, though there is some of that too, of course. But the idea of tackling a cold case makes perfect sense as a training tool for a team of young heroes. The case, which seems to be a retrofitting of one of Captain Atom's comics origins, should be interesting as it plays out next issue.

The highlight of the issue, for me, was undoubtedly the conversation between Aqualad and Artemis wherein he reveals the identities of his parents. Apparently, his mother, Sha'lain'a, lives in the Atlantean city of Shayeris and his father is Cal Durham, who was working as a spy for Black Manta until he fell in love with Kalder's mother! Very interesting that this information has been revealed here in the comic instead of on the show, but I especially like the inclusion of Cal Durham, one of my favorite Aqua-family supporting characters.

We'll see where this all goes next issue!


IADW said...

Contents be hanged - I miss those kind of covers! Captain Atom wants me to solve a mystery? Guess I must be better than Batman!

Joseph Brian Scott said...

Interesting story; and look at that title page: I bet Aqualad was crowned Posture King of his class.