[JSA Book Club] Week 14: What A Long Strange Trip It's Been [9/1/2020-9/15/2020]

Hello Everyone!

It’s certainly been quite a month around DC Universe, between Fandome and the season finale for both Stargirl and Doom Patrol. DC has everything from straight-up superheroics, to some of the most downright trippy stories out there. Personally, I love trippy storylines that take the reader’s imagination on fun little bunnytrails. Variety is an amazing thing, and one of the things I love the most about JSA. It has a little something for everyone.





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JSA (1999) Issues #13-22


1: Extant is a rather unique sort of adversary. How would you suggest going about fighting an opponent that can see the past, present and future? (that may be different than the route taken in the story)

2: We get a look at the pocket dimension inside Fate’s amulet. If you could design your own, what form would it take? Outside your significant other and children, name up to 7 people living or dead you’d want to live there with.

3: Due to a wrinkle in time and reality, it’s interesting to see Courtney get to meet the original Star Spangled Kid, Sylvester Pemberton. What do you think of their interactions? How different do you think that meeting would be between the characters in the comics, versus the same ones in the Stargirl series? (the season finale teased that it might actually be a possibility)

4: Al makes a fateful choice to save his mom’s life, by sending Extant back in time to take her place in that plane crash. Do you believe it was the right or wrong thing to do? Would you have done the same thing under the circumstances? (Considering that this issue is dedicated to Courtney Johns I think it’s especially poignant)

5: It’s revealed in issue #15 that Al and Courtney marry and have children at some point in the future. Since the series ended before that came to fruition, how do you think it finally played out? I’ve always wondered about that, and I’d love to hear your ideas.

6: We finally meet the comics version of the Injustice Society again, and they seem to have some new tricks up their sleeves. What do you think of the roster seen here, versus the television version? How would you propose fighting an enemy that’s obviously done their homework, and knows your weaknesses?

7: We get to see the origins of Johnny Sorrow’s anger with the team, and Sand in particular. How do you think what Sand did accidentally, has affected how he resolved conflict in the future? Do you believe he still blames himself more than he should for what happened?

8: Things take an interesting turn with the addition of Black Adam into the mix. Would you have been as cautious of his intentions as the team was, even after accepting his help against Johnny Sorrow and the King of Tears? Do you think Jay’s trip back in time, and what he learned there is what swayed the team to take his wish to join the team under consideration?

Please feel free to join in the conversation and add your own questions :slight_smile:

If you would like to join us click this link: JSA BOOK CLUB

  1. Sometime after Star turned 21, and Al did something to make the old JSAers love him again.
1 Like

I’m getting this one in at the buzzer.

  1. If I had to fight an adversary like Extant who could see all of time, I would hope that I could convince him or her of the damage their actions would do. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction through time. Even if some of those reactions are positive, many would be negative. Hopefully, I could convince them of the pain and suffering they are causing throughout the time stream. Or, at least, I could maybe convince them that their actions are meaningless because time comes to an end at Vanishing Point. … If all else fails, I know time is cyclical, so if I fail the first time then I’ll get my second chance in the next world.

  2. My pocket dimension would be the beach I used to go to on Namhae Island in South Korea because it’s the last place I remember being truly happy. As for who would be there with me, I’m going to take some liberties with this question. Instead of picking 7 people alive or dead, I’m going to substitute the 8 JSA members from that pocket dimension scene with some of my favorite Golden Age characters from other publishers. Here is Moth’s Substitute JSA:

In place of Dr. Fate: Solar, The Master of Magic (from Holyoke’s Captain Aero Comics)
Solar Master of Magic
Solar’s not really all that special, but I’ve read all four of his appearances and he has an invisibility cape (so that’s a plus).

In place of Stargirl: Kitten (from Holyoke’s Cat-Man Comics)
Cat-Man’s sidekick Kitten would fit Courtney’s burgeoning teen hero role very well.

In place of The Star-Spangled Kid: Rusty (from Holyoke’s Captain Aero Comics)
Blonde? Check. Patriotic-themed? Check. Young hero in the making? Check.

In place of Hawkgirl: The Blue Lady (from Centaur’s Amazing Man Comics)
The Blue Lady
She’s bird-themed (gets her powers from The Blue Bird Ring) and ended every adventure with a patronizing wink toward the patriarchy.

In place of The Flash: Silver Streak (from Lev Gleason’s Silver Streak Comics)
My favorite Golden Age speedster who fought for civil rights before it was cool. I also really love him for this moment:

In place of Sentinel: The Flame (from Fox’s Wonder World Comics)
Much like how Sentinel controls green flame, The Flame controls… regular flame!

In place of Hippolyta: Miss Victory (from Holyoke’s Captain Fearless then Captain Aero Comics)
She’s my second favorite Golden Age heroine after Wonder Woman.

In place of Hourman: Moth (from me)
Moth The Worst
Because it’s my pocket dimension, and, like Hourman, I can “travel through time” by flipping through the pages of their comic books.

  1. I enjoyed what I saw of the interactions between Sylvester and Courtney. Sylvester seemed to take up mentoring Stargirl like he was made for it. Courtney may have been receptive to it since they were close in age (in these issues anyway), and he’s obviously been in her boots before. I worry that when they meet in the TV series next season their relationship may be a little competitive over who gets to wield the Cosmic Staff.

  2. Al’s decision to save his mother and put Extant in her place was a bit selfish. I’m not crying over Extant. Extant was a murderer and a would-be tyrant. He probably deserved what he got. However, Al’s decision to save his mother over everyone else on that plane or everyone else through time he could have saved… that’s a dizzying decision. I’m not going to say that it was the wrong thing to do, but it was definitely messing with the timeline for selfish reasons even if it is to save someone you love.

  3. Al and Courtney are an interesting pairing. Though… Al’s always had a thing for blondes (right, Fury?). As to how exactly it went down, we may never know. Al was always genuine and steady while he was with Infinity Inc. When he joined the Justice League (in the mid-90’s) he was always hopeful and optimistic. This JSA story seemed to show him growing up a bit, but maybe he kept most of those qualities. With Courtney, she’s been more challenging and skeptical. She’s also been through some rough times with her father. Maybe it’s the case where their personalities were opposite enough that they ended up completing one another.

  4. This is not the best Injustice Society roster, but I was glad to see Shiv included. The television roster was far more iconic. When fighting an enemy who knows your strengths and weaknesses, you have to throw out the playbook and try things that are unexpected. I think that’s why Courtney did so well in that attack. She’s good at improvising.

  5. I think Sand felt truly guilty over what went down with Johnny Sorrow in the past. I think he felt responsible for ruining a man’s life and creating a monster. That kind of guilt can weigh you down. I think his decision to look past his own guilt and acknowledge Sorrow’s culpability in the situation may have helped give him the idea on how to beat Johnny. It was easy for Johnny to blame Sand and the JSA for what happened to him. In the end, Johnny needed to take a good look in the mirror and accept some of the blame. I doubt Sand feels completely off the hook, but I’m sure he’s ready to move on.

  6. Black Adam is a complex figure. On one hand, it’s fair to say that he’s a bit misunderstood. On the other, he is still ruthless and unapologetic. Even when he shows that he has the best of intentions, you kind of get the feeling he’s willing to do anything to enact them and that makes him dangerous. The JSA has every right to be cautious of him. The Flash’s trip to the past was probably the deciding factor in Adam being considered for the JSA. Here’s hoping it works out for the best…

That’s all from me. I hope everyone is safe and well in this dark timeline!