Jake’s Gag Bag #3 Justice League Animated Series “Comfort and Joy”
Everyone has their holiday traditions, things like watching your favorite holiday movies, enjoying hot chocolate as you put up decorations, or listening to your favorite holiday songs with the family. For me it’s pretty much the same but with lots of comic book media mixed in there. I have quite a few holiday specials I watch each year, and one I always watch at some point is one my of favorite Justice League Animated Series episodes “Comfort and Joy”. Now, now I know you’re probably thinking “but Jake, you always write about a comic book moment that makes you laugh, not a TV show episode!” and while you’re right I’m breaking my own rules here but I just love this episode so much. Not only is there some pretty great humor in the episode (We’ll get to that), but there’s also a lot of holiday heart in it as well.
In this one-off episode from season two the League wraps up saving an alien race and heads to earth for some holiday fun, Batman of course opts to stay and monitor things at the watch tower. The episode follows multiple stories; Green Lantern and Hawkgirl have an adventure in space, and Flash has a sort of “Jingle All the Way” scenario except if “Jingle All the Way” had the Ultrahumanite in it. Now these aren’t the reason why I am including this episode in this the last story involving Superman, and Martian Manhunter.
Superman invites Martian Manhunter over to his parents for Christmas and we find out Superman is a huge fan of the holiday. As they share stories we find out that Ma and Pa Kent used to wrap all of Clark’s gifts in lead foil so he wouldn’t be able to use his super vision to sneak a peek and spoil what he was getting for Christmas. I was always looking for gifts in the attic or basement to try and see what I was getting for the holidays as presents so I definitely would have done the same thing as young Clark Kent did so I immediately related to this.
Now what really made me giggle and is one of the main reasons I enjoying watching it every year and showing it to people who may not have seen it or missed this specific moment is Clark’s reaction to Ma and Pa Kent sharing this with Martian Manhunter. Clark’s parents mentioned THEY had to wrap the presents in lead foil which leads to Clark’s concerning question of “You mean Santa wrapped them” which is just a great funny moment to me because that means Superman, the most powerful mortal in the DC universe, who has fought gods, warlords from space, ancient evils, and other omnipotent powerhouses still believes in Santa Clause (as he should, everyone knows he exists in the DC universe and our hearts).
Aside from that specific moment the entire episode is great and should be on any comic book fan’s Holiday watch list. Another moment for me in the episode is when Martian Manhunter receives a sweater a gift from the Kents. What would you get the Martian who can shape shift into literally anything for Christmas? Why a sweater of course. Happy Holidays everyone!