Doc’s Special Deep Dive Into The New Golden Age #1

November 9, 2022 Docs Corner, Reviews


Recently, I was asked on-line, “What I wanted from DC’s newest attempt at reviving the JSA?” That one really had me thinking. I have always been the biggest fan of Golden Age heroes and in the early days, was always impressed how DC would use the idea of legacy in their storylines. So what would make me, someone who spent his childhood tracking down and reading any story for the 1940’s, happy? I guess I would want this new creative team to look back at the amazing series of Roy Thomas’s All-Star Squadron and 1999’s JSA series. Both focased in on future heroes taking over for their Golden Age counterparts and brought their legacy forward. With a dash of Roy Thomas and a pinch of James Robinson, line up a few talented artists that can capture the flavor of that 1940’s art styles. Retconning is fine, as long as they make sense. And most importantly, do your research! There were hundreds of secondary characters and also-rans that deserve some respect. Hugh Hazard and Bozo the Robot, USA, the Spirit of Old Glory, Madame Fatal, all lead down some great rabbit holes.

So aside from those brief mentions in the Dark Crisis series, this one-shot is our first real taste of what to expect. And overall, I am liking what I see. The collection of artists here do a really great job of bringing life to those heroes of the past and some of the momentous moments from the actual past of these heroes. (Look for flashbacks to old storylines from the history of the JSA. And present us with a mystery within a mystery. Our main protagonist is most assuredly the strangely named Per Degaton who first appeared in 1947’s All-Star Comics as a lowly lab assistant who steals his bosses newly created time machine. He would return time and time again only to have his plans thwarted by the JSA. But we have more than that as Rip Hunter is involved and heroes and sidekicks are vanishing and being forgotten about. And they are not who you think they are. Take Cherry Bomb, one of the newer retconned characters with the obvious connection to the Freedom Fighters’ Human Bomb. What many don’t realize is that back in the 1940’s, the Human Bomb did have sidekicks. The first major one was a comic relief add on (it was a fad for a while, heck, even the scary Spectre got Pericival Popp the Super-Cop!) Hustace Throckmorton who after a blood transfusion gained the ability to blow things up with his feet! Then he gave powers to three of his friends who joined him as the Bombadiers. So this new character fits wonderfully into continuity. With heroes from not only the JSA but the Freedom Fighters and the Seven Soldiers of Victory (or do you call them Law’s Legionaires!), we are covering a wide variety of heroes from the Golden Age here. And probably best of all, we are promised the return of the Golden Age Aquaman with his giant A belt and yellow gloves. This ain’t your Arthur Curry! And with a grouping of Who’s Who pages which list these characters first appearances, you can bet I’ll be going through the archieves to see if these concept characters actually did show up back then. We are off to a great start here, let’s see if we can keep it up. 10 out of 10 Grahams!