Moments of Wonder: Justice League and Justice League Unlimited Part 1

Taking my cue from a great speech which is used throughout the Man of Steel trailer (so hopefully not spoiling anything for anyone who’s not seen the film yet)  the phrase spoken by Jor-ek ‘Together you will help them accomplish wonders’ got me to think about what things in geekdom make me pause. The moments that even now when I think of them everything else falls away while I allow myself to be lost in a moment of wonder. I think sometimes we are so caught up on comparing this reboot to that remake or that golden age hero to his or her current incarnation that it’s easy to forget some of diamonds in our shining world of geekdom. I know it’s something I’m guilty of.

So rather than share a rant on Man of Steel or Iron Man or why this isn’t my Star Trek (all of which will probably draw in more clicks) I thought I would start sharing some of my personal moments of geek wonder. My go to closet of safety when Geekdom gets a little too harsh for my tastes.  First up I’m going to talk through some of my moments of wonder on Justice League and JLA unlimited. Be warned though if you’ve never watched the shows there will be spoilers!

Justice League title sequence

I’ll go on record to say until my dying day that the original Justice League opening titles was one the best titles of any show, animated or not.

I loved both the Bataman:TAS and Superman:TAS  intros and in some ways they were  better put together but for showing off an ensemble cast of characters, their powers and given them a god like status in sixty  seconds? Well few shows did it better. The first time I hear the opening bars of that theme music I knew I was witnessing something special, although I had no idea at the time just how special. A lot of shows when they come on now I may skip through the intro but never on Justice League…never.

Flash Runs to the Sun

What I loved about this moment is that as someone who’s never read a single issue of the Flash(and still hasn’t) this was the first time I got a sense of a) how fast he could be and b)why he was in the Justice League. I also, as one of the early episodes, I started to see that this was not Batman:TAS and that the Justice League really did deal with things on a global scale. Yeah it might seem cheesy having a guy running toward the sun but I loved watching the planets pass by as he ran. I also loved John Stewart aka Green Lantern having to rely on essentially the comic relief of the team to save the entire planet. It was great foreshadowing for Flash’s greatest moment in JLU.

Flash vs Brainac/Luthor

This was for me one of my  top moments of wonder in JLU and Flash’s greatest moment.  The music, the animation and the sheer power on display was..well to say epic was putting it mildly. I remember siting back and taking the scene  for a moment then hitting pause, picking  up the phone and ringing Dave (the other GS co-founder) and simply saying…’Man I had no idea the Flash was that powerful’ .

Wonder Woman reads an excerpt from “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”

Not much to say about this scene other than when it was over I realised I had been crying all the way through the sequence. The voice acting and music in here was some of the best of both series. When you know what this episode was all about it adds another layer of emotional resonance to the scene.

The one time I thought Batman was going to die.

Ok this where Batman tricks Flash and the Martian Manhunter so he can pilot the watchtower to save the world and certain death. Now call me stupid, call me ignorant but the first time I watched this clip I genuinely thought that was it, Batman was going to die. This was a show that had already proven that it could change things up ‘so why not kill the bat’ I thought and it was one hell of a way to go out.

This leads me onto my second scene in this sequence, where the thing I should have guessed would happen happened, Superman saving Batman’s ass. What I loved though is that every DC fan, hell every comic fan knows that Batman and supes have an unusual friendship to say the least. I think this scene sums up what is to have a friend who you argue and fight with on an almost daily basis but when the shit hits fan that same friend will drag your ass out of hell itself. If you had any doubt these two were best mates the way supes leaves in the middle of the battle the moment he realises what bats is planning says it all. The final exchange between the two and the final shot is one of my defining Batman and Superman moments in any medium.

The true test of  hero or heroine. 

I was annoyed at first viewing of this episode when I realised there was none of the main Justice League characters in it and that the episode was focused on the ‘human heroes’. By the end of it was one my favourite episodes.

It easy to put yourself on the line when you have super powers and few things can hurt you but these guys aside from some martial arts, a sword and armour, some trick arrows and a pair of six shooters had nothing and were going up against guy who appeared as powerful as the hulk. They all knew they were outmatched, outgunned, with no help coming but stood their ground and effectively won by default. What I loved most about this scene is that the aftermath wasn’t capes flapping in the breeze as heroes flew into the fading sun but the sound of ambulances and helicopter as our heroes were ferried to hospital with concerned onlookers helping the medics.

Hard not to shed a little tear everytime I hear that phrase ‘No need to thank me Son, you just get better…the world still needs protecting you know’.

Ok and that’s it for now. I had planned to do this as one post but I realised that was going to be impossible so join me for a second look at my Moments of Wonder from Justice League and Justice League Unlimited  next week.

Remember these are just my moments if you have your own then let me know in the comments below. I hope to do this in other shows, books, TV gaming etc in the every week so please let know your moments in the comments below.

For now just take a moment away from what ever geek debate has you annoyed, take a deep breath and remember your moments of wonder.

Reporter: Nuge

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