Although I was expecting one of the biggest crossovers of the year, Justice League/Power Rangers has been more of a self contained all-ages read. That’s certainly not a bad thing and by all accounts it has succeeded in bringing these characters together in a lighter and fun sort of way.
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Stephen Byrne
Publisher: DC Comics
So what’s it about? The official summary reads:
Superman is determined to help the Power Rangers return to their dimension before the teens learn the pain of losing their entire planet. Billy and Cyborg have a plan that could save the day, but it seems impossible—unless there’s a Large Hadron Collider available? Co-Published with BOOM! Studios.
Why does this book matter?
To me, crossovers like this are fun as they can explore your favorite characters by how they interact. It’s also an excuse to make your childhood dreams come true! Though the Power Rangers are just teenagers, this series has amped up the superhero angle for them, which is pretty cool.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Nice to see Wonder Woman throw around some strength.
As foreshadowed in the first issue of Justice League/Power Rangers, it appears we’ve caught up to the vision of Zack losing his parents. That’s a heavy element of this issue, with Zack’s fear taking up a good portion of the issue and giving these heroes something emotional to fight for. Tom Taylor writes a clever sort of issue giving the Power Rangers a new direction without their powers; there’s a funny moment where Cyborg remarks on their powerless state only to have Batman look on in annoyance (since he doesn’t have powers but is nowhere near powerless). This weaves in some fun weapons and costumes for the team to throw on which come from the Justice League’s storied past; also makes some sense too as the Justice League wouldn’t take a war to Brainiac with some kids in street clothes.
And said war is one of the more exciting scenes in this issue. Stephen Byrne draws this action sequence well, with well-placed blur and other effects to convey the varied powers of our heroes. Surprisingly Byrne and Taylor weave in some hero fighting hero stuff which came as a surprise at this juncture of their relationship. It also delivers a killer full page spread to end the issue on. Overall the colors are bright and the art is somewhat cartoony, which suits both properties. The energy blasts and sound effects add to that feel which looks great too.
Dude, stop being so mopey.
It can’t be perfect can it?
A lot of time is spent focused on Zack’s loss of his parents (3 or 4 pages in the issue), which feels overly done. Sure, this adds an emotional angle to the battle that’ll add purpose to it all, but it verges on the melodramatic as it’s played up so much. This and the opening with the characters figuring out how to get to the Power Rangers universe slow things down considerably as well. The characters are standing around talking when they should be fighting!
Is It Good?
Taking into account this is more of an all-ages adventure this issue delivers an overall good time. There’s all out fighting, interesting interactions between the teams, and some clever ideas too. It spends too much time with Zack’s loss, but that does add an emotional buy in.