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‘Justice League Odyssey #4’ (review)

Written by Joshua Williamson
Illustrated by Philippe Briones
Published by DC Comics


“Well I’m the mightiest tech in the Multiverse!”

That’s quite a statement Vic.

And yet, the Coluan refugees who seem to think you’re their god, and who surely would want to be keeping tabs on any ‘mightiest tech in the multiverse’, never once identified you as a charter member of Earth’s mighty Justice League? Hm.

So many questions…

Our story picks up again this month with more high-level strangeness, and a ramp up of the Ghost Sector mystery, as Cyborg, Starfire, Azrael and Green Lantern Jessica Cruz travel to the first-amongst-many ‘Machine worlds’, where they are received with less than welcome arms by the head priest of Cyborg’s very own religious empire.

Apparently, despite the exact-replica monolithic statue of Vic towering over the main capital, his identity is considered questionable. Rebirth of their god, and all that. Other pretenders to the throne have come before him, each have been tested, and each found wanting. Now it’s Vic’s turn.

So, to prove himself, he has to beat Azrael and a pack of robot-dino-aliens before a packed stadium of true believers. Strangely, this rather straightforward show of force seems to be enough to convince everyone that Vic is, indeed, their one true god.

Despite this, his friends remain locked away, and are forced to escape from their jail cell (into what is almost certainly a worldwide panopticon), just in time to team up with the all-new Ghost Sector Rapture who scoffs at the very idea that any of the earth-heroes are gods at all – all of them, that is, except for Azrael, of course.

Another true believer, I guess. Despite having what appears to be a more than passing familiarity with our heroes and their histories. For some reason.

Maybe he’s met Princess Komandr, a welcome presence in these pages to be sure, or any one of the other Tamaranian’s now stranded in the Ghost Sector, who of course know full-well that their other Princess, Starfire herself, is no goddess.

Certainly, Kory herself is quick to dismiss the idea as mere confusion, despite every evidence that something more serious is going on. And even so, there does seem to be something in Starfire that rises to the idea of being worshipped. (In Vic too, for that matter, given some of what we see this issue, despite his every protestation to the contrary…)

Maybe that’s because Kory does have a history as a princess of her people. One we haven’t actually heard much about for some time now.

Maybe that will change now.

Maybe we’ll also get a clearer understanding sometime soon, of just what the history is between Kory and Victor Stone. Because it’s not clear what that is, even though they both keep alluding to it. Sure, we all know they once were Titans together. But that was in another iteration of the DCU – wasn’t it? Because if that’s another chapter of DC continuity being brought back into the fold by Dr. Manhattan’s ever-evolving machinations, it’s not quite in alignment with what the other Titans seem to be aware of right now.

Not that I’m aware of at any rate.

All of this is exceedingly strange, and not just because writer Josh Williamson’s essential premise is big-level crazy. I mean sure, traveling down the wormhole into space-Wonderland, where a mere triad of Earth’s superheroes have been considered to be deities by countless global civilizations for untold millennia is all crazy enough.

But all these unanswered, confusing questions and nebulous uncertainties are getting a bit much, with all of that primary higher-level craziness going on. Some answers would be welcome.

Like here’s a question: How long have the Machine worlds been around now exactly? And yet only just now are they getting around to building their very own Mother Box the technology for which they apparently have had all along? Why in the world wait so long, when they’ve been prisoners of Colu all this time?

For that matter why wait all this time to enact a decidedly more extreme (if entirely logical) form of hero worship that’s about to be foisted upon all those who live in devotion to the mighty god Cyborg? One it seems that Vic is showing up, just in time now to prevent.

Which is… convenient.

It’s almost like all this has simply been waiting for Vic to show up, in order to royally mess with his head. And either that’s true… or it may feel more like someone’s messing with our heads.

Wonderland indeed.

Next Issue: Maybe some answers?

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