Saturday, April 21, 2018 • Morning Edition • "Because comics!"

Your Top Teams part 44

Written by Chris Mitchell on Friday, July 03 2009 and posted in Features
Closer and closer to the Top 50. Wait, I said then before...




61. The Camelot League (45 points)

"The Big 7 plus awesome characters, all written beautifully by Morrison"

It’s gonna be hard to write something bout this cuz I haven't read the Morrison JLA, well, that’s not true. I have read Rock of Ages, and I remember back at the Old Rama people telling me that was the be all and end all stories for JLA. Nothing can top it, and out of all of Morrison's stories that one was by far the best one ever. Frankly. I think the fanboys over hyped it cuz I really didn't find anything special about that story. It has a cool takedown of Darkseid, it had Batman doing his patience and prep-time stuff. And it had a cool glimpse into the future, but yeah, I was not overly impressed.

As for this team, the Camelot team so to speak, I would've made a few changes. I would've taken out Orion and put Mr. Miracle in. Why the hell is Big Barda there and not Scott Free. Scott Free is far superior then Orion ever will be, he is in fact one of the few New Gods that are actually tolerable next to his wife and Forager. And when I say Forager, I mean the original one not the craphat version from Countdown that sexed up Jimmy Olson. If you do not know who the original Forager is, check out Cosmic Odyssey. That's one pretty badass story, I love it actually. One of my favs.

So yeah, I managed to write a few paragraphs from for this, should I write more? Nah, it’s been a long week and I am starting to get brainfarty.


60. Seven Soldiers of Morrison (46 points)

Ok. Bitch now and I will wait.

Finished? No? Ok, carry on.

Feel better? No? Well, suck it up.

In the first issue of this story (which was part of a two-issue framework for the project), the Vigilante gathers together a new Spider (called "I, Spyder" and apparently the son of the original), Gimmix (the estranged daughter of Merry, the Girl of a Thousand Gimmicks), a new Boy Blue, Dyno-Mite Dan (owner of two "working fakes" imitations of the explosive rings of T.N.T. and Dan the Dyna-Mite), and the Whip, the granddaughter of the Golden Age Whip. The team sets out to battle the Buffalo Spider (later on, the Sheeda are betrayed by Spyder in SSoV#1 in another nod to the original), only to be killed during an event known as the Harrowing.

The seven miniseries follow seven other characters with indirect connections to the first group, each with their own art styles, genres and character arcs. A central part of Morrison's idea for the current series is that although the seven characters in question are each a part of the same struggle, they never actually meet (although there are references to each other in the various titles). Thus, the team is actually not a team.

An explanation for this is presented in Manhattan Guardian and Zatanna. In the first, a man named Ed Starsgard (aka Baby Brain) tells Guardian that the Sheeda have been attacking humanity in periodic waves, taking everything of value (physical & mental) and leaving behind just enough for the survivors to rebuild for next time. It is prophesied that the Sheeda will eventually be stopped by seven soldiers, so they target teams of seven, including the Ultramarine Corps and the Justice League of America. But, because the Seven Soldiers have never met, they stand a chance of doing the job.

In Zatanna, a ghost remarks that there are too many coincidences in the story and it feels like there is a "mystery string tying it all together". It eventually emerges that the Seven Unknown Men of Slaughter Swamp are driving the Seven Soldiers to stop the Sheeda.

In an interview, Grant remarked that this series of stories, (which he calls a "mega-series", also known as a meta-series), takes place after Infinite Crisis (this may explain some apparent plot holes or inconsistencies in the series). Dan DiDio has stated that, after careful consultation with Morrison, the series is now considered to take place a week before Infinite Crisis.

After undergoing various trials and tribulations in their own miniseries, the soldiers eventually take part in the climactic battle against the Queen of the Sheeda in New York, each affecting different parts of the battle without having any idea of the larger picture.

The climactic sequence is initiated by Zatanna casting a spell: "Seven Soldiers Strike!" This is the final push the universe required to move the soldiers into position.

After traveling into the future kingdom where the Sheeda live, Frankenstein takes Castle Revolving, the Queen's time-traveling floating kingdom, to present-day New York so that the Queen can be brought to justice by the paranormal special ops group S.H.A.D.E. Once Castle Revolving arrives, the Shining Knight - who had chased the queen to the future - successfully attacks the Queen, severely injuring her and leaving her open to an attack by supporting character I, Spyder, who shoots an arrow into her and knocks her down to the New York streets below.

There, Guardian has rounded up thousands of New Yorkers into a militia that is successfully fighting off the Sheeda invasion. At approximately the same time, Bulleteer comes tearing down the street in her car, hoping to take her critically ill arch-nemesis, Sally Sonic, to a hospital. Sally, utterly insane, attacks Bulleteer, who loses control of her vehicle and crashes into the Queen. Guardian arrives on the scene, but Bulleteer is the only survivor.

Prior to all of this, Klarion, who had drilled up into New York from hidden caves beneath the city, had stolen a magic die from Misty, Zatanna's sidekick. Together with his own die, the two dice comprise Fatherbox, one of the lost treasures of the ancient superhero Aurakles. Klarion had then traveled up to Castle Revolving. With the Sheeda Queen dead, Klarion uses a binding spell on Frankenstein, forcing him to pilot the ship back into the future where Klarion becomes the new King of the Sheeda. Thus, Klarion becomes the "traitor" that was prophesied.

Finally, Mister Miracle confronts Darkseid in his club. There, Darkseid explains that he gave Earth to the Sheeda in return for them giving him Aurakles, the primordial superhero. Mister Miracle offers himself in exchange for Aurakles' freedom and Darkseid accepts. However, once Aurakles is freed and Mister Miracle is shackled, Darkseid shoots him through the head - thus making him the soldier that was prophesied to die. Miracle is later seen emerging alive from his own grave, "escaping death".


59. The Founding Avengers (45 points)

"The original line-up is a great mix and they were like no other team in comics before. A small but powerful group that I would put up against any other team in comics."

The first adventure features the Asgardian trickster god Loki, who seeks revenge against his adopted brother Thor. Using an illusion, Loki tricks the Hulk into destroying a railroad track, after that he diverts a radio call by Rick Jones for help to Thor, whom Loki hopes will battle the Hulk. Unknown to Loki, the radio call is also answered by Ant-Man, the Wasp and Iron Man. After an initial misunderstanding, the heroes unite and defeat Loki. Ant-Man states the five work well together and suggests they form a combined team — with the Wasp naming the group the Avengers. The original members are known as the "founding members," and courtesy of an Avengers Charter are responsible for the good name of the team. As a result, their wishes regarding the direction of the team are given additional weight and deference.

The roster changes almost immediately; by the beginning of the second issue, Ant-Man has become Giant-Man and, at the end of the issue, the Hulk leaves once he realizes how much the others fear his unstable personality. Feeling responsible, the Avengers try to locate and contain the Hulk (a recurring theme in the early years of the team), which subsequently leads them into combat with Namor the Sub-Mariner. This would result in the first major milestone in the Avengers' history - the revival and return of Captain America. Captain America joins the team, eventually becoming field leader. Captain America is also given "founding member" status in the Hulk's place.



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