Core points of Gamers


Core points of Gamers

The Justice League and Justice Society Celebrated Thanksgiving

In 2004, Geoff Johns wrote a Thanksgiving crossover between the League of Justice and the Justice Society. The fun and festive story served as a welcome reminder that a comic doesn’t need a dark and gritty tone to be a great read.

The current era of DC Comics is filled with stories that follow the idea that the best stories require a dark and gritty feel to succeed. But in 2004’s JLA #54 (by Johns and Don Kramer), the “Virtue and Vice” storyline saw DC’s two best teams come together for a wholesome Thanksgiving dinner. The issue was reminiscent of some older team books, where issues filled the space between arcs causing their heroes to take a break and enjoy life. While Chris Claremont had several members of the X-Men take breaks with baseball games, other books would have Christmas specials and Thanksgiving syndicates. These comics are a great keepsake from the years of fun and wholesome stories.

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The Justice League and the Justice Society celebrated Thanksgiving together

The comic acted as a festive break from the trials and hardships that members of both teams had faced in recent storylines. Packed with all the expected Thanksgiving tropes, Wildcat sparks a political argument with Wonder Woman and the younger heroes eat at the kids’ table. As the story continues, characters from both teams of DC heroes make their entrance, from Kid Flash to Green Arrow. Meanwhile, the ever-vigilant and paranoid Batman struggles to distract himself from his heroic duties and is convinced of an imminent attack that will disrupt the celebration.

As Black Canary and Doctor Mid-Nite try to heal a broken relationship, the teams talk and prepare for their long-awaited Thanksgiving feast. However, two supervillains make the hilarious mistake of crashing the JLA/JSA meeting and are quickly defeated by the big meeting. However, even Batman is certain that he won’t let the intrusion affect his dinner. The heroes order enough pizza for everyone. And to top it off, the story ends with Batman getting the chance to say a smug “I told you so.”

Comic issues that serve as a cooling off point between the big arcs are invaluable to readers both new and old. While they’re a great fan service for long-time collectors, they give new readers a great place to start reading and get acquainted with the characters. In “Virtue and Vice,” the story continued with an equally wholesome Christmas follow-up and showcased a variety of heroes from the DC Universe. Although the gritty and darker stories of modern comics have produced some excellent stories, JSA and similar books have always shown the strengths of a lighter comic.

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JSA JLA Batman Mr. Fantastic

The JSA, since its comeback in the 1990s, has been a great source of DC’s more light-hearted and old-fashioned stories, embracing the “old and new” style of its heroes. This story was no different, bringing each generation of DC heroes under one roof to celebrate Thanksgiving together for a healthy break from fighting crime. Intentionally created to be a down-to-earth and relatable story, “Virtue and Vice” is a must-read story for any fan who enjoys the lighter side of comics.

Wholesome Christmas stories that offer a break from the series can also be a great entry point for new readers and give them something to get to know the heroes in one issue. Most stories like this have fallen by the wayside in current comics, save for a few titles, and modern books have a stronger fixation on grit and darkness. But it’s worth remembering how well received the lighter books can be by fans and the breath of fresh air they bring to a series.

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