Publisher: DC Comics (Wonder Comics imprint)
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Patrick Gleason
Colourist: Alejandro Sanchez
Letters: DC Lettering
Release Date: 9th January 2019
When Brian Michael Bendis announced his big move to DC last year, the thought of him jumping to our long-forgotten teen team so soon didn’t even cross my mind. Part of me even wondered if Bendis could manage to capture the mastery he displayed while writing teenage heroes when he joined Marvel. Well, not only does Young Justice put such ill-founded fears to rest, but it also shows Bendis and Gleason’s pure love for this generation of heroes.
As the Twelve Kingdoms of Gemworld strike Metropolis, and with Superman too preoccupied to intervene, the fated meeting of these once-sidekicks spurs them to once again team up and answer the call. Light on story, big on character, Bendis takes a step back from the large walls of exposition or deep lore building expected from a first issue. Instead, he uses the issue’s simple premise to show off the personality and heart of each character, laying them out for new and old readers alike to fall in love with.
From Robin’s skills, Cassie’s strength and Bart’s non-stop chatter to new characters like Jinny Hex and “Teen Lantern’s” mystery and quirks making them so immediately loveable, it’s obvious right from the get-go that this new series definitely has the same youthful energy that made the original run so beloved.
Bendis also sprinkles in some lovely foreshadowing for future drama and character growth, and a finale that delivers a whole new playing field for this first arc to play out, ensuring that Young Justice #1 ticks all the boxes for a captivating first issue that leaves you wanting more.
Colorful and vibrant throughout, not only do Gleason and Sánchez perfectly capture the tone of Bendis’s writing, but it’s the dynamic artwork and eye-popping colors that helps to deliver the real character of this issue and make it truly special. Pairing up-close-and-personal action and a plethora of double page spreads with the mid-town battle, Gleason and Sánchez bring the expression, the mannerisms, the costumes, the powers and the small touches that make these characters all so distinct and wonderful
Put simply, Bendis, Gleason and Sánchez combine to bring us the return of Young Justice in a way we could previously only have dreamed of. Boasting top-tier execution and filled to the brim with character and action, this first issue gives us everything we’ve come to love about not only this team, but teen heroes in general, while also establishing a strong first arc, some big mysteries and hinting at some even bigger returns down the road.
The writer of this piece was: Connor Stephens
Connor Tweets from @diddlesMVP