Justice League Action promises the revival of all things DCAU, and we couldn’t be more excited.
If you haven’t kept up with it, the show is an homage and modernization of the classic Justice League and Justice League Unlimited cartoons. We’re most looking forward to the return of legendary voice actors like Mark Hamill (Joker) and Kevin Conroy (Batman).
Stylistically, Justice League Action promises to meld the drama and strong writing of JLU with the wacky, family-friendly humor of Teen Titans GO! Although some hardcore fans might balk at the thought of mixing the two styles, it’s a necessary step to ensure the show has the widest possible audience.
And don’t forget, some of the best episodes of Justice League Unlimited included plenty of humor. “The Greatest Story Never Told”, anyone? Or the running gag of Plastic Man and Elongated Man wondering why exactly the League needs two stretchy guys.
The New 152
Structurally, Justice League Action continues the JLU penchant for cramming in as many wonderful obscure comic references as possible. JLU received plenty of acclaim for featuring little-known characters like Shining Knight, Vigilante, and Deadman. Action stands ready to take that even further, and promises no less than one hundred fifty-two characters over the course of the series.
This is the stuff that geek dreams are made of. If you love going down the Wiki Hole and exploring the crazy origins and stories of each and every reference of a show like this, you will be in heaven.
Justice League Action is airing in the United States in just two weeks. On December 15th, the show will premiere on Cartoon Network. Recently, though, lucky viewers in the UK were given a sneak peek. The show has begun early on Sky TV, albeit out of order.
We managed to speak with some British fans to get their impressions and thoughts on the show.
The UK’s Justice League Action Discussion
The show’s reception in the UK has been largely positive. The art style and character designs are a major deviation from the classic DCAU look, and that isn’t to everyone’s taste.
In particular, Wonder Woman looks a little too Bratz. Her hair is messed up, she has a permanent smirk, and overall she just looks a little too young compared with Bats and Supes.
Many fans also expressed displeasure with the new design of Parasite, the Superman villain who has posed a major threat on more than one occasion with his power-stealing abilities. Others pointed out, though, that Parasite’s new, less-human design could easily be the result of where he’s been at the outset of the series.
Parasite’s been in prison and was only able to rebuild his powers by leeching the life force of… cockroaches. It’s not a big leap to imagine that all that bug juice swirling around in there might have changed his appearance, and it’s been done before in the comics.
The new insectoid look is shocking, disturbing, and frankly cool.
Most of all, though, fans who have seen the show are beside themselves over just how deep the showrunners went to find new characters. The early Justice League Action discussion mostly revolves around some of the weirder faces that crop up.
One episode includes an appearance by Space Cabbie. If you haven’t heard of him, well, you’re not alone.
Space Cabbie is indeed a cab driver in space. He lives in the 22nd century, but he’s taken a day job in the present day. He drives superheroes to where they’re going (anywhere in the universe, naturally), and occasionally he helps them in their adventures.
Continuing the DCAU trend of recruiting amazing guest voice actors, Space Cabbie is played by none other than Patton Oswalt. He’s been fantastic in everything he’s ever appeared in, and he’s just the guy to bring Space Cabbie’s unique brand of absurdity to the screen.
Another episode brings in the Nuclear Family. They’re an even more obscure choice, having only appeared in 10 comics over the entirety of the DC brand.
The Nuclear Family are a villainous group of androids who were designed to mimic a stereotypical 1950s family. Think Fantastic Four meets Leave It to Beaver. Except evil.
The members of the family each have their own atomic bomb-inspired powers, like Mom’s EMP blasts and younger brother Brat’s ability to literally turn into radioactive fallout.
If you can’t wait to check out Justice League Action, you’re not alone. Despite our best efforts, we couldn’t find a legal way to watch the show until its US premiere. You can be assured that we’ll be giving it a thorough review once it does air.
In the meantime, join us in watching the preview clips over and over. And over.
How about you? Are you one of the lucky ones? Let us know what you think!