Justice Society of America

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Justice Society of America
Cover to Justice Society of America (vol. 3) #1.
Art by Alex Ross.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance All Star Comics #3 (Winter 1940)
Created by Sheldon Mayer
Gardner Fox
In-story information
Member(s) Anna Fortune
Atom Smasher
Citizen Steel
Liberty Belle
Doctor Fate
Doctor Mid-Nite
Green Lantern
Jakeem Thunder
King Chimera
Mister America
Mister Terrific
Power Girl
Red Beetle
Red Tornado
See:List of Justice Society members

The Justice Society of America, or JSA, is a DC Comics superhero group conceived by editor Sheldon Mayer and writer Gardner Fox. The JSA first appeared in All Star Comics #3 (Winter 1940), making it the first team of superheroes in comic books.

The JSA was limited to heroes appearing in comic strips in anthology titles, but not at the time featured as the stars of their own comic books, because the publisher wanted to bring attention to lesser known characters. Therefore, Superman and Batman were only honorary members, and Flash and Green Lantern's early tenures were brief, ending when each character was awarded his own comic book series. However, a 1944 change in policy allowed them back into the group. Other popular members were Hawkman, the Spectre, Hourman, Doctor Fate, and the Atom.

The team was popular throughout the 1940s, but superheroes' cultural prominence began to fade, and the JSA's adventures ceased with issue 57 of the title (Feb-Mar 1951). All Star Comics became All-Star Western, and JSA members remained absent from comics until 10 years later, when the original (Jay Garrick) Flash appeared alongside a new character by that name in The Flash #123 (September 1961).

During the Silver Age, DC Comics reinvented several popular Justice Society members and banded many of them together in the Justice League of America. The publishers announced that the team existed on "Earth-Two" and the Justice League on "Earth-One". This allowed for annual, cross-dimensional team-ups of the teams, lasting from 1963 until 1985. It also allowed for new series, such as All-Star Squadron, Infinity, Inc. and a new All-Star Comics, which featured the JSA, their children and their heirs. These series explored the issues of aging, generational differences and contrasts between the Golden Age and subsequent eras.

In the 1985 Crisis on Infinite Earths maxi-series, the series merged all of the company's various alternate realities into one, placing the JSA as World War II-era predecessors to the company's modern characters. A few unsuccessful, and often controversial, revivals were attempted, until a new series titled JSA was launched in 1999 and continued through July 2006. A new Justice Society of America series launched in December 2006, coinciding with the new Justice League of America series, also launched in 2006. The title ended in August 2011, with issue 54, as part of DC Comics' September 2011 reboot of its DC Universe properties. The team is slated to reappear in the Earth 2 ongoing series that was launched in May 2012.

Publication history[edit]

All Star Comics (Golden Age)[edit]

The JSA first appeared in DC Comics' All Star Comics #3 (Winter 1940), during the Golden Age of comic books. The team initially included Doctor Fate, Hour-Man (as his name was then spelled), the Spectre, Sandman, the Atom, the Flash, Green Lantern, and Hawkman. Because some of these characters (the Atom, the Flash, Green Lantern, and Hawkman) were published by All-American Publications rather than DC, All-Star Comics #3 is the first inter-company superhero title, as well as the first team-up title.

An in-house rule (explicitly laid out on the last page of All Star Comics #5, reprinted on page 206 of All Star Comics Archives vol. 1) required that, whenever a member received his or her own title, he or she would leave All Star Comics, becoming an "honorary member" of the JSA. Thus, the Flash was replaced by Johnny Thunder after #6, and Green Lantern left shortly thereafter for the same reason. For this reason, Superman and Batman were established as already being "honorary" members prior to All Star Comics #3. How these two heroes helped found the JSA before becoming honorary members was not explained until DC Special #29 in 1977. Hawkman is the only member to appear in every JSA adventure in the original run of All Star Comics, a fact revealed 60 years later in the then-current JSA series when Hawkman temporarily takes command of the team.[citation needed] The Atom missed two issues.[citation needed]

All Star Comics is also notable for featuring the first appearance of Wonder Woman, in issue #8 (December 1941). Unlike the other characters who had their own titles, she was allowed to appear in the book, but only as the JSA's secretary from #11 onwards, and did not actively take part in most adventures until much later in the series. She was excluded from the title due to the same rules that had excluded Flash, Green Lantern, Superman and Batman from the title, though in #13 it was claimed she had become an active member. The only other female member to join was Black Canary, who first appeared in #38, helping the JSA against an insane wax-museum guard, and she became a full member in #41, after restoring the memories of the JSA's members when they were hypnotized by the second Injustice Society.

Cover to All Star Comics #3, the first appearance of the JSA. Art by E.E. Hibbard.

The early JSA adventures were written by Gardner Fox and illustrated by a legion of artists including E. E. Hibbard, Jack Burnley, Jack Kirby and Joe Kubert. The first JSA story featured the team's first meeting, a framing sequence for each member telling a story of an individual exploit. In the next issue, the team worked together on a common case, but each story from there on still featured the members individually on a mission involving part of the case, and then banding together in the end to wrap things up.

By All Star Comics #24, a real-world schism between National Comics and All-American Publications — a nominally independent company run by Max Gaines and Jack Liebowitz — had occurred, which resulted in the Detective Comics, Inc., heroes being removed from the title. As a result, Flash and Green Lantern returned to the book. Eight months later, National Comics bought out Max Gaines' share of All-American and the two companies merged to form Detective Comics, Inc. However, the JSA roster remained mostly the same for the rest of the series.

All Star Comics and the JSA's Golden Age adventures ended with issue #57, the title becoming All-Star Western, with no superheroes. While Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman continued to have their own adventures, most of the characters lay dormant for several years during the slump in superhero comic books in the early to mid-1950s.

The explanation for the team's disappearance and the inactivity of most of its roster after the early 1950s was first given in Adventure Comics #466 ("The Defeat of the Justice Society!", December 1979) by writer Paul Levitz, which explained that most of the Society chose to disband and retire rather than appear in front of the Joint Un-American Activities Committee, which demanded that they unmask themselves (this was later retconned into the real House Un-American Activities Committee).

The chairmanship of the Justice Society mostly resided with Hawkman, although initially the Flash, and later Green Lantern, took their turns at leading the team. For a brief period in 1942, they were known as the Justice Battalion, as they became an extension of the armed forces of the United States of America during World War II. It was later revealed that the reason the JSA did not invade Europe and end the war was due to the influence of the Spear of Destiny, which caused the JSA's most powerful members to fall under the control of its wielder, Adolf Hitler. It was also revealed in the 1980s that the JSA had a loose affiliation with the All-Star Squadron. The All-Star Squadron's adventures were set in the 1940s, and were considered to have happened concurrently with the Justice Society's in an example of "retconning", or retroactive continuity, where new material is inserted into already existent continuity. Both teams were the brainchild of American president Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The headquarters for the JSA was initially a hotel suite in New York City and, after the war, the team settled on a brownstone building in Gotham City and later in Civic City.[1] For a very brief period, the JSA was provided a satellite headquarters, much like their later counterparts, the JLA. However, this turned out to be a deathtrap orchestrated by a crooked senator's henchman from Eliminations, Inc. The Gotham City brownstone remained unoccupied until years later, when the team was active again. The current headquarters is a brownstone in the neighborhood of Morningside Heights, Manhattan, north of Central Park.[2]

The entire original run of All Star Comics has been collected in hardcover volumes in DC's series of Archive Editions.

Guest appearances in Justice League of America and others (Silver Age)[edit]

Having successfully reintroduced several of their Golden Age characters (Flash, Green Lantern, etc.) during the late 1950s, DC tapped industry veteran (and former Justice Society writer) Gardner Fox to pen a new version of the Justice Society, which Fox renamed the Justice League. As Barry Allen (the Silver Age Flash) was to Jay Garrick (the Golden Age Flash), so the Justice League was to the Justice Society: the same team, but with an updated roster and a fresh start.

In Flash (vol. 2) #123 "The Flash of Two Worlds" (September 1961), the Silver Age Flash meets his Golden Age counterpart, Jay Garrick, who (along with the rest of the original Justice Society) is said to inhabit an alternate universe. This historic meeting thus became one of the classic DC comics of the Silver Age. Fan letters on the pages of following issues were wildly enthusiastic about the revival of the original Flash, both from older fans who remembered the old JSA tales, and younger fans desperate to learn more about these new heroes. Further meetings occurred in Flash (vol. 2) #129 "Double Danger on Earth" (June 1962) and Flash (vol. 2) #137 "Vengeance of the Immortal Villain" (June 1963). Flash (vol. 2) #129 contains the first mention of the JSA in the Silver Age, and refers directly to their last adventure in All-Star Comics #57, while in Flash (vol. 2) #137 the JSA actually reform.

The JSA meets the JLA. Art by Mike Sekowsky and Murphy Anderson.

These stories set the stage for "Crisis on Earth-One" (Justice League of America #21, August 1963) and "Crisis on Earth-Two" (Justice League of America #22, September 1963), a two-part tale where the Golden Age Justice Society teams up with the Silver Age Justice League to combat a team of villains from both worlds who have gained a way of travelling between the worlds quickly using vibratory devices made by the Fiddler, planning on committing crimes, then spending the money in the other world where nobody knows them, after capturing both Flashes. The following year, Earth-Three was fully introduced (its existence was guessed at in the previous year's tale), with Justice League of America #29, "Crisis on Earth-Three," (August 1964).

This Earth features an evil version of the Justice League known as the Crime Syndicate of America, whose line-up consists of Superwoman (an evil version of Wonder Woman), Owlman (an evil version of Batman), Ultraman (an evil version of Superman), Johnny Quick (an evil version of the Flash), and Power Ring (an evil version of Green Lantern). These stories became the first in a long series of team-ups of the two supergroups, an annual summer tradition which continued until 1985. These meetings produced a considerable number of notable events and characters to JSA history, including Black Canary leaving to join the Justice League, the return of the Golden Age team the Seven Soldiers of Victory, the creation of the Freedom Fighters, (which incorporated several Quality Comics characters into DC continuity after the characters were purchased by DC Comics), and the introduction of a number of other alternative Earths to house these other teams.

As well as the annual Justice League of America appearances, members of the JSA popped up in other titles over the next few years: the Golden Age Atom in The Atom (vol. 1) #29 and #36, and the Golden Age Green Lantern in several issues of Green Lantern. In addition, a number of the characters appeared in team-up stories in issues of the DC titles Brave and the Bold and Showcase, while the Spectre was given a solo run in the latter which led to his own series.

Almost uniquely in superhero comics at the time, the JSA members during this period were portrayed as middle-aged — and often wiser — versions of their younger, contemporary counterparts. Originally this theme appears to have been introduced simply to acknowledge the back-history of the JSA in DC continuity (another fairly new development for comics), later it was to become a major theme for character development.

Appearances through 1975[edit]

Return to All Star Comics (Bronze Age)[edit]

A JSA civil war. Art by Al Milgrom and Jack Abel.

The JSA's popularity gradually grew until they regained their own title. All Star Comics #58 (January – February 1976) saw the group return as mentors to a younger set of heroes (briefly called the "Super Squad" until they were integrated into the JSA proper). This run lasted until #74, with a brief run thereafter in Adventure Comics #461-466, but it had three significant developments: it introduced the popular character Power Girl in All Star Comics #58, chronicled the death of the Golden Age Batman in Adventure Comics #461-462, and, after nearly 40 years, it finally provided the JSA with an origin story in DC Special #29.[3] This run was mainly written by Gerry Conway and Paul Levitz, and artists included Wally Wood, Joe Staton, Keith Giffen and Bob Layton.

The series was noteworthy for depicting the heroes as having aged into their 50s. The artwork gave them graying hair and lined faces. It was highly unusual, then or now, for a comic book to have heroes this old. Most comic books obscure the timelines or periodically relaunch the series to keep the characters youthful. This depiction was a consequence of the fact that the heroes were closely linked to World War II era. This became problematic in the 1980s when the heroes would logically be well into their 60s. The explanation given for this by writer Roy Thomas in All-Star Squadron Annual #3 was that the team (and several friends) have absorbed energy from the magical villain Ian Karkull during an adventure in the 1940s that stunts their aging process.

Meanwhile, the JSA continues their annual team-ups with the Justice League. Notable events include meeting the Fawcett Comics heroes, including Captain Marvel, the death of Mr. Terrific and an explanation for why Black Canary hasn't aged much, despite debuting in the 1940s. A particularly popular JLA/JSA team-up came in #195–197, in which the two teams had to contend with a re-formed Secret Society of Super-Villains, drawn by George Pérez.

A series taking place in the team's original setting of the wartime 1940s called All-Star Squadron frequently featured the JSA, along with several other Golden Age superheroes. This led to a spinoff, modern day series entitled Infinity, Inc. which starred the children and heirs of the JSA members. Both series were written by noted JSA fan Roy Thomas and featured art by Rich Buckler, Jerry Ordway, Todd McFarlane and others.

In 1985, DC retconned many details of the DC Universe in Crisis on Infinite Earths. Among the changes, the Golden Age Superman, Batman, Robin and Wonder Woman ceased to exist, and the Earth-One/Earth-Two dichotomy was resolved by merging the Multiverse into a single universe. This posed a variety of problems for the JSA, whose history — especially in the 1980s comics — was strongly tied up in these four characters.

The JLA/JSA team-ups had seemingly ended with the last pre-Crisis teamup occurring in Justice League of America (vol. 1) #244 and Infinity Inc. #19 during the Crisis.

Other appearances[edit]

After Crisis on Infinite Earths[edit]

The Last Days of the Justice Society. Art by David Ross and Mike Gustovich.

One of Roy Thomas' efforts to resolve the Crisis-created inconsistencies was to introduce some analogues to Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman, in a sequel to All-Star Squadron entitled Young All-Stars.

In 1986, DC decided to write off the JSA from active continuity. A one-shot issue titled The Last Days of the Justice Society involved most of the JSA battling the forces of evil while merged with the Norse gods in an ever-repeating Ragnarok-like Limbo, written by Thomas, with art by David Ross and Mike Gustovich).[4] Only Power Girl, the Star-Spangled Kid, the Spectre and Dr. Fate escaped the cataclysm. This is later revealed to be a simulation created by Odin searching for a way to thwart the real Ragnarok.[5]

Thomas also revised the JSA's origin for post-Crisis continuity in Secret Origins (vol. 3) #31.

Justice Society of America (vols. 1 & 2) (1991, 1992–1993)[edit]

Justice Society of America (vols. 1 & 2)
Cover to Justice Society of America (Vol. 2) #1. Art by Mike Parobeck.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
Schedule Monthly
Format Vol. 1 - Mini-series
Vol. 2 - Ongoing
Publication date (Vol. 1)
April – November 1991
(Vol. 2)
August 1992 – May 1993
Number of issues Vol. 1 - 8
Vol. 2 - 10
Creative team
Writer(s) Various
Artist(s) Various
Creator(s) Len Strazewski

Fan interest resulted in DC bringing back the JSA in the early 1990s. An eight-issue Justice Society of America limited series telling a previously untold JSA story set in the 1950s was published in 1991. In the final issues of the four-issue Armageddon: Inferno limited series, the JSA returns to the modern-day DC Universe when Waverider transported the "daemen" of the interdimensional Abraxis to Asgard as a substitute for the JSA in the Ragnarok cycle, allowing the team to return to Earth.

In 1992, the JSA was given an ongoing monthly series titled Justice Society of America, written by Len Strazewski with art by Mike Parobeck, featuring the original team adjusting to life after returning from Ragnarok. Though Justice Society of America was intended as an ongoing series and was popular with readers, it was cancelled after only three issues had been released, though the decision was made to actually end the book after 10 issues. Fans' reaction to the quick-handed cancellation was fierce, and the decision was roundly criticized in fanzines and budding electronic bulletin board services like Compuserve.

Writer Len Strazewski, in an interview explaining the cancellation of this surprise hit series, said, "It was a capricious decision made personally by Mike Carlin because he didn't like Mike's artwork or my writing and believed that senior citizen super-heroes was not what DC should be publishing. He made his opinion clear to me several times after the cancellation."[6] Much more "cartoony" than the more realistic artwork favored at the time, Parobeck's art was a pioneering example of the "animation" style that would become quite popular with Batman: The Animated Series. Justice Society of America included the first appearance of Jesse Quick, the daughter of All-Star Squadron members Liberty Belle and Johnny Quick.

Not long after, most of the team was incapacitated or killed off in the controversial 1994 crossover series Zero Hour: Crisis in Time. During the battle between the Justice Society and the villain Extant, the latter removes the chronal energies keeping the Justice Society young. The Atom, Dr. Mid-Nite and Hourman die immediately.[7] Hawkman and Hawkgirl (who were separated from the rest of the Justice Society after being pulled into the timestream) merge into a new Hawkgod being, resulting in their deaths. Dr. Fate dies of the resulting aging shortly after Zero Hour. Green Lantern is kept young due to the mystical effects of the Starheart, but loses his ring and subsequently changes his name to Sentinel.

The rest of the team is now too physically old to continue fighting crime and retires. Starman retires and passes on the Starman legacies to his sons, resulting in the creation of one of the new series following Zero Hour, James Robinson's Starman. The new Starman series brought new attention to the JSA legacy.

JSA (1999–2006)[edit]

Cover to JSA #1. Art by Alan Davis and Mark Farmer.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
Publication date August 1999 – July 2006
Number of issues 87
Creative team
Writer(s) James Robinson, David S. Goyer, Geoff Johns, Paul Levitz
Artist(s) Various

The JSA have remained inactive for some time shortly after the events of "Zero Hour", but the surviving members (Flash, Wildcat, and Alan Scott, now going by the name Sentinel) have remained active throughout the DCU, having been placed as reserve JLI members, as evidenced in Justice League Europe #50.

When the JLA series was revived by Grant Morrison in 1997, he had a four-issue story beginning in JLA (vol. 3) #28-31, in which the JLA and JSA team up against the menace of Qwisp, a 5th dimensional entity (much like Mr. Mxyzptlk), who has previously been a nuisance to Aquaman. That is the only time the JLA has actually teamed up with the JSA post-Crisis until almost 10 years later (see below in next article topic).

The Justice Society as a monthly series was again revived in 1999 in a popular and critically acclaimed series (called simply JSA) which mixed the few remaining original members with younger counterparts. This incarnation of the team focused on the theme of generational legacy and of carrying on the heroic example established by their predecessors. The series was launched by James Robinson and David S. Goyer. Goyer later co-wrote the series with Geoff Johns, who continued to write the series solo after Goyer's departure. The series featured the art of Stephen Sadowski, Leonard Kirk and Don Kramer, among others. It also featured a story by Pulitzer Prize winner Michael Chabon.

During the events of Infinite Crisis, some of the surviving Golden Age characters, such as Wildcat and the Flash, are transported to the new "Earth-Two," as created by Alexander Luthor, and seem to recall the existence of the original one, albeit vaguely.

JSA: Classified (2005–2008)[edit]

JSA: Classified
Cover to JSA: Classified #1.
Art by Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
Schedule Monthly
Publication date September 2005 - June 2008
Number of issues 39
Creative team
Writer(s) Geoff Johns
Artist(s) Amanda Conner
Penciller(s) Jimmy Palmiotti
Creator(s) Harvey Richards
Stephen Wacker

In September 2005, JSA's popularity led to a spinoff series, JSA: Classified, which tells stories of the team at various points in its existence, as well as spotlighting specific members in solo stories. The first arc featured Power Girl's origin. It was written by Geoff Johns, with art by Amanda Conner. After issue #39, released on June 25, 2008, the title was cancelled.

Other appearances[edit]

One Year Later[edit]

After the events of DC's Infinite Crisis crossover and the World War III event chronicled in 52, JSA members Jay Garrick, Alan Scott, and Ted Grant decide to revive the Justice Society.

Justice Society of America (vol. 3) (2006–2011)[edit]

Justice Society of America (vol. 3)
Variant incentive cover to
Justice Society of America (vol. 3) #1.
Art by Dale Eaglesham.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
Schedule Monthly
Format Ongoing series
Publication date December 2006 – August 2011
Number of issues 54
Creative team
Writer(s) Geoff Johns, Alex Ross, Jerry Ordway, Matthew Sturges, Bill Willingham, James Robinson, Marc Guggenheim
Artist(s) Alex Ross
Penciller(s) Dale Eaglesham, Fernando Pasarin, Jerry Ordway, Jesus Merino, Mark Bagley, Scott Kollins, Tom Derenick
Inker(s) Art Thibert, Ruy Jose, Fernando Pasarin, Rodney Ramos, Bob Wiacek
Colorist(s) Jeromy Cox, Hi-Fi

On December 6, 2006, a new series was launched with the creative team of Geoff Johns (writer), Dale Eaglesham (pencils), and Alex Ross (cover art). According to a pre-release interview in Newsarama, Alex Ross also has the "honorary" title of "creative advisor".[8]

The beginning of the new series shows JSA veterans Flash, Green Lantern and Wildcat choosing members of the new generation of superheroes to train. Continuing a major theme from the previous JSA title, this new series focuses on the team being the caretakers of the superhero legacy from one generation to the next.

This also began the crossovers between the JLA and JSA once again, beginning with "The Lightning Saga" (see below) in JLA (vol. 4) #8-10 and JSA #5-6 (epilogue in issue #7).

Justice Society of America Annual #1 (September 2008; titled JSA Annual #1 in the comic's legal indicia) featured the Justice Society Infinity, a team continuing from an analogous post-Crisis Earth-Two. Most of the current members of the Justice Society Infinity are either original members of Earth-Two's Justice Society, such as the Atom and Robin (Dick Grayson), but the Society also includes characters that are normally associated with Infinity, Inc., such as Jade and Nuklon (Albert Rothstein).

Johns' run as writer of Justice Society of America ended with issue #26. Following a two-issue fill-in by Jerry Ordway,[9] Bill Willingham and Matt Sturges took over as writers with issue #29 in July 2009.[10][11]

The most recent JLA/JSA crossover was chronicled in Justice League of America #44-48 and Justice Society of America #41-42 under the Brightest Day banner.[12][13] James Robinson, the writer who helped spearhead the initial 1999 JSA relaunch, took over as the book's writer for the crossover while Mark Bagley illustrated the entire event.[14] After the crossover, Robinson wrote one final issue with artist Jesus Merino, which dealt with the relationship between Green Lantern and his son Obsidian.

Following the Brightest Day story arc, Marc Guggenheim became the new writer with issue #44, and Scott Kolins took over art duties from Merino.[15] During his first several issues, Guggenheim introduced a number of new characters to the team, such as Blue Devil and Manhunter.[16] In issue #49, he greatly expanded the JSA's roster by bringing back all of the JSA All-Stars (save for Magog, who had been killed in Justice League: Generation Lost, and Power Girl, who had unofficially departed from the JSA during the same maxi-series), as well as the original Liberty Belle. In addition, Guggenheim also introduced a new character named Red Beetle (a gadget-wielding heroine clad in a red variation of the Silver Age Blue Beetle's costume), and brought in Ri and Darknight, two Chinese superheroes that he recently created for his Batman Confidential run.

JSA All-Stars (vol. 2) (2009–2011)[edit]

JSA All-Stars (vol. 2)
Cover to JSA All-Stars (vol. 2) #1. Art by Freddie Williams II.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
Schedule Monthly
Publication date December 2009 – May 2011
Number of issues 18
Creative team
Writer(s) Matthew Sturges
Artist(s) Freddie Williams II
Creator(s) Matthew Sturges
Freddie Williams II

In December 2009, DC debuted an ongoing series titled JSA All-Stars (named after a 2003 limited series). The series focused upon a second team that formed after the JSA split. Calling themselves the "All-Stars," the group included more of the newer, younger members of the JSA. The roster consisted of Magog, Damage, Power Girl, Hourman, Atom Smasher, Sand, Stargirl, Cyclone, Tomcat, Citizen Steel, Judomaster, King Chimera, Anna Fortune and A.I. Roxy, with Magog and Damage later being killed off.

DC cancelled JSA All-Stars in February 2011, with issue #18 as the last, due to the events of Flashpoint, the DC 2011 summer event.[17] Because of the title's cancellation, writer Marc Guggenheim had all of the All-Stars (sans Power Girl and Magog) rejoin the JSA in Justice Society of America #49.[18]

The New 52[edit]

Earth 2 and Worlds' Finest (2012-)[edit]

With the September 2011 revamp of DC Comics' properties, the JSA was left without a series for the first time since 1999. DC Comics, however, soon revealed that a new volume of Justice Society of America would be published, written by James Robinson and drawn by Nicola Scott and set on a new version of Earth-2.[19]

However, little more information was forthcoming from DC until the January 12, 2012, announcement of two new ongoing titles set to launch in May 2012: the Robinson/Scott series, now titled Earth 2, and Worlds' Finest, which will revolve around the Huntress and Power Girl from the new Earth 2 stranded on the main DC Earth. Worlds' Finest was to be written by Paul Levitz, and drawn by George Pérez and Kevin Maguire on a rotating basis. Levitz revealed that these versions of Huntress and Power Girl are the versions that had been appearing in the Huntress mini-series (written by Levitz) and the Mister Terrific monthly series respectively.[20][21][22][23][24]

The team would now be known simply as the Justice Society, reflecting its importance on Earth 2 as a whole.[25]

On May 17, 2013, Robinson announced his departure from DC. His last issue of Earth 2 was #16.[citation needed] Tom Taylor became the new writer of Earth 2 beginning with #17. Nicola Scott remained on the book as penciller.

Collected editions[edit]

The Golden Age issues of All Star Comics were collected in the following hardcover DC Archive Editions:

Title Material collected Writers/
Pub. date ISBN
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 0 All Star Comics #1-2 Gardner Fox, et al. March 2006 978-1401207915
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 1 All Star Comics #3-6 Gardner Fox, et al. November 1997 978-1563890192
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 2 All Star Comics #7-10 Gardner Fox, et al. November 1997 978-0930289126
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 3 All Star Comics #11-14 Gardner Fox, et al. November 1997 978-1563893704
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 4 All Star Comics #15-18 Gardner Fox, et al. December 1998 978-1563894336
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 5 All Star Comics #19-23 Gardner Fox, et al. December 1999 978-1563894978
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 6 All Star Comics #24-28 Gardner Fox, et al. October 2000 978-1563896361
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 7 All Star Comics #29-33 Gardner Fox, et al. July 2001 978-1563897207
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 8 All Star Comics #34-38 Gardner Fox, et al. August 2002 978-1563898129
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 9 All Star Comics #39-43 Gardner Fox, et al. August 2004 978-1401200015
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 10 All Star Comics #44-49 Gardner Fox, et al. August 2004 978-1401201593
All Star Comics Archives, Vol. 11 All Star Comics #50-57 Gardner Fox, et al. March 2005 978-1401204037

Most of the Silver Age and Bronze Age stories depicting the annual team-up adventures of the Justice League and the Justice Society were collected in the following trade paperbacks:

Title Material collected Writers/
Publication date ISBN
Crisis on Multiple Earths, Vol. 1 Justice League of America #21-22, #29-30, #37-38, #46-47 Gardner Fox, et al. August 2002 978-1563898952
Crisis on Multiple Earths, Vol. 2 Justice League of America #55-56, #64-65, #72-73, #83-84 Gardner Fox, Denny O'Neil, et al. November 2003 978-1401200039
Crisis on Multiple Earths, Vol. 3 Justice League of America #91-92, #100-102, #107-108, #113 Mike Friedrich, Len Wein, Dick Dillin, et al. August 2004 978-1401202316
Crisis on Multiple Earths, Vol. 4 Justice League of America #122-124, #135-137, #147-148 Dick Dillin, et al. May 2006 978-1401209575
Crisis on Multiple Earths, Vol. 5 Justice League of America #159-160, #171-172, #183-185 Dick Dillin, et al. April 2010 978-1401226237
Crisis on Multiple Earths, Vol. 6 Justice League of America #195-197, 207-209, All-Star Squadron #14-15 Gerry Conway, et al. June 2013 978-1401238223
Crisis on Multiple Earths: The Team-Ups Vol. 1 The Flash #123, #129, #137, #151; Green Lantern Vol. 2 #40; Showcase #55-56, The Brave and the Bold #61 Gardner Fox, et al. January 2006 978-1401204709
Crisis on Multiple Earths, The Team-Ups Vol. 2 The Flash #170, #173; Green Lantern Vol. 2 #45, #52; The Brave and the Bold #62; The Atom #29, #36; The Spectre #3 Gardner Fox, et al. March 2007 978-1401212285

The Bronze Age continuation of All Star Comics (1976–1978), along with the subsequent JSA series in Adventure Comics and a related special, has been collected in the following trade paperbacks:

Title Material collected Writers/
Publication date ISBN
Justice Society: Volume 1 All Star Comics #58-67; DC Special #29 Gerry Conway, Paul Levitz August 2006 978-1401209704
Justice Society: Volume 2 All Star Comics #68-74; Adventure Comics #461-466 Paul Levitz, Joe Staton, Bob Layton February 2007 978-1401211943

The JLA story arc "Crisis Times Five" (1999), which features the first Justice League/Justice Society team-up since Crisis on Infinite Earths, has been collected in the following trade paperback:

Title Material collected Writers/
Publication date ISBN
JLA: Justice for All JLA #24-33 Grant Morrison,
Howard Porter
December 1999 978-1563895111

The JSA (1999–2006) series was collected in the following trade paperbacks:

Vol. # Title Material collected Writers/
Publication date ISBN
1 Justice Be Done JSA #1-5; JSA Secret Files #1 James Robinson, David S. Goyer, Steve Sadowski April 2000 978-1563896200
2 Darkness Falls JSA #6-15 David S. Goyer, Geoff Johns, Steve Sadowski August 2002 978-1563897399
3 Return of Hawkman JSA #16-25; JSA Secret Files #1 David S. Goyer, Geoff Johns, Steve Sadowski November 2002 978-1563899126
4 Fair Play JSA #26-31; JSA Secret Files #2 Geoff Johns May 2003 978-1563899591
5 Stealing Thunder JSA #32-38 Geoff Johns, David S. Goyer, Leonard Kirk October 2003 978-1563899942
6 Savage Times JSA #39-45 Geoff Johns, David S. Goyer November 2004 978-1401202538
7 Princes of Darkness JSA #46-55 Geoff Johns, David S. Goyer March 2005 978-1401204693
8 Black Reign JSA #56-58; Hawkman Vol. 4 #23-25 Geoff Johns, Don Kramer, Rags Morales July 2005 978-1401204808
9 Lost JSA #59-67 Geoff Johns September 2005 978-1401207229
10 Black Vengeance JSA #68-75 Geoff Johns March 2006 978-1401209667
11 Mixed Signals JSA #76-81 Geoff Johns, Keith Champagne September 2006 978-1401209674
12 Ghost Stories JSA #82-87 Paul Levitz, Rags Morales, George Pérez, Jerry Ordway January 2007 978-1401211967

The volume 3 of Justice Society of America was collected in the following editions:

Vol. # Title Material collected Writers/
Publication date ISBN
1 The Next Age Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #1-4 Geoff Johns, Dale Eaglesham, Art Thibert, Ruy Jose September 2007
November 2008
978-1401214449 (HC)
978-1401215859 (TPB)
2 Justice League of America: The Lightning Saga Justice League of America Vol. 2 #0, 8-12; Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #5-6 Brad Meltzer, Geoff Johns, Shane Davis, Ed Benes, Dale Eaglesham February 2008
January 2009
978-1401216528 (HC)
978-1401218690 (TPB)
3 Thy Kingdom Come, Part One Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #7-12 Geoff Johns, Alex Ross, et al. April 2008
April 2009
978-1401216900 (HC)
978-1401217419 (TPB)
4 Thy Kingdom Come, Part Two Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #13-18, Annual #1 Geoff Johns, Alex Ross, et al. December 2008
November 2009
978-1401219147 (HC)
978-1401219468 (TPB)
5 Thy Kingdom Come, Part Three Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #19-22; Justice Society Kingdom Come Special: Superman; Justice Society Kingdom Come Special: Magog; Justice Society Kingdom Come Special: The Kingdom Geoff Johns, Alex Ross, et al. April 2009
April 2010
978-1401221669 (HC)
978-1401221676 (TPB)
6 Black Adam and Isis Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #23-28 Geoff Johns, Jerry Ordway, et al. September 2009
September 2010
978-1401225308 (HC)
978-1401225315 (TPB)
7 The Bad Seed Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #29-33 Bill Willingham, Matthew Sturges, Jesus Merino May 2010 978-1401227142 (TPB)
8 Axis of Evil Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #34-40 Bill Willingham, Jesus Merino December 2010 978-1401229016 (TPB)
9 Justice League of America: The Dark Things Justice League of America Vol. 2 #44-48; Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #41-42 James Robinson, Mark Bagley, Rob Hunter & Jesus Merino March 2011 978-1401230111 (HC)
10 Super Town Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #44-49 Mark Guggenheim, Scott Kollins & Mike Norton September 2011 978-1401232849 (TPB)
11 Monument Point Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #50-54, Annual #2 Mark Guggenheim, Felipe Massafera February 21, 2012 978-1401233686 (TPB)
12 Justice League of America: The Rise of Eclipso Justice Society of America Vol. 3 #43; Justice League of America Vol. 2 #54-60 James Robinson, Brett Booth October 2012 978-1401234133 (TPB)

A new JSA team, the JSA All Stars, spun off the original and was collected in the following trade paperbacks:

Title Material collected Writers/
Publication date ISBN
Constellations JSA All Stars Vol. 2 #1-6 Matthew Sturges,
Freddie Williams II
November 2010 978-1401229009
Glory Days JSA All-Stars Vol. 2 #7-13 Matthew Sturges,
Freddie Williams II
May 2011 978-1401231576
The Puzzle Men JSA All-Stars Vol. 2 #14-18 Matthew Sturges,
December 2011 978-1401232979

Several JSA miniseries, Elseworlds (non-canon) graphic novels, Silver Age collections, and one-shots were collected in the following trade paperbacks:

Title Material collected Writers/
Publication date ISBN
The Justice Society Returns All Star Comics Vol. 2 #1-2; Adventure Comics Vol. 2 #1; All-American Comics Vol. 2 #1; National Comics Vol. 2 #1; Sensation Comics Vol. 2 #1; Smash Comics Vol. 2 #1; Star Spangled Comics Vol. 2 #1; Thrilling Comics Vol. 2 #1; Golden Age Secret Files #1; JSA Secret Files #1 David S. Goyer, James Robinson, Chuck Dixon, Geoff Johns, Ron Marz December 2003 978-1401200909
JSA: The Liberty Files (Elseworlds) JSA: The Liberty File #1-2; JSA: The Unholy Three #1-2 Dan Jolley, Tony Harris April 2004 978-1401202033
JSA All Stars JSA All Stars #1-8 Various artists June 2004 978-1401202194
JSA: The Golden Age (Elseworlds) The Golden Age #1-4 James Robinson, Paul Smith June 2005 978-1401207113
Power Girl JSA #32, #39; JSA: Classified #1-4; Showcase #97-99; Secret Origins Vol. 2 #11 Geoff Johns, Paul Levitz, Amanda Conner, Joe Staton June 2006 978-1401209681
The Huntress: Darknight Daughter DC Super Stars #17; Batman Family #18-20; Wonder Woman #271-287, #289-290, #294-295 Paul Levitz, Joe Staton, Steve Mitchell, Bob Layton, Bruce Patterson, et al. December 2006 978-1401209131
JSA Classified: Honor Among Thieves JSA: Classified #5-9 Jen Van Meter, Peter J. Tomasi, Patrick Olliffe, Don Kramer January 2007 978-1401212186
JSA Presents: Green Lantern Green Lantern: Brightest Day, Blackest Night (one-shot); JSA: Classified #25, #32-33 Steven T. Seagle, Tony Bedard, Junior Thomas, John K. Snyder III, Dennis Calero, Staz Johnson, Mike Norton, Rodney Ramos, Jack Purcell, Allen Passalaqua September 2008 978-1401219727
Doctor Mid-Nite Doctor Mid-Nite #1-3 Matt Wagner, John K. Snyder III April 2009 978-1563896071
JSA vs. Kobra JSA vs. Kobra #1-6 Eric Trautmann, Don Kramer (artist) August 2010 978-1401227296


The Justice Society received a 1965 Alley Award for Strip or Book Most Desired for Revival.

Other media[edit]


  • A Justice League two-part episode titled "Legends" pays homage to the Justice Society, with a team of imaginary comic book superheroes in a perfect world. The team was called the Justice Guild of America. The members are Green Guardsman (Green Lantern), Streak (Flash), Black Siren (Black Canary), Catman (Wildcat), and Tom Turbine (the Atom with elements of Superman). Green Lantern claims comics about them taught him to be a hero. It is later revealed that the Guild died in 1962 in a nuclear war that devastated Seaboard City and, for the past 40 years, a boy mutated by the radiation has used his mental powers to make them appear alive. The Guild sacrifice themselves to restore reality. According to the writers, the creative team originally intended to use the JSA for the episode, but DC Comics declined, as their portrayal clashed with their comic counterparts' post-Crisis on Infinite Earths portrayal.
  • Many members of the current incarnation of the JSA have been featured in Justice League Unlimited, including Black Canary, Doctor Fate (Kent Nelson), Atom Smasher, Stargirl (with S.T.R.I.P.E.), Sand, Mr. Terrific (Michael Holt), Doctor Mid-Nite (Charles McNider), Wildcat, Obsidian and Hourman (Rick Tyler). Stargirl and Mr. Terrific are the two with the most exposure. Stargirl has a speaking part in at least two episodes, while Mr. Terrific takes over Martian Manhunter's job of manning the Watchtower. Wildcat has one episode, "Cat and the Canary," in which he is prominently featured. A version of Power Girl appears as Galatea, and Jay Garrick's helmet can be seen in the episode "Flash and Substance." Hawkman appears in the series and believes that he and Hawkgirl are reincarnations of a king and queen of Egypt.
  • A few members of the Justice Society have appeared in various episodes of Batman: The Brave and the Bold, including Flash, Wildcat, and Doctor Fate. The Justice Society appear in the episode "Golden Age of Justice," with members including Flash, Wildcat, Hourman, Doctor Mid-Nite, and Hawkman. It is revealed that they tutored Batman during his early superhero days. In the present day, Batman helps them when an old foe Per Degaton comes out of stasis. A flashback reveals that the original Black Canary was a member until she died during a mission to save people from a burning building. Before the original Black Canary died, she told Wildcat to watch over her daughter. The Justice Society appears in "The Siege of Starro! Part One," fighting Per Degaton's army of robots in Washington, D.C. The flashback reveals that Doctor Fate was a member of the Justice Society. They later appear in "Crisis: 22,300 Miles Above Earth!" with the Spectre, Doctor Fate, the Flash, Wildcat, Mr. Terrific, Sandman, Starman, and Green Lantern now shown as members. They arrive at the Justice League Satellite in order to have a party with the Justice League International, but instead up fighting their youthful counterparts. Both teams end up working together to combat Ra's al Ghul. Additionally, Stargirl appears in the episode "Cry Freedom Fighters!" where she teams up with Blue Beetle.
  • The Justice Society of America was featured in Season 9 of Smallville, during the two-hour dual episode/television movie Absolute Justice (the episode was written by Geoff Johns, who wrote the episode Legion, which introduced the Legion of Super-Heroes). The episode featured JSA members Hawkman (played by Michael Shanks), Doctor Fate (Brent Stait), and Stargirl (Britt Irvin).[26] Several other members appear briefly, or in flashback, including the original Star-Spangled Kid, Sandman, Wildcat, Flash, Atom, Green Lantern, and Red Tornado. Hawkgirl, Hourman, Doctor Mid-Nite, Mister Terrific, the Spectre, and the original Black Canary appear in a painted group portrait. The JSA are portrayed much like their post-Crisis incarnation as an earlier generation of superheroes that have re-emerged to aid the new superheroes, having been forced to retire when the government tried to take control of the JSA after determining their real identities. Hawkman and Stargirl both appear in additional episodes in Seasons 9 and 10, with Hawkman sacrificing himself in the tenth season mid-finale to save Lois Lane from Slade Wilson.
  • Several members of the JSA appear in Young Justice. According to the producers of the show, most of the original JSA members are dead or retired by the time the series takes place.[27] The team itself appears in a flashback sequence in the episode "Humanity", with a line-up consisting of Green Lantern, Flash, Sandman, Wildcat, Doctor Fate, and Red Tornado. Firebrand was also a member for a short time before she was revealed to be an android created by T.O. Morrow.


  • The JSA appears in the opening credits of the 2008 animated film Justice League: The New Frontier. In this story, Hourman has apparently been killed, and the Justice Society have retired. Ted Grant has retired as a crime fighter, but is still a professional boxer.

Video game[edit]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Thomas, Roy; Murphy Anderson (June 2004). All-Star Companion, Vol. 1. TwoMorrows Publishing. p. 157. ISBN 978-1-893905-05-4. 
  2. ^ Jimenez, Phil (2008). "JSA Headquarters". In Dougall, Alastair. The DC Comics Encyclopedia. New York: Dorling Kindersley. p. 132. ISBN 0-7566-4119-5. OCLC 213309017. 
  3. ^ McAvennie, Michael; Dolan, Hannah, ed. (2010). "1970s". DC Comics Year By Year A Visual Chronicle. Dorling Kindersley. p. 175. ISBN 978-0-7566-6742-9. "The genesis of comics' first superhero team...had been a mystery since the JSA's debut...Writer Paul Levitz and artist Joe Staton decided to present the definitive origin story." 
  4. ^ Manning, Matthew K. "1980s" in Dolan, p. 221: "The world's first super-team saw its adventures come to a temporary end thanks to its biggest fan. Writer/editor Roy Thomas acknowledged that, after...the Crisis maxiseries, the JSA seemed no longer relevant."
  5. ^ The Sandman (vol. 2) #26
  6. ^ Aragona, Mike (June 1998). "Interview with Len Strazewski". Savage Enterprises Publishing. Retrieved October 12, 2008. 
  7. ^ Greenberger, Robert (2008). "Extant". In Dougall, Alastair. The DC Comics Encyclopedia. New York: Dorling Kindersley. p. 117. ISBN 0-7566-4119-5. OCLC 213309017. 
  8. ^ "Johns, Ross, Eaglesham Restart Justice Society in October". Newsarama. [dead link]
  9. ^ "DC Comics Solicitations, May 2009". Comic Book Resources. February 17, 2009. 
  10. ^ Renaud, Jeffrey (January 19, 2009). "Talking JSA with Willingham & Sturges". Comic Book Resources. 
  11. ^ Rogers, Vaneta (December 26, 2008). "Willingham and Sturges Talk Justice Society of America". Newsarama. 
  12. ^ McElhatton, Greg (July 2, 2010). "Review: Justice League of America #46". Comic Book Resources. 
  13. ^ "Justice League Of America #46 Review". AComicBookBlog. July 2, 2010. 
  14. ^ Renaud, Jeffrey (June 3, 2010). "Daybreak: Robinson's JLA/JSA Crossover". Comic Book Resources. 
  15. ^ Renaud, Jeffrey (July 14, 2010). "Guggenheim Takes Charge of the JSA". Comic Book Resources. 
  16. ^ "Guggenheim Builds a New "Society"". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 2011-04-11. 
  17. ^ "DC Confirms Cancellations". BleedingCool. 
  18. ^ "JUSTICE SOCIETY | Marc Guggenheim | JUSTICE SOCIETY Gets New Characters, More Humor with #50". Newsarama.com. Retrieved 2011-04-11. 
  19. ^ Newsarama.com : Fan Expo '11: DC COMICS - THE NEW 52 Panel
  20. ^ DC Universe: The Source » Blog Archive » DC COMICS IN 2012 – INTRODUCING THE “SECOND WAVE” OF DC COMICS-THE NEW 52
  21. ^ Newsarama.com : Paul Levitz Explains More About WORLDS' FINEST, EARTH 2
  22. ^ [Levitz Makes Huntress & Power Girl the "Worlds' Finest" - Comic Book Resources
  23. ^ Newsarama | DC's May 2012 SOLICITS Preview: JUSTICE LEAGUE Titles Page 1 - Earth-2 #1 solicitation
  24. ^ Newsarama | DC's May 2012 SOLICITS Preview: JUSTICE LEAGUE Titles Page 2 - World's Finest #1 solicitation
  25. ^ Videos | DC Comics | The Dark Knight Rises, Man of Steel, Young Justice, Green Lantern: The Animated Series, Watchmen and More
  26. ^ Goldman, Eric (October 19, 2009). "Exclusive: Two of Smallville's Justice Society". IGN. 
  27. ^ Pepose, David (October 9, 2010). "NYCC 2010: Young Justice Video Presentation & Q&A Live!". Newsarama. [dead link]

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]