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ChrisBechtloff




I find myself disliking Robinson's JLA. And yet on paper I shouldnt. For the most part I find the line up interesting (could do without the oarnge monkey tho). I love Mark Bagleys art. I love Dick as Batman. I love the CSA. I love the Tangent universe Green Lantern. And yet I havnt really enjoyed this book since Robinson took over. But I can't quite put my finger on why. I know a lot of people on this board have been hard on Robinson. So what exactly do you thing is wrong or missing in his writing. Because I am generally enjoying the concepts and hating the execution.


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Matt




Well, I believe that people question his choice of heroes to make up the line-up, and the fact that (with the exception of Dick) they are currently made up of B-list characters.

Also, some would question the limited use he had for heroes like Hal Jordan, Black Canary, Starfire, and Cyborg. They worked together with the other heroes for one story then left.

What bothers me personally, is that Robinson had other well-known heroes that were up for grabs to use in the book, but he didn't bother using them (Who would pick Jesse Quick over Wally West???)

That's just me, though. Others may think differently.


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Captain Spanky




He gave us all these great characters for one arc that I was interested in reading about as JLA members and them pulled the bulk of them out in exchange for a monkey and some blue guy I've never heard of. He's relied to heavily on guest stars. He's done very little character development. Its mostly been Batman and four female characters who all react very similarly to him. It seems to me that much of his writing just seems so forced. In the last issue, Congorilla is all, "I give you, the Justice League of America" and all I can think is, "No they're not." Its like all he has tried to do is convince you this is the JLA.

I think the problem is, that he pulled to many characters that could have been interesting out too early, replaced them with characters most people don't care about (Congorilla, Jesse Quick, Starman), and didn't have any familiar characters to still give it a sense of familiarity. The JLI, when it started, added tons of new characters, but still had Batman, Martian Manhunter, and Black Canary in it, to still make it feel like Justice League and it worked out.


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Quantum


Member Since: Sun Dec 21, 2008
Posts: 2,296


My traditional complaint with Robinson is his overly flowery prose or melodramatic prose, and there's also his odd need to boldface random words for no reason. (I know he's not his own letterer, but this is so consistent in all the books he writes that directions on what to boldface has to come from him).

As far as my complaints with the JLA book, they are many. I also love the lineup, even the gold monkey, but there are some other things wrong here.

I like Bagley, but his style isn't right for the book. Everyone looks too spare, too fragile and delicate. The coloring has also been too pale.

As the story goes, Robinson is not approaching the book with the novelistic, darker and more serious approach that is his strong suit. I can only describe his JLA run so far as being superhero silliness. There is so much he can do with this lineup, and I know it is within his considerable capabilities, but his approach here has been focusing on superhero and villain shenanigans and it hasn't been working.




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Omar Karindu




Based on statements by past JLA writers like Grant Morrison and the late, great Dwayne McDuffie's, it does seem as if DC puts the JLA writer at the mercy of every other DC book's story decisions. If Geoff Johns doesn't want Hal in the JLA, Hal goes away. If the Titans book wants Cyborg back, or just wants him gone, he's gone.

Bruce-as-Batman was killed off and has been "busy" since his return, so Robinson was only allowed to use Grayson. Martian Manhunter was yanked because DC would rather give him to Johns for Brightest Day. Black Canary "belongs" to the editors of Green Arrow and JSA, and can be pulled from the book at any time.

Grant Morrison, for example, didn't want to use Electric Superman or to replace Wonder Woman with Hippolyta; he also seems to have plotted the "Rock of Ages" Injustice Gang storyline with the classic Big Seven, but then John Byrne temporarily killed off Wonder Woman, leaving Circe with precious little to do in the entire story-arc. He was also apparently given some restrictions on using Batman due to the No Man's Land storyline in the Bat-books.

Dwayne McDuffie was quite vocal about having storylines rewritten and vetoed by editorial, often at the last minute. The most ifnamous example is around Final Crisis -- McDuffie was told that the Hawks were dead int hat storyline, and wrote (and had pencils for) a good chunk of a JLA issue dealing with the team's reactions. Then the deaths were undone by a late editorial; decision, meaning that a third of a completed issue had to be redone at the last moment.

That seems to be DC editorial policy, not the decisions of the JLA writer. If Robinson' using obscurities, it's likely because obscurities are the only characters he can safely use on a regular basis. DC handles the JLA the opposite of the way Marvel handles the Avengers, where Brian Michael Bendis seems to get to make status quo changes and keep characters regardless of the lower-selling solo titles' writers. That approach has its own problems, though.

Having said all that, I think Robinson has not handled the situation as well as McDuffie and Morrison did, and that his plots have been quite lackluster regardless of which characters are in them. That, to me, has been the real problem of his run -- it's not delivering good characterization, nor is it making up for the shallow characterization by providing crazy cosmic scale or clever plotting. Robinson just doesn't seem cut out for this title.


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Quantum


Member Since: Sun Dec 21, 2008
Posts: 2,296


>>>Having said all that, I think Robinson has not handled the situation as well as McDuffie and Morrison did, and that his plots have been quite lackluster regardless of which characters are in them. That, to me, has been the real problem of his run -- it's not delivering good characterization, nor is it making up for the shallow characterization by providing crazy cosmic scale or clever plotting. Robinson just doesn't seem cut out for this title.

1. Thanks for mentioning Duayne McDuffie, who was a fantastic writer and didn't get the props he deserved.

2. As always, you hit the nail on the head. I'm not understanding why JR's not tapping into his considerable strengths here. He's more than able of creating atmosphere, characterization, and at building complex and satisfying stories. He hasn't been doing these things here.

This is what I think he should do.

1. New artist. I like Mark Bagley, but they're mismatched. Can you imagine if STARMAN had been drawn by Bagley?

2. New color scheme. Robinson's stories need a dark, lush color scheme.

3. Keep Dick Grayson and Donna Troy, Get Barry, Oliver, and Hal. Get Batwoman, Etrigan, and Mon-El.

4. Insidious villains, heavy hitters with long-range schemes and meaningful goals. All that mayhem Prometheus caused in Cry for Justice was just gratuitous destruction.








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