JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA
19 issues (1995-96)
Extreme Crimes Call for Extreme Justice...
... so DC's house ads would have you believe. The early 1990s in the comics industry was characterized by a tremendous upswing following the success of Image Comics. Launched in 1991 by the industry's hottest artists (note: not writers), Image quickly became the leader to catch. Not only were people buying comics in record numbers—up to millions of copies per book—but investors took note and began propping other independent publishers.
To compete, the entire industry changed to capitalize on the "Image style." This style was epitomized by the phenomenal success of Rob Liefeld (X-Force, Youngblood), Todd McFarlane (Spider-Man, Spawn) and Jim Lee (WildCATS), whose characters were brash and the artwork was often overworked, exaggerated and "skritchy."
By the time major publishers caught up, this upward trend had begun to collapse. Critical success evaded the "celebrity creators," many of whom could not publish on a regular schedule.
And you'd better believe it... these changes found their way into the Justice League as well. Prior to the creation of Extreme Justice, the main title, Justice League America made subtle changes to reflect signs of the times. In issue #80, Booster Gold was retooled with an all-new ridiculously bulky armor. The character line-up changed as well, to include resident bad boy Guy Gardner, and another '90s flash-in-the-pan, the Ray.
One of the JLA's writers at this time, Dan Vado, cites a definite edict from DC's editorial staff to do more sensational stories. This led to the development of a major cross-over event among the three Justice League titles (including the International and Task Force books). The seven-part "Judgment Day" arc culminated in the death of a popular character, Ice, and the fracturing of the teams.
Extreme sodas, Xtreme sports, extreme nachos ... Extreme Justice.
The team never called itself "Extreme Justice," it was merely the title of the book. When Captain Atom challenged Wonder Woman's leadership and formed his own splinter group, the team did little to establish a new identity. As the Blue Beetle said in the first issue "We're the Justice League... We've got as much right to the name as anyone." And they were off!
My decision to write the profile was odd indeed. I never liked this book, because of it's "Image-style" art. But in retrospect, I have to admit that my impression excluded the better aspects of Dan Vado's writing. Though his character choices were limited to B-listers or worse, he managed to assemble a really fantastic mix of characters. He squeezed in the requisite Superman and Wonder Woman analogs (with an edge), included the popular Blue and Gold pair, and brought back Ronnie Raymond as Firestorm.
A read through the letter columns quickly reveals fans' cheers and jeers. Readers liked the new outlook, the move away from '80s humor, the art, use of character histories, and Firestorm, Firestorm, Firestorm. Naturally, its detractors cited many of the same things. The most common complaint was Marc Campos' art style. The book's demise was not helped by the high turnover in creative teams. In under two years, the title had three writers/artist teams and two editors. On the up side? Some great covers by Steve Lightle, Howard Porter and Chris Batista.
Looking back, I'm confused by DC's decision to re-launch a third JLA title at a time when neither Superman nor Batman could not be used to anchor any of the books. Sure, the Justice League is an ensemble book, but history proves that its success is linked to the inclusion of DC's top-selling characters. Extreme Justice was canceled so soon (with issue #18) ... I wonder how far in advance the editors knew about the relaunch of Grant Morrison's "big guns" JLA.
29 July 2008
Dan Vado was the original writer of Extreme Justice. He preceded this book with a tenure on Justice League America (#78-91). Dan was kind enough to enlighten me about the origins of this team and the somewhat odd circumstances (JLA-wise) under which it was created...
Q: In retrospect, it seems the timing of your run on Justice
League America couldn't
have been worse. You had to tell JLA stories with only ONE of the "big
seven" anchors (Wonder Woman).
DV: Yeah, I found the whole process kind of limiting, with edicts about being "commercial" and for the need to keep big characters out of the mix. My theory was that the JLA should be more of a state of mind than a group where you carried a membership card. You might have people who lived in the satellite or whatever, but then in a BIG crisis everyone gets called in, kind of like a super-hero national guard. My original ending to the "Judgment Day" involved Superman searching his ship and discovering two Kryptonians, who would then help him but die in the process. It would be implied that the Overmaster was the one who destroyed Krypton.
When they shifted me to Extreme Justice I suggested using Bruce Wayne (at that time, with a broken back) fund the group. They didn't think the they could ever get that past the Batman group.
Q: You began writing Justice League America in 1993 with
issue #78, after the death of Superman. It seems from the beginning,
your stories were crafted to lead towards the "Judgment Day" story arc,
and the JLA's split ...
Dan Vado: Was it really THAT long ago? When I took the JLA job I had a story involving a god-like Galactus character called the Overmaster (my goal at the time was to find little used bits of continuity from different JLA periods and develop stories for them). This was independent of "Judgment Day." When the Justice League editors decided they wanted a big cross-over event for the book they figured they could use the foundation I laid as a jumping-off point for the cross-over. I had not done much other than put in little bits of foreshadowing, (Justice League America #79, 83) so the whole thing was kind of a blank canvas at that point.
Q: How did you come onto the JLA book and what role did
you play in the development of the "Judgment Day" cross-over?
DV: I had written a couple of Superman Annuals from the year before for that year's Annuals' cross-over event. One of them involved some of the Justice League characters. I think the editors read that and, needing a writer, offered me the JLA book. Once "Judgment Day" became a cross-over thing all of the writers, artists and editors of the various books had input on the development of the story and how the characters they has should be involved in it. My main involvement was to share the ideas I had for my own big story and the research I had done. On the whole, though, it was a group effort.
Q: Were you involved in the decision to kill Ice?
DV: Yes, we all were. I think I may have been the one to pitch her being killed, might have been [JLA Editor] Marc Waid, I don't really recall. I was in full support of it though because I felt that Ice dying would add weight to the gravity of the story. We could have knocked off a character that nobody cared about, but then what would be the point? Would you even be asking about "Judgment Day" today if we hadn't? [Ed. note: Marc Waid did indeed make the call.]
Q: There was a lot of cross-over stuff happening between titles during that time. Did that affect your ability to tell stories you'd rather have written?
DV: Yes and no. I had always had in mind that the JLA should be about big things, when I grew up reading comics (DC Comics in particular) there was only one JLA and everyone was in it. They had a giant satellite and looked down on the earth like overlords. That was the JLA I wanted to write and get to. As a writer, I cut my creative teeth doing my own thing, so having to work with other writers and editors, not getting to end a story I started, or having to pick something up in the middle, it was all kind of foreign to me.
It goes with the territory, though, and this is less a criticism of the way DC works and more of an admission that I was perhaps not suited to doing that kind of comics work.
Q: Can you tell me anything about the creation or
"offshooting" of Extreme Justice? Was this a book you pitched
to DC, or did they approach you with the concept?
DV: No, I had nothing to do with the creation of Extreme Justice, nor did I ask to write the title. After "Judgment Day" the Justice League books were revamped and the creative teams were juggled around. They moved me to Extreme Justice.
Q: Were you asked to make this book one that would compete with
the crazy Image-style books of its time?
DV: I can't speak for the idea around the creation of Extreme Justice, but one might assume that competing popular Image Comics books was the driving idea. What I was told was that they wanted Extreme Justice to be about big villains, big heroes and the end of the world every issue. It needed to be hyper and, of course, EXTREME!!!
Q: You wrote Extreme Justice for only a short time. Why did you
DV: There was a change of editors right after the book launched and I did not see eye to eye with the new guy. [Ed. NOTE: Brian Augustyn was succeeded by his assistant, Ruben Diaz.] He started pushing me to put the Wonder Twins into the thing and some other crap and I had no patience for it. The editors at the time also had a habit of changing things in my story and dialog without even giving me the courtesy of a warning. There were several times when I picked up comics I had written and noticed changes in the dialog.
For example, right after I got the JLA job and finished two issues, I got a call from the Green Lantern editor informing me that the Guy Gardner who had appeared in those two issues was not the REAL Guy Gardner, but a clone. He then told me that the two comics had been adjusted to reflect this already and then proceeded to inform me how I should be handling the character.
Of course, once the books got published people jumped all over me for not knowing how to write Guy Gardner, so I took a lot of creative heat for something I had nothing to do with.
Anyway, had I known that quitting that book would mean the end of my writing career at DC (and, pretty much everywhere but my own company) I might not have done it. Archie Goodwin, who was my first editor there and someone whom I considered a friend, warned me not to quit. Maybe I should have listened.
Q: You never did write the Wonder Twins, did you? They seem to
have debuted after your departure. Do you think their introduction was
an attempt to boost sales?
DV: No, I did not write them.
Q: Was it your idea to put Firestorm through the leukemia?
DV: I am pretty certain that bringing back Firestorm was my idea; I was fully in favor of it. It might have even been my idea to do the cancer storyline. It was ironic to cure the Nuclear Man with nuclear medicine.
Q: Were you and penciller Marc Campos both left at the same time.
Were you a package team on the title?
DV: We were not. I liked Marc's work, and speaking as a publisher I think he was someone who could have been so much more than he was. The work that was printed was really kind of rough, but I saw his pencils and I know this guy had a ton of potential and maybe what he needed was to be left alone to explore his own talent rather than being asked to draw like a bunch of Image comics. (I do not know if that was the case, but it seemed that way to me). [Ed. NOTE: Campos was indeed encouraged to draw a certain way.]
I hope he kept working on his craft. As a publisher I review a lot of art and I really did feel like he had potential.
Extreme Justice's original penciller, Marc Campos of Brazil, moved with Dan Vado, from the Justice League America book. Many fans criticized Extreme Justice for its ... extreme artwork. In an interview at Toon Zone, Campos confessed:
I did Darkstars, Justice League of America, Extreme Justice, Guy Gardner – Warrior, and Blood Pack for DC and I found it odd. I didn’t like the end result. I don’t like my drawings when I try to be more of a "realist." I’m sure that my realist style is almost insignificant.
And on his true aspirations:
I would love to have a chance to write and also to draw a story with one of these characters. Actually I never considered myself an artist, I started to draw because I liked to write stories, I loved animation and movies and I was a fan of comics.
Campos, who still lives in Brazil, has gone on to a successful career on many other projects. These days he is often employed by DC as an inker for (fellow Brazilian) Ivan Reis.
Click the name to read the Character Profile.
|Member||Captain Atom||Maxima||Booster Gold||Blue Beetle II|
|Joined||Extreme Justice #0||EJ Extreme Justice #0 #0||Extreme Justice #0||Extreme Justice #0|
|Status||Active in adventuring||Deceased Man of Steel #117||Active in adventuring||Deceased DC Countdown #1|
|Member||Amazing Man II||Firestorm||Zan||Jayna|
|Joined||Extreme Justice #0||Extreme Justice #5||Extreme Justice #16|
|Status||Deceased Starman #38 (Jan.98)||Deceased Firestorm v.3 #13||Active in adventuring|
What follows are events specific to Captain Atom's so-called "Extreme Justice" team only.
|In the Beginning...|
|25 Years Ago: Air Force Captain Nathaniel Adam disappears in an explosion involving alien quantum metal. Adam becomes the "template" for a new life form, which is made of this metal and copies his form. This "clone" emerges from the time stream decades later. Adam himself remains trapped outside of normal space/time. The two of them have opposite traits. NOTE: The dual nature of Adam's being was revealed in Extreme Justice #13.||Captain Atom #1 (Mar. 1987), Extreme Justice #13 (Feb. 1996)|
|Ronald Raymond and Prof. Martin Stein are bonded to form Firestorm the Nuclear Man. NOTE: Superman promises to sponsor Firestorm for JLA membership in Firestorm #2.||Firestorm #1 (Mar. 1978)|
|Superman recommends Firestorm for membership and he is ensnared by the Satin Satan (Sabrina Sultress). Green Arrow opposes his admittance. NOTE: The creators would have had readers believe that Firestorm heralded a "new world" for the JLA.||Justice League of America #179 (June 1980)|
|After a brief period of retirement during which he develops his corporation, Kord, Inc., Ted Kord returns to action as the Blue Beetle II. NOTE: First post-Crisis appearance of Blue Beetle II.||Blue Beetle #1 (May 1986)|
|Michael Jon Carter arrives in the 20th century after traveling back in time from the year 2462 with equipment stolen from the Space Museum. Although Carter intends to call himself "Goldstar," he stumbles when introducing himself to the President and becomes known as Booster Gold. NOTES: His first appearance in print was in Booster Gold #1, but his arrival was told in these issues.||(Booster Gold #8-9, Sept.–Oct. 1986)|
|Booster Gold establishes himself as a major hero in Metropolis, parlaying his fame into a vast fortune by doing personal endorsements and using his knowledge of the future to invest in the stock Marcet.||Booster Gold #1 (Feb. 1986)|
|Captain Nathaniel Adam reappears twenty years after apparently being disintegrated, now imbued with formidable powers. He becomes a government operative, reporting to General Wade Eiling, while operating publicly as Captain Atom. NOTE: Captain Atom's historical first appearance was in Charlton Comics' Space Adventures #33 (1960).||Captain Atom #1-3 (Mar.–May 1987)|
|Doctor Fate calls on heroes to form a new Justice League. Batman, Black Canary, Blue Beetle, Captain Marvel, Guy Gardner, and J'onn J'onzz agree to join.||Legends #6 (Apr. 1987)|
|Booster Gold is admitted to the League after helping to defeat the Royal Flush Gang — unaware that the attack was once again organized by Maxwell Lord.||Justice League America #4 (Aug. 1987)|
|Captain Atom and Rocket Red #7 join the League, which has just been sanctioned by the United Nations as the Justice League International.||
Justice League America #7 (Nov. 1987)
|Seeking to make Superman her consort, Maxima of Almerac arrives on Earth.||Action #645 (Sept. 1989)|
|Maxima joins the League, which follows her to her home world Almerac where Starbreaker has taken power.||Justice League America #63 (June 1992)|
|Maxima is exiled by her own people from Almerac.||Justice League America #65 (Aug. 1992)|
|THE DEATH OF SUPERMAN|
|The JLA tracks down Doomsday. Blue Beetle is critically injured.||Justice League America #69 (Dec. 1992)|
|Booster Gold's uniform is destroyed by Doomsday.||Superman v.2 #74 (Dec. 1992)|
|Wonder Woman assumes leadership of the Justice League in the wake of Superman's death. She convenes a meeting to reform the team.||Justice League America #71 (Feb. 1993)|
|US official Hannibal Martin recruits J'onn, Aquaman, Flash, Gypsy and Nightwing for a special undercover assignment. This group becomes a second "branch" of the Justice League—the Task Force.||Justice League Task Force #1 (June 1993)|
|NOTE: Dan Vado begins as writer of Justice League America.||Justice League America #78 (Early Aug. 1993)|
|Blue Beetle builds Booster Gold a bulky suit of armor to help with his mobility; it malfunctions frequently.||Justice League America #80 (Sept. 1993)|
|Maxima chooses Captain Atom as her newest conquest. Just then, her former betrothed from Almerac, Ultraa, comes to Earth for her. She lets them fight for her but eventually sends Ultraa away. NOTES: This is the first post-Crisis appearance of Ultraa, who was formerly of Earth Prime. His appearance here retroactively eliminates all previous appearances.||Justice League Quarterly #13 (Winter 1993)|
|1st app. Amazing Man II (Will Everett II). NOTE: Marc Campos begins as penciller.||Justice League America #86 (Mar. 1994)|
|The Seeds of Dissent|
|Part 1: The Overmaster's ship arrives on Earth at Mt. Everest, Nepal. When all Justice League teams are assembled, Captain Atom clashes with Wonder Woman over a course of action. Against her wishes, Atom leads a team to Everest where Booster Gold loses an arm and is fatally injured.||Justice League America #89 (June 1994)|
|Part 2: UN Liaison, Hannibal Martin orders the League to stand down against the Overmaster. Captain Atom again defies him and assembles another strike team. NOTE: Written by Marc Waid.||Justice League Task Force #13 (June 1994)|
|Part 3: At Maxwell Lord's urging, the U.N. sends the League Busters (Peacemaker, Ultraa, Mirror Master, Chromax, Spellbinder) to stop Captain Atom's team. The Cadre destroys the League's New York headquarters. Guest stars: Lionheart, Osiris and Seneca. NOTE: In Gunfire #6 (Nov. 1994), Mirror Master (McCulloch) says that the Mirror Master in this tale was not him.||Justice League Int'l v.2 #65 (June 1994)|
|Part 4: Ice kills Shatterfist and assumes leadership of the Cadre. Booster is saved by the life support features and pacemaker in his new suit. Wonder Woman rails at Max for conspiring to create the League Busters.||Justice League America #90 (July 1994)|
|Part 5: Bloodwynd leaves the JLA and becomes an observer. Gypsy is deserted on Mt. Everest. Ice turns on the Overmaster and is killed. NOTE: In retrospect, writer Marc Waid regrets the decision to kill Ice.||Justice League Task Force #14 (July 1994)|
|Final: Amazing Man subdues the Overmaster by absorbing his power. Meanwhile, Beetle discovers the control room of the Overmaster's ship and detonates the ship (and Overmaster) ahead of the armageddon device.||Justice League Int'l v.2 #66 (July 1994)|
|Epilogue: The funeral of Ice. The UN (Catherine Cobert) denies the heroes access to their former headquarters. Captain Atom butts heads with Max.||Justice League America #91 (Aug. 1994)|
|Zero Hour, Return of the Hero 3: The last of the Justice League's members resign. NOTE: Last issue of Justice League Europe/International. Phil Jimenez pencils.||Justice League Int'l v.2 #68 (Sept. 1994)|
|Zero Hour: Parallax begins a campaign to reshape the universe in his own image, starting a wave of temporal distortion that begins to unravel time from the end of the universe backwards. As Waverider and the Linear Men move to warn Earth's heroes, the villain Monarch, now calling himself Extant, tries to exploit the crisis for his own ends. Superman, using the help of Metron and Kyle Rayner, recruits Earth's heroes and alerts them to the time crisis.||Zero Hour #4 (Sept. 1994)|
|Zero Hour: The Justice Society engages Extant, who uses his time manipulation powers to kill the Atom and Hourman, mortally wound Doctor Mid-Nite, drain the power from Green Lantern's power ring, and split Doctor Fate into Kent and Inza Nelson, stripping them of their power and returning them to their chronological ages. NOTE: It is later revealed that this Hourman was the android, who switched places with Rex Tyler just before Extant's blow (JSA #66).||Zero Hour #3 (Sept. 1994)|
|Zero Hour: A new League reforms under Wonder Woman with new members Hawkman III, Nuklon and Obsidian. They claim the Overmaster's former escape pod as an orbiting headquarters (later referred to as the Refuge). Other members include Flash, Crimson Fox & Metamorpho. The members comment that Blue Beetle has joined Captain Atom's team.||Justice League America #0 (Oct. 1994)|
|Zero Hour: J'onn forms a new team (Gypsy, L-Ron, Ray & Triumph) intent on training future Leaguers. The Bronze Tiger declines an invitation to join. They establish headquarters in Ivotown (Professor Ivo's island).||Justice League Task Force #0 (Oct. 1994)|
|A New Team Forms|
|Dan Vado and Marc Campos begin as writer and penciller|
|Zero Hour: Frustrated by the League's leadership, Captain Atom claims the Justice League name and forms his team. Maxima, Blue Beetle, Booster Gold and Amazing Man II join him. After taking down the rogue U.S. Colonel West, they establish headquarters at Mt. Thunder, Nevada, a former military complex. 1st app. of General Denton Synge, who has a secret in Mount Thunder; Synge sends the Peacekeepers after them. Ronald Raymond (Firestorm) is told he is dying of leukemia. 1st app. (shadowed) of Monarch II, the original Nathaniel Adam. NOTE: The team considers itself the Justice League and does not call themselves "Extreme Justice."||Extreme Justice #0 (Jan. 1995)|
|Synge sends a team in to check out Mount Thunder, but Captain Atom recognizes their leader, Lt. Crater, and convinces him to leave. Synge follows up with robot minions (Synapse, Pulse and Kill Unit), who send Cap into the timestream. Firestorm meets Oberon at the former embassy in New York.||Extreme Justice #1 (Feb. 1995)|
|Synge kills his associate, Mister Jones. Amazing Man has doubts about continuing with the team. Skeets intervenes in Ron Raymond's treatment. Synge's robots begin to question their programming. Captain Atom returns, having jumped in time.||Extreme Justice #2 (Mar. 1995)|
|Synge offers Atom the chance to command his A.I. army. When Synge destroys his own creations, Synapse turns on him and they explode. Skeets calls Oberon to attend to the ailing Ron Raymond, who erupts into flame.||Extreme Justice #3 (Apr. 1995)|
|Amazing Man learns that his powers are more about absorbing energy than copying it. Cap rebuffs Maxima's advances. The team responds when Firestorm is seen berserk in New York. From deep space, Martin Stein heads back to Earth.||Extreme Justice #4 (May 1995)|
|Ronnie Raymond and the team try to reason with the all-new cosmically aware Martin Stein. Stein offers Ronnie a cure, but they would be bonded permanently. Stein ultimately cures Ronnie's leukemia and departs for space. Firestorm joins Captain Atom's team. NOTE: Ronnie takes the form of the original Firestorm, while Stein takes the elemental look. Ruben Diaz is announced as the new Editor.||Extreme Justice #5 (June 1995)|
|Oberon hangs around to use the team's computer to search for Dirk Davis, a man who took Oberon's fortune. Booster recognizes the name and tracks Davis down; he owes Booster, too. As payment, Booster assumes leadership of Davis' company, Lightspeed Entertainment. Captain Atom reconnects with Plastique. The television broadcasts the return of Monarch. NOTE: A new writer and penciller are announced.||Extreme Justice #6 (July 1995)|
|Catherine Cobert is sent by the U.N. to communicate with Monarch. Monarch is offering to cure the sick, and gains converts. He reveals his new identity—he is the real Nathaniel Adam! NOTE: Dan Vado's last issue as writer. Cover pencils by Howard Porter.||Extreme Justice #7 (Aug. 1995)|
|Al Rio begins as penciller|
|Monarch explains that both he and Captain Atom were created in the explosion of his "origin." In truth, Captain Atom was merely a construct/clone made from the Adam floated in limbo until freed by he was found by the beaten Monarch. Adam and Monarch spent centuries together there and learned more about the quantum field. When Monarch became Extant, his suit appeared in front of Adam and he became the second Monarch. Plastique dons her costume again to help fight an alien invasion. Afterwards, Cap asks her to marry him. A man name Smokey approaches Ronnie about a "debt." NOTE: Cover pencils by Steve Lightle.||Extreme Justice #8 (Sept. 1995)|
|The slave-aliens Zan and Jayna crash into the Arizona desert. The team is alerted to the chaos they cause and arrive to find they are gone (retrieved by their master, Ovon Kelt). NOTE: Zan and Jayna first appeared on TV as the "Wonder Twins" (with their space-monkey, Gleek) in the All-New Super Friends Hour (1977). This appearance has parallels to their 1st comic book app. (not-in-continuity) in Super Friends #7 (Oct.77). They speak "Legion style" Interlac in this issue. Cover pencils by Howard Porter. In this letter column, Diaz estimates the team's ages: Cap 35, Maxima 7, Beetle 30, Booster 27, Amazing Man and Firestorm 23.||Extreme Justice #9 (Oct. 1995)|
|Underworld Unleashed: Fire, Icemaiden and Black Canary attend Plastique's bachelorette party. Cap hires Carol Ferris to run maintenance in their base. Ferris is carrying Star Sapphire's "baby," which she gives to Neron in exchange for being split from Sapphire. Maxima takes a liking to Amazing Man. Beetle discovers a cure for Booster's condition in the nanites of Zan and Jayna's ship. NOTE: Cover pencils by Chris Batista.||Extreme Justice #10 (Nov. 1995)|
|Underworld Unleashed: The disembodied Predator seeks out Star Sapphire's child as a host. When Carol Ferris saves the baby, causing the Predator and Sapphire merge and disappear. Carol gives the tainted child over to Neron. Maxima knows Star Sapphire from Almerac. NOTE: The Predator first appeared in Green Lantern v.2 #178 (1984). Cover pencils by Chris Batista.||Extreme Justice #11 (Dec. 1995)|
|Robert Washington III begins as writer|
|When Booster's prostheses act up, he seeks help from Monarch and he is apparently restored to normal. Monarch hides plans of an attack from the world. NOTE: Cover pencils by Chris Batista.||Extreme Justice #12 (Jan. 1996)|
|Cap learns the whole truth about Monarch. Monarch is the real Nathaniel Adam, while Captain Atom has always been a marriage of Adam's conscience and the alien quantum metal. Captain Atom was split from Adam upon the initial nuclear explosion. Booster discovers his new body is cursed with Monarch's freakish quantum genetics. NOTE: Cover pencils by Chris Batista.||Extreme Justice #13 (Feb. 1996)|
|Beetle helps stabilize Booster's form; he notes that Booster's status as one of the "chosen" New Guardians is helping to correct his cellular structure. He dons a new suit that incorporates Skeets and uses parts from Zan and Jayna's ship. Brainwave II (shadowed) recruits Killer Frost for his Legion of Doom. Ovon Kelt returns with Zan and Jayna. NOTE: The Legion isn't named until #17. Cover pencils by Chris Batista.||Extreme Justice #14 (Mar. 1996)|
|Zan and Jayna lead a challenge against their "royal" Exorian brethren, and triumph. They agree to take back their planet. Gorilla Grodd joins Brainwave's team.||Extreme Justice #15 (Apr. 1996)|
|Zan and Jayna elect to remain on Earth and join Captain Atom's team. Cap vows to make the team more proactive in its approach, and scolds Firestorm for his recent childish antics. Maxima and Amazing Man discover a romantic connection. Cap tells Plastique about his true origins and changes his name to Cameron Scott. Houngan joins the Legion of Doom.||Extreme Justice #16 (May 1996)|
|The team investigates the stolen corpse of Major Force, taken by the Legion of Doom. They trace the villains to the Florida swamps. are captured. The Madmen are revealed as members, and Grodd is an android. NOTE: Firestorm's story continues in Showcase '96 #6.||Extreme Justice #17 (June 1996)|
|??... Firestorm||Showcase '96 #6 (June 1996)|
|The League is nearly defeated but Amazing Man rallies and the Legion of Doom is capture. Maxima discovers that Brainwave is being driven by guilt over possession of his father's powers. NOTE: Last issue of Extreme Justice. Ruben Diaz announces the upcoming JLA title.||Extreme Justice #18 (July 1996)|
|Out with the Old...|
|The JLA returns with the Refuge to Earth; they do not disband, but remain a loose-knit group, using Captain Atom's Mt. Thunder headquarters. Lord Havok and Judgment destroy the Arcana's "four Aces." NOTE: This Max Lord storyline was left unfinished.||Justice League America #113 (Aug. 1996)|
|The three branches of the League celebrate Christmas together.||Justice League Task Force #37 (Aug. 1996)|
|Doctor Destiny returns, empowered by Know Man (1st app. #3); Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Lantern, Aquaman and the Martian Manhunter join together to defeat them. (#3) NOTE: This series implies that a Justice League of some sort currently exists.||JL: Midsummer's Nightmare #1-3 (Sept.–Nov. 1996)|
|Final Night: The Sun-Eater destroys Earth's sun. League members past and present band together with other heroes to save the planet. NOTE:The new "big seven" JLA has not yet officially formed. Captain Atom makes reference to his own team, still together.||Final Night #1-3 (Nov. 1996)|
|In response to the new Queen Bee (III)'s reconstruction of the Extremist robots, Captain Atom's team invades Bialya. The U.N. responds by asking all Leagues to disband. Maxima departs in anger. Batman then meets with Superman to discuss the direction of a new JLA. NOTE: This tale erroneously suggests that the post-Judgment Day were U.N.-sanctioned.||JLA: Incarnations #6 (Dec. 2001)|