Justice Riders


Justice Riders

General Info

Issue No:
1
On Sale Date:
December 1996
Cover Date:
February 1997
Era:
Elseworlds
Story Title:
Justice Riders

Creative Team

Cover Artist:
John Van Fleet
Writer:
Chuck Dixon
Penciller:
J. H. Williams III
Inker:
Mick Gray
Letterer:
Bill Oakley
Colourist:
Lee Loughridge
Editor:
Ruben Diaz

Characters

Main:
Diana Prince (Wonder Woman), Wally West (Kid Flash), Kartar Johnson (Hawkman), Micheal John Carter (Booster Gold), Ted Kord (Blue Beetle), John Jones (Martian Manhunter)
Heroes:
N/A
Villains:
Maxwell Lord, Felix Faust
Olympians:
N/A
Amazons:
N/A
Other:
Kid Baltimore (Guy Gardner), Oberon, Dominator, Clark Kent (Superman)
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Comments

This may be the perfect book for people who don’t read comics because they find that the stories are too complicated. “Linear” probably best describes this book’s plot. Clark Kent makes a brief cameo as a newspaper editor.

Synopsis

In the early days of the wild West, sheriff Diana Prince has left her deputy Oberon in charge of the small town of Paradise, while she was out chasing two horse thieves. Now before you say anything about the improbability of having a female sheriff in the early days of the wild West, let me point out that if you acquired this book, chances are that you believe a man can fly, so this is not so far fetched.

Being a very competent deputy, Oberon actually put someone in jail for rowdiness, after presumably too many drinks at the saloon. The prisoner, who we’ll discover to be Prof. Felix Faust, demands to be released, threatening Oberon with the worst punishment otherwise.

As would be expected, Oberon ignores the threat; however Faust is a man of his word, and when sheriff Prince returns to town, all she finds are ashes and Oberon, who barely has time to whisper a few words to her before breathing his last. Feeling terrible that the whole town that she had promised to protect has been wiped out, including of course its citizens, Diana sets out to get the person responsible. On her way, she will build a team.

Her first stop is for someone nicknamed Kid Flash; though his real name is Wally West, he’s gotten into some trouble, and prefers to wear a mask to hide his identity. And if you think that wearing a mask in itself might be quite conspicuous for someone who’s trying to go unnoticed, please re-read the note above about believing a man can fly.

As Diana and Kid Flash are discussing, one Booster Gold comes in and offers his services, however Diana prefers to pick her own talent, so she turns down his offer. Disappointed, he will pay a visit to gunsmith and inventor “Beetle” and ask him for a weapon that will give him an ‘advantage in the speed category’ (Kid Flash did make him look slow).

Meanwhile, Diana’s next stop is to pick up a Cheyenne named Katar Johnson, who has the ability to put on a pair of wings and travel long distances without the need of a horse (and faster too). “Hawkman” might be a good description of what he looks like with his gear on. When the three of them stop for a quick meal, a bunch of weird-looking look-alikes barge in on them and start shooting without a warning. The trio appears to be in a desperate situation (it’s not clear why Kid Flash doesn’t use his great speed to disarm all of the clones), when the cavalry comes in to save the day, in the form of Booster Gold and Beetle, equipped with one mean machine-gun (certainly unheard of, at the time).

As the team is having dinner around a fire under the stars in typical Far-West fashion, a green-skinned bald guy named John Jones walks up to the group and is immediately accepted by Diana as an additional (and final) member.

On the next day, the team reaches its destination, which turns out to be a very elaborate (and polluting) industrial complex, from which Prof. Faust and the leader of the gang, Maxwell Lord, are leading the attacks. The rest of the book is devoted to the showdown, which is somewhat troubled by the unexpected arrival of Guy Gardner, out to arrest Wally West, in the one sub-plot that this book has.

Sheriff Diana Prince, who at no point in the book is referred to as Wonder Woman, wears a costume which is mostly standard cowboy apparel (boots, jeans, belt, hat), except for the bustier, which is quite similar to the traditional Wonder Woman costume (the one with the eagle, not the one with the “Double W”), and the bracelets. The boots are the familiar ones (red with the white line), but with spurs added, and the lasso is replaced by a gun. She does use a lariat at some point, and tells the victim to not even think of not telling the truth, but it’s not clear if it’s because the lariat has some supernatural power, or if it’s just because she has it around the guy’s neck (we believe the latter).