What's included in Morrison's JLA Deluxe?

Friday, August 07, 2009

Here's an initial solicitation for the contents of the collected JLA Deluxe Vol. 3 (i. e. what my comics library is drooling for):
Grant Morrison's incredible run on JLA continues in this new hardcover.

First, the JLA's very first foe, Starro the Conqueror, returns in a new guise as the Star Conquerer! The JLA is powerless to awaken a slumbering world trapped in the endless nightmares caused by the menace formerly known as Starro. But help arrives in the form of an unexpected ally: Daniel, The Lord of Dreams, from the pages of The Sandman. And in the tale "Crisis Times Five," the Justice League of America meets the Justice Society of America as only Grant Morrison can write it!

When Earth is threatened by beings of seemingly unlimited power -- beings reminiscent of the genies, and fairies of ancient myth -- members of both the JLA and the JSA rush to answer a challenge that may be beyond their power.
This essentially confirms that we'll see the "It" and "Crisis Times Five" storylines in JLA Deluxe Vol. 3. Between those two is the three-part Ultramarines storyline, so likely that's in there as well. That means JLA issues #22-26 and #28-31, or nine issues.

In comparison, JLA Deluxe Vol. 1 contained JLA #1-9 and a story from JLA Secret Files #1 (ten stories), and JLA Deluxe Vol. 2 contained JLA #10-17, New Year's Evil: Prometheus, and the JLA/WildC.A.T.s one-shot (ten stories).

It's possible, then, that JLA #22-26 and #28-31 may be all JLA Deluxe Vol. 3 contains. It seems a little on the thin side, but only a little. This would leave seven issues (JLA #34 and #36-41) for JLA Deluxe Vol. 4, suggesting that volume might contain Grant Morrison and Frank Quietly's JLA: Earth-2 graphic novel as well. It'd be nice, too, if perhaps some annotations by Morrison might round out the series.

Of course, all this suggests terribly bad news for anyone hoping to find the JLA aspects of the Morrison-written DC One Million crossover in the JLA Deluxe volumes -- probably isn't going to happen. It's understandable, not only because DC One Million has already been collected and because it doesn't feature art by Howard Poter as does most of Morrison's JLA run, but also because it generally didn't win the same acclaim as JLA or Morrison's Seven Soldiers did.

I understand that DC took some pages out of the original JLA trade paperbacks so as not to confuse readers where One Million crosses over, but it'll be tough to do that later on in the Deluxe volumes. Unfortunately, that may turn out to be a place where the JLA Deluxe editions don't read as well as they should (but I still want them).

If you've been reading JLA Deluxe so far, how have you enjoyed the volumes? Any drawbacks?
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  1. I would like to see Vols 3 & 4 contain the following:

    Vol 3
    Orion and Big Barda Join the JLA - 2 page Morrison story from New Gods Secret Files and Origins #1.
    JLA 22-23
    DC One Million 1-4 + JLA #1,000,000 - I reckon the series actually reads OK with just the Morrison parts. Perhaps a text page could summarise other important story points from the issues he didn't write (though I understand he plotted the entire series)
    JLA 24-26,28-31

    Vol 4:
    JLA 34, 36-41
    JLA Earth 2
    JLA Classified 1-3

  2. Should have added - each of these volumes would only be maybe 30 pages or so bigger than Volume 2 (which was 320 pages). For ultra-completeness sake you could also find room for GM's JLA story in Secret Origins #46 (1989), 'Ghosts of Stone'!

  3. Hm, I don't know about DC One Million without the Green Lantern and Starman issues. Come to think, then -- I wonder if the Starman #1,000,000 will be included in the Starman Deluxe series?

  4. The end of "Rock of Ages" in Deluxe vol.2 certainly gives up some One Million tidbits. They could have easily have cut them out but choose not to, which I am glad of.

    The Deluxe collections are great, but I do wish there was more commentary by Morrison or any of the creators. The sketches in the back are hardly worth their place.

    I'm also surprised they are just skipping over the Mark Waid runs. I know this is a Morrison thing they're doing here, but to collect a series of this magnitude, calling it JLA: THe Deluxe Edition instead of "Grant Morrison's JLA The Deluxe Edition" is kind of crappy, if you ask me. Not everyone who read the series did so because of Morrison.

    I am replacing all of my trades with these HCs and am sad to see those Waid stories won't be included. (or that it will likely not continue past vol.4 and Morrison's end of the run)

  5. Indeed there's a certain way James Robinson's Starman run works in Deluxe format, even despite some crossovers, that Morrison's doesn't -- the ways in which JLA was pulled into crossovers was more disruptive, other writers wrote issues of JLA, DC One Million is too big to include and too big to exclude, etc.

    I'm eager to get Y: The Last Man, Fables, and Ex Machina all in the Deluxe format -- but none of these, again, have the kind of continuity problems that collecting JLA brings.

  6. I wonder if they might consider doing DC One Million as a separate Deluxe volume.

    I recently re-read the whole series and, as I said, I think it reads OK with just the GM stuff. There is a lot that is totally irrelevant (Young Heroes in Love anyone??) and some that has story relevance but isn't terribly well-written (Starman excepted). Quite frankly I would far rather have a couple of paragraphs explaining what Batman was up to rather than having to read 4 or so Chuck Dixon stories!

    If this ever happens it might also be worthwhile including some stuff from the DC One Million 80 Page Giant - GM had a couple of stories in that.

  7. I didn't like the inclusion of the JLA/Wildcats special because I don't feel it fits with the theme of the rest of the JLA stories. I also agree with Brad about them skipping over Waid's run. I think this would be more forgivable if they had highlighted this collection as Morrison specific but since they haven't done that I see no reason why they can't include Waid's stories and why they have to stop collecting after Morrisons run.
    I'm not sure what they are going to do about 1,000,000. I didn't read it in comic form and only have the trade and I found it a little confusing because it kept referencing events from the uncollected issues. I Still enjoyed the story though and if they released it as a separate volume I would certainly pick it up.

  8. I didn't find the JLA/WildCATS thing to be good, but I like its inclusion; if you're going to be paying extra for a deluxe oversized hardcover of Grant Morrison's JLA, the more material reprinted the better, and it's better if it's actual comics instead of DVD-style extras ( which are cool, but not as weighty when judged as content in a comic collection ).

    This is also why I liked the reprinting of the Civil War: Confession story in the New Avengers Vol. 3 Deluxe HC; not the best story ( the second half was good, but the first half with Tony Stark blubbering like a baby for 12 pages wasn't ), but it made the collection feel more cohesive.

  9. Like I said before, DC could release a DC One Million omnibus collecting the whole mini series plus all relevant tie-ins. And by "relevant", I mean JLA, Superman (all 5 books), Batman (all 3 books), Wonder Woman, Aquaman, The Flash, Green Lantern, Martian Manhunter, Starman, Resurrection Man, Robin and Nightwing.

    That said, I still think DC One Million is a much more integral part of Morrison's run than JLA/Wildcats and even Earth 2.

  10. Agreed that DC One Million is integral, and I'd like to see it included, if only because of how it includes/explains Hourman's later appearances (and where's our JSA Presents: Hourman trade paperback, I might add!). But I think the likelihood is low, and the likelihood of a deluxe edition lower, because the story isn't that well regarded (though, now that I've talked it over some, I'm seeing ties to Final Crisis that warrant a second read of One Million).

    That said, deluxe editions of crossovers, with some or all of the crossover parts included, is a really cool idea. For a long time I've heard bounced around the idea of an Absolute Crisis on Infinite Earths Companion that collects the COIE crossover issues, but I doubt it'll ever come about.

  11. I would like to see the works of joe kelly, mark waid, including one shots and crossovers, all of them in deluxe editions until it end to isse 125 :) i think collectors and readers would appreciate this :)

  12. Unlikely right away, I think -- but I wonder if, twenty or thirty years down the road, we'll see runs like Joe Kelly or Mark Waid's JLA collected in archive format. 'Til then -- enjoy your trade paperbacks!

  13. Were their any other stories about the JLA Morrison wrote but were not in the Delux Edition?