Justice League of America #20
I get that the Final Crisis tie-ins don’t begin until next month, but I am so tired of this book. First Brad Meltzer strings us along with an interminable story that I could barely follow and whose main attraction was the promise of more Geo-Force (who was thankfully traded to Chuck Dixon’s Batman and the Outsiders). Then McDuffie takes over with all kinds of fanfare and expectations attached, and what do we get? A ho-hum crossover with a much better book (Ostrander's sorely missed--and now missing again--Suicide Squad).
Wally West is a busy guy. He's worn out from cooking breakfast, so to keep himself alert while saving some cats, he monologues about thrilling matters like how forest fires start (droughts! lightening strikes! careless smokers!) and explains something about rotating updrafts and fuel ignition temperatures... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... Sorry, I nodded off there for a minute.
Then, Wonder Woman shows up to save Wally’s bacon after he fucks up the cat-rescue. In the process, she gets him all hot and bothered, in a gross Oedipal sort of way, and Wally explains how he really wants Diana to “respect” him after they hook up—which, hey, I guess, who doesn’t? But please, dude, keep it to yourself.
Anyway, it turns out that Wonder Woman wasn’t just passing through, but popped by to tell Wally to stop spending so much time with his goddamn family, which of course gets him all excited and hopeful…until he realizes that she really just wants him to spend more time alone in the clubhouse pulling “monitor duty,” if you know what I mean. Totally bummed out, and sensing the oncoming guilt-trip, Wally whines about how hard done by he is, having “just come back from the future” and finding himself with “a lot of stuff to deal with,” “just needs time to catch up,” etc, etc. Diana’s not having any of that shit, and proceeds to unleash the mother of all guilt-trips on this douchbag, explaining, in detail, the various ways in which he sucks.
“Wallace, Superman was very disappointed that you didn’t answer that distress call last week (too busy loafing off!), but don’t worry, he forgives you. Oh, and Batman? He thinks you’re a write-off and wants to replace you with Jay Garrick (burn!), but he wanted me to come check things out with you, just to make sure.”
Thoroughly dissed by the whole damn Oedipal trinity and now a nervous wreck, Wally falls tearfully to Diana’s feet, renounces his wife and children, and begs her for some test—anything—that would allow him to regain her approval and the confidence of his two passive-aggressive daddies. Luckily, at this very moment, Wally’s much cooler older brother Black Lightening calls with a hot tip about Queen Zazzala and a bunch of lab techs who’ve been turned into extraterrestrial bees. Something about a diabolical plan to steal earth’s honey supply.
The honey is saved—by Wonder Woman, primarily; meanwhile, Wally runs around for pages and pages providing exposition. Diana feels sorry for him, and, in the end, lets him collar Zazzala, because that's just the way she rolls. Wally isn’t fooled, though. He knows he’s a total fuck up. Miserable at having pissed Wonder Woman off yet again, he grits his teeth for the inevitable lecture. Diana is more efficient than that, though, and lets him off with a parting knee to the groin, which she delicately calls “an entreaty.” Humbled by these attentions, Wally hobbles home to tell his family to fuck off, and then heads off to the Hall of Justice to watch TV.
Beautifully illustrated by Ethan Van Sciver.