- Oh, Superman... all those people you've saved over the years: Where are they now? No one is coming. No one cares. You are alone, at the end of the world. Completely alone.
- -- Protex
"JLA: New World Order" was a four-issue story-arc and the inaugural event of the 1997 ongoing JLA title. The story was written by Grant Morrison with illustrations and cover art by Howard Porter and John Dell. Pat Garrahy and Heroic Age provided the coloring and Ken Lopez provided the lettering. The story was edited by Ruben Diaz. All four issues chronicling the event were collected in trade paperback form in 1997 and in a hardcover edition in 2008. The story-arc is significant for not only being the first major story of a new title, but also for regrouping the Justice League of America (known only as JLA now) with a familiar and popular team roster. It is the first time that heavy hitters such as Aquaman, Batman, Martian Manhunter, Superman and Wonder Woman have all been together on one team since the mid-1980's. The series also introduced the concept of the White Martians, an aggressive, more predatory race of Martians, dramatically different from the more peaceful Green Martians of past stories. In "New World Order", a group of White Martians band together as a team of faux heroes known as the Hyperclan. White Martians prove to be formidable adversaries and they make return appearances in future issues of JLA as well as Martian Manhunter (Volume 2)-3. "New World Order" also introduces the Justice League Watchtower and Z'onn Z'orr, future headquarters of the Martian Manhunter. This storyline is followed by Morrison's second arc American Dreams.
A team of galactic super-beings calling themselves the Hyperclan came to the planet Earth and made a showy spectacle of themselves at the National Mall. Introducing themselves to the world, they told the tale of how their home world had been decimated by ecological irresponsibility and now they pledge themselves towards preventing the same catastrophes from happening to other planets. They announced that they were there to heal the world.
The general populace of Earth immediately took a liking to the Hyperclan, but Earth's super-hero population were dubious of their intentions. The Hyperclan gained mass respect when they pooled their talents towards terra-forming the Sahara Desert, turning the arid, barren wasteland into a virtual paradise. Superman went on record, expressing his concerns over these demonstrations, citing that there was no way one could determine the long-term geological or social ramifications of such a massive change to the environment. Despite the legitimacy of the Man of Steel's concerns, most people thought that he was just "sour grapes", jealous of the Hyperclan's goals to improve life rather than simply slugging it out with super-villains.
The Hyperclan also used their abilities to serve as law enforcement, catching dangerous criminals and executing them. Public support for their actions increased exponentially.
Superman and his colleagues in the JLA soon discovered however, that there was more to the Hyperclan than what they seemed. They suspected a connection between the Hyperclan and an unidentified group of invaders who came from out of nowhere and destroyed the Justice League's previous satellite headquarters. This incident resulted in the disbanding of the previous League and the apparent death of team member Metamorpho.
The Hyperclan meanwhile, continued to maintain a foothold on the planet Earth. They erected massive watchtower citadels all across the globe and headquartered themselves at a fortress in Antarctica named Z'onn Z'orr.
The Justice League soon learned that the Hyperclan were not the benevolent beings they pretended to be and were using mind-control technology to turn public opinion against the League, thus embracing the Hyperclan as Earth's preeminent champions.
It wasn't long before the League and the Hyperclan came to blows. Superman fought against team leader Protex. Wonder Woman and Aquaman fought against the female Hyperclan members, Primaid and Tronix. The Flash and Green Lantern had their hands full with Zenturion and super-speedster ZüM, while the Martian Manhunter swapped blows with the armored Armek. Batman concentrated his efforts on the wraith-like A-Mortal, but lost the initial round when A-Mortal destroyed his Batplane. In total, the Hyperclan scored a decisive victory over the League.
Protex brought all of the captured members back to Z'onn Z'orr. The Martian Manhunter had been missing in action, and Batman was presumed dead. Protex placed the League members inside of an ancient torture device called the Flower of Wrath. Although his victory over the League seemed to be complete, his downfall was soon forthcoming.
Batman had survived the crash of the Batplane and had infiltrated Z'onn Z'orr. Creeping about the lower levels of the citadel, he discovered the truth about the Hyperclan's origins - they were Martians. As such, Batman knew that they were vulnerable to fire. Armed with this new and valuable knowledge, he began conducting surgical strikes against the team, taking them down one at a time.
The Martian Manhunter meanwhile, had disguised himself as Hyperclan member Armek and was waiting for the opportune moment to strike. When the imprisoned Superman learned for himself that his captors were Martians, he was able to break free of his bonds and fight back. The Martian Manhunter switched back into his normal form and deactivated the Flower of Wrath, freeing the rest of his teammates.
The JLA and the Hyperclan had their final battle in the frozen wasteland surrounding Z'onn Z'orr. They succeeded in defeating them, but quickly became aware of an even more pressing concern.
Prior to their battle, Protex had sent a signal to a Martian invasion fleet waiting to attack Earth from a hyperspace pocket called the Still Zone. The Martians began striking at major population centers and the people of Earth stood little chance against them. Back at Z'onn Z'orr, Superman broadcast a global message, telling the world about the Martians and their vulnerability to fire. As nearly everyone had access to some kind of flammable accelerant, it wasn't long before the people of Earth were able to repel the Martian forces.
With the crisis passed, the League was tasked with the responsibility of what to do about the Hyperclan. The Martian Manhunter psychically lobotomized the team-members, forcing them to assume mundane, humanoid forms. Forged with new identities and no knowledge of their Martian heritage, they were sent out into the world to join the human race.
Items: None known.
Vehicles: None known.
Weapons: None known.
- No special notes.
- All of the titles to the individual issues are named after cult sci-fi movies from the 50's.
- Issue #1 - "Them!"
- Issue #2 - "The Day the Earth Stood Still"
- Issue #3 - "War of the Worlds"
- Issue #4 - "Invaders from Mars!"
- Justice League of America (Volume 1)
- Justice League of America (Volume 2)
- Justice League of America (Volume 3)
- JLA (Volume 1)
- Justice League (Volume 2)
- Justice League International (Volume 1)
- Justice League International (Volume 2)
- Justice League International (Volume 3)
- Justice League Europe (Volume 1)
- Justice League America (Volume 1)
- Justice League Task Force (Volume 1)
- Justice League Quarterly (Volume 1)
- Justice League Dark (Volume 1)
- Extreme Justice (Volume 1)
- Justice League Elite (Volume 1)
Links and References
- JLA New World Order review by comicbookandmoviereviews.com
This event or storyline is specifically related to the Justice League of America, or to any other incarnations of the Justice League. This template will automatically categorize articles that include it into the Justice League Storylines category.