- Give me a razor-wielding midget dressed up as a kid, any day.
- -- Starman
Appearing in "The Wheel of Life"
- Reting Monastery
Synopsis for "The Wheel of Life"
Scarab and the JSA members convene in the old Dodds estate, a mansion left behind by Wesley Dodds and Dian Belmont. Scarab tells them that an agent of Chaos known as the Dark Lord is seeking a baby who is destined to become the next incarnation of Doctor Fate. With the power of Doctor Fate, the Dark Lord would be unstoppable, which is why he needs the JSA's help. He has isolated the potential whereabouts of the prophesied Fate baby to either British Columbia, Tibet or Venice, Italy and will bear the birthmark of an Ankh. The JSA split into three teams to investigate each location.
Due to not being a member of the JSA yet, Star-Spangled Kid was impatiently waiting outside. When she decides to poke her head into the room she finds the JSA have left and Scarab is secretly conferring with the ghost of Kent Nelson. When they jump through a spatial rift, Courtney is torn between calling for help and following them. In a split-second decision, she jumps in through the rift after them.
In Vancouver, British Columbia, Atom Smasher, Hourman, and Wildcat visit a hospital where a pregnant Jane Doe had been admitted. She had only recently given birth to a child bearing the birthmark of an Ankh on its right arm. But as they enter the room, they find that the new Hawkgirl has beaten them to the task. Hawkgirl grabs the baby and flies out the window. She doesn't get very far however. The Dark Lord appears and zaps the JSA members with a bolt of mystic lightning. Picking up the child, he announces himself as the sorcerer, Mordru.
- This book was first published on July 21, 1999.
- This issues is reprinted in the JSA: Justice Be Done trade paperback and JSA Omnibus Vol. 1.
- The Dark Lord is revealed as Mordru for the first time in this issue. Mordru is typically found in the 30th century fighting the Legion of Super-Heroes.
- Scarab says that he has only recently returned to action. This return is explained in greater detail in the Scarab limited series.
- The Ankh symbolizes Life in Egyptian mythology. Ironically, the symbol has also become synonymous with the character, Death, of the Endless.
- Starman makes reference to the film Don't Look Now in this issue. Don't Look Now was released in 1973 and starred Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie. Its significance to this issue is that it takes place in Venice, Italy.
- Jack later says that the Flash "makes like Heston". This is a reference to the Flash using his super-speed to part the waters of the Venice canal, similar to what actor Charlton Heston did to the Red Sea when he played Moses in The Ten Commandments.
- This issue shows a photograph of Sandy as the Silicon Monster, an event that was featured in Justice League of America (Volume 1) #113. This was originally a Pre-Crisis event, which is now considered as part of modern canon continuity. Superman and Batman both appear in flashback from this issue.
- There is a color-tinted photograph in the Dodds' estate trophy room showing the original Justice Society. This photo is based on the cover to All-Star Comics (Volume 1) #3, the first appearance of the assembled Justice Society of America.
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Links and References
- JSA series index at the Grand Comics Database
- JSA series index at the Unofficial Guide to the DC Universe
- Justice Society of America article at Wikipedia
- JSA Chronology page
- Justice Society Index at Dark Mark's Indexing Domain
- Justice Society Fact File
- JSA Checklist