Tag Archives: Ray Palmer

Get Into The All-New Atom

The All-New Atom: My Life In Miniature (#1-6)
The All-New Atom: Future/Past (#7-11)
The All-New Atom: The Hunt For Ray Palmer (#12-16)
The All-New Atom: Small Wonder (#17-18, 20-25)

Do you know about the old Atom? You should, but even if you don’t, that won’t stop you from enjoying the new one. The Atom is a character who can shrink down to minuscule size to fight crime. That is actually a useful power when you need to be stealthy and you get the chance to explore tiny civilizations or dive into the human body. He can also punch people in the face really hard when he shifts his molecular density. The All-New Atom comes into possession of the Bangstick, a staff that allows him to fly and shoot energy blasts, so he does pack some heat.

The Atom as we know him today was created by the legendary Gardner Fox in 1961. It was part of National Publications’ (soon to be DC Comics) effort to revitalize and reintroduce their super-heroes after they had fallen out of favor in the 1950s. This era would be known as the Silver Age of comics, begun by the revamp of the Flash from Jay Garrick to Barry Allen, Ray Palmer replaced the Golden Age Atom, Al Pratt, as well. While the concept of the Flash remained intact, the Atom was reinvented for a new generation. Al Pratt was simply a really short man who fought crime with his fists. With science-fiction booming, the Atom was now a man of science who developed a way to shrink himself and decided to fight crime. He was one of the first Justice League recruits and even mentored a new group of Teen Titans for a time, but no one likes to talk about that anymore.

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Review – JLA/JSA: Virtue and Vice

All the Justice

4 out of 5 stars
DC Comics
David S. Goyer/Geoff Johns – Writers
Carlos Pacheco – Penciler
Jesus Merino – Inker
Guy Major – Colorist

Virtue and Vice is your elevator into the DC Universe, if that elevator suddenly went into a freefall and dropped you down into the sub-basement. It is a perfect sample of what the DCU can offer and is a great introduction into the Justice League of America and the Justice Society of America. There are no origin stories, no hard hitting narratives; instead, Goyer and Johns cut out a healthy slice of continuity and offer it up as an appetizer to impress you.

The heroes here are not iconic, but current (2002 current). Unless you’re a DC Universe continuity cop, you probably won’t be familiar with everything. Nothing is explained to the reader up front, but rather through the progression of the story answers can be found. It’s not outright confusing, but you just have to deal with the fact that Wally West is the Flash, Kyle Rayner is the one and only Green Lantern, JLA headquarters is on the moon and Lex Luthor is President (yes, that was a thing that happened). Several references are made to previous stories that took place in each teams’ ongoing series, JLA and JSA, but an unfamiliar reader can simply pass that off as ‘casual’ conversation.

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