Episode 120: An Age of Wonder

This week Luke and Devin cover the Elseworlds comic Justice League: Age of Wonder, discuss technology, revolution, Thomas Edison, and more!

Universes and Issues Explored:

  • Earth-1876 – JLA: Age of Wonder

Our theme music is by Vibe Leviathan and our cover art is by Kyle Latino.

Check out the Image Gallery and summary after the jump.

JLA : The Age of Wonder – 2003
Writer – Adisakdi Tantimedh, Pencils – Galen Showman, breakdowns – P Craig Russell, Inks Galen Showman, colors – Dave McCaig, Letters – Bob Lappan
It’s 1876 and the Centennial Exposition is going on and they’re showing off technology like the telephone while Lois Lane and Lex Luthor walk about discussing the future and Thomas Edison’s company which promises to change the world.
Meanwhile Jonathan and Martha Kent are looking for their son who is going to reveal something great – and as they notice a crowd forming outside, they go to look, along with Lois Lane who has left Lex Luthor behind. We see Clark Kent flying, holding the torch of the statue of Liberty, revealing himself and the gift from the President of France. Side note – it should have been bronze!
He introduces himself as someone who doesn’t seem himself as someone who is better just because he has powers – but he just wants to help people and help the greatest inventor of the time to help and reshape the future. Lois introduces him to Lex Luthor who was claiming to be Edison’s right hand man who could get him a meeting with Edison.
A week later we find that Luthor is only a bookkeeper but Clark still wants to help. Edison has a hard time visualizing how until Clark reveals he can quickly hand craft bulbs in his hand. Time passes and Kent meets Nikola Tesla who also works for Edison and Tesla wonders why he does what he does – and Luthor also doesn’t trust him and Clark says he just wants a better place for mankind and he wants to share his discoveries with the masses but Edison agrees with Luthor about needing to make money.
Tesla wants to share his alternate current plans but Edison is all for the direct current. When they go to test it, it turns out Clark is immune to electricity. Meanwhile Luthor reveals he went to Westinghouse and offered up the Alternating Current and they accepted and Clark is offered to come along too, and before long Superman is working on a power station at Niagra Falls where he’s run into Lois Lane again who is interested in Clark. Luthor meanwhile is vain and sees himself as the true power, and Clark is only a marketing technique. As reporters rush in though, Lois is pushed over the side – only to be saved by Clark who suggests he maybe gets a costume.
Clark, in his new duds, goes home his parents reveal he’s not from earth, and soon he shares his spacepod with his science friends, Theodore Knight and Barry Allen who begin reverse engineering it. Soon Ted Knight is the Starman and when a bolt from his new rod is tested on Superman – it bounces off onto Barry making him into The Human Flash.
Time passes and start passing out cold wireless lamps – essentially light orbs – but when they run out the people begin rioting and fighting over them causing the police to descend and they see their plans falling apart. Luthor is angry since they did this without him and without money and Clark gets angry that wealth is Luthor’s only drive.
Lois and Clark meet together and he feels bad because he trusts people too much but Lois loves that about him and kisses him.
Later in Nevada, Clark was called in because an alien with some sort of green lantern ring has shown up, offering him the ring to be his successor. Clark refuses based on everything else, so he nominated Captain Hal Jordan who becomes the Green Lantern in 1896.

As technology advances, people begin having more issues with technology and science – while Clark has assembled the League of Science in the Olympus Building, owned by Thomas Wayne. Clark wants this new group to make a better world for everyone.
Jordan and Luthor are similarly doubtful – Jordan being haunted by what he’s seen of mankind in war. Meanwhile Superman meets with a young Bruce Wayne – but he hears Luthor trying to propose to Luthor but she already accepted Clark’s proposal because he’s an inspiration to make the world better so Superman comes in and they dance together in flight.
time passes again – Superman and Lois marry, Luthor begins mysterious expeditions, The Human Flash discovers the Sound Barries, Green lantern prevents what I assume is the Ohio River Flood of 1897.

Luthor’s expedition is running into trouble as everyone on the ship is falling ill – and he calls for a distress signal – summoning Superman, Starman and the Green Lantern and it turns out they found radium which is killing everyone. They rescue the crew and blow up the ship and Luthor curses them even though he broke their science pact.
Luthor and Tesla meet and Luthor is bald now. He wants Luthor to design a radiation ray and he quickly leaves as Clark and Lois approach. Half the men died, and Luthor head Lex wanting to build a death ray and Luthor calls out their moon base and Clark just asks him to stop his radium development.

Clark calls another meeting of the League of Science and Luthor wants to be able to produce weapons which is against their charter. The Human Flash brings up how Green Lantern has been getting involved with War as a soldier and Jordan wants things to change because there is now technology inspiring wars. The meeting ends and Luthor stays behind to talk with Jordan.
Clark is taking the Waynes on a tour of the League of Science headquarters when an explosion goes off, killing the Waynes who shielded Bruce with their bodies.

Clark starts to investigate and finds clues about the Spartans who want to take down the bosses and the the science people and Clark asks Lois for an address. He goes to their base and finds it abandoned except for the Green Arrow who takes down Starman and the Human Flash and then the common people surround them. Arrow explains that the Industrial Revolution is leaving people underpaid and unable to get help and he asks who will stand for Justice. Clark tries to bring up how the Spartans killed people and Arrow agrees – but says he is after the bomber and warns of their bigger problems ahead.
Luthor and Jordan meet on his new Zeppelin before enacting their plan and Hal soon goes to Clark to ask for help and ends up abandoning him on the moon. When he returns, he lies, saying that Clark was killed by a comet and Lois enters into mourning and Lex immediately tries to mack on her.
It’s now 1911 and Green Arrow tries to stop some thieves but causes a factory explosion – and a woman is the only survivor who ends up flying out. The League which now consists of Starman, The Human Flash, Plastic Man and The Atom look into it but find no evidence but they find the Batman who explains what went down and how he also heard about the flying woman.
Luthor unsurprisingly was behind the factory which slowed down his plans and he’s also with Wonder Woman who he adopted in a creepy way after promising to help the Amazons.
Meanwhile Batman and Alfred discuss the coincidence that the factory was owned by a Luthor shell company which is illegal since he is the secretary of defense and should have divested.
Wonder Woman gives a speech about how the Germans took over Themyscira and are looking for war and they need to fight. Lois meanwhile is also interested in the shadow of war and Luthor wants to go to war to show force – especially since it would help business.

Bruce dances with Wonder Woman and talk about how she’s also helping him develop technology, and meanwhile Hal is preparing to head to the Eastern front for advice. Luthor has Wonder Woman show her powers which includes flame resistance when Starman fires a bolt at her and Bruce is suspicious.
Meanwhile tanks appear on the front line and Jordan is suspicious and flies in and destroys the tank – so the Germans call in yellow suits of antigravity armor which he can’t directly affect – so he destroys them with tanks – dragging the US into war. He confronts Luthor, suspicious of the technology and Luthor promises his death ray will keep them safe and he can then become president. London meanwhile gets bombed with an atomic bomb and Jordan is outraged. He attacks and Wonder Woman comes in and tries to stop him but Luthor buries a yellow headed axe in Jordan’s back and the ring floats away.
Meanwhile on the distant world, Clark Kent has been farming when the Green Lantern ring comes to him.
War begins quickly with the League of Science trying to help with humanitarian efforts while the world fears further atomic attacks. They feel unable to help as if this is what progress drove them to and they see a green flash and believe it is Hal – but they find Clark instead.
Meanwhile in the city, Batman finds that Wonder Woman is associated with Luthor.
Clark struggles with what to do before he starts fucking up people on the battlefield with the League of Science which Luthor is unhappy about so he gets into the airship and calls Diana but she refuses to help.
Left alone Batman comes in as Wonder Woman is consumed with grief over what her associations with Luthor have led to. Luthor talks to Bismarck and tells him to launch the missiles which will lead to a truce between Germany and the US.
Wonder Woman explains that she was swayed with small sacrifices and that Luthor planned to trick the Germans into attacking the US so he can use his death ray and become president and she and Batman head to the death ray.
Luthor arrives and trie to get Tesla to leave and he fires up the generators – while across the sea the League confronts the Germans and they stop the rockets and capture Bismarck, forcing him to stop the war.
Meanwhile Wonder Woman and Batman show up at the Death Ray while Superman stops the last missile but Luthor sees him and strikes with his death ray which has limited affect. The machine starts acting up so Wonder Woman attacks it and ends up dying from the energy release.
Luthor is locked in jail and Clark asks why – because he wanted to leave a mark on the world no matter the cost.
Clark then talks to the world assembly about how the war was made by greed and how they lot so much – and he must now stand for justice so he forms the Justice League of Nations and grants them the Green lantern ring and power battery. The remaining league members promise to be there if needed but want to return to science, Clark and Lois fly off, Batman Batmans and Luthor is executed.

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