It’s clear from this trade that Part One is just the set-up for this three-part saga in the Thy Kingdom Come storyline. A lot happens here, but it’s also a lot of exposition. That’s not a bad thing; it just makes it clear that I’ve barely cracked the surface with this story.
We open as the JSA is still working on expanding its numbers, while also continuing to train its new recruits.
The newly dubbed Citizen Steel is one such recruit. He’s still adjusting to his powers, as well as the idea of even being a superhero in the first place. He’s fortunate to have such understanding teammates help him make the transition from normal citizen to hero.
The first half of the trade focuses no the Society, but the story doesn’t really pick up speed until the shocking arrival of a familiar, yet altogether difference, face.
Superman from Earth-22, better known as the Earth from Kingdom Come, arrives on our planet, completely unsure of where he is or how he came to be there. The requisite questioning follows, with the JSA enlisting the JLA to help prove that the man before them really is Superman. After confirming this, everyone tries to come to terms with the implications of his arrival: that there may once again be a multiverse out there, with who knows how many different Earths.
Superman tries to adjust to life on this new planet. He confirms that he saw his entire home world destroyed, so he has no where to return to. He’s still conflicted about what everything means, but he seems to be trying to find a place for himself in this new world. The story shifts away from him though, as we instead focus on a series of murders happening across the world:
Someone has been murdering people who dress up and/or claim to be pseudo-gods in a most violent manner, leaving a gaping hole straight through the center of their chest. The JSA has only just begun to look into this. We actually see the new Mr. America spending more time on the case than anyone else at this point. Storylines collide as Mr. America winds up at the JSA’s doorstep, asking if anyone’s heard of someone named Gog. The trade ends here, with a clear line of what path this storyilne will be following next.
As an introduction to a bigger story, this was a great trade. There are a handful of new characters introduced here, all of whom have been extended invitations to join the JSA. No one in the group has come up against a main adversary yet, but I’m okay with that. The story is taking its time, allowing the plot to be fleshed out slowly, while characters adapt to their new surroundings. I find this much more preferable to the non-stop action some comics employ; without a chance to catch their breath, the heroes of those stories lose some of their humanity, resembling nothing more than fighting machines. I rather enjoy reading the down-home side of the JSA. I know that a major battle is always just around the corner, so I can appreciate these moments of calm as the members are allowed to interact as a family. In this way they’re more believable than the JLA, and even arguably make for better storylines. I’m liking where the plot is going so far, and I’m excited to see what happens next.