The closest thing to an archenemy the Justice League has is Darkseid, however, they’ll need his planet’s help if they want to protect the Earth.
Warning: contains spoilers for Justice League: Last Ride #1
Though heroes being forced to work with villains is a common trope, it’s difficult to imagine the Justice League working with someone as evil as Darkseid. The Lord of Apokolips has created such a cruel and brutal world, that it’s hard to see any self-respecting hero cooperating with such a despot, let alone heroes as upstanding as the Justice League. However, in a new comic, Darkseid’s Apokolips may be instrumental in protecting the Earth.
Justice League: Last Ride #1 from Chip Zdarsky and Miguel Mendonca presents readers with a far different world than anything they’re used to, and the changes all began with Martian Manhunter’s death. Readers don’t know the specifics just yet, but whatever happened to J’onn created a rift between members of the Justice League, resulting in Batman and Superman hating each other, and then the Justice League itself disbanding. After years of resentment building up, the League is finally called back together for a meeting in the JLA Watchtower by John Stewart.
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The Green Lantern reveals to Earth’s greatest heroes that he has something of a proposition for them. For some unspecified reason, the Green Lantern Corps are in shambles. Despite this, many of Earth’s Green Lanterns have still been operating, and they caught the universe’s most wanted criminal and the new Gods’ murderer; Lobo. John Stewart, Hal Jordan, and the other Lanterns have a simple proposal for the League, if they protect Lobo while he awaits trial, then the Green Lantern Corp will reestablish itself with Earth as its new operating center, making them the Earth’s protectors. Batman immediately dismisses this. However, after a great deal of needling from Superman, Batman reveals that he knows exactly where to hide Lobo; Apokolips.
While Apokolips initially seems like an outlandish suggestion on Batman’s part, it starts to make sense if given some thought. Though readers have no idea why he did it, Lobo is guilty of killing the New Gods. Darkseid might be the cruelest person in the DC Universe, but if he’s going to be kind to anyone, it’s going to be to the person single-handedly responsible for ending the New Gods. His hatred of the New Gods is the character’s whole reason for existence. Even with his legendary cruelty, Darkseid has every reason to protect Lobo.
Despite this though, it’s clear that something will go wrong with this plan. The comic is, after all, titled Justice League: Last Ride, and has explicitly been described as the Justice League’s final mission. That doesn’t necessarily mean the League will die, but it still suggests that this adventure won’t exactly have a happy ending. The Justice League has battled Darkseid countless times, but their hardest mission just might be asking the despotic Lord of Apokolips for help.
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