My first serious foray into the world of DC comics was not a pleasant one. Let me warn you of a potential waste of time.
Title: JLA: The Island of Dr. Moreau
Credited To: Roy Thomas and Steve Pugh and Patricia Mulvihill
Original Publication Date: August 21, 2002
Cover Price: $6.95US, $11.50 Can
H. G. Wells’ The Island Of Dr. Moreau, the Justice League of
America, and the legend of Jack The Ripper combine into this
adaptation of all three source materials that retains Wells’
sentiments about the abuse of science.
The decision to incorporate the Jack The Ripper legend in at the half
way mark was natural, and it set this apart from being just another
adaptation of The Island of Dr. Moreau.
The artwork in the action scenes didn’t seem to have a lot of action.
Apart from the Flash, there was no blurring, and no motion lines. The
flying projectiles should have those lines as well, but they don’t.
The lack of such in those and other cases makes it harder to imagine
this as full action. It’s a minor problem, really, but it’s the only
element that really seemed below the average quality. Most of this
was right on the average quality.
How original can the combination of three concepts be? I
give them credit for combining three elements that haven’t really been
combined before, but it still felt like the combination of the three.
This was particularly true of the first half, which followed Wells’
novel very closely. I give it 3 out of 6.
The artwork was usually good, but it had its low points. The
most notable was the low point above, but the other main problem was
that the St. Bernard creation looked more like an ape to me than
anything else. Still, the problems were minor. I give it 3 out of 6.
The story was decent, but most of it was really written by
other people. The combination required some work, though. I give it
3 out of 6.
The characterization was poor. Moreau, Carr, and Ivo were
the same bland characters they were in the Wells original. The JLA
members were a blur, with no distinct personalities among them. I
give it 2 out of 6.
The emotional response this generated was minimal. I was not
given any reason to care about anyone on these pages, which makes it
hard to really get involved on any personal level. There were a
couple moments where the variations from the source material struck me
as interesting, but no more. I give it 2 out of 6.
The flow was somewhat hampered by the inability of the
artwork to really show action where needed. Things seemed to almost
take too long to do, rather than the typical problem of not having
enough time to do them. I give it 3 out of 6.
Overall, this is mainly a curiosity for people familiar with
the source material. If you’re not familiar with the sources, find
those instead, as they’re much more interesting. I give it 3 out of
In total, JLA: The Island of Dr. Moreau received 19 out of 42.