Deathstroke fights the entire JLA

Avoid fighting Deathstroke the Terminator.  Sure, he’s the arch-nemesis of the Teen Titans, best known as the team of teenage sidekicks.  Also, he’s older than all the Teen Titans put together.  But still, he’s cool.  Master assassin, enhanced physical attributes, 90% brainpower!  And more importantly, whenever someone asks about the toughness of Deathstroke, fans always bring up that one time he took on the entire Justice League at once.  Luckily, we’re going to be reading that today.

Premiering in 1980, Deathstroke (real name Slade Wilson) learned his killing skills in Vietnam. Judging from his gorgeous head of white hair, that bit of his history still holds true today making him close to 70 years old.  To be fair, with that little army experiment he undertook (superstrength gets handed out like cheap candy in the comic universe), his age remains unimportant.  Oh, and his wife shot him in the eye.  It happens with assassin spouses.  You’ve seen Mr. and Mrs. Smith.

We pick up in Identity Crisis #3, written by Brad Meltzer and drawn by Rags Morales.  The supervillain and current amnesiac Dr. Light, with a genius intelligence and I guess, powers to control light and stuff, is wanted for murder.  Did he commit it?  Not important.  On the run, he hires Deathstroke to protect him.

Okay, let’s quickly go over Deathstroke’s opponents.  You know the Flash (superspeed) and Green Lantern (power ring) already.  Black Canary, the blonde in fishnet stockings, can create an ultrasonic blast by screaming.  Zatanna, the other lady in fishnets, can cast magic spells by reciting them backwards.  Hawkman, who you can probably pick out on your own, has a magical mace.  Oh, and the flying thing.  The Atom, who you can kinda see on Black Canary’s shoulder, gets to shrink himself while maintaining his normal physical strength.  Sneak punches and stuff.  Green Arrow, the Robin Hood-esque dude with wacky facial hair, never misses with his bow and arrows.  Essentially, Hawkeye from The Avengers movie.  Also, he’s our narrator for this story, hence why all the text boxes are green.  There you go, all caught up.

I think Batman, Superman, Martian Manhunter, and the others you know are out having a drink or playing darts or something.  I don’t know.  Anyway, keep in mind that this ain’t a tag team fight. Nope, Deathstroke has to fight them all at once.  The way a master assassin should.

Okay, one down, six to go.

You see the problem with battle armor consisting of half a tuxedo?  Bowties are great for charity balls, but absolutely awful for protecting oneself from old-timey mercenaries.

If Batman wore an ammo belt, carried around a broadsword, and killed superheroes, you’d have Deathstroke.  Though, I hate to bring up uniforms again, but at least the half-tuxedo covered Zatanna’s torso.  Hawkman ain’t even wearing a shirt.  Three down, four to go.

Five down, two to go.  Not bad for six pages into the issue.  Remember who’s left?  Deathstroke certainly does.

I understand the whole shrinking superhero usefulness when say, compared to Superman.  But when The Atom can become microscopic, run inside someone’s ear canal and punch his or her brain with the exact same impact as if he were full size, The Atom certainly has his uses.  Unfortunately, being tiny also brings with it all those obvious weaknesses.  Like this:

If you’re complaining that none of JLA’s heavy hitters fight in this rumble, you’re forgetting the space cop.  Y’know, Green Lantern, who can create anything simply by wanting it.  The same member of the Green Lantern Corps who can change the entire course of wars just by showing up on an alien planet. The most famous police force in the galaxy, roughing up bad guys for over three billion years.

In my personal opinion, which has about as much credibility as any other yahoo on the Internet, it doesn’t fare well for Deathstroke’s little bet.  Pretty sure that since the Green Lantern rings choose their hosts, it ain’t going to work for Old Man Vietnam’s hostile takeover.  Though I guess that’s up to the writer.  Either way, doesn’t really matter.

As you can imagine, the fight takes a drastic turn in favor of the good guys.  Because if Deathstroke kills the half the Justice League, the mood of the DC universe would shift dramatically.  Plus, readers would have to plop down a small fortune for all the resurrection events a few months later.  Y’see, since Deathstroke’s whole plan relied on expert timing and crowd control, deviation to smush Green Arrow’s face gives a chance for the other six good guys to recover.

As we wrap up our article in a few images, we’d be remiss to forget about Dr. Light, hanging out in the corner.  Magical amnesia can sometimes make supervillains batty.  Especially when that triggers PTSD flashbacks.

With that, our villains flee and the fight ends.  Super cool battle, right?  You can go read the Identity Crisis event for what happens next.  Like daddy Superman flying in to fold his arms and shake his head in disappointment.

14 Comments on “Deathstroke fights the entire JLA”

  1. wwayne says:

    I miss the old Green Arrow so much. The New 52 version of Oliver destroyed the character. His distinguishing mark was his maturity: now he’s just a young hero like (almost) everyone else, from Spider Man to Superboy. I understand they had to link the comic book to the upcoming tv series, but they could have done that in a far smarter way: for example, they could have created a comic series narrating his early days as Green Arrow, like Marvel did with “X – Men: First Class.” When you reboot a character, you can change everything but his spirit: DC didn’t follow this simple but essential rule, so they haven’t been faithful both to their tradition and to their public.

    • balox says:

      oh pleaseeeeeee havent u even been paying any attention?

    • Milbury says:

      Maturity? Pre-N52 Oliver is a left wing dingbat. He’s the sort of loony toon who’d be flooding Twitter with incoherent tantrums about President Trump — assuming he didn’t just outright try to assassinate the guy, as breaking the no-kill rule was the other thing he was known for. Many New 52 reinventions were trash, but Oliver was not one of them. Like Anarky, he was a thinly-veiled mouthpiece for his writers to wax political, and badly needed that reinvention.

      • Joe Manning says:

        “Maturity? Pre-N52 Oliver is a left wing dingbat. He’s the sort of loony toon who’d be flooding Twitter with incoherent tantrums about President Trump — assuming he didn’t just outright try to assassinate the guy, as breaking the no-kill rule was the other thing he was known for.”

        Holy fuck dude, you are insane. 1) Left wing doesnt mean immature, your reaction to a comic book character being a left winger? That mature? No. 2) President Trump is closer to Lex Luthor in the DCU than say, a Bruce Wayne (a SUCCESSFUL businessman). 3) Idiots like you project nonsense like this, complain about how the left demonize the right, and Trump, speak in generalizations while whining about being generaized.
        4) Bruce Wayne is clearly a liberal as well, so is Superman. Being a hero requires empathy and selflessness. Not racial biases, an inability to accept uncomfortable social progress, ignoring the taking of civil rights, and self-victimizing while complaining about other people that do the same thing.
        The vast majority of comic book writers and artists? Liberal. Bill Finger, the REAL creator of Batman? a democrat.

        Y’know Ollie is actually a SOCIALIST at one point (oooooohhhhh shit!). Which is a good thing, we need more socialism (#triggered!)

        Sgt. Manning 10th SFG, SOCOM

      • Jonesy says:

        You mean like breadlines in Venezuela, Joe? Yeah, socialism REALLY worked there, didn’t it? By the way, anybody can look up information on the military on Wikipedia. Answer me this, what color is the boathouse at Hereford?

      • LeagueofAvengers03 says:

        Yikes. Took a big jump there

      • Max says:

        Your idiots Milbury and Jonesy. Venezuelas problems are much more complex than “socialism baaaad”. I´ll leave it at that.

  2. Quora says:

    Who are the coolest DC characters?

    In my opinion, Deathstroke is DC’s coolest character. He has shown his astounding ability as a master tactician and an apex fighter throughout his run as a character. ​ Deathstroke possesses a well-honed Promethium (a metal with extraordinary properti…

  3. […] hecho, en la saga Identity Crisis, Deathstroke es capaz de enfrentarse a toda la Liga, pese a que su enfrentamiento en desventaja incluía a rivales como The Flash y Green Lantern. Es […]

  4. […] has gone toe to toe with multiple members of the League at once before and has essentially handed their butts to them. So, he seems like at least one person Luthor could recruit in order to hinder the League and their […]

  5. David Foster says:

    Love the narrative, but what did Deathstroke actually do to Black Canary?

    • Patrick James Manders says:

      Well the bag is probably made of a material that can contain her scream. Then he made it really hard for her to get it off with handcuffs and ziplock.

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