Is This Really The Worst Comic Of All Time? A Defence Of Justice League: The Rise of Arsenal #3

Okay. This is a difficult mission. One to combat hatred, disgust and negativity in the world. I am trying to find positive reviews of Justice League: The Rise of Arsenal #3.

It’s not easy. With all the bad sex, bad sexual politics, bad drugs and bad cat-killing, there’s not exactly a surfeit of giggles to be had here. After all, Brian Hibbs told us “Everyone involved in its production, especially the editor, Brian Cunningham, and publishers Dan Didio and Jim Lee should be deeply ashamed of what they’ve done here” and Chris Sims -summed it up saying “when you’ve got a character who literally ranks the women he has had sex with while whipping one of them with an electrical cord, the only thing you’re succeeding at is lowering a comic with the words “Justice League” on the cover to the level of “Tarot: Witch of the Black Rose”, David Brothers giving us ” My post was going to be called “Rise of Arsenal: Wynken, Blynken, and On the Nod” which is some kind of perfect storm of stupid and amazing, but no–not worth it. Rise of Arsenal is lazy and stupid and doesn’t even have a villain.”

Or as one comic book professional told me the other day “it’s a comic that deserves to be downloaded.” It’s already being acclaimed as the worst comic book of all time.

But. Positive reviews. And they do exist.

Okay, Factual Opinion’s review is more of a backhanded compliment, glorifying in zigging when others zag, saying;

The tits in Rise of Arsenal are the tits of women who have babies, women who are enough in charge of their sexuality that they can fuck with the lights on. The men are men of passion, who cry and throw elbows and buck against the hallways of life, and at the heart of it, down in the bowels of degraded hell that unite their core, is our hero: Roy Harper. Roy is the true, final response, the exacting moral statement on an industry built on childish things, codified in stupid shorthand explanations by malcontent softbrains that these things are the new mythology, openly proclaiming that these are what super-hero comics strive to be, at every second, at every moment, upon every page.

But are there any less metatextual positive reviews? Why yes, yes there are.

Jason Todd not only tells us;

The fight with Roy and Dick was very well done, as was the scene that followed with Dinah. The last scene was a little too, grim for my tastes, I mean she’s a little girl. But eh, whatever, all in all this was a good comic, and I’m enjoying it. Some will say it’s a step back for Roy, which it is, but with everything he’s been through it’s expected of him. I’ll give this issue a 9/10 and I’m eagerly awaiting the fourth and final issue of this mini.

But he then going to the X-Men’s Comic Blog, where the book is given 3/10 and begins to turn that reviewer round a little to Jason’s way of thinking.

While the Comic Bloc Forum have a mixture of positive and negative – with the positive side saying;

I enjoyed the issue.

Well written issue and overall seeing the fall of Roy Harper has been a sad yet gripping read.

A very well done issue and mini. I enjoyed this a lot.

My mother was a psychiatric nurse for quite some time, and Roy’s situation, and the way he deals with it, resonates with some of the horror stories she told me about. If anything, the comic is being a bit tame.

really gripping read. roy’s downward spiral is nearly complete.

A sad comic, but a good one. No one wants to see Roy fall… but sometimes that happens. I can’t imagine what it would be like to lose one of my kids.

Solid read. I like that Roy’s drug use history is being explored here. Being a clinical psychologist who works with heroin users on a regular basis I feel this situation, overall, rings very true. i.e. when placed under significant stress even ex-users who have been clean for years are strongly tempted to return to old ways.

The lesson is this. No matter how much you despise a certain comic, a certain plot, a certain marriage being done away with, there are those who don’t share your opinion, who reject it and love that comic as much as you love yours. Comic fans do not share a hive mind. And sometimes it’s just worth remembering that. Justice League: The Rise Of Arsenal #3 may not be the worst comic book of all time.

Okay, okay, maybe it is.

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