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Wonder Woman w/o Powers Pt. 30: Justice League of America #102

It was going to be a party at first – but the inter-dimensional summons of Dr. Fate had changed that!
Now it was a manhunt – a desperate quests that has led the members of the Justice League and Justice Society down the infinite corridors of time!
The object of their search: the Seven Soldiers of Victory – long-lost champions who alone can save their planet rom the awesome, nebulous hand that holds the Earth!
--But the price of such success may prove most terrible indeed!

Not well, it seems...

...for she is beset by the Iron Hand whose nebuloid namesake is the cause of the great quest – and she knows not her danger!

Green Arrow, Black Canary, and Johnny Thunder arrive on the side of a wooded hill. They witness Vigilante about to be burned at the stake by Native Americans.

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Aquaman, Wildcat, and (Earth-1) Green Lantern don't know where they've arrived, but they know when: 50,000 years in the past. They find the Star-Spangled Kid cornered in a cave by cavemen.

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The Flash, Zatanna, and the Red Tornado land on a Mediterranean island and are surprised to learn that Speedy, a victim of the sorceress, Circe, has become a centaur!

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After all heroes have been rescued, as we knew they would be…

It turns out (SPOILER ALERT) that it was Wing, Crimson Avenger's sidekick, who died defeating Nebula-Man.

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Diana is now being held captive by the Iron Hand, but she finally gets to participate in the action:

Dr. Fate tells the Iron Hand that everyone is not necessarily doomed "if the Seven Soldiers can recreate the weapon they built to destroy your earlier menace – the Nebula-Man!"

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They do; however, in delivering the nebula-rod into "the heart of the menace," Red Tornado is destroyed, joining Wing in tribute by the Justice League and the Justice Society.

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Thoughts

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I'll focus more on the death of Red Tornado when I one day start a series about one of my favorite characters, but for now, we're talking about Diana Prince. And, as Batman says...

Costumed or not, you're still a wonder, Diana.

Indeed! She finally shows her worth in a climactic moment of this three-part tale. We're left in suspense for most of the issue as the sub-teams wrap up their adventures, but then aren't disappointed when she demonstrates her ruthless man-to-man combat skills. How cool is it that she karate-chops the Iron Hand's... iron hand?

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I'd actually say this is the climax; we see more action that we do with the creation and delivery of the nebula-rod, which seems crammed into only a couple pages.Then, the death of Red Tornado is relegated to only a couple panels. Maybe there's too much story for it's three parts, all of which are just 20-cent, regular-sized issues.

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This cover is an iconic one for me. I owned this comic as a child and distinctly remember it... Superman standing on a hill declaring...

For the Earth to live, one of us must die!

He's not kidding, is he? Although, we've been misled by hyperbole like this in any number of other comic books. It's not clear from the cover that this is part of a crossover, much less the final chapter of three. It doesn't matter. It's what's inside that counts and this, with our without Diana Prince, is classic JLA.

Title: Justice League of America

Issue #: 102

Cover Date: Sept. 1972

On Sale Date: July 18, 1972

Writer: Len Wein

Penciller: Dick Dillin

Inkers: Joe Giella, Dick Giordano

Editor: Julius Schwartz


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