Justice League Metamorpho OK, I have a question for you. What does paint - water - stone - asparagus - sh*t - gas - light - metal - and Bill Clinton, all have in common? No! It's not that, silly! It doesn't have anything to do with Monica Lewinsky! They're all elements, right? As exhibited by an elemental hero who strutted his stuff in this 40-minute cartoon made in 2004.

Justice League - Metamorphosis

Now it's pretty safe to say that corporate tycoon, Simon Stagg, is complete and utter b*stard. However, do you know why he is a complete and utter b*stard? Does it have anything to do with his brutish aide, Java, when he inadvertently causes a train crash, whilst transporting an elemental mutagen Stagg recently devised?  Moreover, could it also have anything to do with Simon using this said same mutagen to transform Rex Mason -- his daughter's (Sapphire Stagg) boyfriend -- into some freakish science-experiment, because he witnessed this accident?

Yeah. I am afraid it does. Plus to add additional salt into Rex's collective wounds, he is then tricked into believing that his old pal -- Green Lantern (John Stewart) -- is the man responsible for these ghastly turn of events.

Don't fret though. Thankfully the Justice League is by John's side when Rex attacks him, and just about fends him off by the skin of their unified teeth. Also, Sapphire manages to slap Rex back to his senses too; just in the nick of time for a one on one with the big bad b*stard himself, Simon, whose been recording what's been happening for his own profit.  

Still, that's most probably why what next transpires all kicks off when Rex freezes to the spot! As garbage in, garbage out - people have a need to scream and shout - monsters put the League in a fix - and at the end of the day it all ends up in a right elemental mix.

I've always liked Metamorpho you know. He's just one of those lumbering heroes whose always there come what may. The League. The Outsiders. His own solo exploits. Whatever. As a character in his own right, he's right up there as a great second-stringer who deserves a lot more respect than he's been given.

Now if memory serves me correctly, I was first introduced to 'The Elemental Man' during his eighties stint on 'Batman and the Outsider'. And even then, for some unknown reason, he clicked with me nigh on straight a way. Maybe this had something to do with his own perception of himself. Or maybe its how his adventurous origins stuck a chord with me. Nonetheless, from then on in I became a big fan of Rex; and always enjoyed a comic that much more with his inclusion.

Justice League - Metamorphosis

Here, check out these Metamorphic-facts for a bit of back-story on this very colorful hero: (1) Metamorpho's first appearance was in the team-up comic, 'The Brave and The Bold', issue 57, January, 1965. (2) His creator, Bob Hanley, created Rex because the then DC group editor, George Kashdan, wanted Bob to capitalize on his previous comic book creations -- the 'Metal Men' and the 'Doom Patrol'. (3) The artist who first illustrated Metamorpho, Ramona Fradon, also helped create Aqualad too. (4) In the last sixties Rex had a solo series which lasted for seventeen issues. During this period, he also made an appearance in 'Justice League of America', and was the second hero to turn down membership into this team. (5) Metamorpho was a founding member of 'The Outsiders', along with Geo-Force, Katana, Black Lighting, Halo, and, of course, Batman. (6) Not so long after 'The Outsiders' disbanded, Rex became a member of 'Justice League Europe' -- later re-titled, 'Justice League International'. (7) Rex was transformed into Metamorpho because he came into contact with the Egyptian 'Orb of Ra'. According to historians, 'Ra' was the God of the sun; and by the fifth Dynasty became a major deity of the Egyptian religion. (8) I kid you not; Metamorpho has died and been reborn many-many times throughout his career -- implying that he might be immortal. (9) It is a little known fact that Rex is actually one of many 'metamorphae', whom was created by Ra to fight against the serpent God, Apep. (10) For a short while Metamorpho had a crime fighting partner called 'Element Girl' -- also known as adventurer, Urania 'Rainie' Blackwell. (11) In the 1990's he married Sapphire Stagg, and had a baby with her called Joseph. And (12) In the mid 'noughties' Rex split into two, and his doppelganger joined 'The Outsiders' under the name of 'Shift'.

Metamorpho Batman and The Outsiders Justice League Europe

Hey! Did you take note of points 7 and 9 in my trivia splurge? Well, to me, this was one of the only faults with this cartoon, 'Justice League - Metamorphosis'. Personally speaking of course, I would have rather preferred Rex's original origin in this tale; and not just a 'generic Simon Stagg ploy', of dumping on 'The Element Man', again, and again, and again.

Please note: don't take this statement the wrong way, dear reader. I did enjoy this cartoon. As it had some really nifty little inclusions that made it stand out from the crowd. Like the Rex / League battle for example -- I found that very dynamic and bold indeed. Plus let's not forget all of the 'splatter-effects' either -- that was just a right blast -- literally. Also, I did get a kick out of Rex and John being old 'Army buddies', plus Sapphires flirtatious nature as well -- this additional layer of humanity did enhance the overall narrative in both plot and scope, giving it an almost warming quality I really love to see.

Simon Stagg in Justice League - Metamorphosis

All in All 'Justice League - Metamorphosis' is up there as one of my all time favorite cartoons associated with this show. It was fun. It was adventurous. It had personality. And by in large it was too quick for my liking. Agreed, jazzy YouTube video clip?

I take that as a 'Yes'.