Justice League: Hearts and Minds If you had one of the most powerful weapons in the known universe in the palm of your hand; what would you do with it? Use it for good? Use it for bad? Use it to shave with every second Sunday of the month? Or use it like some of the chaps seen in this 45 minute cartoon made in 2004? Go ahead. Make a choice. You'll never know, one day it may come true.

Justice League: Hearts and Minds

Excuse me. But do you know where the Green Lantern Corp member, Katma Tui, is please? Her compatriot, Kilowog, would like to know where she is. Especially since they both got separated when Despero's guards -- also known as the Legion of the Third Eye -- kicked their collective asses on the ravaged planet known as Ranstad-7.

Huh? What's that you say? You don't know who Despero is? Well, he's from Kalanor. He's purple. He's big. He has an extra eye stamped in the middle of his forehead. And he has enslaved a whole nation with the destructive force of the Flame of Py'tar.

Don't fret though, dear reader. Katma's one time pupil -- Green Lantern John Stewart -- does manage to catch up to her not so long after Kilowog travels to Earth and asks for his help. Furthermore, John also meets up with an underground resistance that's in opposition to Despero's tyranny too.

Yeah. It was just before he gets briefly captured by some of one-eye's guards' amidst his search. And quite some time after he loses his nerve and his colleagues in the Justice League eventually catch up to him.

Still, that's most probably why what next transpires kicks off when the Flame of Py'tar goes nova, thus prompting the resistance and the League to step up their game. As Lanterns train hard - a betrayer plays his card - Justice is ready for a fight - and at the end of the day everybody in the world sees a bright new light.

Oh! Isn't that nice!

Now normally I just love watching these episodes of the 'Justice League'. They're full of character. They tell a story. Plus they throw little nods and winks to comic book continuity here and there. However, in the case of this particular story -- 'Hearts and Minds' -- I seem to have enjoyed it, except for one single fact... the story is a bit laboured in content.

Despero in Justice League: Hearts and Minds

Here, let me explain to you what I mean by this by playing the advantage / disadvantage game.

(1) The interaction between the Flash and Kilowog was just priceless in this tale. In many ways their dynamics brought back many memories for me from the Giffen / Dematteis era of the League. (2) Wasn't it nice to see the Martian Manhunter save everyone at the end of this adventure for a change? Usually he's treated as Mister 'Allergic to Flames' that always seems to patch people up, or sound off their troubles to. (3) The sexual tension between John, Hawkgirl, and Katma Tui, was just electrifying to watch. I particularly got a kick out of that scene where the girl's flirted / bullied John one after another. Boy! That really made my loin's stir! (4) Yes. There was a Kyle Rayner reference in this yarn. Kat threatened John that he might replace him if he didn't buck up his ideas.

Green Lantern Comic Book  1st John Stewart in Green Lantern1st Green Lantern Corps

(1) My main grumble with this cartoon was how the overall narrative was constructed. To me, it flimflammed between the Despero and the Katma sub-plots so much, that the validity of the overall threat appeared diluted in retrospect. Not having any sort of 'impending doom' hanging over it. (2) Another thing that felt very disposable within the confines of this tale; was how John lost 'his will' for no apparent reason whatsoever. Again, this segment of the story never seemed to hold any sort of substance to me. Feeling like a 'Come on -- just get on with it', piece of plot. (3) As much as I like Despero as a villain, and as much as I liked some of his conceptual origin inserted into this show, at the same time he just came across like a very plain 'villain of a month'. Very one dimensional. (4) There wasn't enough of the Justice League in this adventure. Simple as that.  

Sexy Katma Tui in Justice League: Hearts and Minds Cartoon
Hey! While I am in a bullet-point type of a mood, why don't I present to you some bullet-point GLC facts, OK? (1) The Green Lantern Corps were created by writer, John Broome, and artist, Gil Kane, in Showcase #22, September, 1959. (2) It is believed that the self appointed leaders of the Corps, the Guardians of the Universe, were a part of the first intelligent life forms that populated our Galaxy -- from the planet Maltus. They were also created by Broome and Kane, and made their first appearance in Green Lantern #2, 1960. (3) The Guardian's were initially led to devise a 'Universal Police Force', because one of their 'Maltusian brothers' -- Krona -- accidentally unleashed the Anti-Matter universe into our own universe; inadvertently making it older than it really was. (4) When their previous robotic peacekeeping force -- known as the Manhunters -- suddenly turned rogue, the Guardians formulated the Corps to be their more sentient replacements. (5) It has been revealed that the Guardian have two hereditary off-shoots. The first are called the Zamarons: Who've created the Star Sapphires. And the second are called the Controllers: Who've created the Darkstars. (6) There have been many-many different Earth Green Lanterns in out time. Such as: Alan Scott, Hal Jordan, Guy Gardner, John Stewart, Kyle Rayer, Jade, and Simon Baz. (7) Including their present day DC-New incarnation, plus their prior DC-Old incarnation, there was also another Green Lantern Corps comic book series that ran from 1986 to 1988 -- lasting 24 issues -- taking over from the second series of Green Lantern. (8) Even though the Green Lantern Corps have patrolled the DC Universe for over three billion years now, during that time they've only spawned one movie, one cartoon, a number of Justice League inspired spin-off shows, plus a shed load of action figures too. 

John and Katma in Justice League: Hearts and Minds  Katma Tui in Justice League: Hearts and Minds

Overall 'Justice League - Hearts and Minds' was a bit of a lop-sided animated adventure in my eyes. Those bits they were good were really good. And those bits that were bad were really bad. Still, like I always say, you can't win them all, can you dear reader?