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Now can you guess what the following bad guys all have in common? Abra Kadabra. Mad Hatter. Amos Fortune. Bane. The Monocle. Doctor Psycho. The Calculator. And Rainbow Raider. Why, yes; that is correct, dear reader! They have absolutely nothing to do with this 45 minute cartoon made in 2004. Congratulations. You win absolutely nothing.

Justice League - Secret Society

What do you get if you group together a bunch of known super villains, get them to trust each other, and then lead them to swipe a new member away from the dastardly arms dealer, Morgan Edge?

No! You don't get the 'Injustice League', silly. Instead, you get Gorilla Grodd and his new 'Secret Society'. Namely: Sinestro, Giganta, the Shade, Killer Frost, the Parasite, plus their newest recruit, Clayface.

Alright. I know what you're thinking to yourself, folks. You're thinking something like 'So what! I'm sure the Justice League can handle them', right? Especially when they manage to track this motley crew down to a disused warehouse, far out of town! But again, 'no'! I'm afraid not. Presently the League aren't really seeing eye to eye as a team. And after a bit of a skirmish -- before a bit of a practice -- they get their collective assess kicked into touch by 'The Society', resulting in them to part ways not so long thereafter.  

Ouch! Now doesn't all of that sound pretty bad to you? Huh? However, does it sound as bad as when the Flash then tries to do his best Batman impersonation? Or does it sound as bad as when each individual member of the Justice League gets kidnapped, one, by one, by one?

Well, whatever the case may be, that's most probably why what next transpires has a song and dance when Grodd reveals that he's been playing around with the heroes emotions. As fights are hard - a Gorilla quotes 'the Bard' - a Lantern comes out to play - and please don't worry my friends, everything turns out for the best at the end of the day.

Kind of.   

Now 'Justice League - Secret Society' is what I would call a really-really great cartoon. It told a smashing story about a bunch of villain fighting a bunch of heroes whilst they weren't in the best of spirits. Furthermore, it took this premise, and spiced it up with character, humour, pathos, and everything else I've always loved about this series.

Yeah. No kidding, folks. This is what I would call an animated adventure that hardly has any flaws in it what so ever. Granted, the pacing was slightly uneven in places. And the visuals were kind of dated compared today's high standard. But apart from these two miniscule gripes -- no -- everything was shipshape and Bristol fashion (i.e. F*cking amazing).


Here, before I praise this film any more, lets have some 'Secret Society' facts, shall we? (1) This episode first aired on the same day that the American government tested the world's largest non-nuclear bomb in Florida -- the 22nd of November, 2003. (2) Gerry Conway, who was the writer that originally came up with the concept behind the 'Secret Society', also created the Punisher for Marvel; and Firestorm for DC Comics. (3) Although they were initially called 'The Brotherhood of Crime', the first incarnation of the 'SS' was formed by a doppelganger of Darkseid, who cobbled together Clayface, Star Sapphire, Captain Cold, Gorilla Grodd, plus a clone of Manhunter, all with the intention of enslaving humanity. (4) In a classic JSA / JLA team-up, the Ultra-Humanite devised the next version of 'The Society', by amalgamating two sets of villains from two different earths. From 'Earth 1' there was: Signal Master, Killer Frost, The Floronic Man, and The Cheeter. Whereas from 'Earth 2' there was: Brainwave, Psycho-Pirate, Rag-Doll, The Monocle, and the Mist. (5) There was a whole issue of 'Crisis on Infinite Earths' dedicated to how all of the villain's in the DC Universe joined together, and then tried to use this intergalactic event to their advantage -- #9, December, 1985. (6) During the 'Infinite Crisis' cross-over event, Earth Prime's Alexander Luthor took a stab at forming his own version of this team, this time with the intention of siphoning off their energies to take over the multi-verse. (7) In late 2007, early 2008, there was a miniseries called 'Salvation Run', where the governmental organisation called 'Checkmate' transported every single member that ever joined the Secret Society -- plus many-many more that didn't -- to another dimension, so they could kill each other in the process. (8) 'The Secret Society of Super Villains' has plagued popular culture since their initial inception. Heck, they've been on 'Super Friends', many episodes of the 'Justice League', 'Justice League Unlimited', 'The Brave and The Bold', 'Young Justice', plus the straight to DVD movies 'Crisis on Two Earths' and 'Doom', and even the 'DC Universe Online' video game.


OK, so now that's out of my head, lets me just mention that one of the most enlightening aspects about 'Justice League - Secret Society', hasn't really got anything to do with the overall premise. Although that was very-very good. What I liked about it the most was how it defined 'the League' as a group.

You see, in my eyes they've never really been a 'family of heroes' like the 'Teen Titans' or the 'Doom Patrol'. Rather, they are a well oiled fighting unit who have banded together because they are stronger as a whole, and can do greater things as a team than individually. However, like this tale perfectly illustrated, whenever ego get in the way of things, sometimes the whole can be less than the sum of its parts.

Do you know what I mean, dear reader? The League are like a team of 'office workers' more than a couple of chaps down the local comic book shop, who share similar tastes in style, topics, or other personal matters.

Well, that's what I think anyway? Don't you agree, Superman?

Ha! Overall this was a smashing cartoon. It was fun. Full of action and character. Plus is a must see for any fan of a good old fashioned adventure. Class.


JUSTICE LEAGUE - SECRET SOCIETY JUSTICE LEAGUE - SECRET SOCIETY Reviewed by David Lee Andrews on July 04, 2013 Rating: 5
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