21: The Savage Time (S1 Ep 24-26), Directed by Butch Lukic and Dan Riba, Written by Stan Berkowitz
FUCK NAZIS! Anyway the League is returning home from a mission in space when a time wave hits them, thanks to GL they are unaffected as the world they new has become altered where the Nazi’s won the war. With the help of rebellion leader Bruce Wayne they go back in time to fight Vandal Savage and fix the world. The season finale of the first Justice League episode has big action and throws back to classic DC war comics and even a little Jack Kirby like style with the Nazi war machines. Dug the stuff between Diana and Steve Trevor, but also John Stewarts arc was great. A strong ending to the first season.
20: Paradise Lost (S1 Ep 8-9), Directed by Dan Riba, Written by Joseph Kuhr
Wonder Woman returns home to find Themyscira has been attacked by Felix Faust. The only way to save her mother and sisters is to find certain artifacts and deliver it to him. With the help of the League WW does battle with Faust and the guy behind his plans. I was not a WW fan way back when this series started airing so this series was my biggest introduction to this character. I enjoyed the mythology in this arc, the action scenes, and Flash is really amusing through out.
19: Grudge Match (JLU S3 Ep 9), Directed by Joaquim dos Santos, Written by Matt Wayne with Teleplay by J. M. DeMatteis
JLU season 3 is… Lackluster. After the dynamite season 1 and 2 of JLU and especially Justice League season 2. That sad there was some fun episodes including this one. Roullette restarts Meta-Brawl with a focus on female superheroes. The episode focuses on Huntress and Black Canary but we got Vixen, Hawkgirl and Wonder Woman in probably her most badass warrior mode.
18: Patriot Act (JLU S3 Ep 7), Directed by Joaquim dos Santos, Written by Matt Wayne
Its the Seven Soldiers of Victory! Sorta… When Superman can’t make a parade in Metropolis Green Arrow and others fill in. Just in time to take on General Eiling who uses a super-soldier serum to become a metahuman. he wants to beat Superman in his hometown, feeling that Superman is a real threat. I dug GA in the series but I really like the cast here. Vigilante is perfectly voiced by Natahn Fillion. I dug him and Shining Knights back and forth. Plus Stargirl! A fun episode with lots of great moments.
17: Clash (JLU S2 Ep 7), Directed by Dan Riba, Written by Dwayne McDuffie and J. M. DeMatteis
The world needs more SHAZAM! Captain Marvel and Superman duke it out because a combination of Marvels child like optimism, Superman’s attitude toward Luthor, and Luthor being the smartest man in the room. I don’t have much to say about this episode other than I wish there was a Captain Marvel cartoon.
16: Injustice for All (S1 Ep 18-19), Directed by Butch Lukic, Written by Stan Berkowitz
Luthor is angry. The only thing that will make him happy is destroying the Justice League. He puts together a team of villains with the goal of that one purpose. The use of Joker in this arc was great, especially his annoyance in how Luther didn’t want to kill Batman yet. Batman, most clever man in the room.
15: The Once and Future Thing, Part One: Weird Western Tales / The Once and Future Thing, Part Two: Time, Warped (JLU S1 Ep 12-13), Directed by Dan Riba (part 1) and Joaquim dos Santos (part 2), Written by Dwayne McDuffie
John Stewart hates time travel. Seems he does it every other season. This time him, Batman and WW find themselves on chasing a time traveling theif who is messing up the timeline. Along the way they meet some of DC’s famous Western characters like Jonah Hex and Bat Lash. They also zip to the future to team with Batman Beyond, older Bruce and more. Lots of laughs, good action, a Hal Jordan cameo, and a reminder of how great the two episode format was that got dropped for JLU.
14: Flash and Substance (JLU S3 Ep5), Directed by Joaquim dos Santos, Written by Matt Wayne
Its the opening of the Flash Museum. Batman and Orion come to attend and help Flash take on his rogues. This is episode makes up for the lack of Flash that was present in much of JLU. My favorite scene is in the bar where Flash has a talk with the Trickster, voiced by Mark Hamill who has played the character in both the 90s TV series and the current TV series. Also props to Ron Perlman as the vocie of Orion, his delivery is on point through out. Plus Mirror Master uses a disco ball in a roller rink as par of his scheme to rid the city of Flash. That’s just awesome.
13: Question Authority/Flashpoint/Panic in the Sky/Divided We Fall (JLU S2 Ep 9-12), Directed by Dan Riba (Ep 9, 11) and Joaquim dos Santos (Ep 10, 12), Written by Dwayne McDuffie
These four episodes are basically one long arc. Starts with Questions discovery of Lex Luthors plans and ends with the big showdown. This is what the series was building to. Lex’s manipulation of Cadmus, who were doing worst case scenario in case the Justice League attacked. We got big action on the Watchtower, big action in Cadmus, big action on the street plus cool scenes with the Question and CCH Pounder killing it as the voice of Amanda Waller.
12: The Enemy Below (S1 Ep 6-7), Directed by Dan Riba, Written by Kevin Hopps
Someone tries to have Aquaman killed. Doesn’t work. People will pay. Especially for putting his newborn son at risk. This is the barbarian king Aquaman. Tough son of a bitch. Season 1 started a little rocky, the first couple arcs were just okay but for me this is where I started to get good. It had good action, great interactions, plus Aquaman cuts his own hand off and plans revenge.
11: A Better World (S2 ep 11-12), Directed by Dan Riba, Written by Stan Berkowitz
The Justice Lords episode. Another version of the League from another Earth decide to pop over and fix the Justice Leagues world. How did the Lords go form being superheroes to ruling the planet? This two parter is important for setting into motion elements that happened in Justice League Unlimited. The fight between the two teams will be some peoples highlights mines includes Flash’s clever escape from Justice Lord Batmans cell as well as his interactions with Justice League Batman.
10: Double Date (JLU S2 Ep 6), Directed by Joaquim dos Santos, Written by Gail Simone
Huntress offers to give Question a tip on Cadmus for his help tracking down a mob boss. This brings them into conflict with Green Arrow and Black Canary who are assigned to guard said Mob Boss before he can go to trial. Its time to focus on a classic Justice League couple and a new couple. There really should’ve been more Question throughout the entire series.
9: The Ties That Bind/Miracles Happen (JLU S2 Ep 2), Directed by Dan Riba, Written by Jim Steranko with Teleplay by J. M. DeMatteis
I love Mister Miracle and Big Barda. Love them. They are the best. In my top ten Jack Kirby creations. They are in this episode which was co-written by comics legend Jim Steranko who Mister Miracle was partly based on. Steranko was an escape artist and Mister Miracle is the super escape artist. I’m not saying anything in this episode just professing my love.
8: Fearful Symmetry (JLU S1 Ep 6), Directed by Dan Riba, Written by Robert Goodman
One of the most fascinating things about JLU was the friendship between GA and Supergirl. I don’t know much about their friendship in the actual comics but I dug the pair in JLU. Add Question and a big mystery, things were popping. A good mix of intrigue, humor, drama and big action. I really dug the Question, and know people who suddenly became fans because of this episode. Such a stand out.
7: Only a Dream (S2 Ep 5-6), Directed by Butch Lukic, Written by Stan Berkowitz
As an individual fascinated with dreams and being a big fan of Nightmare on Elm Street, this arc spoke to me. A convict who had been volunteering for testing in prison goes overboard with an ESP machine to gain powers. First he goes after his ex, then the Justice League. I loved the sequences inside the Flash’s head where he fears he’s become to fast and that the world around him is stopped. I love Batmans efforts to stay awake. Season 2 of the Justice League really fired on all cylinders.
6: Maid of Honor (S2 ep 7-8), Directed by Dan Riba, Written by Dwayne McDuffie
Seriously, they should’ve just hooked up Diana with the Princess. I like seeing Wonder Woman determined to beat up up some assholes.
5: For the Man Who Has Everything (JLU S1 Ep 2), Directed by Dan Riba, Written by J. M. DeMatteis and Based on Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons comic
Adaptation of the famed comic book. I actually seen this episode before I ever read the comic book and its a very good adaptation. This is big action and big drama as Mongol uses a plant to imprison Superman in a perfect dream. Batman tries to pull him out of it while WW takes on Mongol. This is one of the definitive Superman stories turned into a definitive Superman episodes.
4: Hereafter (S2 ep 19-20), Directed by Butch Lukic, Written by Dwayne McDuffie
Another Superman centric story finds a group of Superman Rogues trying to kill him. Seems Toyman has done the deal and the Justice League is in mourning. In reality Superman gets blasted into a future where man is dead, and has to work on with Vandal Savage. I like the drama in the first part, but dug the adventure of Superman in the second. There are some great sequences and some great scenes with Lobo.
3: Twilight (S2 ep 1-2), Directed by Dan Riba and Butch Lukic, Written by Rich Fogel and Bruce Timm
We’re in the top 5 and I’ve already written two entries about Superman. Well here’s a third one. Twilight is when Superman got cool. First season Superman is a shoulder shrug. This season kicked off with moody Superman and throwdown hard Superman. The League take on Brainiac and Darkseid, which sows the seeds for future episodes in JLU. I love when Supermand and Darkseid face down inside Brainiacs craft. Just the edge Superman had. This is visiually a step up from season 1 too. Brilliant visuals. Twilight set the mood for my favorite season.
2: Kids’ Stuff (JLU S1 Ep 3), Directed by Joaquim dos Santos, Written by Henry Gilroy (Based loosely on elements of the DC Comics events JLA: World Without Grown Ups and Young Justice: Sins of Youth.)
Superman, Green Lantern, Batman and Wonder Woman get turned into kids to stop Mordred. Laughs abound at the young incarnations of the heroes. I love this episode and by favorite of the entire JLU series. Baby Etrigan, John Stewart trying to decide what to make with his Green Lantern ring, Diana flirting with Batman, so much gold material. Even Copperheads brief scene is gold.
1: Wild Cards (S2 ep 21-22), Directed by Butch Lukic, Written by Stan Berkowitz and Dwayne McDuffie
Right before the Season 2 finale 3-parter came this great arc. Joker plants bombs through Las Vegas but its a cover for his real scheme. Narrated by Joker, of course voiced by Mark Hamill, this arc brings a lot of goodies. The Royal Flush gang voiced by Teen Titans voice actors, Harley Quinn mentioning couples counseling with Joker (Im not a fan of these two as a couple but I thought that line was funny), the kiss between Hawkgirl and John, Batman being a badass, and the actual endgame scheme. This is just one of my favorite Justice League stories of all time.