I get ticked when people lump the Silver Age and the Bronze Age together indiscriminately: you know, "the Pre-Crisis DCU". Sigh. While there are similarities and connections through continuity, there is a difference between those two ages, certainly where the JLA is concerned.
To help those who haven't steeped themselves in the idiocy of the Silver Age, I'm going to start a little seminar I call
TOP TEN CLUES YOU ARE IN A SILVER AGE JUSTICE LEAGUE STORY.
In this post we'll learn the first clue...!
1. You're fighting inanimate objects that aren't particularly inanimate. You are experiencing the Silver JLA phenomenon of: Notsoinanimation.In a normal story, you find yourself fighting crooks, or villians, sometimes a monster or an alien. If Winick's writing it, definitely a monster or an alien.
But in the Silver Age JLA, you're just as likely to be enmeshed in a life and death struggle against an hourglass, the Sphinx, or an enraged 1099 Tax Form.
Here, Batman and Green Arrow are being eaten by a giant pearl that escaped from a flying necklace. I bet after that little incident, Bruce's therapist got some big bucks in extra sessions. "You can get free, Mister Wayne -- but only if you free yourself from guilt."
Above, Green Lantern relives the horror of flunking 5th grade Reading (again) in his struggle against an incomprehensible jumble of letters. He rejects literacy with the help of his fellow anti-intellectual, Green Arrow. Ladies and gentlemen, Dumb and Dumber of the superhero set. Like Marvel readers, they mostly just look at the pictures.
Here's poor Batman again, who could combat 30 ninjas but is about to be knocked senseless by the numerals from a clockface. Kind of like when his therapist says, "I think the pearls may symbolize your-- Oh, I'm sorry, Mister Wayne -- your hour's up. Please leave the check on the mantle as you leave."
Oh, and here's Green Arrow, being thwarted by a living roulette wheel (his fortunes do come and go!), while sure-bet Superman stumbles into unconsciousness, having been overcome by poker chips. Yes, really.
I don't know kind of pipeline Julie Schwartz had back in the day, but his writers were getting some serious stash, and none of it stepped on, I'll wager. It also explains why books were never late back in day. No finals, no fix.
There are hundreds of other examples. I bet you've started to recall some already! So, always remember,
Silver Age JLA.