Justice League of America (1960) - #68
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Dennis 'Denny' O'Neil
Sidney "Sid" Greene
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Cover Date: December 1968
Cover Price: US $ 0.12
Issue Tagline: None.
Format: Color; Standard Comic Issue; 32 pages
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Scene opens on Primordial earth with Neverwas, a giant mutated single celled creature with dim intelligence wonders the earth. Sensing danger the creature takes to air where he feels an odd surge of power and awakens to find himself in modern times. Confused by his surroundings he begins careening through the city. Hawkman is passing overhead flies down to investigate.
Neverwas is attracted to a neon sign but is hurt by its touch, sending him into a rage. Hawkman uncertain of the creatures motives attempts to grab him, only succeeding in angering the creature further. They battle with the two of them crashing through a skylight, disrupting a flower show. Hawkman is knocked out and Neverwas escapes.
Hawkman decides to gather the Justice League to investigate further. Green Arrow argues that they can't be sure that the creature is hostile (Freedom Hater!) Green Lantern says that the bruises on Hawkman are proof enough (Fascist!) Superman & Batman agree with Lantern and leave to search. Batman says he will send word to Aquaman to keep an eye underwater (nice to fit Aquaman in there).
Neverwas comes upon a luxury hotel on the beach. Remembering its own journey to this time it taps into it's odd time travel powers. It accidentally sends the hotel through a time gate. Superman (using his telescopic vision) witnesses this and follows the hotel in. He is surprised to find that Earth in the past had a red sun...thus robbing him of his powers. So powerless Superman heads into the hotel to inform the occupants of their situation. (Vacation Buzzkill)
Neverwas retreats to the sea where it develops the idea that it wants this planet, where there are no giant predators. As it begins formulating a plan Aquaman discovers the creature. It instinctively lashes out. During the battle Neverwas discovers that like any single cell organism it can reproduce on its own. It creatures another body, knocks out Aquaman and buries him in a cave. Eventually Aquaman awakens, tells a squid to dig him out and has a bunch of porpoises spell out SOS, so that Green Lantern can see it.
Green Lantern alerts Batman & Green Arrow that he has a lead on the creature. The Batmobile (sweet) and the Arrow Car (not so Sweet) speed toward the scene. Neverwas 1 begins to create a time gate in the sky while Neverwas 2 begins to create a time gate beneath the ground. The are planning on sending all of North America into the past. Green Arrow attempts to stop them but is knocked out of commission.
Green Lantern, Batman, Hawkman, and Aquaman go underwater to confront one of the Neverwas. Green Lantern creating green energy bathyspheres to protect everyone but Aquaman. As they confront Neverwas, the creature panics and begins splitting over an over again. Greatly increasing in number. At the same time the time gate has weakened the fabric of time and visions of the past are appearing. With most of the team out of their element, the JLA begins to lose...
Meanwhile Superman has noticed a time gate opening. He jumps through to discover he is home and has his powers, and that the time gate is perched above North America! Superman finds the JLA and rallies them to victory. He has GL make a green energy fishbowl and tosses the Neverwas through the gate, he then grabs the hotel. One last thing...Superman creates a giant toy and throws it into the gate. He realized that the Neverwas is just a child and needed something to play with.
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