During the so-called Silver Age of comics, one of the teams that would transcend to this day was formed. We refer to Justice League, DC’s star team. This group of superheroes was a reinvention of the so-called Justice Society of America, which was born in the Golden Age of comics.
The team was originally made up of Superman (Clark Kent), Batman (Bruce Wayne), Wonder woman (Diana Prince), Flash (Barry Allen), Green Lantern (Hal Jordan), Aquaman (Arthur Curry) and Martian Detective (J’onn J’onzz). Which first appeared together as the Justice League of America (JLA) in The Brave and the Bold # 28 (March 1960).
The members of this famous league have changed over time, however, the best characters were not always part of it. Let’s go over some of these, especially the ones that appeared in the animated series aired during 1973-1986. The Justice League series was produced by Hanna-Barbera and called in Spanish Super Amigos.
Wendy, Marvin and Wonder Dog
The main characters of the Justice League in Super Friends were: Superman, Batman and Robin, Wonder Woman and Aquaman. By then, in 1973 when the animated series was released, Superman, Batman and Aquaman had already had their own television series produced by Filmation.
In addition to the well-known superheroes, there were three other characters in Super Friends, perhaps the most infamous in the entire history of the Justice League: Wendy, Marvin White and Wonder Dog. These three had no power, except, of course, that Wonder Dog had the ability to reason and speak. It’s no wonder a couple of teenagers and a smart little dog were part of the Justice League. And it is that another success of the Hanna-Barbera production company was Sooby-Doo, which handled this kind of characters and humor.
The White brothers and Wonder Dog, as they were known in English, were like a class of assistants within the Justice League., as well as characters catalysts from the adventures of superheroes. Let’s remember that in those days the series and many titles of pop culture had an educational and moralizing cut. In fact, the structure of the episodes consisted of a capsule of advice and recommendations for the little ones.
The bad luck for these brothers and this ungraceful Wonder Dog was that after its first season the show was canceled with no renewal plans. When the animated series returned to the screen, it did so without these characters, who disappeared like tears in the rain. They were not mentioned again and they were replaced by other siblings and a pet.
‘Super Friends’, the Justice League and the Fantastic Twins
In 1977, the Justice League returned to television. In this new stage the episodes were divided into four shorts. The first segment was dedicated to an adventure with two superheroes; the second segment was starring the Fantastic Twins, two extraterrestrial brothers with superpowers who first appeared in comics that saw the light of the same year.
Among these segments of the League of Justice or Super Friends other characters appeared giving safety lessons, first aid, magic tricks and riddles.
The Fantastic Twins are Jayna and Zan, who were also accompanied by a peculiar space monkey called Gleek. Unlike Wendy and Marvin, these characters did have powers. They were activated by touching their hands while saying: “Powers of the Fantastic Twins, activate!”, After which Zan turned into water (in any form) and Jayna into an animal. For his part, Gleek had a prehensile elastic tail and collaborated with the twins as a conduit when they activated their powers.
More Justice League
By 1979, the Justice League would carry the title: The world’s greatest Super Friends. At that stage the main superhero team continued to include the Fantastic Twins. The series would run until 1986, and focused on showing villains and other characters from the comics of DC.
In addition to the classic DC superheroes, in this series we could see many other characters that to a lesser and greater extent have gained relevance in the DC universe. Such as Green Arrow, Cyborg, and Captain Marvel. As well as Lex Luthor, Joker, The Scarecrow and Captain Cold. Thus, despite the quality of the series and its moral stage, this animated series of the Justice League is still a curiosity. Fortunately, DC has expanded its universe with many other series, such as those that will premiere in 2021.
The article The worst characters of the animated series of the ‘Justice League’ was published in Hypertext.