"Element of Surprise": Somewhere, a little kid innocently wishes that his dad should come back.

Quote1.png It's Metamorpho and he's come for his family! Quote2.png
Martian Manhunter

JLA #52 is an issue of the series JLA (Volume 1) with a cover date of May, 2001.

Synopsis for "Element of Surprise"

Somewhere, a little kid innocently wishes that his dad should come back.

Meanwhile, most of the Justice League members are still mysteriously separated from their own alter egos. The heroes now devote themselves completely to fighting evil, without having to worry about secret identities. Superman is working hardly on expanding the Watchtower on the Moon. Unfortunately, most of the heroes still seem to be having a hard time functioning without their dual lives. Superman shows off his heritage by wearing a regal Kryptonian outfit, while Clark Kent is developing a strong fear of heights. Bruce Wayne's various psychoses, normally controlled by his Batman persona, are starting to run wild. Eel O'Brian gets close to returning to a life of crime. Flash has redesigned his costume to purge it of the influence of his once-beloved Uncle Barry. Martian Manhunter is adopting a more alien appearance, while the recovering John Jones does not want to rejoin with his super-heroic self. Green Lantern has created a heavily-armored costume, and Kyle Rayner is locked in his apartment, obsessively drawing pictures of the JLA on his walls and any other surface he finds. Aquaman and Wonder Woman, who did not solit their personalities, are well aware of their comrades' strange behavior.

The JLA is needed when a mysterious force is blasting through Los Angeles. It makes its way to the little boy who'd wished for his father who turns out to be Metamorpho. He's back from the grave, but he's not exactly alive again, and his rampage threatens to destroy his surviving family. Suddenly, a pair of lizard-like aliens appears and reverses the kid's wish, sending Metamorpho back into the Great Unknown.

Back inside the Watchtower, the aliens introduce themselves as the Cathexis hailing from the Sixth Dimension. They created a sentient energy wave called "ID" that warps reality to fulfill the desires of others. When Superman asks how they can contact ID, the Cathexis reveal that ID also has been responsible for them splitting apart.

Appearing in "Element of Surprise"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:


  • Cathexis (First appearance)
  • Id (Behind the scenes)

Other Characters:




See Also

Recommended Reading

Links and References

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