DC Database

"The Nail": Jonathan and Martha Kent are delayed from traveling to Smallville due to a flat tire to their pickup truck caused by a nail. The couple decide to postpone their trip. As they return inside their home, a object streaks across the sky.

Justice League: The Nail #1 is an issue of the series Justice League: The Nail (Volume 1) with a cover date of August, 1998. It was published on June 17, 1998.

Synopsis for "The Nail"

Jonathan and Martha Kent are delayed from traveling to Smallville due to a flat tire to their pickup truck caused by a nail. The couple decide to postpone their trip. As they return inside their home, a object streaks across the sky.

Twenty-four years later, a great degree of xenophobia for the "metahumans," fueled by anti-metahuman propaganda from Perry White, backed by Metropolis mayor Lex Luthor, who gained points for his actions in establishing a high-tech police force for Metropolis in its absence of a superpowered protector, and the bitter rantings of former hero Oliver Queen, now a paraplegic after sustaining injuries in a battle with Amazo (which also resulted in the death of Hawkman). Queen claims that the JLA and all metahumans are aliens secretly conspiring against humanity, an attitude that is far from helped given that Flash, Wonder Woman and Atom are the only League members who can be 'confirmed' to be human, particularly with Green Lantern's allegiance to an interstellar power and the mystery of Batman's true nature.

The League equally perturbed of Oliver's slant and the general metahuman xenophobia. However, the growing fear also cause some sense of division within the JLA. Green Lantern finds a solution to the negative media coverage by gaining the aid of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Lois Lane, who will agree in representing them. Batman, on the other hand, doesn't agree in cooperating with how the news treats him and other metahumans and focus on his war on crime. The JLA then postulate on a possible conspiracy behind the anti-metahuman movement, although there isn't any evidence to prove the existence of an orchestrated hate campaign. Batman is then called by Robin, informing him that the Joker has taken over Arkham Asylum. As Batman left for Gotham, his departure effectively ends the JLA's discussion.

Meanwhile, the Outsiders, led by Black Canary - who have since resigned from the JLA following the Amazo incident - are trying to find a missing Metamorpho. Their leads track them to the Arctic Circle where Metamorpho and his wife Sapphire were assisting Simon Stagg with polar research.

In Midway City, The Chief shared his concerns on the anti-metahuman movement to the Doom Patrol as he relates to their foes, the Brotherhood of Evil, have been apparently eliminated in ties to the movement. Suddenly, the human members of the Doom Patrol are knocked out by gas from a gas-based metahuman, and the rest are then promptly subdued and captured by unknown men in power armor.

At Arkham, a super-powered Joker liberates the inmates by using acquired alien gauntlets that generate energy blasts. The Asylum is covered in an impenetrable force-field that the police cannot enter; however, only Batman, Batgirl, and Robin are allowed in. Batman orders Batgirl and Robin to stay outside as he enters Arkham alone.

In Coast City, Green Lantern flies into space due to an urgent call, but is slammed into a similar force-field as the one in Arkham that have surrounded Earth. He is met by Star Sapphire, who is responsible for the urgent call, and informs that she discovered the force-field and that neither her or Green Lantern's powers can't penetrate the shield and only feeding it. Green Lantern tries to analyze the force-field and shockingly finds the asphyxiated corpse of Adam Strange, whose Zeta-Beam got caught in the interference of the force-field and caused him to materialize inside it. Green Lantern examines the corpse and finds the decay level of Adam Strange's corpse indicates he as been there for over three months, in which Green Lantern had been to Oa and back twice in that time. Meaning that either he was allowed to pass through previously or the field is growing stronger. Out of his depth, Green Lantern creates a temporarily image of his symbol in an attempt to contact the Green Lantern Corps.

On Apokolips, Darkseid and his cohorts examine a destruction to their munition factory after a team of Parademons were traveling to Earth via Boom Tube had caused an explosion which focused back to the factory due to the force-field surrounding Earth. The Apokolipians strongly suspects that the forces of New Genesis are behind this. They interrogate a captured Mr. Miracle and Big Barda, who had been trying to rescue their friends from Granny Goodness' Orphanage. The prisoners tells Darkseid that New Genesis is not behind the Boom Tube accident given Earth was declared neutral territory in the peace treaty between New Genesis and Apokolips. Their assertions are reinforced by Metron, who arrives as an emissary. However, Darkseid attacks Metron and firmly believes that New Genesis is scheming for an invasion of his planet, and declares war on New Genesis.

Back at Arkham, the Joker has been forcing the inmates into a gladiatorial process for his entertainment. Batman fights the Joker, but he is caught and held captive in the Joker's gauntlets. Joker explains to Batman he was able to acquire the gauntlets from powerful allies. Against Batman's orders, Robin and Batgirl enters Arkham and tries to save Batman, but are also easily captured. Joker then tortures and kills Robin and Batgirl, forcing a horrified Batman to watch as he tears them apart. Unfortunately for the Joker, Catwoman sets Batman free by attacking Joker while he is occupied with his torture of the Dark Knight, breaking his concentration. In a fit of grief-induced madness, Batman damages the Joker's gauntlets before he proceeds to kill his enemy on live television by snapping his neck on the roof of Arkham.

Appearing in "The Nail"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:


Other Characters:

  • Adam Strange (Appears only as a corpse)
  • Hawkman (Flashback only) (Dies)
  • Jonathan Kent
  • Martha Kent
  • Ragman
  • All-Star Squadron (Flashback only)
    • Amazing Man (Flashback only)
    • Atom (Al Pratt) (Flashback only)
    • Blackhawk (Flashback only)
    • Commander Steel (Flashback only)
    • Doctor Mid-Nite (Flashback only)
    • Flash (Jay Garrick) (Flashback only)
    • Green Lantern (Alan Scott) (Flashback only)
    • Hourman (Flashback only)
    • Liberty Belle (Flashback only)
    • Phantom Lady (Flashback only)
    • Robot-Man (Robert Crane) (Flashback only)
    • Sandman (Flashback only)
    • Starman (Flashback only)
    • Star-Spangled Kid (Flashback only)



See Also

Links and References

Elseworlds logo.jpg
DC Rebirth Logo.png

This comic issue, event, or limited series takes place in its own separate continuity as an Elseworlds story; although it may exist within a larger Elseworlds continuity as part of its series. This includes both titles with the Elseworlds Logo, and titles retroactively declared as Elseworlds Stories.
This template will categorize articles that include it into the Elseworlds category.


Elseworlds Batman Batman Chronicles #11Batman Chronicles #21The Batman of ArkhamBatman: BloodstormBatman: The Blue, the Grey, and the BatBatman: Book of the DeadBatman: Brotherhood of the BatBatman: Castle of the BatBatman: Crimson MistBatman: Dark AllegiancesBatman: Dark Knight DynastyBatman: Dark Knight of the Round TableBatman: Detective No. 27Batman: The Doom That Came to GothamBatman: The Golden Streets of GothamBatman: Gotham by GaslightBatman: Gotham NoirBatman: Haunted GothamBatman: Hollywood KnightBatman: Holy TerrorBatman: I, JokerBatman: In Darkest KnightBatman: League of BatmenBatman: ManbatBatman: MasqueBatman: Master of the FutureBatman: NevermoreBatman: Nine LivesBatman: The Order of BeastsBatman: Red RainBatman: Reign of TerrorBatman: Scar of the BatBatman: ThrillkillerBatman: Year 100Batman/Dark Joker: The WildBatman/Demon: A TragedyBatman/Houdini: Devil's WorkshopBatman/LoboCatwoman: Guardian of GothamRobin 3000
Superman Kamandi: At Earth's EndSon of SupermanSuperboy's LegionSupergirl: WingsSuperman, Inc.Superman: A Nation DividedSuperman: At Earth's EndSuperman: The Dark SideSuperman: Distant FiresSuperman: KalSuperman: The Last Family of KryptonSuperman: Last Son of EarthSuperman: Last Stand on KryptonSuperman: Red SonSuperman: Speeding BulletsSuperman: True BritSuperman: War of the WorldsSuperman/Tarzan: Sons of the JungleSuperman/Wonder Woman: Whom Gods Destroy
World's Finest Batman: Two FacesElseworlds 80-Page Giant #1Elseworld's FinestElseworld's Finest: Supergirl & BatgirlSuperman & Batman: Doom LinkSuperman & Batman: GenerationsSuperman and Batman: World's FunnestThe Superman Monster
Trinity Batman: NosferatuSuperman's MetropolisWonder Woman: The Blue Amazon
Green Lantern Green Lantern: 1001 Emerald NightsGreen Lantern: Evil's Might
JLA/JSA JLA: Act of GodJLA: Age of WonderJLA: Created EqualJLA: DestinyJLA: Island of Dr. MoreauJLA: Riddle of the BeastJLA: Secret Society of Super-HeroesJLA: Shogun of SteelJSA: The Liberty FilesJustice League: The NailJustice League: Another NailJustice RidersJSA: The Golden AgeKingdom ComeLeague of JusticePlanetary/JLA: Terra Occulta
Other ConjurorsFlashpointTitans: Scissors, Paper, StoneWonder Woman: Amazonia

Annuals Action Comics Annual #6Adventures of Superman Annual #6Batman Annual #18Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight Annual #4Batman: Shadow of the Bat Annual #2Catwoman Annual (Volume 2) #1Deathstroke the Terminator Annual #3Detective Comics Annual #7The Flash Annual (Volume 2) #7Green Lantern Annual (Volume 3) #3Justice League America Annual #8Justice League International Annual #5L.E.G.I.O.N. Annual #5Legionnaires Annual #1Legion of Super-Heroes Annual (Volume 4) #5Lobo Annual (Volume 2) #2New Titans Annual #10Robin Annual (Volume 2) #3Steel Annual (Volume 2) #1Superboy Annual (Volume 4) #1Superman Annual (Volume 2) #6Superman: The Man of Steel Annual #3Team Titans Annual #2

Related Alternate TimelinesAmalgam UniverseImaginary StoriesIntercompany CrossoversJust ImagineMultiversePossible FuturesRealworlds