Solicitation Mark Antaeus is as powerful as Superman, as selfless as Batman, as righteous as Aquaman, and more compassionate, perhaps, than any of them. His vision is, like the JLA’s, a world with justice for all, and he’s willing to fight for that goal. But is there such a thing as too much justice?
In the city of Tripoli, hijackers have kidnapped a school bus full of children. Luckily, Mark Antaeus
is on the scene. Mark takes out the bad guys, thanks to his superhuman strength and near-invulnerability. He is again thanked by a welcoming city, and returns home to his mother’s praise. His father, however, remains reticent.
Mark has done much for the city of Tripoli, but even with his powers he must eventually falter. While trying to rescue people from a burning building, Mark fails, and the building crumbles, leaving four dead and Mark seriously burned. Wishing a power boost, Mark goes to S.T.A.R. Labs
, and the All-American is replaced by an armored cyborg. His parents and girlfriend Lori try to understand what he has become, but it is tough on them.
Meanwhile, as the armored Antaeus, Mark continues to save lives. He garners the attention of the Justice League
, who offers him a position on the reserves. Mark is overwhelmed, having a hero complex towards his idol, Superman
. Over the next few weeks, Antaeus tries to fit in with the Justice League, with only Green Lantern Kyle Rayner
remaining skeptical of his abilities.
As Antaeus becomes more involved with League business, he sees more and more of what evil is in the world. Delving into his work life causes Lori to leave him, and prompts his father to ask him to return to what he once was. Antaeus leaves his family, setting himself up permanently in the Justice League Watchtower
While Antaeus performs admirably as a member of the League, his thoughts turn to what else they could be doing besides defeating villains. He witnesses the horrors committed in the Middle East, especially in the nation of Kirai, where President Mehtan has been killing the Vudish rebels. Superman and the League inform Antaeus that the JLA does not interfere with politics. Angered, Antaeus smashes the League’s meeting table and leaves.
Superman hopes that Antaeus will calm down, but he does not. Antaeus takes matters into his own hands, and kills President Mehtan and his officials. The League tries to take Antaeus in, but Antaeus refuses. A fight breaks out, and Antaeus takes down Green Lantern and Martian Manhunter
before Antaeus flees.
Antaeus finds out that the death of Mehtan sparks a civil war in Kirai, with 10,000 dead. Despondent, Antaeus rips out his armor’s cooling system, then flies from Earth to the moon, where he overheads and explodes. The League finds the remains of Antaeus’ helmet on the surface of the moon, and they mourn a good man who went too far. Superman keeps his helmet as a reminder.