A fleet of alien ships arrive at the JLA Watchtower -- with a mission imperative to their survival -- in Part 1 of the 4-part "Rings of Saturn!" After suffering colossal injuries at the hands of Malefic and during the DAY OF JUDGMENT, J'onn has returned to Mars in an attempt to heal himself. But while he's away, Saturnian ships arrive to reclaim Jemm, Son of Saturn, who is still recovering from being used as a pawn. What the Saturnians find troubles them deeply, and only the Martian Manhunter may be able to stop an interplanetary war...if he returns to Earth in time!
J'onn restores his Martian form back to normal in his ghostly home on Mars with the aid of a Mother Box, and just in time too, as the Martian Manhunter is needed at the Watchtower. The Saturnians have great need of Jemm, but are met with a problem. To stand united on Saturn, the reds and the whites formed a treaty through the engagement of Prince Jemm and Princess Cha'rissa. But many purists from both sides are opposed to this union and the potential for an interracial society... and would use any excuse they can find to break the treaty. Jemm's poor condition at the hands of Malefic would be an example of this.
On an abandoned moon orbiting Saturn, a being known as "Cabal" discusses the presence of a "maker", and the conspiracy to kill both Jemm and Cha'rissa as a means of breaking the treaty with balanced results on either side.
Aboard the starship Va'Jacoth, enroute to Saturn, J'onn pledges as a maker to assist the red and white Saturnians in their struggles of peaceful coexistence, and melds his mind with Jemm. Within their minds, Jemm is able to ease his rage and embraces J'onn as a brother.
Princess Cha'rissa makes a pass at J'onn, but their flirtation is quickly interrupted by an attacking pirate starship. As the two use their inherent abilities to fight off the boarding parties, the captain of the pirate starship threatens to blow up the Va'Jacoth if the Royal Couple is not surrendered to them. J'onn makes a quick decision, informing Captain Kharr and Prime Minister Dall that he will pose as Jemm to ensure the safety of Princess Cha'rissa, and avoid the destruction of the Va'Jacoth.
Now aboard the pirate craft Kharma, the captain introduces himself as "Horatio Destiny", and J'onn recognizes him as the actor Richard Destine. With the "Royal Couple" now in their custody, Destiny orders his men to destroy the Va'Jacoth.