Sunday, December 30, 2007

Week of 26 December 2007

(SPOILER ALERT: This post contains spoilers. Don't read it before you've read the comics.)

COUNTDOWN #18 (12/26/07)
"Safe House"

No LSH content in this issue.


ACTION #860 (2/08)
"Lightning and Shadows (Superman and the LSH Part 3)"
ROLL CALL: Brainiac 5, Colossal Boy, Dawnstar, Lightning Lass, Night Girl, Polar Boy, Shadow Lass, Superman, Timber Wolf, Wildfire (Lightning Saga Legion)
Justice League of Earth: Earth-Man, Golden Boy, Radiation Roy, Spider-Girl, Storm Boy, Tusker

Superman and the Legionnaires rescue Polar Boy, and then head off to Colu to find Brainy.

This version of the Legion captures a lot of the spirit and character of the original LSH. Some details may be different (especially if Karate Kid and Una from Countdown are members), but overall it's like meeting up with old friends after many years. As a die-hard fan of the old Legion, I am really enjoying the journey.

I hope that DC will find some way to integrate this version of the Legion into the new DC Universe, because I'd love to read more of their adventures. But I can't imagine how they would be able to pull it off without eliminating the Teenage Revolution Legion. (Although nobody seems to have problems with the simultaneous existence of the animated Legion in LSH/31st Century.)

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: Nice to see the Shadow Lass/Night Girl team in action again. They were always such a natural pair, yet they seldom worked together.

The contrast between the Subs and the Justice League is made explicit by Polar Boy: both were groups of Legion rejects, but the Subs rose to the occasion, while the JL sank. (Although it seems that Golden Boy is not too happy; I suspect he will come over to our side before the end.)

No, that's not Kinetix on page 24: it's Ayla, apparently lit by the yellow of her lightning. It took me a moment, though.

Polar Boy loses an arm and acquires a prosthetic, echoing Lightning Lad's tragedy...and giving him the classic "cold fish" handshake.

Colossal Boy's wife, Yera, has died. ALthough with Durlans, I guess you can never be sure....


"Evil Adventus Part 1: Conflict"
ROLL CALL: Invisible Kid, Karate Kid, Light Lass, Lightning Lad, Phantom Girl, Princess Projectra, Saturn Girl, Star Boy, Timber Wolf, Triplicate Girl

Note: This issue was available with two different covers which fit together to make a big picture of a bunch of Legionnaires.
ROLL CALL (Left-side cover): Atom Girl, Brainiac 5, Colossal Boy, Element Lad(?), Invisible Kid, Light Lass,Star Boy, Sun Boy, Triplicate Girl 1&2, Timber Wolf
ROLL CALL (Right-side cover): Chameleon, Karate Kid, Lightning Lad, Phantom Girl, Princess Projectra, Saturn Girl, Shadow Lass, Triplicate Girl 3, Ultra Boy

This story, the first part of Jim Shooter's long-anticipated return to the Legion, picks up in continuity soon after the last issue. Lightning Lad struggles with the demands of Leadership, Projectra loses her station, and the team on Triton runs into some trouble.

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: Cosmic Boy (who is away in the future) is conspicuously absent from the cover. I guess he wasn't there when the picture was taken.

Triplicate Girl's multiple selves no longer wear different colors; they are now clothed identically. I suppose this is more consistent with the way her powers work, but it was a really cool effect.

A glow surrounds the Legion teams in space and on Triton -- a nice visual interpretation of the flight rings' environmental field.

Timber Wolf is back to a more-human appearance.

Seven "pre-approved candidates" are arriving at Legion HQ. Looks like it's Legion Tryouts time again....

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Sunday, December 23, 2007

Week of 19 December 2007

(SPOILER ALERT: This post contains spoilers. Don't read it before you've read the comics.)

COUNTDOWN #19 (12/19/07)
"Season's Beatings"

No Legion appearances in this issue.



Reprints LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES #1 - 6 (8/1984 - 1/1985)


"Bad Ideas"
ROLL CALL: Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, Sun Boy, Superman/Superboy, Triplicate Girl

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: Bouncing Boy's attraction to Triplicate Girl is obvious, but it's a little less clear how much the Trips reciprocate.

Brainiac 5 learns for sure that he is the descendant of the original Brainiac. He says, "There are deletions in my genetic memory, but I had suspicions. The artifact confirmed the Brainiacs' terrible family secret..." (I'm guessing that the "terrible secret" is not so much the existence of Brainiac, but the fact that he was "perhaps Superman's greatest foe.")

Sun Boy sings a number of sun-related songs. This may be the first incarnation of Sun Boy to spontaneously burst into song.


SUPERMAN #671 (2/08)
"A Fall of Moondust: Insect Queen Part 1"

This story is of peripheral interest to Legion readers. In the classic Legion, a teenaged Lana Lang became "Insect Queen" when she received a mysterious ring from an insect-like alien. As Insect Queen she became an honorary Legionnaire, and participated in several Legion adventures.

This time around, insect-like aliens are involved, and Lana Lang...except it's the adult Lana Lang, and the Insect Queen seems to be her clone. And there is no Legion connection (yet). We'll see as the story develops in subsequent issues.

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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Week of 12 December 2007

(SPOILER ALERT: This post contains spoilers. Don't read it before you've read the comics.)

COUNTDOWN #20 (12/12/07)
"Loneliest Number"
ROLL CALL: Karate Kid, Una (Lightning Saga Legion)

As the OMACs and Brother Eye attack, Val and Luornu struggle to open the mysterious box. You don't suppose there's a Miracle Machine inside, do you?

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: It becomes clear that Lurornu is still Triplicate Girl...her other two selves are in the future.

She also entertains the possibility (hypothetically) that she's had romantic feelings for Val for a long time...but also hints that her other two selves might not feel the same way. This raises interesting questions about Luornu and her past crush on Superboy, followed by her love for Chuck...could each Luornu have feelings for a different fellow Legionnaire? (Note that in the current continuity, Luornu has dated several of the boys simultaneously.)


GREEN LANTERN #25 (1/08)
"Birth of the Black Lantern"
ROLL CALL: Starman (cameo)

Starman (Thom Kallor), along with most of the rest of the JSA, appears in at least one big fight scene.

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Week of 5 December 2007

(SPOILER ALERT: This post contains spoilers. Don't read it before you've read the comics.)

COUNTDOWN #21 (12/5/07)
"Down and Out...and Beyond"
ROLL CALL: Karate Kid, Una (Lightning Saga Legion)

The virus that Karate Kid carries is identified as "morticoccus." Buddy Blank leads Val and Luornu to a chamber containing a mysterious box, which Val must open.

The cover has the date mistakenly printed as "Oct. 5, 2007."


"The Second Coming"
ROLL CALL: Starman

In discussing the possibility of opening a wormhole into a parallel Earth, Starman says that he would need "a map of the multiverse." He then turns to the reader and says, "Anyone have one?" Well, yes, kinds...the text page in last week's DC releases had a guide to the first 26 universes of the multiverse.

Except for "back of the book" features like lettercolumns and profiles of reader-submitted costumes, I can only recall one other time when a Legionnaire spoke directly to the reader. In one of the Devil's Dozen stories (ADVENTURE 350/351), Chameleon Boy changes into a spider, then turns to the reader and makes a jape at Spider-Man.

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Sunday, December 02, 2007

Week of 28 November 2007

(SPOILER ALERT: This post contains spoilers. Don't read it before you've read the comics.)

COUNTDOWN #22 (11/28/07)
"Miracle Mile"

Once again, no Legion content -- unless you count a few Dominator corpses on the first two pages.


"Hammer to Fall"

There's no actual Legion content here, but this issue features the Daxamite Green Lantern Sodam Yat. Flashbacks show his life on Daxam, where everyone wears big Mon-El-type gold buttons and matching belt buckles.

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: The Daxamites call their red sun "Valor" -- which, of course, was Mon-El's superhero name at one point.


"The Quest for Cosmic Boy: Epilogue"
ROLL CALL: Atom Girl (cameo)), Brainiac 5, Chameleon (cameo), Cosmic Boy (cameo), Dream Girl, Evolvo-Lad, Lightning Lad, Phantom Girl (cameo), Saturn Girl, Shadow Lass (cameo), Supergirl, Star Boy, Sun Boy (cameo), Timber Wolf (cameo), Ultra Boy (cameo), Wildfire (cameo)

Supergirl returns to the 21t century, Brainiac 5's nefarious scheme is revealed, and Lightning Lad takes over as Leader.

The art is still awful, but next month we'll have a new artist...and the return of Jim Shooter. Hooray!

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: The cover pictures Cosmic Boy, Dream Girl, and Ultra Boy in action. Cosmic Boy and Ultra Boy appear in this issue only in cameos, and Dream Girl exclusively inhabits Brainiac 5's dreams.

Before sending Supergirl back to the 21st century, Evolvo Lad wipes her memories of the Legion.


"The Fall"

There is no actual Legion content, but on page 4 the Legion is mentioned. The Phantom Stranger, talking to Superman, says, "All futures are merely possibilities, to one standing in the past. They branch out -- utopian futures, disasters, futures of all shapes and kind. You have seen some of these futures. Your time with the Legion of Super-Heroes, for one. What future will actually come? That depends on what choices we make."

How this philosophy fits in with the restored multiverse, and what it means for the Legion, we can only guess. Does each Earth have its own sheaf of possible futures? There are several versions of the Legion in existence at the moment -- do they come from the future of different Earths, or are they different possible futures from a particular Earth?

This week's "DC Nation" text page (appearing in various comics) identifies 26 of the 52 Earths. Some of them can be identified with alternate versions of the Legion...and others can be ruled out.

Earth-2, home of the original Justice Society -- possibly also home of the "Glorithverse" Legion of LSH #6 - 61, the one with Laurel Gand, Lightning Boy, Reflecto, and Valor.

Earth-3, the Crime Syndicate's world, would seem to be the home of the "Legion of Super-Traitors" from SUPERBOY #117 (12/64) -- except in SUPERBOY #117, Superboy was a member of the Legion. Was there a Superboy on Earth 3? Did he live in Smallvile (with only three Ls)? Maybe he was the teenage version of the Crime Syndicate's Ultraman?

If not, is Earth-3 perhaps home of the evil Legion of Mordru and Glorith from LEGIONNAIRES #18 (9/94)?

Earth-13 is listed as "World of dark and arcane heroes." Could this be the Mordruverse from LSH #5 (3/90)? Or the home of the evil Legion of Mordru and Glorith?

Earth-22, the Kingdom Come universe. A Legion was pictured in one panel of KINGDOM COME -- that Legion was consistent with the Legionnaires/SW6 Legion from LSH #24 - 61 and LEGIONNAIRES #1 - 18 (1992-94). This Legion included Catspaw, Computo, and Dragonmage. In original continuity, the SW6 Legionnaires were "chronal dopplegangers" created by the Time Trapper...but might the Time Trapper have lifted them from Earth-22 instead?

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