Saturday, December 26, 2009

Updated Post

I updated the post for the week of 23 December 2009 to include JSA #34. Thanks to brainypirate for pointing it out to me.


Friday, December 25, 2009

My Favorite Christmas Present

My hubby, Thomas, made me this acrylic ornament at his laser shop. (The penny is there for scale.)

I'm thinking of wearing it as a pendant when appropriate.


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Week of 23 December 2009

(SPOILER ALERT: This post contains spoilers. Don't read it before you've read the comics.)
[Post edited on 26 December 2009 to include JSA #34]

"Merciless Part One of Two"
CUTE BOYS: Dr. Fate, Mr. America (and he has a whip!), Jeremy Karnes aka Karnevil aka Kid Karnevil aka All-American Kid (in bondage, no less)

I'd lost interest in the Justice Society. And after JSA All-Stars, I was even less inclined to pick up this issue.

Boy was I wrong.

This one has almost everything that makes a team comic good. Cute boys, teamwork, humor, cute boys with whips, good pacing, clever dialogue, cute boys on the floor with their legs spread, good art, Mordru, cute boys getting blown on the floor (I am not making this up), suspense, magic, cute boys being entered, technology, cute boys in bondage...all it lacks is Legionnaires. And nudity.

Mordru starts off as a disembodied spirit adrift in time, and winds up as a middle-aged version of himself with crazy eyes.


SUPERMAN #695 (2/10)
"Man of Valor Part Two"
ROLL CALL: Mon-El, Sensor Girl (Wilcox), Tellus, possibly others
CUTE BOYS: Chris Kent, Conner Kent, Jimmy Olsen, Mon-El

In the ongoing soap opera that is the Superman comics nowadays, all of the disparate threads are coming together into one tangled mess. While Wilcox and the other SPs capture Parasite, Mon regains his powers and chases off Bizarro...who vows to come back with a Bizarro Mon-El. Meanwhile, we learn more of Conner's secret mission to the Fortress of Solitude: Mon wants Conner to begin the repair of Mon's spaceship.

Mon can't tell the truth about General Lane and Project 7734 because Lane is way ahead of him. The only person who believes Mon about Chris and Thara being good is the dark-haired girl who may or may not be Duplicate Damsel. Wilcox greets Mon, who says he knows who she is (he doesn't; she's Jeckie in disguise). Mon dashes off in answer to Jimmy's signal watch, which is being held by Perry White.

Jimmy is still alive, but officially "dead" and in hiding. He was rescued and healed by Tellus. He's working with Natasha Irons, who is a double-agent inside Project 7734. Mon flies off to see Billi. Natasha goes to see her uncle, Steel, who is unconscious...but she uses her super-power of inspirational speech to bring him back to consciousness. Confused about his location, he demands an atlas.

Mon does the nasty with Billi, but then rushes off to where the SPs have discovered Nightwing and Flamebird.

BITS OF DAXAMITE HOT ACTION: When Mon finds out that Jimmy is still alive, he gives the boy reporter a really sweet hug. But with Perry and Natasha around, they can't really take it any further.

However, hugging Jimmy gets Mon so hotted up that he goes in search of Mitch. Unable to find his boyfriend, he has sex with Billi Harper. But notice: he turns her around so he can pretend she's a boy. Afterwards, Mon rushes off to find Chris...don't worry, with his Daxamite powers of regeneration, he'll be ready to have a go at Chris right away.


Week of 16 December 2009

You didn't miss anything. I didn't see any LSH content in DC comics this week.

Apparently there's a big upcoming crossover in all the Superman books to be called "Brainiac and the Legion of Super-Heroes." At last we'll get to see what all the Legionnaires in the 21st century are up to. Based on the last issue of R.E.B.E.L.S., the action will probably cross over to that comic as well. There may be others.

I have only one request for the DC creative staff: Please don't get rid of New Krypton by moving it into the 31st century. The Legion has enough problems without having to cope with that lot of malcontents.

Unless...Paul Levitz has said that he's going to start off slowly, by destroying a Legionnaire's homeworld. I would accept New Krypton going into the 31st century if it gets destroyed soon after. (Yeah, yeah, I know: it's not technically Superman's homeworld. But Kandor was part of Superman's homeworld, and Kandor is part of New Krypton, so...)

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: In the "Five Legion Orphans" story in ADVENTURE #356 (5/1967), it was established that the planet Rokyn had been settled by the inhabitants of Kandor when Superman enlarged the city in the 20th century. The Earth-Prime version of Rokyn was shown in SUPERGIRL & THE LSH #23 (12/06), with basically the same backstory. The status of Rokyn/New Krypton in current continuity remains to be seen.


Saturday, December 12, 2009

Organizing Those Comics

Lately I’ve been reconsidering the way I have my comics organized.

Naturally, I have comics all bagged and boarded and tucked away in their boxes (short comic boxes, preferably, because they’re kinder on the back). What I’m considering here is how to arrange those comics within and among the boxes.

Now, I’m not talking about my 1600+ Legion comics: those are stored in chronological order, which is the only proper way. No, I’m dealing with the 3000+ other comics, the Supermans and Actions and Flashes and Superboys that go back 50 years, the multi-title crossovers and one-shots, and the odd stuff that’s crept in here and there throughout the decades.

Like many other collectors, I used to do the alphabetical-order thing. (I’m a librarian, so alphabetical order comes naturally to me.) That’s how most comic shops organize their back-issues: Broadly separated by publisher (Marvel/DC/Other) then alphabetically by title, then (usually) separated by volume, then by issue number. And that makes great sense for a shop, where customers are going to be looking for specific issues of specific titles.

It has slowly penetrated to me that I do not live in a comic shop.

Alphabetical/issue-number worked fine in the olden days. Then, each title was separate, and most single issues were self-contained. A two-or-three-parter could go across successive issues of the same title, but it was very rare to see a story that (for example) started in Action then moved into Superman before concluding in Supergirl.

Nowadays, that sort of thing happens all the time. Even before Crisis on Infinite Earths, I remember stories that started in All-Star Squadron and continued in Infinity Inc. And now, there are story arcs that stretch across five or six titles – not to mention mega-crossover events like Final Crisis or Blackest Night. Even when there aren’t actual story arcs, story elements continue across all of the Superman books, the Batman books, or the Green Lantern titles.

It’s time to give up on alphabetical order.

This article tells us:

There’s a saying in the comic book collector hobby: alphabetical is for chumps. Attempting to keep every title is perfect alphabetical order will make adding to your collection a nightmare, as will trying to access a series that includes multi-book crossovers.

Instead go for either character or publisher.

That states the problem nicely, but it isn’t very helpful. (I have noticed some comic shops using a modified character-based system: i.e. all the Bat-books or Superman titles are together in one section, nicely alphabetized by title/volume/issue-number.) “Go for character or publisher” is probably fine when you have 20 Supermans, 18 Spidermans, and a handful of assorted independents – but it doesn’t scale up to thousands of comics.

I found a lengthy discussion from 2006 that talks about the different ways people arrange their comics. In that discussion, there’s the following from DrBombay:

Lately, with all the events, crossovers and relaunches, not to mention zero and half issues, what really seems to make the most sense to me is sorting by publication date. What would really be great is some way to have a database for physical objects where you could resort easily based on whatever mood strikes you.

But yeah, my collection, which is right now mostly in piles, is going to be sorted by year, then month, then week.

That’s more along the lines of what I’m looking for, although it goes a little in the anal-retentive direction: by week?! Year and month are on the cover (or in the indicia), but week? I generally don’t keep track of what week my comics came out, and I’m certainly not going to look it up for 3000 older comics.

Still, chronological arrangement has its advantages. Mega-crossover events will pretty much all be together. Story arcs will be much easier to follow.

And since I have my comics cataloged (in HanDBase for the iPhone and Mac), it’s no trouble to look up the year and month of a particular issue.

The more I think about it, the more I like the idea of arranging all my comics the way my Legion collection is arranged: by year, month, and then (I guess) alphabetically by title.

However, I’m going to give the last word to Travis Pullen, from his two-part series titled How Do I Organize My Comics? (Part One, Part Two):

A final note on managing your collection: there is no right or wrong way to do this, it's all about what's right for you. Some of my friends do alpha order everything, but by the indicia, which means a Giant-Size Avengers will actually be filed under ‘G.' Another friend says, "The Dewey Decimal System," and walks away smiling like he just won an argument or something. My organizing is specific to me.


Friday, December 11, 2009

Week of 9 December 2009

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

Now this was more like it! There were Legion appearances in four comics this week.

Or maybe not. Two of them involved simple cameos of Legionnaires (two of them dead), and one was published by Marvel and only had not-the-Legion.

ACTION #884 (2/10)
"Captain Atom Chapter Six"
CUTE BOYS: Mon-El, looking hot in his new costume

NOTE: There are no Legion appearances in the main story. The only cute boy is Chris Kent, cured of his hyper-aging (and even he looks kinda dorky).

Mon-El joins the endless, pointless Captain Atom second feature. He and Atom fly to the Justice League satellite, Atom gives a capsule review of the last few years (which I suspect would make more sense if one had actually followed Captain Atom, but which just serves to confuse everyone), and then half the Justice League shows up calling Atom a fugitive from the military, a danger to the world, and in desperate need of justice.

Pay particular attention to the double-page spread on pages 2-3 of this story. The action proceeds counter-clockwise across the two-page spread; that is, down page 2, across to the bottom of page 3, and then up page 3. Notice the artful placement of the word balloons to lead the reader through this unconventional sequence of panels. I think this was very well done. If you didn't notice it while you were reading, that's a tribute to how well the layout worked.

BITS OF JUSTICE LEAGUE BUSINESS: This story seems to take place after the upcoming changes in the Justice League, which are supposed to follow the end of JUSTICE LEAGUE: CRY FOR JUSTICE, which is only on issue 5 of 7.


ADVENTURE #5/508 (2/10)
"He Primed Me Part Two: Flame War"
ROLL CALL (EARTH-PRIME LEGION): Brainiac 5 (vision), Element Lad (zombie), Light Lass (vision), Lightning Lad (vision), Sun Boy (zombie), Ultra Boy (vision)
CUTE BOYS: I admit it, Prime looks kinda cute at the end of the story, shirtless and all like that

As usual, this issue came out with two covers. For once, you don't have to feel like you must have the 1-in-10 variant cover: the only Legionnaire on it is a blurry figure who might be the Black Lantern Earth-Prime Sun Boy.

The story of Superboy-Prime comes to...well, a conclusion, if not an actual end. Prime's fight with Black Lantern Alex Luthor and the Black Lanterns of all the heroes he's killed takes him to the DC Comics offices, where he complains to the editors that he's sick of being their punching-bag, and threatens to (in Prime's phrase) "feed them their own tongues." Then Alex & the Blacks take him back to his basement and spill his comics.

Prime puts on a black power ring and becomes a Black Lantern. The, unaccountably, he (and the ring) cycles through the emotional spectrum: green (willpower), indigo (compassion), orange (avarice), yellow (fear), red -- until he winds up as a rage-filled Red Lantern. But then he says he loved Laurie and explodes in violet (love) light, apparently reducing the Black Lanterns to oilspots. Then the ring shatters, bathing him in six of the seven colors ( blue for hope is nowhere to be seen). Prime is left shirtless and devastated, mourning how he was turned from a hero to a bad guy, and how hs hates himself.

The Laurie comes down the stairs, telling Prime that the DC editors sent her to tell him that they're going to leave him alone now, and everything is alright. On her hand is a Black Lantern ring with a faintly-blue glow, and the word "hope."


Okay, I get that Prime is filled with rage, but the rest of it doesn't make an sense. I mean, it doesn't even make comic book sense. The whole Earth-Prime-is-Our-Earth thing, with DC people in the comic producing the very comic that we're reading, thus altering their own reality, is one of those ideas that sounds pretty cool when you think of it at 3 am one morning after too many pizzas and shots of vodka, but quickly collapses under its own absurdity when sobriety returns. If those DC people could change the nature of their own reality, why didn't they edit this very story to negate the damage that Prime and the Black Lanterns did to their offices?

Adn what's this whole thing about Prime donning a black power ring and cycling through the emotional spectrum. Black power rings never did that before. If it's intended to show that Prime has all the emotions within him, not just rage, then that's all fine and good -- but isn't that true about other characters who've been turned into Black Lanterns?

And I guess I'm okay with the resurrected Laurie having a blue (hope) power ring, but khaving a black power ring that thinks it's blue? WTF does that mean? They've spent all this time establishing that black power rings are bad and blue ones are good, and then we get the ring good or bad? Are we supposed to think that Laurie is a good buy or a bad guy? Is the story over, or is she going to rip out Prime's heart and...what? Turn him into a Black Lantern? But he already was a Black Lantern, and it didn't stick.

No, I'm sorry, this whole Black Lanterns/Blackest Night thing is making less and less sense the longer it goes on. I have to believe that Geoff Johns thinks he knows what he's doing here, but he sure isn't making any effort to share that with the rest of the class. He has a good understanding of the Leigon, and I'm forever grateful to him for bringing them back, but...Blackest Night has been nothing but a narrative disaster up to now, and I sure don't see it getting any clearer.

The good news is that, for all the fire and lightning and such, most of Prime's comics seem to be undamaged at the end.

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: When Prime turns yellow, we get to see what he fears: Superman, Flash (Bart?), Kid Flash (Bart?), and four Earth-Prime Legionnaires: Brainiac 5, Lightning Lad, Ultra Boy, and Light Lass.


R.E.B.E.L.S. #11 (2/10)
"The Son & the Stars Part Two"
ROLL CALL: Adam Strange, Amon Hakk, Bounder, Captain Comet, Garv, Lyrl Dox, Rocky, Stealth (zombie), Strata, Tribulus, Vril Dox, Wildstar, Xylon
CUTE BOYS: Captain Comet, Lyrl (get a haircut, boy!)

A three-way battle between Starro's troops, the Black Lanterns, and the R.E.B.E.L.S. Lyrl invents the Stargate and brings Starro people & Black Lanterns to the planet, but Dox gets mad and sends them all back. Sinestro gives Dox an order, which Dox refuses, so the yellow power ring rejects him and dashes off in search of a replacement.

The last page of this issue ("R.E.B.E.L.S. Rolls Along in 2010!") shows Dox, the original Brainiac, and Brainiac 5.

BITS OF L.E.G.I.O.N.NAIRE BUSINESS: Everybody except Tribulus gets a nametag in this issue.


(no title)
ROLL CALL: not-Brainiac-5, not-Ferro-Lad, not-Lightning-Lad, not-Phantom-Girl, not-Saturn-Girl, not-Star-Boy, not-Sun-Boy, not-Superboy, not-Timber-Wolf, not-Tyr, not-Ultra-Boy

The adventures of the Imperial Guard continue. Yawn.


Week of 2 December 2009

I did not see any Legion content in DC comics this week.

I did get, and read, SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #10 (2/10) -- although why I did, I have no idea. The people of New Krypton are all so unpleasant, their society is unpleasant, and the longer Kal-El stays there, the more unpleasant he gets. (I will say, though, that a lot of the members of the Labor Guild are particularly good-looking...which raises interesting and disturbing questions about the nature of the "labor" they are required to engage in. There are several porn stories in there.)


Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Under the Dome

Steven King's new book, Under the Dome, takes place in a small town that is suddenly walled off from the rest of the world by an impenetrable dome...

...where a local thug exploits the populace...

I wonder where he got that idea?

...I'm just sayin'.


Monday, November 30, 2009

Week of 25 November 2009

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

SUEPRMAN #694 (1/10)
"Man of Valor Part One"
ROLL CALL: Chameleon Boy [Control], Matter-Eater Lad, Mon-El, Quislet [Hovercam MTSP02], Sensor Girl
CUTE BOYS: Conner, Matter-Eater Lad, Mon-El

Mon-El is back, and he's learning to use contractions. He spends some tme on the Kent farm with Conner, Ma, and Krypto. Ma makes Mon a snazzy new tight costume. Mon sends Conner to the Fortress of Solitude on a mysterious mission. Then Mon flies off to Metropolis to rescue Sensor Girl and the Science Police from Bizarro. Mitch turns out to be Matter-Eater Lad, and eats a car to rescue a little girl. Then the Parasite takes way Mon's powers.

So Mitch was Matter-Eater Lad all along. And Wilcox is Sensor Girl. Element Lad is Superboy's chemistry teacher. Tellus is living in the swamp near Smallville. And now I'm doubly-suspicious of everyone in the 21st century.

Look at page 7. Three panels, each showing the woman the Guardian calls "Control." She might be moving around the room as she speaks...but it sure looks like there are three of her. And when the Guardian tells her that Mon-El is not dead, she responds "Mon-El? Of course he isn't." Is she Luornu?

The woman who left her daughter napping in the car...sounds like criminal negligence -- is she a supervillain in disguise?

What about that tractor on the Kent farm? Chameleon Boy in disguise?

According to L3W, the "missing" Legionnaires are Chameleon Boy, Dream Girl, Element Lad, Matter-Eater Lad, Quislet, Sensor Girl, Tellus, and Tyroc. Are they all in the 21st century on this Espionage Squad mission?

Chameleon Boy: Still unknown, but could be anyone or anything.
Dream Girl: Could be the girl Lori in Conner's school in Smallville.
Element Lad: Conner's chemistry teacher in Smallville.
Matter-Eater Lad: "Mitch" in Metropolis.
Quislet: Still unknown, although Thom seemed to indicate to the birds that he was part of the mission.
Sensor Girl: "Wilcox" in the Science Police, Metropolis. (Incidentally, the way to spot her in armor is that her hair sticks out from under her helmet.)
Tellus: In the swamp in Smallville.
Tyroc: Still unknown.

In addition, we know that Starman is still in the 21st century, and "Control" might be three of Duplicate Damsel's bodies. Historically, Luornu has always been part of the Espionage Squad.

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: IMHO, Matter-Eater Lad completely blows his cover as soon as he calls Mon-El "buddy." Mitch is Jonathan Kent's buddy, not Mon-El's.


WORLD'S FINEST #2 (1/10)
"Book Two: Guardian and Robin"
ROLL CALL: Mon-El mentioned in dialog.
CUTE BOYS: Damian Wayne is still too young, but he can come back in a few years. The two S.P.s he beats up are not un-cute.

Mr. Freeze and the Parasite are trying to out Mon-El in a freeze chamber so Parasite can feed off him. Freeze says, "Once I've finished and you've caught him, Parasite, Mon-El will stay frozen in time, forever young." An interesting parallel to Mon's time in the Phantom Zone.


Saturday, November 21, 2009

Week of 18 November 2009

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

ADVENTURE #4/#507 (1/10)
"He Primed Me Part One: Spoiler Alert"
ROLL CALL (EARTH-PRIME LEGION): Brainiac 5, Chameleon, Element Lad (zombie), Light Lass, Lightning Lad, Sun Boy (zombie), Triplicate Girl, Ultra Boy
CUTE BOYS: Superboy-Prime is not unattractive,

Zombie Alex Luthor travels to Earth-Prime to take on Superboy-Prime, accompanied by zombie Element Lad and zombie Sun Boy, as well as other zombies of people Prime has killed. Meanwhile(?) in the 31st century, the Earth-Prime Legion gets an alarm that Prime, who is under house arrest, has left the building.

First of all, it's good to see the Earth-Prime Legion again. I hope Adventure Comics continues to show the different versions of the Legion, and not just the Big Three: I miss Devlin O'Ryan and Kent Shakespeare, Danielle Foccart's Computo and Dragonmage. Come on, DC, there are 52 universes: let's see a Legion form each one!

Second, although I never thought it would be possible, Superboy-Prime almost comes off as sympathetic in this story. It's hard not to sympathize with someone who thinks he's going to die. Or a kid who finds out that his parents fear him. The moment that crystallized it all was when Prime threw himself in front of his parents to save them. It's the most unselfish thing I've seen him do since Crisis on Infinite Earths.

Is it possible that Superboy-Prime has begun his journey to rehabilitation?

If so, what would it take for the rest of the DC Universe to accept that he's rehabilitated? If we take a lesson from Hal Jordan, a big enough self-sacrifice can reclaim the reputation of a hero-turned-villain. Final Night ended with Hal Jordan giving up his life and reclaiming his reputation. If Blackest Night ends with Superboy-Prime giving up his life to save the world, would that be enough to reclaim his reputation?

(if that's what happens, you heard it here first.)

It would be interesting to see a rehabilitated Superboy-Prime as part of the Earth-Prime Legion. Some of the others would never trust him, some would accept him, some would have mixed feelings.


ADVENTURE #507/#4 (1/10)
"Long Live the Legion Part Four: Star Crossed"
ROLL CALL: Black Witch, Blok, Brainiac 5, Dawnstar, Phantom Girl, Wildfire
CUTE BOYS: It's a sad day when Brainy is the cutest boy in the story.

Blok, crumbling as an effect of his fight with Mordru, heads off to the Sorcerer's World to find Mysa. Dawnstar and Wildfire accompany him. Mysa states that she is, now and forever, the Black Witch. She is fighting to keep Mordru's evil magic inside and turn it to good. She removes Mordru's poison from Blok, making him whole again. He elects to stay on the Sorcerer's World with Mysa. Dawny and Wildfire leave, expressing their own love-across-enormous-gulfs.

A very sweet and powerful story of two couples whose love transcends the differences between them.

Thematically, this story fits in with the two previous ones in showing love transcending differences. First there was Garth and Mekt, brothers who still love one another despite the gulf between good and evil. Then Sun Boy and Polar Boy, comrades whose love crosses not only the gulf between hot and cold, but that between Legionnaire and Sub, experienced oldster and newbie. And now we have Mysa & Blok, Dawny & Drake with love that bridges gulfs of species and physical form.

And isn't that one of the important messages of the Legion? Love/respect/affection that bridges the gulfs separating people?

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: On the Sorcerer's World there are statues of Evillo and Glorith. Did Mordru put them there? Mysa?

I'm able to identify five of the six stone faces surrounding Mysa's throne: Zatanna, Green Lantern Alan Scott, Raven, Blue Devil, and his son. I'm missing the one in the upper left: he's obviously a Green Lantern of some kind, but he also looks like the Spectre. Anyone?

Mysa's transformation is obvious: she went form White to Black. Whatever changes happened to Blok are less obvious: he went form being a craggy rock to being a smooth rock. I guess I was expecting more. Strata turned into crystal, after all.

ADDED LATER: My husband Thomas points out that Mysa's struggle to contain and tame Mordru's dark energy is a parallel to Wildfire's situation: Drake is all about containing and taming wild energy. I have a very perceptive husband.


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Week of 11 November 2009

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

R.E.B.E.L.S. #10 (1/10)
"The Son & The Stars Part One"
ROLL CALL: Adam Strange, Amon Hakk, Bounder, Captain Comet, Ciji, Garryn Bek, Garv, Lobo, Lydea Mallor, Lyrissa Mallor, Lyrl Dox, Rocky, Strata, Stealth, Tribulus, Vril Dox, Wildstar, Xylon
CUTE BOYS: Lyrl Dox, of course. continues to run around without a shirt. Captain Comet lloks cute in some shots, less so in others.

I was very dubious about a Blackest Night crossover, but this one worked. They used the zombies theme very effectively, to bring back Stealth...and she's after Dox.

BITS OF L.E.G.I.O.N.NAIRE BUSINESS: You just know that ever since Dox heard of the Yellow Lanterns, he's been planning what his outfit would look like....

ACTION #883 (1/10)
"Divine Spark Part 1"
CUTE BOYS: Chris Kent, of course, in a new tight outfit.

Mon-El is mentioned, but there are no actual Legion appearances.

At last, someone has noticed that Jimmy Olsen hasn't shown up for work in more than a month. His girlfriend goes to his boss, Perry White -- to whom the fact that Jimmy's missing comes as a complete surprise. I mean, wouldn't you think the Daily Planet would have a timeclock or sign-in sheet or some method of making sure that its employees actually show up for work?

Anyway, Chris blows up another apartment and is suddenly a decrepit oldster.

You know, Brainiac 5 could have this whole tedious storyline solved in about an hour, including a break for lunch. I'm just sayin'



REALM OF KINGS: IMPERIAL GUARD #1 of 5 (1/10) (Marvel)
(No Title)
ROLL CALL: not-Brainiac-5, not-Colossal-Boy, not-Cosmic-Boy, not-Dawnstar, not-Ferro-Lad, not-Lightning-Lad, not-Phantom-Girl, not-Star-Boy, not-Sun-Boy, not-Superboy, not-Timber-Wolf, not-Tyr, not-Ultra-Boy

Marvel's Imperial Guard is their version of the Legion; call it the Legion of Earth-Marvel. This miniseries is written by Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning, who were Legion writers a while ago.

The art is awful, the story doesn't make a lot of sense, the Imperial Guard is bloodthirsty, and their members don't get along together very well. In short, it's a lot like the Giffbaum Legion, without the nine-panel grid.

The Imperial Guard doesn't show up very often, but they're back in this five-issue miniseries. Is this Marvel's way of capitalizing on the excitement that the Legion is generating in DC circles? Dunno.

Should Legion fans buy this series? I'm a fanatical completist, but even I don't have a complete set of comics featuring the Imperial Guard. I must admit that I've picked up some from back-issue ins, but I haven't been deliberately seeking them out. To me, the Imperial Guard falls into a category similar to Booster Gold's flight ring: I just don't feel the compulsion to own every single issue.

Still, as long as I'm spending good money on Blackest Night and the whole pointless New Krypton thing, it can't hurt to pick up five Imperial Guard comics. Your Mileage May Vary.


Saturday, November 07, 2009

Week of 4 November 2009

I did not see any Legion content in DC Comics this week.

In a rather pointless story in SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #9 (1/09), we learn that the whole universe is watching what's happening on New Krypton. One can only wonder why: are there their lives that boring? Because frankly, with no Legionnaires and very little of consequence going on, there's really not a lot of point in watching what happens on New Krypton.

At least Tyr-Van, Superman's cute ex-boyfriend from the Labor Guild, is still around. Apparently, members of the Labor Guild are supposed to do whatever their supervisors command. That leads to interesting naughty speculations, and would certainly provide the rest of the universe something more worth watching....

Meanwhile, it's been nearly two months and Jimmy Olsen is still floating dead in Metropolis harbor. Just thought I'd mention that.


Week of 28 October 2009

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

SUPERMAN #693 (12/09)
ROLL CALL: Mon-El, Sensor Girl (maybe)
CUTE BOYS: Mon-El spends most of this issue with his teeth gritted and his brow furrowed. Ir's not flattering.

Mon-El is tormented as Major Lane's prisoner. With the Parasite, he plots an escape through the Stargate. Luthor & Brainiac attack Lane's base, and Lane decides to let Mon-El go. Two days later Bizarro shows up in Metropolis.

Jeckie might be in with the SPs on the penultimate page, but with them all in their suits, who can tell?


"Secret Origin Book Two: Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes"
ROLL CALL: Brainiac 5, Chameleon Boy (voice only), Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad, Phantom Girl, Saturn Girl, Superboy, Triplicate Girl
CUTE BOYS: Brainy, Cos, Garth, Kal

This issue has two covers, and Lgion fanatics will want both. The standard cover features Brainy, Saturn Girl, Superboy, Lightning Lad, and Cosmic Boy in front of the Legion Clubhouse; the variant cover features Triplicate Girl's and Phantom Girl's breasts, and has Cosmic Boy, Superboy, Brainy, Lightning Lad, and a surprisingly flat-chested Saturn Girl in the background. Hey DC, how about some parity here? If we're going to see Tinya and Luornu's well-endowed boobs, why can't the boys have similarly-exaggerated packages?

Parts of this story are a revisit of scenes in the Superman & the Legion of Super-Heroes series.

Clark is doing super-feats in his super-suit, but he's keeping out of sight and still hates the costume. There's a nice discussion about Clark's underwear. Then Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad, and Saturn Girl show up and take him to the 30th century. In a fight against human supremacists, Superboy coins the phrase "Long Live the Legion." Legion relations with the SPs are strained -- the Legion does not yet have official UP sanction. Superboy meets Phantom Girl and Triplicate Girl, who both flirt with him (nice echo of Luornu's eventual unrequited crush on Kal). Brainy berates the founders for bringing Kal to the future, but Garth dares him to figure out a way to involve Kal without endangering the timestream.

The founders return Kal to 20th century Smallville, where he is a changed boy: he loves the Legion, loves his super-suit, and the look on his face clearly shows that he's stopped wearing underwear.

Then a rocket shows up over Smallville, Kal catches it, and then comes the single greatest panel in the entire issue: Superboy's delighted face reflected in the rocket's metal as he hears an "ARRF!" from inside.

Meanwhile, Lex Luthor has killed his father (making it look like an accident) and he's off to Metropolis to start a life of crime.

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: Chameleon Boy summons the Legionnaires to the anti-alien riot in downtown Smallville, but we never see him. I assume he's back at the Clubhouse on monitor duty.

We never see the Clubhouse, either.

Rokk says that the Legion chose to base the team in Smallville. This is a direct echo of the first Legion story. I don't know that his has ever been explicitly established, but the implication is that the Legion remained based in Smallville until the Fatal Five wrecked the Clubhouse and they built their new Headquarters in Metropolis. Comments, anyone?

There's a cute statue of a cartoon-style Krypto in Smallville.


Also out this week: LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES: ENEMY RISING Trade Paperback, which collects issues LSH #37 (2/08) - #44 (9/08). The cover also features Phantom Girl's boobs.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Week of 21 October 2009

I did not see any LSH appearances in DC Comics this week.

Mon-El was mentioned in SUPERGIRL #46 (12/09), and the hardcover collection of FINAL CRISIS: LEGION OF 3 WORLDS came out with no additional material -- no introduction, no background sketches, nothing that you didn't see if you got all the comics, except it's in a fine-looking hardcover.

Specifically, there were no Legionnaires, not even Mon-El, in JLA #38 (12/09). Unless Invisible Kid or Chameleon Boy were there on Espionage Squad business.


Monday, October 19, 2009


Just to let everyone know: It has not escaped my notice that Jimmy Olsen has been floating (presumed) dead in Metropolis Harbor for over a month now, and nobody -- not his "best friend" Superman, not his coworker Lois Lane, not his boss Perry White, not even the Daily Planet HR department -- seems to have noticed or seems to care.

It's because he used to be a Legionnaire, that's why. Even though it was long ago, far away, and several universal reboots ago that young James wore the Elastic Lad costume and journeyed to the 30th century, that doesn't prevent the DC bigwigs from mistreating, abusing, and neglecting current and past Legionnaires (and/or Legion supporting characters).

I mean, look, Batman co-starred with the Legion in a handful of stories, and they went and killed him.

When will this rampant anti-LSH bias end?

(Yeah yeah yeah, I know, it's been going on for 25 years or more, why should it stop now?)


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Week of 14 October 2009

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

ACTION #882 (12/09)
"The Hunt for Reactron Part 3"
CUTE BOY: Chris Kent (in bondage, no less)

No actual Legion content, but Mon-El is mentioned on the second page.


ADVENTURE #3/506 (12/09)
"Superboy the Boy of Steel Part Three"
ROLL CALL: Element Lad
CUTE BOYS: Conner Kent, Tim Drake (comforting one another, but no kissing)

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: One of Conner's classmates is a blond girl named Lori, who sleeps all day and is up to trouble at night. Apparently she is "a born troublemaker." Obviously she's someone of significance, possibly a villain (see below). My first guess is Dream Girl, but somehow I just don't see it. Horrible thought: Lori...G-LORI-th? Think about it: have you ever seen the two of them together?

Look at Tim Drake and Conner together in Luthor's abandoned lab: they would definitely be happier if they would cuddle and kiss a little, don't you think?


ADVENTURE #506/3 (12/09)
"Long Live the Legion Part Three: Running Hot and Cold"
ROLL CALL: Polar Boy, Sun Boy
CUTE BOYS: Sun Boy is looking particularly good, and even Polar Boy is actually a little adorable. (Yes, "actually.")

Once again, this issue came with two covers. The one you want is the variant cover, with Sun Boy and Polar Boy on it.

A fine friendship and action story. And a surprise at the end: Cryo-King, the LSV wannabe, has a map of Earth in the 21st century. He says, "Come on, Sun Boy. You think you're the only Legion with an espionage squad in the 21st century?"

Aha! The LSV has people back in the 21st century too. And Lori must be one of them. (Unless she's really a good guy in disguise. What about Chameleon Boy?) Now I don't trust anyone in Smallville or Metropolis to be who they claim they are.


BOOSTER GOLD #25 (12/09)
"Day of Death: Aftermath"
CUTE BOYS: Booster's looking kinda nice with his mask and goggles off; ditto for Dick Grayson; Damian is a little young but he should definitely come back in a few years.

No actual Legion content, but Booster's flight rings is quite in evidence on the cover and throughout the issue.


R.E.B.E.L.S. #9 (12/09)
"Strange Companions"
ROLL CALL (L.E.G.I.O.N.): Adam Strange, Amon Haak, Bounder, Ciji, Captain Comet, Garv, Lyrl Dox, Rocky, Strata, Tribulus, Vril Dox, Wildstar, Xylon (aka Fleet Admiral)
ROLL CALL (Omega Men): Broot, Darkfire, Doc, Tigorr
CUTE BOY: Lyrl Dox runs around wearing only tight shorts. Sure, he needs a haircut, but wotthehell. And Darkfire looks

Adam Strange steps in to save Kanjar Ro from Starro, the Omega Men land on the Starro homeworld and attract some attention, and Starro's homeys are after the perennially-shirtless Lyrl.

Another fun issue. Unfortunately, that all goes away next month when Blackest Night invades R.E.B.E.L.S. I don't have anything against crossovers invading Legion long as they're good ones. But whenever DC starts messing with the dead, things get tedious pretty quickly. (Anybody remember a little disaster called Underworld Unleashed?)

BITS OF L.E.G.I.O.N.NAIRE BUSINESS: The Dominator Fleet Admiral has a name now: Xylon. And they're calling Lyrl "Brainiac 3," but I'm doing my best to ignore that.

It's been interesting how some of the new L.E.G.I.O.N. personnel parallel both the powers and names of real Legionnaires. Bounder and Bouncing Boy. Wildstar and Wildfire/Dawnstar. Tribulus and Validus. The one I was having trouble with was the Durlan (well, not "the Durlan," who was an original member of L.E.G.I.O.N. several continuities ago, but the Durlan who's joined the team now) -- I mean, "Ciji"? What's up with that?

Well, I just got it. Ciji...pronounced "see-gee" Chameleon Girl.

I can't decide if I think this is incredibly clever, or really, really stupid.


Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Week of 7 October 2009

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

"Cry for Justice: The Fix"

I was about ready to give up on this series, but I thought "What the hell, it's issue 4 of 7, maybe it will start making sense now," so I went ahead and bought it.

And who came swooping down on page 11, but Mon-El! It's a cameo, where Jay Garrick imparts some mysterious yet obviously important bit of information to Mon as part of his tour-the-DC-universe-with-Jay-Garrick gig.

Suddenly it's worth paying attention to CRY FOR JUSTICE.

R.E.B.E.L.S. ANNUAL #1 (12/09)
"Starro the Conqueror"
ROLL CALL: Amon Haak, Bounder, Ciji, Lyrl Dox, Stealth, Strata, Tribulus, Vril Dox, Wildstar

Wow, a really good story. Think nobody could make Starro sympathetic? You were wrong.

The members of L.E.G.I.O.N. appear only as cameos, but that doesn't matter. It's a good story.


Friday, October 02, 2009

Week of 30 September 2009

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

SUPERMAN #692 (11/09)
"Down Time"
ROLL CALL: Karate Kid (image), Mon-El (image), Sensor Girl

The Guardian gathers the Science Police together in their usual cop bar for a wake for Mon-El. He reveals that Jon Kent was Mon-El's secret identity, and Billi Harper is shocked. As the two talk, the Guardian reveals that he also knows that Billi is the neice of the man he was cloned from. (Apparently he knows everyone's secrets...or so you'd think.)

Next the Guardian talks to Team Leader Wilcox, the redhead who has been around for the last few issues. She tells him, "I'm a widow. Lost my hubby not too long ago. My heart's closed. Maybe forever. Certainly for now." The two of them toast to "The future."

Then we follow Wilcox home. She speaks on the phone, saying (among other things), "Anyway, the Science Police had a wake for Mon. Yeah. They think he's dead. They'll know the truth soon enough, I guess."

Mon-El, alive?! Who could possibly have guessed?

Wilcox hangs up, and on the next page...well, there's an advertisement for Blackest Night. But on the page after that...Wilcox looks at a framed picture of Princess Projectra and Karate Kid and sighs, "Oh, Val." Pull back, she's crying and the top of Sensor Girl's costume hovers by the open window above her.

All right, I'll admit it. They surprised me. I knew that Mon-El wasn't dead, but I would never have guessed in a million years that Wilcox was Jeckie. (In fact, I had to look back at the last few issues to see if Wilcox was actually there. She was.)

We already knew that the Espionage Squad is on a mission in the 21st century. And Tellus has already been connected with the whole storyline in Superman. But now it seems that they're a little more involved in what's going on.

I wonder if Team Leader Romundi is anyone?

Anyway, the story ends with Mon-El a bacta tank in in Project 7734, just like the one that had Tellus in it. Unfortunately, they put a bathing suit on him...but it's a tight one. Hooray! And he's mad.

Next issue should be fun....


Sunday, September 27, 2009

Week of 23 September 2009

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

SUPERGIRL #45 (11/09)
"The Hunt for Reactron Part 2"
ROLL CALL: Mon-El (image only)

Supergirl, Thara, and Chris are on the run from the Science Police, and Reactron gets orders to kill them. Mon-El (still presumed dead) shows up in a picture on the front page of the Daily Planet. Lana Lang is bleeding, Lois Lane is pissed, and Kara and Thara are still mad t each other.

Despite the fact that Chris is still looking very nice, I am left with one major question: Is this storyline over yet? (Please, can it be over?)


ALERT: Upcoming Legion content.

Two of this week's comics have warning of Legion content coming up next month.

First, SUPERMAN: SECRET ORIGIN #1 ends with a teaser: "Next: Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes." Definitely not to be missed.

Second, JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #37 has an ad for the next issue, in which "A new era begins" (oh no, not again). A picture of the next JLA lineup features Mon-El, his usual costume adorned with a small Superman-style S. It looks like the trio of Mon-El, Donna Troy, and Dick-Grayson-as-Batman are going to be stand-ins for DC's Holy Trinity (Superman, Wonder Woman, and Batman).

I guess Mon-El isn't really dead. Golly gee, what a surprise. Who could have predicted that?


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Week of 16 September 2009

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

ACTION #881 (11/09)
"The Hunt for Reactron Part 1"
ROLL CALL: Mon-El (image only)

Supergirl, Nightwing, and Firebird are accused of murdering Mon-E, with an image of Supergirl punching Mon on video screens all over Metropolis.

First, it wasn't really them. Second, oh come on now, we all know that Mon-El is not dead.

With all my recent pondering of Legion chronology, I was fretting about Mon-El. In the Superman titles, he seems to be 20-something -- but about a thousand years from now, when he's released from the Phantom Zone, he should be a teenager. How is that going to work?

No problem. If Chris Kent has shown us anything, it's that physical age can change in the Zone to match whatever is needed for the plot. Eventually Mon will go back into the Phantom Zone, and when he comes out again in the 30th century, he'll be the right age to pick up his aborted hot-teen-sex thing with young Clark.


R.E.B.E.L.S.#8 (11/09)
ROLL CALL (L.E.G.I.O.N.): Amon Hakk, Cece, Garv, Lyrl Dox, Rocky, Stealth (flashback), Strata, Tribulus,Vril Dox, Wildstar
ROLL CALL (Omega Men): Broot, Darkfire, Doc, Elu, Tigorr

The R.E.B.E.L.S. track down Lyrl Dox on Voorl. Lyrl informs them that his mother (Stealth) was killed by L.E.G.I.O.N. robots. Strata sends Wildstar off to find Garv and her son, which she does. The Khunds attack Starro's forces and are defeated. Meanwhile, the Omega Men are fitted with mutant Starros that make them invisible to the real Starros, and they set off for the Starro homeworld to kill the main Starro.

It's good to see Stealth again. Everyone who believes that she's really dead, please raise your hands. Yeah, I thought so.

As the Omega Men were approaching the subspace rift, there was a nice homage to Return of the Jedi. I almost expected Tigorr to say "Fly casual."

I was never much of an Omega Men follower before, but I'm certainly enjoying them here in R.E.B.E.L.S. I doubt that I'll pick up more of their adventures -- the whole Vegan thing is a level of complication that I don't really need. It's already hard enough to keep track of the Legion....


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Fixing Legion Chronology (For the LAST Time) (No, Really)

The Problems:

1. The Legion is 50+ years old, but its members are in early adulthood (20s - 30s).

2. The Legion interacts with the "present day" DC Universe on a fixed 1,000-year interval.

3. Reconciling these two conditions results in a Legion chronology that is ever-changing and ever-shrinking to match the current DC Universe.

4. Everybody keeps messing with the Legion, and there is no agreement on fundamental principles.

5. By the nature of the problems, most solutions are only temporary. Ideally, any solution should still stand when the Legion celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2058.

Previous Solutions:

Based on the Mayfair Games sourcebooks, a generally-accepted Legion chronology was established in the 1990s. This chronology, based on the terms of Legion leaders, had the Legion founded in 2973 and the Magic Wars in 2989.

Unfortunately, this chronology would have Cosmic Boy aged 42 in the year 3000 and most Legionnaires approaching their 50s at the time of "Legion of 3 Worlds." And it's only going to get worse in the future.

Basically, the generally-accepted chronology is too long. It needs to be shortened.

The Givens:

1. The Legion was founded in the 3oth century. Young Clark Kent/Superboy visited the 30th century.

2. The Legion is "now" in the 31st century. Superman visits the 31st century.

3. Rokk Krinn (Cosmic Boy) was 15 when the Legion was founded. The ages of other Legionnaires are relative to him.

4. With Paul Levitz coming back, this is a great time to end the madness once and for all. One hopes that Levitz has the clout to make changes stick.

Everything else is assumed to be negotiable.

The Proposed Solution:

1. The fixed 1,000 year interval must be abandoned. Ideally, the Legion's chronology should be divorced from the present day as much as possible. To accomplish this:

A. "Legion time" runs more slowly than "present day" time. In particular, the ratio is approximately 1:5 - that is, five years of "present day" time equals one year of "Legion time."

In practical terms, each month (or each issue of the comic) covers more-or-less one week in Legion time. Sixty issues (5 years) covers one year in Legion time.

(Roy Thomas used a similar system with All-Star Squadron/Young All-Stars and it worked fine. Also, in LSH v.4 Giffen & the Bierbaums ran "Legion time" on a slower rate than "real time.")

B. There is only one anchor point: the year 2000 corresponds to the Legion's year 3000 (technically, December 31, 2000 = December 31, 3000). Therefore, Adventure Comics #1/504, cover date October 2009, corresponds to a Leigon time of late in the year 3001 (mid-December, to be exact, although cutting things so closely is not encouraged - it would tie the hands of creative teams too much).

2. To shorten the generally-accepted chronology, it is decreed that all Leigon Leaders served half-year terms (forget what the Legion Constitution says - that was pre-Choose-Your-Crisis).

Under these changes, Cosmic Boy was born in 2976, the Legion was founded in 2991, and the Magic Wars occurred early in the year 3000. Cosmic Boy was 15 when the Legion was founded, is "now" about 25, and will be about 35 by the time of the Legion's 100th anniversary.

Here's a quick-and dirty outline of the proposed chronology:
    2991 [old: 2973/74] Legion Founded - Leader: Cosmic Boy (2 terms) - Hamilton/Binder Era - Adventure

    2992 [old: 2975/76] Leader: Saturn Girl (2 terms) - Death of Lightning Lad - Adventure

    2993 [old: 2977/78] Leaders: Brainiac 5/Invisible Kid - Computo, Death of Ferro Lad - Shooter Era - Adventure

    2994 [old: 2979] Leaders: Ultra Boy/Karate Kid - Shooter Era - Adventure/Action

    2995 [old: 2980] Leaders: Mon-El/Ultra Boy - Chuck & Luornu married - Cockrum Era - Superboy

    2996 [old: 2981/82] Leaders: Mon-El/Wildfire - Earthwar - Levitz I Era - Superboy/Superboy & LSH

    2997 [old: 2983/84] Leaders: Lightning Lad (Element Lad)/Dream Girl - Clark/Superboy resigns, Great Darkness - Conway Era, Levitz II Era - LSH v.2

    2998 [old: 2985/86] Leaders: Element Lad (2 terms) - LSV, Crisis on Infinite Earths - Levitz II Era - LSH v.3

    2999 [old: 2987/88] Leader: Polar Boy (2 terms) - Universo Project - Levitz II Era

    3000 [old: 2989/90] Leaders: Sensor Girl/Unknown - Magic Wars - Levitz II Era, Interregnum

    3001 Leaders: Unknown/Unknown - Lightning Saga, Superman & the LSH, L3W - Johns Era

3. These changes apply to the Classic/Retro/Earth-0 ("Lightning Saga") Legion only. Other Legions from other Earths have their own internal chronologies.

Moving Forward:

1. Elections for Leader should happen roughly every 2.5 years (30 issues).

2. In "Legion time" a new year will come in every "real time" year that ends in 5 or 0 (2005, 2010, 2015, 2020, etc.)

3. In the "present-day" DC Universe, the Legion's time should be referred to as "about a thousand years in the future" or "the 31st century." Any adventures of young Clark Kent/Superboy took place in "the 30th century."

4. Unless future creative teams want the Legionnaires to grow up and have grandchildren, this scheme will probably need some sort of adjustments around the year 2100. I doubt I will be here.

5. There's enough leeway here that creative teams can play fast-and-loose with these guidelines. If they want to spend a five-issue arc on a two-day adventure, that works. If they want to cover an entire year in a single issue, there's room for that too. If they want to revisit a past time occasionally (Levitz did), no prob.

What Next?

No scheme is perfect. Make comments and suggestions. We'll thrash it around a bit. Spread the word to other Legion fans so they can weigh in.

Once you think we have a solution that's workable, contact DC (to the attention of Paul Levitz) and let them know. Posting on the DC message boards would probably help too.


Monday, September 14, 2009

Legion Boys and Girls

Has anyone noticed how the Legionnaires are getting subtly younger since "Superman & the LSH" and L3W? In Superman etc, they looked to be contemporaries of Superman's, say early 30s. Now they look early-to-mid 20s.

I wondered if Geoff Johns was going to address the "Lad" and "Boy" and "Girl" names for characters who looked like they were in their 30s. Now that Levitz is coming back, I suppose we can all just agree that the explanation of "extended lifetimes with extended adolesence" is true, so it's not odd for them to be "Boy" and "Girl" at what we would consider to be advanced ages.

I'm okay with that, as long as we don't have to be brainwashing Superman to keep the secret from him. That was a cool idea, but it didn't quite fit in with the Legion. One of Levitz's rare misses.

of course, it might just be a public relations thing: the public responds better to "Lightning Lad" than to "Lightning Man." After all, that's always been his name.

I've been trying to think of similar contemporary examples; the best I've come up with is the Spice Girls, some of whom are as old as the Legionnaires appear to be now. There's also a group of definitely-mature woman performers who call themselves "The Fuel Girls." And, of course, there was the comedy troupe called Kids in the Hall.

It's the old dilemma of letting time pass and characters develop vs having stories take place in some sort of "eternal now." If you look closely at the official chronology of DC Comics, the Infinite Crisis happened more than a year ago, while the original Crisis on Infinite Earths must have been only a few years before that, certainly less than a decade...otherwise Superman would be in his 40s. It gets really absurd when you try, for example, to reconcile the ages of the multiple Robins.

We were doing okay with a Legion history that covered 15-20 years between the Legion's founding and the "present," but that's not going to be tenable forever. On the other hand, I like having a Legion that changes and develops; I don't really want these characters to go back to being teenagers in an "eternal now."

Is it possible to craft a solution that will satisfy today's readers, while still allowing for what things will be like as the Legion approaches its 100th annviersary? I don't know. I would love to see the development of a second-generation Legion, featuring the sons and daughters of the current Legionnaires, along with their friends and classmates. I would love to see Garth and Imra and all the others as grandparents (I know, sacrilege!).

But I do know one thing...every time the Legion gets too tightly coupled to the present-day DC Universe, sooner or later it leads to bad things for the Legion.

It's that damned fixed 1,000-years timespan. If we gave up on that, we could allow the Legion to develop along its own calendar...similar to the way Roy Thomas ran All-Star Squadron, where each "month" in comic-book time (i.e. one issue to the next) covered a specific period (a week, maybe?) in real-world history. Anchor the Legion firmly at some particular date in the 30th century, and allow approximately one "Legion week" to pass for each issue of them comic. Or give up on a fixed-ratio, just elect a new Leader every five years (60 issues) and call that a "Legion year."

I shall have to think on this, toss some numbers, and see if I can't codify it into something useful.


Saturday, September 12, 2009

Week of 9 September 2009

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

ADVENTURE #2/#505 (11/09)
"Superboy: The Boy of Steel Part Two"
ROLL CALL: Element Lad

Element Lad is masquerading as Superboy's chemistry teacher.

ADVENTURE #2/#505 (11/09)
"Long Live the Legion Part Two: Lightning Lad"
ROLL CALL: Colossal Boy, Cosmic Boy, Dawnstar, Lightning Lad, Saturn Girl, Wildfire; Lightning Lord, Storm Boy

There are two covers for this sisue, same as last time. And same as last time, the one to get is the 1-in-10 variant cover, which has Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad, and Saturn Girl on the cover (among others). Besides, the standard cover is a big spoiler for the Superboy story, giving away a panel that they spent four pages setting up.

In the Legion story, Garth travels to Takron-Galtos to see Mekt. After an emotional interchange, Mekt reveals that he thinks his parents lied to him: he actually has a twin, who was separated from him at birth. Garth sets out to Winath to start tracking down his lost brother.

A low-key but powerful story that shows Lightning Lad as more than a one-note hothead: there's real depth of character there. And the story shows how Mekt can still get inside Garth's head and mess with him. But at the same time, there is obviously still some kind of familial feeling between the Ranzz boys...for when Mekt needs help, he calls on Garth.

Good story. Looking forward to more.


Sunday, September 06, 2009

Week of 2 September 2009

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

I did not see any LSH content in DC comics this week.

Nothing to do but wait patiently until Adventure #2 comes out next Thursday. (Comic are delayed due to the Labor Day holiday.)



Sunday, August 30, 2009

Week of 26 August 2009

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

SUPERMAN #691 (10/09)
"Codename: Patriot Part 4"

Mirabai, disguised as Supergirl, leads Mon-El into the Metropolis sewers, where she ambushes him and he is, for some reason, knocked out by Reactron. (Does Gold Kryptonite affect Daxamites? It never did before...) Then the sewers explode, and Mon is presumed dead.

Why everyone assumes that a few punches from non-Super people and some run-of-the-mill explosions could kill a guy who goes sunbathing in the sun, I have no idea. Maybe because Mon-El is under the influence of a power greater than Daxamites, Kryptonians, or any other force in the DC Universe: the script. Script says "Mon-el is knocked out and everyone assumes he's dead," and that's what happens.

When you look up "good storytelling" in the dictionary, they do not have a picture of this story.


"The Death of Jimmy Olsen"

Jimmy is afraid that Codename: Assassin is coming after him. Mon-El assures him that he has nothing to fear; Mon will respond to his signal watch.

Then Codename: Assassin comes after Jimmy, and Mon-El doesn't respond to the signal watch. This is because Mon-El is presumed dead in the sewers of Metropolis. So Codename: Assassin shoots Jimmy, who falls into the water, bleeding profusely.

Okay, first of all, I doubt that Jimmy is dead...and even if he is, he'll be back. Death isn't the handicap it used to be. It doesn't slow down your career the way it did in the old days.

Second, before anyone accuses Mon-El of dereliction of duty, I think it only fair to point out that at the same time Jimmy was getting shot, Supes was ignoring both the signal watch and a terrorist attack on Metropolis, and instead was chasing his way off to New Krypton for a fabulous party with his aunt and his New Kryptonian posse. Mon-El at least had the excuse of being (somehow) beaten half-to-death by Mirabai and Reactron, and further inconvenienced by some explosions that had to seriously tickle....

...You know what? I can't go on. This whole General Lane/Who-is-Superwoman?/Codename: Stupidity storyline has been a disaster from page one, and I just can't even try to take it seriously any more. No more trying to piece together this sloppy narrative. I'm just going to look at the pretty pictures of Mon-El and cute Kryptonian boys, and drool quietly in the corner.


FLASH: REBIRTH #4 (9/09)
ROLL CALL: Not XS, certainly

The long-awaited FLASH: REBIRTH #4 arrived this week, and once again it features every important speedster in the DC Universe...with the exception of Jenni Ognats (aka XS). Well, okay, the Tornado Twins are also absent...which just makes the rampant anti-LSH bias in this comic even more obvious.

I mean, at the end of L3W #5, Jenni could've said, "Okay, Bart, I'll go back to the 21st century with you just long enough to participate in FLASH: REBIRTH, then my flight ring will catapult me forward to the exact time I left." But nooooo.

Mon-El knocked out & presumed dead, XS cruelly banished from the Flash Family Reunion...what is it with DC and Legionnaires?



Friday, August 21, 2009

Week of 19 August 2009

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

SUPERGIRL #44 (10/09)
"Codename: Patriot Part 3"
ROLL CALL: Chameleon Boy [Control], Mon-El, Sensor Girl [Wilcox]

Kryptonian cutie Ral-Dar escapes from Project 7734, but it's all part of General Lane's nefarious scheme.

Meanwhile, Mon-El and Supergirl go after Nightwing and Flamebird, and Mon-El is pleased to see how Chris has developed into a gorgeous young man. Only trouble is, it isn't really Chris, but only a magical simulation.


"The Secret Origin of Mon-El and His World"
ROLL CALL: Mon-El, Tellus (fingers only)

An issue that proves Mon-El came by his good looks honestly. First there's Dax-Am, the Kryptonian who discovered and settled Daxam (and who was apparently sent on his way by the Jedi Council). Then Lon-Am, who started interbreeding with Daxam's aborigines. Zax Vane and his boyfriend Van Toth were the first to leave Daxam to explore the galaxy. Mon-El's direct ancestor Bal Gand bore a child to a tall, hunky Earth Aztec named Juyu. And Lar left a cut boyfriend, Van, behind when he fled Daxam.

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: Lar's great-great-etc-grandmother Bal Gand visited several planets besides Earth. One of them was Imsk, later to be the homeworld of Shrinking Violet. Other Daxamite explorers are shown making friends with inhabitants of Dryad, homeworld of Blok. Kryptonian invaders are visible on Imsk and Durla.

When Mon goes to the gay porno theater, he prefers comedies to action pix.

The Damamite vulnerability to lead was apparently due to genetic manipulation by the Kryptonian entity called the Eradicator.

It is strongly implied that Tellus was the source of the mysterious bottle of anti-lead serum that Supes found to save Mon-El after the Phantom Zone collapsed.


Thursday, August 13, 2009

Week of August 12, 2009

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

This was a great week for LSH fans. Forget Blackest Night: the Legion is all over the Superman titles.

ACTION #880 (10/09)
"Codename: Patriot Part 2"
ROLL CALL: Mon-El, Sensor Girl [Wilcox]

Lots of cute super-beings in this issue. Mon-El, of course, who flies into action to rescue a pilot, and then creates a distraction so that Supes and Lois can sneak away for some off-panel canoodling. But there's also Ral-Dar, misguided but totally adorable Kryptonian. And then there's Nightwing/Chris Kent, about whom an onlooker has the final word: "--Oh, he is cute! Wouldn't mind seeing what's under that armor --"

As usual, Mon-El is the most sensible and heroic one around. Although Tellus foiled Mon's chance for hot Daxamite sex with Sodam Yat, perhaps we can hope Mon will step up to the plate and rehabilitate Ral-Dar with some hot hugs & kisses. Or when Flamebird goes crazy (you know she will) or gets killed (it could happen), Mon could comfort Chris and become a true member of the Superman Family as Clark and Lois's son-in-law.


ADVENTURE #1/#504 (10/09)
"Superboy The Boy of Steel Part One"
ROLL CALL: Brainiac 5 (cameo), Chameleon Boy (cameo), Cosmic Boy (cameo), Lightning Lad (cameo), Phantom Girl (cameo), Saturn Girl (cameo), Superboy (Kal-El) (cameo), Tellus, Triplicate Girl (cameo)

Tellus is hiding in Bruin Lake in Smallville, terrorizing a strange young boy named Simon Valentine. Everyone needs a hobby.

ADVENTURE #1/#504 (10/09)
"Long Live the Legion Part One" (second feature)
ROLL CALL (cameos): Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, R.J. Brande, Chameleon Girl, Colossal Boy, Cosmic Boy, Dawnstar, Duplicate Damsel, Invisible Kid (Jacques), Lightning Lad, Lightning Lass, Night Girl, Phantom Girl, Polar Boy, Saturn Girl, Shadow Lass, Shrinking Violet, Starman/Star Boy, Sun Boy, Superboy (Kal-El), Superman, Triplicate Girl, Timber Wolf, Ultra Boy, Wildfire
ROLL CALL (speaking roles): Blok, Brainiac 5, Dream Girl, Element Lad, Lightning Lad, Starman/Star Boy, Tellus, XS

There are two covers for this issue. The one Legion fans want is the variant cover (pictured here), which is done in the style of Adventure 300 and countless others, and shows Starman in one of the panels. (The non-variant cover has Superman, Superboy, and Luthor.) This issue is numbered both 1 and 504; the non-variant cover has a huge white 1 and a greyed-out 504, while the variant cover has a white 504 and a huge greyed-out 1.

A lot crammed into eight pages, most of it setup for future stories. The main story takes place in 21st century Smallville. Starman talks to some birds; in the course of the conversation he lets slip that he is part of an Espionage Squad mission ("The worlds still need to be saved.") He also mentions Quislet; it's hard to understand Thom all the time, but the implication seems to be that Quislet is one of the team in the 21st century.

Thom visits Tellus in Bruin Lake and makes reference to "R.J. Brande's Last Will and Testament, aka our battle plan. Legion operation: Spin the bottle." Tellus tries to cure Thom's insanity; Thom criesout "Arrggg! The war. The 31st century. Today. Tomorrow. Beware the Black Witch. Dream Girl!"

Then there are some intriguing preview images ("Coming up for the Legion of Super-Heroes in the 21st/31st century"). In the 21st century there's Element Lad; then Dream Girl, Superboy (Connor), and a mystery boy (who might or might not be Mon-El); and Morgan Edge and Despero. In the 31st century, the cameos show Brainy, Tinya, and Blok (whose wounds have healed with a complicaiton, but who is eager to be off to the Sorcerer's World); XS on the Cosmic Treadmill ("Gotta get back. Gotta warn --"); and a mysterious gloved hand bearing a Green Lantern ring and a Legion flight ring.

BITS OF LEGIONNAIRE BUSINESS: In the double-page spread, the identifying labels for Night Girl and Shadow Lass are switched. Also, Jacques is invisible.

It appears that many of the missing Legionnaires are in the 21st century as part of an Espionage Squad operation: Dream Girl, Element Lad, Starman, Tellus, possibly Quislet...and if the Espionage Squad is involved, could Chameleon Boy be far? Especially since it has something to do with his father's Last Will and Testament? I'm willing to bet that Cham is masquerading as someone we've already seen, or will see soon.


R.E.B.E.L.S. #7 (10/09)
"No Way Out"
ROLL CALL: Amon Hakk, Bounder, Cece, Strata, Vril Dox, Wildstar

BITS OF L.E.G.I.O.N.NAIRE BUSINESS: Oddly enough, Despero shows up for the second time this week in a Legion-related comic, when he refuses Dox's plea for help.

For the first time, we get to see the Gil-Dishpan at home. Out of their containment bubbles, they look more anthropomorphic than you'd think.


"Mon-El" (text feature) & "Double Act" (story)
ROLL CALL: Mon-El, Sensor Girl [Wilcox]

Besides the text feature, Mon also appears in a seven-page story of the developing partnership between Jonathan Kent and Billi Harper.

When Billi suggests that Jon might have a boyfriend, he replies, "No. I like girls. It is just -- like I said, my life has been complicated." Hooray for complicated! (I think it's been clear, since Mon's first meeting with Kal-El, that Mon goes for boys as much as for girls.)


Sunday, August 09, 2009

Week of August 5, 2009

I did not see any Legion content in DC Comics this week.

So I went back and read LEGION OF 3 WORLDS over again. It helped.

Here are some more thins I'd like to see for the Legion in the future:

  • Some new threats/villains. The Universe-Prime Legion was good at this: We had Lemnos, Robotica, and the invaders who were digitizing everything. Oh, I don't mind bringing back bad guys from old continuity -- but let's not do it too often, okay?

  • New Legionnaires. Yeah, everybody complains that the Legion's cast is too large already. Tough. It's the "Legion" of Super-Heroes, not the "Dozen or So" Super-Heroes.

  • Some clarification of what's part of Retro Legion continuity. Sensor Girl, Tellus, Quislet, and Polar Boy are all members: what about Magnetic Kid? Did he die in the Magic Wars? (In "Superman & the LSH," Supes mentioned the Magic Wars; apparently they are still part of continuity.) I presume that the whole "Death of Superboy" thing is out (or is it? Was there a Pocket Universe?)

  • What has happened to the Legion in the years between the Magic Wars and now? Yera has a career as Chameleon Girl. Night Girl joined the Legion. Val came back from the dead. What happened with Night Girl and Comsic Boy? Last time we saw they were a couple, but in L3W Cos seemed devoted to the Legion to the exclusion of personal relationships. What about the Ranzz Family: how are the twins, have there been any other kids? Have Jo and Tinya tied the knot? What else have we missed?

  • How do we stand with Superboy? Apparently Kal-El had a career in the 30th century as Superboy, while in the 20th "the Super Boy" was a suburban legend. One assumes that most of the previous Legion stories are essentially unchanged, except those that brought the Legion back to 20th century Smallville. There must be some way to save the "Mordru the Merciless" story....

  • What about Supergirl?

    I guess the bottom line is that I want to see a nice balance between history/nostalgia and innovation, between old and new, between character and plot, between relationships and great events. That's not too much to ask, is it?

  • Sunday, August 02, 2009

    Week of 29 July 2009

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

    SUPERMAN #690 (9/09)
    "The Setup"
    ROLL CALL: Mon-El, Sensor Girl [Wilcox], Tellus

    The title says it all: this issue is little more than four vignettes, each a setup for a later story.

    Eleven pages are wasted on a protracted fight scene between Steel and Atlas, in which the dialogue consists mostly of various grunts. Eleven pages which could easily have been spent showing us something interesting, like Mon-El undressing and taking a shower, or parading around in bathing trunks, or any of a number of other scenarios.

    A two-page Science Police setup (in which Mon-El appears, fully-clothed, in only two panels) has Officer Harper assigned to partner with Mon-El (Jon Kent) in the new plainclothes squad. Well, at least this bit has an openly gay S.P. officer, so that's cool. This story will be continued in Superman: Secret Files 2009.

    An extended teaser has the Parasite going after Zatara, who is assisted by Mark Merlin. (I should know who Mark Merlin is, but I'm too lazy to look it up.) Zatara, as always, is cute but rather insufferable. Somebody needs to shove something in his mouth to keep him from talking. This story will be continued in the pages of Superman and Justice League.

    The last setup sequence is the best. It shows a meeting between Tellus and Sodam Yat. Sodam is on his way to find Mon-El for some hot Daxamite boy-on-boy action, but Tellus stops him. Tellus announces that "If you meet Mon-El now, the future will be such that evil will win out over good." I am guessing that this is a tie-in to L3W, where Mon and Sodam apparently met for the first time...but perhaps it is some other kind of time paradox.

    Sodam wanted to show Mon his with information about Daxam. (Sodam is apparently under the impression that Mon doesn't know that much about Daxam, which is odd, because Daxam is where Mon grew up, eh?) So Tellus agrees to take the crystals to Mon. This story will be continued in Superman Annual #14. Somehow, it seems like Sodam is missing the point. I mean, he gets credit for the "seduce Mon by showing him pictures from home" plan, but not so much for the "send the hulking telepathic alien in my place to seduce Mon by showing him pictures from home" plan.

    Tellus, on the other hand, knows exactly what he's doing -- after all, now he gets to seduce Mon, and he's gotten rid of the competition. Just goes to show that a Legionnaire can out-think any 21st century hero, especially when it comes to hot mansex.


    Saturday, July 25, 2009

    Are You Prime or Brek?

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

    Geoff Johns was not dissing all comic book fans...just the obnoxious ones.

    Before you go getting all insulted about his satirical portrait of Superboy-Prime as an obnoxious comic fan, take a look at his loving portrayal of Polar Boy as the greatest comic book fan in the universe. A hero who saves the day by inspiring a friend with his joy and enthusiasm.

    Geoff Johns is obviously an uber-fan of the Legion, the Green Lanterns, the Flash mythos, and the entire Superman Family. You need only glance at his work to know this. The man is not making fun of all comic fans...just the ones who like Superboy-Prime.

    So before you get your knickers in a knot, ask yourself: does the shoe fit? Am I Superboy-Prime, or am I Polar Boy?

    And if you're Superboy-Prime...well, then, take Sodam Yat's advice and exercise your right to be silent. People might start liking you a little better.

    Thursday, July 23, 2009

    Reflections on L3W #5

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

    Well, the dust is settled and we finally know the fate of the Legions, Superboy-Prime, the Time Trapper, and all the other related characters and institutions. What a long, strange trip it's been.



    Everyone thought that this series would end with only one Legion in existence. Happily, that was not the case.

    There are now three main Legions. There's the Legion of Universe-0, which is the Classic/Retro Legion with the addition of XS and Gates. There's the Legion of Universe-Prime. And there's the Legion formerly-of-Universe-247, possible now the New Wanderers.

    In addition, there is a multiverse of potential other Legions. We saw the SW6/New Earth Legion, the 5-Year-Gap Legion, and various earlier incarnations of the classic Legion.

    If I had my way, there would be a Legion for each of the 52 Universes (add Universe-Prime and the Wandering Legion, and that would give you a total of 54).

    And here's the best news: Apparently, at a Comic-Con panel today, Geoff Johns said that we will see all the Legions in Adventure Comics. I couldn't be happier.

    Remember the old days, when the JLA and the JSA had their annual meetups -- and all the Legion fans were jealous because there was no Earth-2 Legion? Well, boys & girls, wouldn't it be cool to see annual meetups between different Legions? Wouldn't it be excellent to see a team composed of (say) Saturn Girl, Gear, Gates, Kono, the L-Prime Shadow Lass, and (I dunno) Furball? Wouldn't it be superb to see a Boy's Night Out featuring L-247 Invisible Kid, L-0 Element Lad, Classic Chemical King, Sean Erin, and L-Prime Colossal Boy's brother?

    Or think of the erotic potential of a M'Onel/Valor/Kent Shakespeare teamup. :)

    Seriously, though, there are plenty of open threads for each Legion to pursue. Missing members of L-0, plus Thom and Tellus in the 21st century. All the unfinished business with L-Prime, from Cosmic Boy's leave-of-absence in the future to Lightning Lad & Saturn Girl's future as a couple. And with L-247 prowling the white spaces of the multiverse, who knows what they'll turn up?

    There were some personal transformations that made things interesting. Luornu is now Duplicate Damsel, and can manifest as many copies of herself as she wants. That's kewl. And the White Witch is now the Black Witch, with all the Mordru/Kinetix magic to deal with -- you just know we haven't seen the last of Mordru.

    And the Time Trapper? Hey, he'll be back. He's inherent in the nature of Time itself. He can never be pinned down to a definite origin or identity.


    Wednesday, July 22, 2009

    Week of 22 July 2009

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

    LEGION OF 3 WORLDS #5 (9/09)
    "Legion of 3 Worlds Book Five"

    ROLL CALL (Classic/Retro Legion): Blok, Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, Chameleon Boy (image), Chameleon Girl, Chemical King, Cosmic Boy, Dawnstar, Dream Girl (image), Duplicate Damsel, Element Lad, Ferro Lad, Green Lantern (Rond) (statue), Invisible Kid (Jacques), Invisible Kid (Lyle), Karate Kid (Myg), Karate Kid (Val), Lightning Lad, Lightning Lass, Matter-Eater Lad (image), Mon-El, Night Girl, Phantom Girl, Polar Boy, Princess Projectra, Quislet, Saturn Girl, Sensor Girl, Shadow Lass, Shrinking Violet, Starman/Star Boy, Sun Boy, Supergirl, Superman, Tellus, Tyroc, Ultra Boy, White Witch, Wildfire

    ROLL CALL (Earth-247 Legion/New Wanderers): Andromeda, Brainiac 5, Cosmic Boy, Ferro, Gates, Gear, Inferno, Kid Quantum, Kinetix, Leviathan (Gim), LeVIathan (Salu), Live Wire, Monstress, Saturn Girl, Sensor, Shikari, Spark, Star Boy, Superboy (Conner Kent), Thunder, Timber Wolf, Triad, Ultra Boy, Umbra, Valor/M'Onel, Wildfire, XS

    ROLL CALL (Earth-Prime Legion): Atom Girl, Brainiac 5, Chameleon, Colossal Boy, Cosmic Boy, Dream Girl, Element Lad (statue), Invisible Kid, Karate Kid, Light Lass, Lightning Lad, Phantom Girl, Projectra, Saturn Girl, Shadow Lass, Star Boy, Sun Boy (statue), Timber Wolf, Triplicate Girl, Ultra Boy

    ROLL CALL (SW6/Legionnaires): Catspaw, Computo, Dragonmage, Inferno, Matter-Eater Lad

    ROLL CALL (5-Year-Gap): Devlin O'Ryan, Furball, Kent Shakespeare, Kono, Laurel Gand, Neon (Celeste), Vi

    ROLL CALL (Super-Pets): Beppo, Comet, Krypto, Proty, Streaky

    ROLL CALL (Adventure 247): Cosmic Boy, Lighting Boy, Saturn Girl

    ROLL CALL (Friends & Relations): Atmos, Bloodclaw, Calamity King, Chlorophyll Kid, Color Kid, Crystal Kid, Echo, Elastic Lad (Jimmy Olsen), Fire Lad, Firefist, Flederweb, Green Lantern (Sodam Yat), Infectious Lass, Insect Queen (Lana), Kid Flash (Bart Allen), Kid Psycho, Laurel Kent, Porcupine Pete, Power Boy (Jed Rikane), Reflecto, Shadow Lad, Spider Girl, Stone Boy, Veilmist, Visi-Lad

    ROLL CALL (L.E.G.I.O.N.): Captain Comet, Garryn Bek (image), Garv, Lady Quark, Phase, Stealth, Strata, Telepath

    ROLL CALL (LSV): Beauty Blaze, Black Mace, Chameleon Chief, Grimbor, Lightning Lord, Magno Lad, Mano, Micro Lad, Mist Master, Mordru, Silver Slasher, Spider Girl, Superboy-Prime, Terra Man, Terrus, Time Trapper, Titania, Tyr



    On 31st Century arth: Blok, Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, Chameleon Girl, Cosmic Boy, Dawnstar, Duplicate Damsel, Gates, Invisible Kid (Jacques), Lightning Lad, Lightning Lass, Mon-El, Night Girl, Phantom Girl, Polar Boy, Saturn Girl, Shadow Lass, Shrinking Violet, Sun Boy, Superman, Ultra Boy, Wildfire, XS

    On Sorceror's World: Black Witch

    With Teen Titans in 21st Century: Superboy (Connor), Kid Flash (Bart)

    Last Seen in 21st Century: Starman/Star Boy, Tellus

    Missing: Chameleon Boy, Dream Girl, Element Lad, Matter-Eater Lad, Quislet, Sensor Girl, Tyroc



    Past the White Void & Into the Multiverse: Andromeda, Brainiac 5, Cosmic Boy, Ferro, Gear, Kid Quantum, LeVIathan (Salu), Live Wire, Saturn Girl, Sensor, Shikari, Spark, Star Boy, Timber Wolf, Triad, Ultra Boy, Umbra, Valor/M'Onel, Wildfire



    On 31st Century Earth-Prime: Atom Girl, Brainiac 5, Chameleon, Colossal Boy, Dream Girl, Invisible Kid, Karate Kid, Light Lass, Lightning Lad, Phantom Girl, Projectra, Saturn Girl, Shadow Lass, Star Boy, Timber Wolf, Triplicate Girl, Ultra Boy

    Last Seen Leaving for the Future: Cosmic Boy


    More comments later. But basically: SQUEEEEE!!!!!

    Saturday, July 18, 2009

    PsiScouts #1 on Kindle

    Just in case anyone wants to know....

    My LSH-inspired young adult science fiction book Psi Scouts#1: At Risk is now available in Amazon Kindle format.

    The book, published under the pseudonym Phil Meade, is also available in print format here.


    Week of 15 July 2009

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

    ACTION COMICS #879 (9/09)
    "The Sleepers Part 5"
    ROLL CALL: Mon-El

    Chris Kent is looking pretty fine, but the star of the comic is Mon-El. At Lois's request, he uses his x-ray vision to inspect the skeleton buried in her father's grave. It turns out, based on dental evidence, that the body was not Major Lane's. As we already knew, Major Lane is still alive.


    BLACKEST NIGHT #1 (9/09)
    "Blackest Night"
    ROLL CALL: Starman/Star Boy

    At least, I think that's Starman, in the upper-right corner, just over the statue of Dr. Midnight. Take a look:

    Here's an enlarged view:

    Many JSA members are in evidence in this panel. This figure isn't Atom Smasher or Damage (they both wear hoods, but their costumes are more colorful). And Thom was last seen hanging around a cemetery in 21st century Metropolis. I am reasonably satisfied that this is him.

    If so, it certainly qualifies for nomination in the "Most Obscure Legion Appearance of the Year" award contest.

    Sunday, July 12, 2009

    Week of 8 July 2009

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

    R.E.B.E.L.S. #6 (9/09)
    ROLL CALL: Amon Hakk, Bounder, Ciji, Strata, Tribulus, Vril Dox, Wildstar

    The Dominator world falls to Starro's forces. Dox uses Silicato trigger a backdoor command that put him in charge of the L.E.G.I.O.N. robots; he uses them to bottle up Maltus and the Dominion in an impenetrable force shield.

    In addition to the Dominators, we also see several other Legion-related races and planets: The Khunds, Gil'Dishpan, Coluans, and Durlans.

    Dox ends the issue with the promise of new members. I'm guessing that he Dominator Fleet Admiral will become part of the team, and Garv is out there somewhere. I also wonder what happened to Stealth. But it would not bother me at all if Lobo is busy elsewhere.


    BOOSTER GOLD #22 (9/09) doesn't have any direct Legion content, but Booster's Legion flight ring is clearly in evidence.

    Friday, July 03, 2009

    Week of 1 July 2009

    I did not see any Legion content in DC Comics this week.

    I saw super-powered Daxamites fighting against Mongul; I saw obscure Green Lanterns; I saw a Starman who wasn't Thom Kallor; I even saw Congorilla. But the only Legionnaires I saw were Superman and Supergirl. There wasn't even a Legion flight ring in evidence.

    Sigh. Maybe things will get better next week.


    Wednesday, June 24, 2009

    Week of 24 June 2009

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

    SUPERMAN #689 (8/09)
    "The Tourist"
    ROLL CALL: Mon-El, Tellus

    Mon-El goes on a tour of the world, meets many superheroes, and gets his first kiss (what, it wasn't Kal-El? Or Mitch?)

    Meanwhile, Tellus bids farewell to Harper and, presumably, the 21st century. He says, "Things need to be done. I must do them...for the good of everyone." Before he leaves, he zaps Harper with some pink energy to prepare him for "the battle you'll one day fight with your enemy the Assassin."

    The remainder of the issue deals with the incomprehensible Major Lane subplot and a threat to Steel. Since none of this has any connection to the Legion, I'm trying to ignore as much of it as possible.


    Also of interest: In JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #34 (8/09), the League is fighting Starbreaker. Vixen calls him "a second-rate sun-eater" and Starbreaker responds, "A sun eater is but the larval form of my species. You tremble at the thought of of the infant, and yet you dare to challenge the adult?"

    Interesting. The League faced a sun eater in FINAL NIGHT. In classic LSH continuity, sun eaters were manufactured by renegade Controllers in another universe, then used as weapons in this universe. I suppose it's possible to reconcile that with this revelation by Starbreaker. Still, it does seem odd to think of Controllers releasing something that could row up to be as powerful...and as independently Starbreaker.


    Okay, it has nothing to do with the Legion (so far), but I have to say it: I am totally lost by what's been going on in Green Lantern and Green Lantern Corps. I get the feeling that there's a lot of information in between the lines; I just don't know what it is. I don't know if it's sloppy storytelling, or just that I'm not smart enough. Sigh.

    Sunday, June 21, 2009

    Week of 17 June 2009

    I did not see any Legion content in DC Comics this week.

    There is one minor LSH connection. ACTION COMICS ANNUAL #12 (2009) tells the origin story of the new Nightwing and Flamebird, aka Christopher Kent (Lor-Zod) and Thara Ak-Var. One of the characters is a Kryptonian criminal named Dev-Em.

    In classic Legion continuity, Dev-Em was a Kryptonian juvenile delinquent and Kal-El's on-again-off-again S&M buddy, before jumping forward to the 30th century to become entangled with the LSH. Dev-Em had a long and distinguished career as an agent of the Interstellar Counter-Intelligence Corps, then Giffen and the Bierbaums drove him insane with a terrible haircut and made him blow up the moon.

    That was about it for Dev-Em. In current continuity he is a Kryptonian criminal incarcerated in the Phantom Zone. He has no connection to the Legion...yet.

    I still have my eyes on Chris Kent/Lor-Zod/Nightwing. I'm willing to bet he hooks up with the Legion sometime.


    Friday, June 12, 2009

    Week of 10 June 2009

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

    R.E.B.E.L.S. #5 (8/09)
    "The Stars We Are"
    ROLL CALL: Amon Hakk, Bounder, Ciji, Geotrix, Strata, Vril Dox, Wildstar
    ROLL CALL (Omega Men): Broot, Darkfire, Doc, Elu, Tigorr

    Lots going on this issue. Ciji reveals that she's on Dox's side. Amon Hakk goes on a mission to kill Dox. Astrild offers Dox a position as a favored lieutenant of Starro. The Dominators fight against Starro's invading troops. Dox sends Wildstar to retrieve the remnants of Silica. Dox and crew escape into hyperspace. And the Psions tell the Omega Men that their mission is to assassinate Starro.

    I never thought I would be cheering for Dominators.

    The blue-skinned woman with the crazy hair has a name now: Astrild Storm-daughter. She's still not very nice.


    Elsewhere in DC Comics this week, there were no appearances or references to the Legion, Mon-El, or Tellus in ACTION #878. And in FLASH: REBIRTH #3, there was a virtual family reunion of speedsters and Allen Family members: Johnny Quick, Jesse Quick, Barry Allen, Wally West, Jay Garrick, Bart Allen, Iris West Allen, Max Mercury, even cameos of Barry's parents...but is there a single panel showing Jenni, or even a mention of her? No. Guess We know how she rates, eh?

    Monday, June 08, 2009

    Week of 3 June 2009

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

    I did not see any Legion appearances in DC Comics this week.

    However, Mon-El is mentioned in SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #4 (8/09). Sodam Yat is among the Green Lanterns sent to investigate New Krypton. Superman says, "You're not one for pleasantries, huh, Sodam?" Sodam Yat answers, "What can I say? I'm true to my people."

    "I beg to differ," Superman says. "I'm friends with one of your people -- Mon-El. In fact, I left him in Metropolis to guard the city for me." Sodam Yat frowns enigmatically.

    A little later, when Superman observes that Sodam Yat looks troubled, Sodam Yat answers, "Not by anything I'm seeing. I was thinking about the Daxamite yous aid was on Earth." Replies Supes, "Mon-El, yeah, is that a problem?" Sodam Yat grins. "No. I'm just surprised to learn he's there."

    So let's read between the lines here. Sodam Yat has been away from Daxam for years, and has not seen another Daxamite boy in all that time. Now he finds out that there's an eligible Daxamite hunk on Earth...immediately he thinks to himself, "Let's finish up this stupid mission so I can go to Earth, find that other Daxamite, and have mad, passionate Daxamite sex."

    Oh, well. R.E.B.E.L.S. is due out next week.


    Friday, May 29, 2009

    Week of 27 May 2009

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

    SUPERMAN #688 (7/09)
    "The Fall and Rise of Jonathan Kent"
    ROLL CALL: Matter-Eater Lad [Mitch], Mon-El, Sensor Girl [Wilcox], Tellus

    Mon-El's powers are on-again, off-again. Doctor Light (Doctor Light?) explains that the mysterious anti-lead serum is at war with his super-powers, and that his powers will continue to fail at times convenient to the plot.

    Seems to me that Supergirl had this problem once, and her father invented various devices (an exo-skeleton, then some magic power discs) that allowed her to have some measure of continuous power. And her Legion flight ring came in handy, too. Maybe Mon could use a flight ring....

    In this issue Mon-El gets a little boyfriend. His name's Mitch, he works in the restaurant downstairs, and apparently he's been watching Mon pretty closely for a a while. He's obviously crushing on Jon Kent pretty badly. Who can blame him?

    Mon and the Guardian break into General Lane's headquarters and rescue Tellus. So is there going to be time-paradox trouble between Mon and Tellus? I don't think so. Tellus, remember, is a telepath -- so presumably he has read Mon's mind and knows that this version of Mon-El has never met him before. I also assume that there will be some kind of telepathic jiggery-pokery so that Mon won't remember meeting Tellus (or maybe a thousand years in the Phantom Zone will take care of that.)

    The bad thing is that the war between Mon's serum and his powers will continue until he dies, in a year to eighteen months. According to Doctor Light, that well-known expert on Daxamite physiology and mysterious serums. What does this mean? Well, it means that just about the time the New Krypton storyline finishes up and Supes no longer needs Mon, he'll be able to pop Mon back into the Phantom Zone and be rid of him once again.

    You know, Supes is coming off as a real bastard here. No wonder the Earth-Prime version of Mon-El came out of the Zone and started punching anybody wearing the "S" symbol.


    I got my Mattel Legion figures (pictured above). Notice how the boys all have the same body, differing only in paint jobs. And once you get your figures, notice how each one has a tiny little yellow flight ring painted on the middle finger of their right hands. What attention to detail.

    The three boys all have their right hands made into fists. Presumably this is so that thy can engage in action poses, punching bad guys...but it also makes it fairly easy to arrange the boys in a fairly rude tableau where they are pleasuring one another like Boy Scouts at camp (see below). I'm sure that wasn't Mattel's intention, but it's pretty cool anyway.