Thursday, August 25, 2011

Week of 24 August 2011

I did not see any Legion content in DC comics this week. I'm ready for Flashpoint to be over.

I lied. There was this:

KID FLASH LOST 3 (2011/10)
"Kid Flash Lost Part Three"

ROLL CALL (Earth-247 Legion):

Cosmic Boy, Live Wire, Saturn Girl, XS, Bart Allen, Iris Allen

CUTE BOYS: Bart, Conner, Garth, Rokk, Wally

As Bart is running through the timestream, he sees visions of his past -- including one panel with the Earth-247 Legion. Then he Flssshs into the Speed Force, fading out a la Barry Allen in Crisis on Infinite Earths.

I suppose Bart is gone now; possibly he never existed in the new timeline. This is an excellent case study for what I've been talking about. Technically, this messes up Jenni's story -- if Bart never existed, then did Jenni?

In the past, DC would insist that Jenni go away, or that she be given some origin story that doesn't involve Barry Allen. And the Legion creators would scramble to obey, making Jenni a survivor of ancient Atlantis, or a clone of Max Mercury, or an inhabitant of a pocket universe.

This is a great time to simply ignore the whole matter. Jenni is a 31st century speedster with some connection to the Allen line. Let's just leave it at that, okay? Then when DC eventually gets tired of this New 52 crap, and reboots the universe again (as they surely will), Jenni will still be there.

And fans -- please don't start complaining about Jenni's inconsistent origin, and demanding that DC Do Something. It's like The Lord of the Rings: you don't want to draw the Eye of Sauron in your direction. Likewise, we don't want to draw the attention of DC to the Legion. Just let them leave our corner of the DC Universe alone, and we'll be fine.


Week of 17 August 2011

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



 Brainiac 5, Colossal Boy, Dawnstar, Dream Girl, Earth-Man (died), Element Lad, Gates, Invisible Kid (Jacques), Lightning Lass, Mon-El, Phantom Girl, Polar Boy, Quislet, Shadow Lass, Star Boy, Sun oy, Tellus, Timber Wolf, Tyroc, Wildfire, Dyogene, Harmonia Li, Sodam Yat, Blue Entity, Saturn Queen, Zymyr

CUTE BOYS: Brainy, Brek, Brin, Dirk, Gim, Jacques, Jan, Jo, Mon, Troy (note to Thom: ditch the beard and take off the mask, and we'll talk)

Well, this is it. LSH v.6 didn't last very long, did it? (Longer than v.1, anyway...)

The cataclysmic final battle takes place on the planet of wisdom. Saturn Queen attempts to take over Earth-Man's mind and use him to defeat the others. But he's assisted by Sodm Yat, Dyogene, armonia Li, and the other Legionnaires -- incuding Mon-El and his power ring. Together, they all give Earth-Man enough power to resist Saturn Queen's control and defeat the Blue Entity. However, Earth-Man dies in the effort, a hero in the end.

Shadow Lass takes his body and flies away, flinging back a snarky comment at Mon-El and whispering to the corpse, "Now they know who you really were.

Mon-El resigns from the Green Lantern Corps and gives Dyogene the ring back. Dyogene settles into the dirt, remarking that he will help heal the world of wisdom, and perhaps a new Mogo will in time arise. He salutes the Legion as "Proud successors to the Corps."

Harmonia Li tells Brainy that she is going to come back with them, and apply for Legion membership -- she hints that she has suitable super-powers.

ANNOUNCING A WINNER: In this issue the Blue Entity announces its identity: "I am the curse of the Oans, before they even dared call themselves Guardians...evil loosed on the universe by Krona's crime. Long ago, and reborn when Titan fell and mortals dared to look upon the unknowable. I am the serpent of Eden, the worm who devours Yggdrasil, and the end of all things..."

Reader pblfsda caught the Krona connection before anyone else, and so is the winner of Legion Archives #1. Email me your mailing address at don at meerkatmeade dot com, and I'll mail it out to you. Good work!


Dyogene is "Little more than a clump of Oan soil, held together by tears and dreams"; it is hinted that he may also be the embryonic form of an intelligent planet like Mogo. Whether or not the people of the wisdom planet will have any vote, is unclear.

The Legion stands together. It's one of the most common threads in Legion stories, and the trick of tying all the Legionnaires together in one gestalt is one Levitz has pulled again and again, from Earthwar to the Great Darkness and beyond. Other creators have done the same. 

Mon-El, Shadow Lass, and Earth-Man: Wel, apparently I was wrong about Shady just feigning her romantic interest in Earth-Man. I still don't understand it. I'm beginning to wrap my head around the Cosmic Boy/Night Girl split, but I think there's more to be told about why Shady and Mon broke up. I hope this "new beginning" won't prevent that story from being told.

Harmonia Li: She hints that she has powers that might qualify her to be a Legionnaire. Huh? The power to summon ultimate evil to destroy the universe? The power to make mysterious, oracular pronouncements? What will her code name be, Enigmatic Lady? Hubris Lass? Arrogant Girl?


Dream Girl saw a vision of herself saying that Thom's power saved the day. Uh-huh. Sure. Things don't seem to be going very well for Nura. I'm still convinced that something's going on with her. I thought she was a Durlan spy, but I guess I was wrong on that -- but the defining feature of Nura's power is that all her predictions come true. This one sure didn't. What are you up to, Mr. Levitz?

The Bue Entity said that it was reborn when "Titan fell and mortals dared gaze upon the unknowable." Except...Harmonia Li isn't exactly a mortal, is she? In fact, she is an immortal. Do you suppose that she could have told the Blue Entity that she wasn't a mortal, and the Entity would have said, "Oh...never mind" and gone away?

(Okay, there were other scientists with her on Titan, and they probably gazed too.)

NEXT UP: A few Legionless weeks, and then we'll see just what damage this new reboot of the DC Universe does to the Legion. I don't have a good feeling about this. Prove me wrong, DC....


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Week of 10 August 2011

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


Week of 3 August 2011

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

ADVENTURE #529 (2011/10)
"The End"


Bouncing Boy, Duplicate Girl, Night Girl, Chemical Kid, Comet Queen, Dragonwing, Glorith, Gravity Kid, Variable Lad (died), Cosmic King

CUTE BOYS: Chuck, Hadru, Tel

It's taken me a while to post on this issue, because I've been sorting through my feelings on two different levels. More on that in a moment, but first a synopsis:

Chemical Kid, Comet Queen, and Dragonwing confront Cosmic King, who has already defeated Bouncing Boy, Duplicate Girl, and Night Girl. They are basically getting their butts kicked (and not in the good way) when Glorith, Gravity Kid, and Variable Lad show up. The newly-arrived kids make a good showing, until Cosmic King threatens to melt their bodies (and not in the good way). Variable Lad, whose powers have turned him into a giant silver cobra, attacks Cosmic King and when the smoke clears, Variable Lad is dead and Cosmic King is nowhere to be seen (although wherever he is, he's missing part of his shirt and most of a glove).

Later, during the mopping-up process, everyone is grieving for Variable Lad. Chuck tells the cadets that their chances of making the team have just gone way up. Gravity Kid announces that he's resigning from the Academy and going to Takron-Galtos as a "trailing spouse" of Jed Rikane aka Power Boy. As he elaves, he voices his hope that none of the rest of them wind up like Variable Lad.

Okay, now my two things.

Tel and Jed: Hooray for the very public admission that they're a couple (spouses, actually). I know there have been gay relationships in the Legion before -- in the Glorithverse Legion, Ayla and Salu were an item, and there was the whole regrettable Jan-Shvaughn/Sean thing; and in the Earth-247 Legion there were strong hints that Lyle and Condo had something going on, and of course Lyle kissed Brainy, and there were other gay couples among the supporting characters. And admitted, Tel and Jed aren't technically in the Legion. But still, this is (more or less) the Legion I grew up with, and to me at least, there's something momentous about this.

And yet....

They aren't Legionnaires. They're supporting characters, and it looks like they're being shuffled off to the sidelines, to appear only as cameos in the next "all hands on deck" Earthwar/Great Darkness/L3W storyline. Even worse, is Tel's final line foreshadowing? Is he going to Takron-Galtos only to die during the next prisoner escape, or when bad guys use his life as a weapon against Officer Jed?

I hope I'm wrong. I can envision a great subplot going on, about how someone (I'm looking at you, Rokk Krinn) kept Jed from joining the Legion out of homophobia -- a subplot leading to revelations about what Garth and Rokk did together in the early days of the Legion, and how Rokk has always felt weird (or maybe it was Rokk and Pol, brothers who shared a small single bed while the family was living in squalor on Bismoll Brral, the innocent games of childhood, the struggle for dominance, and Rokk's subsequent self-imposed guilt over Pol's death...) -- and the joyful reconciliation as Rokk comes to term with his homophobia and Tel & Jed welcome him into a celebratory three-way....

Yeah, like that's going to happen.

So there's where I am: mixed feelings. Happy to see a gay couple in the Legion; dismayed that they're probably going to be sidelined and ignored or worse.

The last issue and the New 52 reboot: Yeah, I know, the Legion is supposed to be changed the least of all DC's titles. And even though Adventure Comics is going away, there will still be two Legion titles, at least at first. However, I feel a real sense of loss here. There's a break, and however much Paul Levitz tries to minimize the disruption, I still feel like some plot threads are going to be lost in the transition.

The future will tell, of course. But for now, it seems like the story of the Academy group is over before it really got started.


Deaths: I've seen speculation that Variable Lad isn't really dead. Some people are saying that we don't see any bodies, so the jury is still out. That could be true...but among the debris I see bits of silver dragon, and what's clearly part of the dragon's head. In addition, that's clearly a coffin the cadets are bearing (although they seem to be putting it into a garbage truck). Besides, the emotional point of the whole story demands that Oaa is dead. All I can say is, Dr. Gym'll isn't going to be happy.

Cosmic King, on the other hand...was on the planet of wisdom in the last issue of LSH. There's no body, and it's hard to imagine that Levitz would kill him off permanently. I'm going to guess that he was spirited away by the Blue Entity (remember, he was on a mission for Saturn Queen). This is one of those details that I fear may be lost in the rush to wrap up the LSH storyline.