Friday, September 22, 2017

New 52 Legion of Super-Heroes #2

Welcome to the retro-review of the New 52 Legion of Super-Heroes #2. For those not here last week, this review was originally posted on my Supergirl site the week it was released back in 2011. I am reposting here, exactly as it was then. But I am adding some added comments in blue. 

I think I was happy that the Legion survived the universe clearing of the New 52 and continued on its current course. But it is clear that, looking back at this, some of the warts that happen in this run were obvious even from the beginning. I wonder if writer Paul Levitz was caught betwixt and between. He needed this book to hit the ground running (remember how well all the New 52 #1s sold??) but he also was picking up on decades of history. It is the universal conundrum of the Legion. Blow it up and restart, irking long time fans (are there many of us left?). Or keep right on plodding along hoping to pick up new readers.

I'll comment on my specific issues now at the end of this review. For now, here is 2011 Anj's thoughts.

Legion of Super-Heroes #2 was released last week and continued the story of the attack on Panoptes, a UK watchworld. Remember, the DCnU is not a relaunch but instead a reboot. In the case of the Legion, it is more of a renumbering as the title picks up exactly where the last one left off. So without some inherent 'newness', it is up to writer Paul Levitz to reinvigorate the book, to bring in new readers and keep them.

One way of doing that is to bring in new members. And while we have learned a lot about DragonWing, Chemical Kid, Glorith, and Comet Queen from their Adventure Comics arc, they haven't had much time to shine here. One thing that I think will provide some grist for the mill will be the reaction of the older Legionnaires to these rookies and their inexperience.

Artist Francis Portela is the new artist on the book and his work suits the title well. His style is a clean, energized look, with maybe just a hint of anime, which works well on the book.

But the story itself is pretty standard fare so far with a probable Dominator plot to undermine the United Planets. There might be too much politics, too much back story to grab a truly new reader who might not know what a Dominator is.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Reboot: Plus the Legion of Super-Heroes Specials

In 1996 and 1997, DC published a number of "Plus" specials that teamed up various characters. By virtue of being stranded in the 20th Century, the Legion was featured in TWO of those specials, though neither time the headliner, always the guest. Our fearless leader Russell covered the Superman + the Legion special some time ago, so while we will give our thoughts - we're Reboot completists - we will let his fine article stand as the only synopsis. On the other side of our comments, we will fully tackle Sovereign Seven + the Legion. May God have mercy on our souls...

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Who's Who: Circadia Senius

Circadia Senius
by Russell & Siskoid

Real Name: Circadia Senius
Super-Power(s): None
Planet of Origin: Pax Colony
Relationship to Legion: Time Institute contact

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

TOS: Adventures Comics #311

Adventure Comics #311 (August 1963)
title: "The War Between the Substitute Heroes and the Legionnaires!"
writer: Edmond Hamilton
artist: John Forte
letterer:Joe Letterese & Milton Snapinn 
editor: Mort Weisinger
cover:Curt Swan & George Klein 
reviewer: Mike "Nostalgic Kid" Lane

Mission Monitor Board: 
Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, Cosmic Boy, Saturn Girl, and Sun Boy. Cameos by Chameleon Boy, Colossal Boy, Element Lad, Invisible Kid, Lightning Lass, Shrinking Violet, Star Boy, Superboy, and Ultra Boy.

Guest Starring:
Chlorophyll Kid, Fire Lad, Night Girl, Polar Boy, Stone Boy 

Monday, September 18, 2017

Bombshells United #1

Title: Bombshells United #1 - American Soil
Writer: Marguerite Bennett
Artist: Marguerite Sauvage
Letterer: Wes Abbott
Cover Artists: Terry and Rachel Dodson
Variant Artist: Babs Tarr
Editor: Jessica Chen

So the first thing you're probably wondering is, what's a DC Bombshells review doing here? Well if you've been on Legion World or paying attention to DC's variant cover solicits, you'd know this series features the unexpected appearance of a Legionnaire.

DC Bombshells started life as a series of statues designed by Ant Lucia, before becoming a variant cover theme and then gaining its own digital comic series. What could've been an excuse for DC to shill gratuitous cheesecake art with absolutely no plot turned out to be their most feminist and empowering comic to date, and considering this began when the New 52 was still going, that's really saying something.

Marguerite Bennett, plus a rotating cast of artists including Marguerite Sauvage, Mirka Andolfo, Laura Braga, and several others, has created an alternate take on the DCU during World War II, where the majority of the world's greatest heroes are all openly queer women. Wonder Woman, Batwoman, the Batgirls, Supergirl, Stargirl, and so many others are reimagined with a 1940 retro Bombshells design. The original series dealt mainly with the Nazi Party in Germany and Europe, but this new series, "Bombshells United," takes place in 1943 and examines the internment of Japanese-American citizens following the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Considering what's been going on in the world for the past few years this is extremely relevant.

Friday, September 15, 2017

New 52 Legion of Super-Heroes #1

Hello all. It's Anj and I'll be "starting" my reviews of the New 52 Legion book on Fridays today. I put starting in quotes because I will be reposting my reviews of the book from when they first came out. Incredibly, that was 6 years ago. Given that I didn't want to completely re-review the books but not wanting to let these older comments stay untouched, I thought I would add new comments to the old post. Hence, 'Blue Ink Anj' will be the 2017 fan commenting on my own comments. 'Black Ink Anj' is the original post. 

Looking back, I was thrilled that the Legion was part of the New 52. Levitz was writing the book before this new number one, a retroboot based off of Geoff Johns' Legion story arc in Action. Despite it being a new continuity, the Legion wasn't being rebooted, instead picking up right where it left off. And Francis Portela was staying on art. Portela was the closest to Steve Lightle we had had on a Legion book since ...well ... Steve Lightle. Optimism was high even if I didn't agree with a company wide reboot. But here we are. Set the time bubble for 2011 and Legion of Super-Heroes #1.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Reboot: Legion of Super-Heroes #90

Legion of Super-Heroes (v4) #90 (March 1997)
title: "Face to Face"
writers: Tom Peyer and Tom McCraw
pencillers: Lee Moder

inker: Ron Boyd
lettering: Pat Brosseau
colorist: Tom McCraw
assistant editor: Frank Berrios
editor: KC Carlson
cover: Alan Davis
reviewers: Siskoid & Shotgun

Mission Monitor Board:  
Apparition, Brainiac 5, Cosmic Boy, Gates, Saturn Girl, Spark, Ultra Boy

Aven of Titan (mind construct), Ferro, Inferno, Koko, Shvaughn Erin, mental institution personnel

Dr. Psycho

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Who's Who: Chemoids

by Russell & Siskoid

Super-Power(s): Counter Legionnaires' powers
Planet of Origin: N/A
Relationship to Legion: Villain's army of artificial henchmen

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

TOS: Adventures Comics #310 Point-Counterpoint

The Legion of Super Bloggers Point-Counterpoint Review of
Adventure Comics #310 (July 1963)
title: The Doom of the Super-Heroes
writer: Edmond Hamilton
penciller: John Forte
letterer: Milton Shapinn
cover: Curt Swan and George Klein
editor: Mort Weisinger

Mission Monitor Board: Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, Chameleon Boy, Colossal Boy, Cosmic Boy, Element Lad, Invisible Kid, Lightning Lass, Shrinking Violet, Star Boy, Superboy, Star Boy, Sun Boy, Triplicate Girl, Ultra Boy 

Opponents: Mask Man

Synposis: After the Legion undergo their annual re-dedication ceremony, they are attacked by a new villain, Mask Man. He can duplicate all of their powers and quickly decimates the team, killing several members. The Legionnaires track the villain to Doll World, but only lose more members. The team flees to a planet nearby to build a defensive citadel, but Mask Man continues to strike down more Legionnaires. Finally, the last surviving Legionnaire, Superboy, realizes his amazing powers must be due to magic and learns the secret of defeating the villain and restoring the Legion to life.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century #4

Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century #4 (September 2007)
title: Higher Education
writer: Christine Boylan
art & cover: Steve Uy
letterer: Phil Blasman
editor: Jeanine Schaefer
reviewer: Mike "Nostalgic Kid" Lane

Mission Monitor Board: Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, Lightning Lad, Phantom Girl, Saturn Girl, Superman, Triplicate Girl.

Villains: The Fatal Five - Emerald Empress, Mano, Persuader, Tharok, Validus.