Friday, January 18, 2019

Final Crisis Legion of Three Worlds #2: Part One

Last week I began my review of Final Crisis Legion of 3 Worlds, a book I fear would break me. The first issue almost did. A dizzying array of inset panels, bulk text, uncertain continuity, and story bloat made it nearly impossible to cover in one review.

And then, like a wish from the Miracle Machine, an answer was provided to me by fellow Legion Blogger Siskoid. Why not take two posts to review one issue of this book? God knows, there is enough story stuffed into these pages to warrant at least that much.

So welcome to Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds # 2 review, part one. I'll finish this issue next Friday.

One of the interesting things for me to do, as I decipher this book, is to try and come to grips with the continuity speed bumps. I didn't read any of the Reboot Legion, the Abnett stuff. I had intimate knowledge of the Threeboot book, still fresh.

But it is the classic Legion, the one brought back by writer Geoff Johns that I struggle with the most. The assumption is that 5YL never happened. The Legion timeline progressed differently from the end of the Baxter Run and the Magic Wars.

Clearly 'stuff' happened between the end of the Magic Wars and the Action Comics storyline which just preceded this. So we are sort of dropped into a fresh, unknown, yet oddly classic timeline. Please get me some ibuprofen!

Johns again puts about three books worth of material into this issue. And that despite having not one but two double page splashes! Poor George Perez. If you thought Crisis On Infinite Earths was a great example of page layouts and panel variation, you ain't seen nothing yet. No surprise, Perez shines here. But I wonder how much wonderful art was covered by the massive dialogue balloons needed to convey the story?

I usually wail against decompression. But this is overstuffing. This would have been a great 9 part mini-series. I wonder if the time alloted was dictated by the main Final Crisis book. And yet, if I recall, the book was delayed badly meaning more actual time and issues could have been devoted here.

Ah well .. what might have been. Onto the half-review!

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Reboot: Legion of Super-Heroes #116

Legion of Super-Heroes (v4) #115 (June 1999)
title: "Cold Irons Bound"
writers: Tom McCraw and Tom Peyer
penciller: Keron Grant

inker: Ray Kryssing
lettering: Pat Brosseau
colorist: Tom McCraw
assistant editor: Frank Berrios
editor: Mike McAvennie
cover: Alan Davis and Mark Farmer
reviewers: Siskoid & Shotgun

Mission Monitor Board:  
Brainiac 5.1, Invisible Kid, Live Wire, M'Onel, Sensor, Spark, Thunder

Koko, Magno, Thunder's father and mother (Superintendent Javert and his wife)

Dr. Aywebn, Dr. Deacon, Lefty, Lord Pernisius, Scurrches, Zeek; Black Star nurse, Rimborian gang (named: gang admin Sara)

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Who's Who: Polecat

by Russell & Siskoid

Real Name: Dafe Meron
Super-Power(s): Repellent scent
Planet of Origin: Earth
Relationship to Legion: Rejected applicant

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

TOS: Adventure Comics #370

Adventure Comics #370 (July 1968)
title: "The Devil's Jury!"
writer and layouts: Jim Shooter
artist: Curt Swan
inker: Jack Abel
letterers: Joe Letterese (splash page only) and Ben Oda
editor: Mort Weisinger
cover: Curt Swan and George Roussos
letterer: Gaspar Saladino
reviewers: Jason "Anachronistic Kid" Knol

Mission Monitor Board: 
Duo Damsel, Mon-El, Shadow Lass, and Superboy

Dream Girl, Insect Queen, Invisible Kid, Princes Projectra, 
Ultra Boy, The White Witch

Mordru the Merciless!

Monday, January 14, 2019

Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century #10

Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century #10 (March 2008)
title: House Arrest
writer: Matthew K. Manning
penciller: Alex Serra
inker: Jeff Albrecht
letterer: Sal Cipriano
colorist: Heroic Age
editor: Jeanine Shaefer
cover art: Matt Stewart

Mission Monitor Board: Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad, and Saturn Girl.

Villains: The Fatal Five (Emerald Empress, Mano, Persuader, Tharok, and Validus)

Friday, January 11, 2019

Final Crisis Legion of Three Worlds #1

Settle in True Believers as I try to make my way through one of the denser issues I have had to review on this site. And remember, I reviewed the early 5YL issues back in the day.

Final Crisis:Legion of Three Worlds #1 was written by Geoff Johns and drawn by George Perez. It was released in late 2008 in conjunction with Grant Morrison's main Final Crisis mini-series and was meant to stabilize and streamline the recent Legion history. Earlier in the year, Johns and Gary Frank brought the original Legion back into continuity, showcasing a very Levitz/Giffen feeling team working with a Superman who was a Legion member in his past.

Now as comic fans, we are used to multiple realities and many universes. But Johns was taking a bit of a risk because that storyline in Action Comics took place while the Threeboot Legion still had a book on the shelves.

Which Legion was 'real'? And more importantly, which Legion was DC going to promote moving forward. It was clear, at least to me, that the Threeboot book was in a decaying orbit, having lost its way a bit. I also felt that giving us back the original Legion felt like  'bringing the band back together' for one more tour. It was doubtful the magic would be there again.

So I had high hopes when The Legion of Three Worlds was announced as I thought it would be a surgical Crisis on Infinite Earths style event, melding the disparate Legion histories into something new, stronger, and hopefully energized. And what better team to do that than Johns, riding on a recent high at DC comics and clearly a lover of the Legion, and Perez who drew COIE and shined when a billion characters needed to be in one series.

Was it a success?

To be honest, I can't say because I don't remember that much of it. What I can say is that reviewing this first issue made me remember that two villains I was and still am a bit fatigued with, The Time Trapper and Superboy Prime, are the main baddies. And that this was as packed an issue as I have read in a while. Between many small inset panels and significant dialogue, this felt like two issues in one. I wonder why DC didn't just make this a 6 issue mini instead of a 5. As such, I felt like Johns put so much into this set-up that I was frazzled at the end.

Enough prologue. Be prepared! Onto the book!

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Reboot: Legionnaires #72

Legionnaires #72 (June 1999)
title: "Enemies of Science!"
writers: Roger Stern and Tom McCraw
penciller: Jeffrey Moy
inker: W.C. Carani
lettering: Pat Brosseau
colorist: Tom McCraw
assistant editor: Frank Berrios
editor: Mike McAvennie
adult legionnaire: Carmela Merlo
cover: Chris Sprouse and Al Gordon
reviewers: Siskoid & Shotgun

Mission Monitor Board:  
Cosmic Boy, Element Lad, Gates, Kid Quantum II, Live Wire (flashback), M'Onel (flashback), Monstress, Saturn Girl, Star Boy, Ultra Boy (cover only), Umbra, XS (flashback)

Chuck Taine, Del, Derek Morgna (flashback), Dirk Morgna (flashback), Dr. Gym'll, Dragonmage, Dreamer, Giselle King (flashback), Lori Morning, Mysa, Takron-Galtos' warden; Coluans, alien terraformers, lizard alien ambassador (flashback), Science Police

Amelia Crugg, Doctor Savant, Elements of Disaster (A'rie, Ebb, Phy'r, Rroxx), Leland McCauley, Mantis Morlo, Mordru (flashback); Brain Globes and Gil'dishpan of Gil'd.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Who's Who: Plant Lad

Plant Lad
by Russell & Siskoid

Real Name: Noyt Echad
Super-Power(s): Ability to transform into any plant
Planet of Origin: Simballi
Relationship to Legion: Ally

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

TOS: Adventure Comics #369

Adventure Comics #369 (June 1968)
title: "Mordru the Merciless!"
writer and layouts: Jim Shooter
penciller: Curt Swan
inkers: Curt Swan (page 1) and Jack Abel
letterers: Gaspar Saldino (page 1) and Charlotte Jetter
cover: Neal Adams
reviewer: Jason "Anachronistic Kid" Knol

Mission Monitor Board: 
Duo Damsel, Mon-El, Shadow Lass and Superboy, plus a few flashback cameos.

Mordru the Merciless!

This Neal Adams cover kicks everything off with his trademark sense of action. The powerful hands of the mysterious, magical Mordru burst out through a massive vault door. How often do we see Superboy taken aback with such shock? Mon-El definitively cries "We're dead!" in response to the wizard's hands appearing so suddenly. This immediately feels like it's going to be an action-packed adventure of an issue!

Monday, January 7, 2019

LEGION TOYS: Ferro Lad (DC Direct 2004)

 If there's one thing my fellow podcasters have learned during our off-air conversations during our tenure at the Fanholes Podcast, it's that one of my action figure collecting pet-peeves is buying action figures who are dead. So it's no surprise then, that I tend to avoid buying any Game of Thrones action figures for instance. At least 2 exceptions will creep up in my coverage of the DC Direct Legion of Super-Heroes line. One of which is the Legionnaire who makes the Ultimate Sacrifice against the menace of the Sun-Eater, Andrew Nolan a.k.a. Ferro Lad!