Recap: A giant planet has entered our solar system, harboring technoconstruct 'emulations' which have been attacking United Planets for some time. And the UP has welcomed diplomats from this planet, allowing them to scan much of Earth and even drain the life essence from a UP official. Meanwhile, Princess Projectra has been supplementing her powers and preparing to wreak her revenge on the UP for allowing Orando to be destroyed by Praetor Lemnos. And there is the standard internal strife of this team during this run, sexual infidelity, and personality clashes.
My first set of reviews on this site was the 5 Years Later run by Giffen and the Bierbaums. I loved that book. But as I was reviewing the later issues, I was struck with ennui. There was a brilliance to the first three years of the 5YL run, especially the first year. As it rolled on, I was just more and more disappointed. The book was a fine super-hero book. But it wasn't the heady brew of those early issues. I was bored.
Now I am reviewing the Threeboot. And I am suffering in a different way in the later issues. These later issues don't bore me. They irritate me. Because this just doesn't read like a Legion book. Every issue seems to have problems. Whether the gratuitous sexual innuendo and cheesecake or Legionnaires acting horribly out of character or the meandering plots, nothing seems to be right about this book.
Don't get me wrong, the early Threeboot book had its issues as well. That wasn't 5YL either.
But this book ... I'm sort of done with it.
And thankfully I am almost done with it. One more issue.
The earliest Legion stories I read as a child were reprints of earlier tales in Adventure Comics. The title at the time was featuring Supergirl, and Legion reprints were common. Two stories that left an impression on me were "The Revolt of the Girl Legionnaires" originally from Adventure #326 and "The Weddings That Wrecked the Legion" from Adventure #337.
These two stories made my preschool mind aware of two things. First: how progressive the future was in that men and women, even as teenagers, were all equal – as opposed to the present day where most super-teams only had one female, like Sue in the Fantastic Four and Wanda in the Avengers. Secondly I was made aware that most of the female Legionnaires were paired off with male Legionnaires. Straight in the Silver Age, but the Legion was ahead of its time gender-wise in the years to come. So it's true, the Legion taught me equality, and sexuality, before I even hit kindergarten.
So for the day before Valentines' Day, let's take a look at couples, Legion style!
Recap: An alien planet is parked in our solar system, encased in a gravitational field to stop it from wreaking havoc on the galaxy. An alien technoconstruct army has been attacking the UP for some time. The UP has tried to hem in the Legion but is currently working with them. Brainy has married Dream Girl in his mind after having a physical fling with a medium channeling Nura. Dream Girl was unfortunately psychically blinded within Brainy's mind. And Projectra is planning an overthrow. So what else can happen?
For those who have been following these reviews of the Jim Shooter/Francis Manapul run on Legion of Super-Heroes, I thank you. I have been pretty harsh in my reviews of these books. I know we aren't supposed to curse the darkness. We should light a candle. But I haven't found much to like in this run, especially these issues nearing the end.
Legion of Super-Heroes #48 doesn't break the trend. With so many plot lines being juggled, Shooter decides to add another. I am unclear when Shooter knew this title was going to be canceled (two issues from now) but you would think that if he knew we were that close to the end line he would be shoring things up not adding more.
At the very least, we are merging two of the storylines into one. In this issue we learn the flying planet is the source of the technoconstructs. Hurrah for that. And I was happy to see Sun Boy back in the fold. Shooter closes off a plot from the Waid run.
As for the complaint of casual sexism and unnecessary cheesecake in this run, we do get one superfluous scene which fits the bill. At least it didn't reach the wretchedness of last issues treatment of Meander and Dreamy.
And, as is typical of this run, Manapul brings a nice feel to the art here.