Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Adventure Comics (v2) #1 (#504)


Adventure Comics (v2) #1
Long Live the Legion Part One
Written by Geoff Johns
Pencils & Inks by Clayton Henry
Colors by Brian Reber
Letters by Sal Cipriano
Standard & Variant Covers both by Francis Manapul
Cover Date October 2009
On Sale August 12th, 2009


Following the #0 introduction issue that reprinted the classic tale of the Legion of Super-Heroes first appearance from Adventure Comics #247, Volume Two of Adventure Comics launched with a new issue #1, which also carried a gray translucent 504 on the cover, continuing the numbering from Adventure Comics volume one (which had ended in 1983). The variant cover utilized more of the classic Silver Age DC panel design depicting multiple separate panels or “windows” into the story contents inside; this cover also featured the 504 numbering much more prominently. Issue #1 had two stories, the main story, a 22 page adventure starring the recently resurrected Superboy (Conner Kent) and the back-up feature, which ran 8 pages, and starred the Legion of Super-Heroes.

The first page gives a brief history of the Legion, emphasizing that Earth-One Clark Kent, Superman in the current DCU of the time, did in fact spend his younger years patrolling Smallville as Superboy and occasionally teamed up with the Legion of Super-Heroes. This was would be re-established and further elaborated on in Superman: Secret Origin #2, which would hit shelves two months later in October 2009. The third panel of this first page summarizes how the Legion was formed when Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad (Boy), and Saturn Girl came together and saved the life of R.J. Brande. The next panel then revisits the tale of the Legion’s first appearance in Adventure #247, which once again validated that the classic tale reprinted in Adventure Comics #0 was in the current Legion History continuity for Earth-One (the main DCU Earth). Pages two and three consist of a double page splash which starred Superboy (Clark Kent), Brainiac 5, Timber Wolf, Lightning Lass, Phantom Girl, Polar Boy, Sun Boy, Duplicate Damsel, Cosmic Boy, Wildfire, Dawnstar, Invisible Kid (not shown), Bouncing Boy, Lightning Lad, Ultra-Boy, Shrinking Violet, Night Girl, Saturn Girl, Chameleon Girl, Shadow Lass, & Colossal Boy.

Page four features the story title and credits, and we learn that the narrator on how the Legion formed is Starman (Thom Kallor) in present day, explaining the Legion history to three pigeons. This is our first hint that Starman is a currently a little off in the head. As he continues, he states that he is part of the Legion Espionage Squad and played a hand in resurrecting Conner Kent in the Legion of Three Worlds mini-series. While lost in his discussion with the pigeons, Starman crashes into a bowling alley where he terrifies the locals, before completely destroying the bowling alley and flying off to meet up with Tellus in a swamp. Tellus notes that Starman’s brain is suffering from a degenerative disease, and he attempts to use his telepathic abilities to stabilize Thom’s condition. It is too much for Tellus to handle, but he does restore temporary sanity to Starman. Thom cries out for Dream Girl, and shouts a warning that war is coming in the 31st Century and to be wary of the Black Witch. Starman pleads with Tellus to help him before his mind is completely gone, and the future of the 31st Century with it.

The final page serves as a teaser for six new story threads that will be picked up and continued in future issues of the run. First we see Element Lad as a chemistry teacher in the 21st Century. The next panel shows Superboy (Conner Kent) busting through a wall to save a hostage Dream Girl. The third panel depicts Morgan Edge making a deal with Despero. Fourth we see Brainiac 5 telling Blok that his wounds have healed, but there is a complication. The fifth panel shows a desperate X5 running on the Cosmic Treadmill, saying she has to get back and warn someone as she is getting sucked into the speed force. And finally the last panel teases that a Legionnaire will be joining the ranks of the Green Lantern Corps.

This story was collected/reprinted in the DC Comics Presents: Legion of Super-Heroes 100-Page Spectacular #2 prestige format book that hit stands December 28, 2011. 

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