Friday, March 25, 2016
Threeboot: Legion of Super-Heroes #10
Recap: The United Planets is under attack from Praetor Lemnos and his super-powered team Terror Firma. Lemnos has put the federation in a state of chaos, attacking key planets and nudging others to secede. He hopes to shake the foundation of the times, embracing a progressive society over the calm, secure doldrums that exist. That idea of progress is also espoused by the Legion but they use different means to achieve that end. But instead of preparing for battle, the Legion is beset with internal strife. That is, until the front line comes nearer.
In Legion of Super-Heroes #9, the team was the most fractured and splintered I have ever seen it. It was only thanks to a nudge by Invisible Kid at the end of that issue that led to Cosmic Boy staying with the team and leading an away team into combat against Terror Firma.
While that internal strife is hardly over, it is pushed to the back burner in Legion of Super-Heroes #10. It has become abundantly clear that the team needs to put their differences aside if they are going to save the galaxy. In fact, the only up-front issue is the distrust everyone seems to have for Invisible Kid. The team feels he has sown the seeds of discord by telling Brainy that Cosmic Boy went into his lab, a charge Invisible Kid vehemently denies.
With war on the horizon, the team goes on the offensive. I think this is the first time in this book that we have seen a true battle sequence, enemy team vs. Legion. And it reads great. The book continues to look beautiful with Barry Kitson returning on pencils and being inked by Drew Geraci.
But don't think that the unstable reunion of the team is going to lead immediately to sunnier times. This is a war book right now. And that means casualties.
The book opens with the team returning from the planet Helegyn where they had battled Terror Firma. While they look a bit haggard, the team has Elysion, the leader of the Terror Firma team in tow.
It is hear where we first learn of Dreamy's latest vision, or lack of vision. Her precognition does not extend past several hours in the future. She can only imagine what sort of disaster could do such a thing.
This is the first we have seen of an angry Dreamy. She has been happy-go-lucky, awkward, and confident in the past. But seeing her like this is new and adds some suspense to the scene. After all, this must be terrifying to her.
As I said before, the team knows it needs to put its petty squabbles behind them.
The team addresses the Legion followers outside the headquarters, letting them all know that now is not the time for back-biting and in-fighting. Everyone needs to be on the same page to fight the incoming threat. Despite preaching of individuality and freedom, the Legion now has to be of one purpose. "Individual differences are an unaffordable luxury."
Even Brainy needs to admit that he can't win this on his own.
I have to say, it was right about this issue that I began to like the idea of the Legion as a youth movement rather than a team .
We then flashback to Helegyn were we actually see some of the battle.
It was so good to actually see the team working together to fight other characters. So seeing Cos lead an effort with Star Boy and Colossal Boy (Micro Lad) was incredibly fun.
And then we see how Elysion got captured.
Using a mix of Shadow Lass's cloaking and Element Lad's presumed fraility, He is led to the dark (and intensely cold) side of Helegyn. Without a transsuit flight ring, he is immediately incapacitated.
We haven't seen much of her, but I very much have liked what I have seen of this Shadow Lass. Strong and bold, she has shined in her moments.
The team seems to be enjoying this small victory when Projectra points out something obvious. Elysion is wearing Brin Londo's coat.
The Lone Wolf had gone on a reconnaissance mission, hiding out in Lemnos' base. It is clear now he was discovered and probably dead.
Between the win on Helegyn, the concern for the UP holding up, and now direct attacks, it is clear the Legion needs to go on the offensive.
Meanwhile, the more immediate threat of Dream Girl's future black out is being investigated by Brainy. He can only think of major disasters, rips in the time stream, supernovas, massive entropic storms which could cause this disconnect. The other option is Lemnos simply blocking it.
Either way, something big is about to happen!
It is great to see these two working together so closely since their prior interactions in the book were pretty contentious. Could there be a relationship budding here?
There are three key planets which need protecting. Cos brings the team together to strategize. Three teams are set up to head out and defend.
As I said above, there is no wiggle room for dissent. The team needs to be a unit. So seeing Cos take control of the tactical efforts was great. He needs to be the leader here.
The teams leave for their sites, leaving only Dream Girl, Invisible Kid, and Brainiac 5 manning the headquarters. Not exactly a powerful bunch.
Brainy probably feels that Cos has handled the battle aspect, leaving him to handle to information side of things. This includes Dreamy's mystery. Why is her vision black in the next few hours?
He promises her that he will solve this mystery for her, something she finds sweet. She sheds a tear. Could she know what is about to happen? Could she have feelings for him (she did say jokingly they were going to be married)?
Still, there is no denying the chemistry here. I like these two together.
Members of the Legion faithful outside are sleeper agents, suicide bombers.
Any number of them detonate both outside the headquarters and inside.
Enough damage is done that the Legion headquarters actually collapses.
And with only Dreamy, Brainy, and Invisible Kid around, the damage is hardly contained.
I wasn't expecting this turn at all. I was finally feeling like the team was moving forward, maybe a step ahead of Lemnos who seemed to be lapping them in this race for galactic control.
But then this happened and I was floored.
If I wasn't expecting kids to be suicide bombers, I certainly wasn't expecting Dream Girl to die. We are just into this new reboot. Killing off a well-established, some might say beloved, character is bold and surprising.
It is a testament to Mark Waid that I wasn't expecting this. Dreamy doesn't see past a few hours ahead. One simple answer is that she has died. But instead, he throws feints like Chronovores and entropic storms. And being a comic reader, I actually thought that cosmic upheavals like that were more likely an answer. I didn't even think Dream Girl would die because ... how could Dream Girl die??
I was floored when I first read this. And I was stunned how much the writing was on the wall on the reread. Even that tear from Dreamy a few pages back is powerful. Maybe she knew this was possible ... or probable.
This Legion book was different than prior ones already, a true reboot. The team was young again. They were political. They were defiant. Things already felt new. But killing off a veteran like this ... as a Legion fan ... I felt like we were really in uncharted waters.
Dream Girl has died.
So what did you all think?