Thursday, December 22, 2016

Reboot: Legion of Super-Heroes #75

Legion of Super-Heroes (v4) #75 (December 1995)
title: "2-Timer"
writers: Tom Peyer and Tom McCraw
penciller: Lee Moder

inker: Ron Boyd
lettering: Pat Brosseau
colorist: Tom McCraw
assistant editor: Mike McAvennie
editor: KC Carlson
cover: Alan Davis & Mark Farmer
reviewers: Siskoid & Shotgun

Mission Monitor Board:  
Brainiac 5, Chameleon, Cosmic Boy, Invisible Kid, Leviathan, Saturn Girl, Shrinking Violet, Triad, XS

Golden Gladiator (cameo), Lori Morning, Ron Morning, Rond Vidar, Lori's school friends, a 20th-Century cop and paramedics; in flashback: Atom (Ray Palmer)

Chronos; in flashback: Atomic Skull, Black Spider, Cluemaster, Dr. Alchemy, Gorilla Grodd, Mister Freeze, Neron, Ocean Master, Poison Ivy, Psycho-Pirate, Riddler, Shade

When the Legion went back in time to get their hands on a means to rescue Valor from the Stasis Zone, they lost XS in the time stream. Meanwhile in the larger DC Universe, the demon Neron has offered various villains and heroes a devilish contract...

XS is lost in the time stream, but imagining Cosmic Boy's encouragement, she finds her way to a time breach created by Chronos. He's just been given more power by the demon Neron to travel through time, but has also been cursed. Each time he uses his powers, it ages him, so he must drain the youth out of kids to keep himself alive. His sidekick Lori Morning is younger than she appears, for example, and she and XS, despite not speaking the same language, soon find teenagers turned into venerable old men in a cell. Figuring that XS used a time machine, he vows to get his hands on it so he can fix his problem.
Meanwhile, Brainiac 5 has entered the time stream looking for XS, but the trail runs cold. Fellow scientist Rond Vidar gives Legion HQ a call to see why a bunch of time disturbances are connected to the location, and Cosmic Boy races to the lab to shut Brainy's machine down. They come upon Chronos threatening Lori, and here the story becomes fractured as we cut from these events - Chronos vs. the Legion - and those in XS' time-frame, where Chronos has just killed Lori's dad.
In the future, Lori tells the Legion to destroy Chronos' glove and they do, but the temporal fallout causes part of the HQ to crash down on their heads. In the past, XS is drained of her youth and then told by Lori to destroy the glove and there (then?) too, there's an explosion and the roof collapses. Chronos is killed by falling debris and XS reconstructs the glove at superspeed, races to the aged teenagers, turns them back to normal, then makes herself young again. But then Chronos appears, sees his own corpse, grabs Lori and disappears. In the aftermath, XS hears someone refer to Wally West, a name she recognizes.
Glad to see XS again! It’s great that she’s the one to end up in this situation as she is friendly and kind-hearted, so connects almost immediately with Lori. She also takes the time to save the boys before making herself young again. That was a big gamble to take and, again, it just goes to show how great she is. I must say that even as a granny she looks badass! It was nice of Brainy to try and find her in the time stream. Now, with his time machine all destroyed, I wonder how he will be able to make it back. Also, will it be by himself or will he find XS and bring her back at the same time?
Exactly what is going on in the last part of the comic? I’m not sure. Is Chronos in both places at the same time or is it just a coincidence – or some sort of weird habit he’s having – that explains why he’s repeating the same things? Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s clever and interesting, but it confused me a little. Because of the kidnapping at the very end of the comic, I think they decided to show both timelines simultaneously, but that the part with XS happens before the part with the Legion. Whatever it is, I think it was a fun way to show how time is relative – even more so for a time traveler.
Ooooooh a translation key!! Did I just go back to Superboy #21 to translate all of the Interlac dialogue? Yes… Yes I did! Am I now able to read Interlac without the translation key? Well I know what most letters are and I use common sense to fill in the blanks so, yes. I’ve always been a fan of these secret message games.
You're not alone. I thought the way they weaved the two timelines together was confusing as well. And I'm both a comics fan AND a time travel expert. The next issue will explain everything, hopefully, but for now, there's a big paradox at play here (in a Legion story?! Get outta here). If the future sequence happens in Chronos' future (he's already killed Ron Morning and has Lori), then who is the corpse the Lori-grabbing Chronos saw? Where did HE come from? Events are mirrored in both timelines, so... Are there parallel Chronoses in play? Timey-wimey, eh?
The recent time travel shenanigans come just in time for the Legion to take part in the Underworld Unleashed crossover, which was a nice enough ploy to turn laughable villains into real menaces, but with hindsight, not a lot of the changes put into action took hold permanently. I don't remember this version of Chronos in any other story. The look is a bit gimpy for me, but I don't dislike it. Given he's always been a bit of a fashion nightmare, this is probably his best, if least remembered, costume.
I don't really remember Lori Morning, but she'll have a sizable role to play in the Legion books to come. Already, we have the idea of a little girl who can't wait to grow up, and that works with what my quick flip-throughs of future issues shows me she'll become. Don't want to spoil it here, but I hope Shotgun liked the character, because she's here to stay. She does tread some of the same ground Kinetix does though (speaking of which, it's about time we check in on her, am I right?).

I'm also maybe wondering what we're going to do about XS slumming it in non-Legion books...

Science Police Notes:  
  • The issue is part of the Underworld Unleashed crossover event (and sports its banner), in which the demon Neron boosted the power of several B-villains, in this case, classic Atom villain, Chronos.
  • First appearance of Lori Morning, who will go on to appear in three dozen Legion comics issues.
  • This is Rond Vidar's first Reboot appearance. In the original continuity, he was Universo's son and was tapped to be the last Green Lantern, but mostly worked on time experiments with Brainiac 5.
  • The letters page includes an Interlac translation key so readers can access what XS is saying to Chronos.
  • XS' story continues in Impulse #9, as XS tries to find Wally West AKA the Flash.


  1. XS continues to be my favorite character. It was great to see her in action again after what seemed like ages since she did anything useful.

    I definitely agree with the comments on how confusing the timeline is on these. There's something I just can't rectify in my mind and I can't quite place it. It's bothered me for years.

    As for Lori ... given some of her later history, I think the character must have been inspired somehow by Glorith. As in G(LORI)TH. Lori Morning > Morning Glory > Glorith. Am I reading too much into this? But she's blond, and time traveler adjacent....

  2. Oooh I really like that! Post-Zero Hour Glorith... It's easy to imagine her "quest for power" leading her to become a Time Trapper type of character. In fact, the Comic Book DataBase gives one of her aliases as the Time Trapper of Earth-247 and searching for Glorith turns up a result for Lori. But then the info itself is inconclusive. It was never confirmed and is now unlikely to be. Still, great point!