Monday, December 19, 2016

Titans/LSH "Universe Ablaze!" #4

Titans/Legion of Super-Heroes: Universe Ablaze! #4 
title: no specific title
writer/layouts: Dan Jurgens
finished art: Phil Jimenez
letterer: Comicraft
colorist: Tom McCraw
separator: Heroic Age
logo design: SJI Associates
editor: Mike McAvennie
cover: Dan Jurgens & Phil Jimenez, color separation by Richard & Tina Horie
reviewer: Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage

The Epic Conclusion! 

Mission Monitor Board:  

The Titans: 

Brother Blood, Universo, Blackfire

Hiding out under Earth, the Legion learn that the Tamaran fleet, being led by Blackfire, is attacking Earth. A large group of Legionnaires goes out to try to repel the invaders. However, it is a suicide mission. Several members, such as Karate Kid, Lightning Lad, and Monstress, are killed.

Somewhere on Earth, Saturn Girl and Starfire are captives of Universo, Brother Blood, and Blackfire. Saturn Girl knows that Lilith is suffering from "flashbacks" to 1,000 years in the past, so she attempts to telepathically nudge Lilith to help her fight against Universo's hypnotic control.

Universo admits that his plan is to murder billions of people all over the galaxy.

Brother Blood comes to see Saturn Girl and Starfire. Saturn Girl takes mental control of him, forcing him to let them out. They head towards Sarhatu to face off against Universo and Blackfire.

Outside of Atlantis, the Devil Fish leads Cosmic Boy and Argent to Atlantis to free the captive Legionnaires. Close by but on land, Tempest stands guard against attack on the mental wave amplifier, located on the island nation of Sarhatu.

Cosmic Boy & Argent free the captive Legionnaires, including Apparation, who for some reason could not phase herself free. The Titans and the remaining Legionnaires meet up on Sarhatu, where Saturn Girl manages to use the mental amplifier to knock out Universo. The Flash manages to free Tempest from Universo's control.

 Saturn Girl then uses the amplifier to mentally go back in time (?) with Lilith. They tell Arsenal to destroy the jewel of Brother Blood's spear, not the spear itself. When he does, Brother Blood becomes powerless, the Titans defeat him and his army, and they are never cryogenically preserved.
In the future, the Titans fade away and Universo is never released by Brother Blood.

In the present, Argent watches as her Legion flight ring disappears from her finger. Was it all a dream?

And this started out so well....

The Devil Fish brings Cosmic Boy and Argent to the captive Legionnaires, and then promptly disappears from the story.

Although the Legion stopped two separate Khundish invasions of Earth without losing a single member, half a dozen Legionnaires die fighting the Tamarans.

As I guessed in my review of volume 1, this story turns out to be a "hoax," i.e. a dream story that folds in on itself after Lilith saves Nightwing after he stops Brother Blood "in the past."

However, as this is a time travel story, I have some questions. How does stopping Brother Blood in "now" prevent Universo from reading about Brother Blood sometime in the future? Brother Blood is still immortal, isn't he? So wouldn't he still be available to free Universo? How did Universo manage to contact Brother Blood in the first place? Plus, why in the world does Universo want to slaughter billion of sentient life forms? His characterization is totally off in this story.

Speaking of not understanding the villains, Brother Blood is used mostly as a hook in this story. He's immortal, so he can somehow go to Titan and free Universo, got it. After that....he's basically relegated to being a minor character. He and Blackfire are Universo's pawns, which is an odd role for him to play.

As I've said before, the art by Dan Jurgens and Phil Jimenez is beautiful. Unfortunately, the story collapses like a house of cards.

And by the way, per my review of the first issue, I never did learn what Kinetix could do. 

Science Police Notes:  
  • This story takes place before the events in Legionnaires #81 and Legion of Super-Heroes #125, before the events leading up to Legion Lost (v1) #1 (2001). Likewise, in Titans continuity this story takes place before Titans #20, wherein Cyborg leaves the team.  
Unfortunately, these issues have not yet been compiled into a Trade Paperback.

1 comment:

  1. Russell, don't worry; by this point *nobody* had any idea what Kinetix could do.