Friday, February 1, 2019

Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds #3, Part 1

Final Crisis Legion of  3 Worlds #3 is the halfway mark of the 5 issue series. And this review will cover the first half of this issue. That means when this review is over we are officially at the halfway mark of this story. And what a place to be at that fulcrum.

Like in the preceding two, writer Geoff Johns puts a lot into the issue. It is as dense as prior. But much of this piece is devoted to battle. Johns really does his best to showcase as many Legionnaires and as many villains as he can. As a result, artist George Perez is put through his paces, dealing with panels stuffed with characters as well as innumerable small inset panels focusing in on some one-on- one battles. If you thought Crisis on Infinite Earths was a heavy lift for Perez, imagine stuffing everything that happened in those 12 issues into 5. You catch my drift? Perez deserves a medal here.

Unfortunately, one thing that comes through in this review is that Johns is really playing as much in his own sandbox as he is in the Legion's. Certainly Superboy Prime, a Johns favorite, is playing a big role in this story. He isn't exactly part of classic Legion lore. But now we see that Sodam Yat, the Daxamite Green Lantern and another Johns fave, is also going to get serious screen time.

For me, I'd much rather have this be a series completely steeped in the Legion rather than looking outward to bring people in. Why not have three Mordrus combining their might? Or the Fatal Fifteen?

One last piece of intro is that this first half of the issue sort of reads like the back half of the last. There really isn't much plot progression here. I talk about the issues being stuffed. But much of that here is just sensory overload from the battles.

On to the book:

The issue opens with the burial rites of Rond Vidar on Oa. Standing on a landscape of powerless rings, Sodam Yat explains to Mon-El that there is no soul pure enough to grant a ring to someone. Mogo is dead. And Yat, as the last surviving Green Lantern and possessor of the Ion spirit, has sinned too much to feel he can make the call.

I have to be honest, I don't really know what Yat did that was so awful. Was that known? Or was that Johns planting a few seeds for upcoming Green Lantern stories. Remember, we are 1000 years into the future. Maybe he was planning a 'downfall' story?

As I have mentioned, this miniseries is a dense read. Look at the dialogue balloons here as a good example. Perez must have done layouts first to make sure he could accommodate the speeches. There is no reason for Shadow Lass to be that far back in the second panel except to give space to Mon-El's word balloon.

What I do like is that Mon can empathize with Yat. Yes he is a Daxamite. Yes, they both worry about lead poisoning. But moreover, both have suffered an eternity of loneliness. Mon was stuck in the Phantom Zone for 1000 years. He had to have hope ... he had to overcome fear ... to not let despair overwhelm him.

And that little reminder about how Mon-El has been able to shake the dust off the doldrums seems to ignite something in Yat.

Going full on 'crazy Hal Jordan', Yat dons 10 rings and recites the Lantern Oath.

I have to say, I'd feel pretty good about going into war with a Daxamite Green Lantern on my side.

Back on Earth the battle rages on.

Perez gives us this amazing double page spread of the LSH/LSV brawl.

I can only imagine how long it took Perez to block out this page, deciding who is fighting where.

Just an amazing battle page.

Then Superman squares off directly with Superboy.

In case some readers didn't know Prime's innocent beginnings, we get a brief origin. We recap his love of Laurie and his love of comics and the loss of his world.

Superman asks the question 'what would Laurie say?'

That isn't something Prime wants to hear. In fact, it infuriates him. He perforates Superman's hand with heat vision and renews his efforts.

(Gruffly) Laurie?? Why do you keep saying that name??

And there can't be a Crisis without a couple of deaths of minor characters to make it feel important.

For example, Myg (also known as Karate Kid 2) joins in the fight.

But very good karate can't match hand beams. He is vaporized by Radiation Roy.

I call this the 'Kid Psycho' death of the series. Remember Kid Psycho dying in Crisis on Infinite Earths?

And while most of the LSV is interested in fighting, some are more interested in personal quests.

Mordru might be wearing a LSV ring and might have joined the group but he has one thing alone on his mind .. recapturing the White Witch. To help him gather her as well as aid in the battle against the Legion, he releases Shadow Demons.

It definitely gives the whole thing a Crisis on Infinite Earths feeling. Shadow Demons were the infantry of the Anti-Monitor.

Mordru's obsession is fascinating. But I also like Universo just sitting out the melee. He isn't a fighter he's a schemer. He'll bide his time.

Given who Prime organized under his banner, it was unlikely the Legion would be able to hold off the onslaught.

Time finally catches up. Despite some minor wins, the villains eventually wear them down with numbers.

As before, we get some quick inset panels singling out villains and heroes. One by one, we see the Legionnaires fall.

Luckily, this is Legion of 3 Worlds.

That means we have two whole other teams out there.

And the time is right to unify the forces. Just as the 'original' Legion falls, the Threeboot and the Reboot arrive.


What a great double splash. It is so cool to look for the different incarnations all flying in formation!

Will this army of good guys be able to defeat the horde of bad guys??

I'll hold off my grade for this issue until I finish the review next week. But pretty good start, especially for the art.

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