Monday, September 22, 2014

How Can You Not Love the Legion of Super-Heroes?

Kyle Benning: New to the World of Blogging
Power: An unquenchable thirst & passion for the Bronze Age of comics

What’s not to love?!?! The Legion of Super-Heroes combine so many great comic and sci-fi themes and motifs all rolled into one fantastic book featuring the largest super team in comics, protecting not just Earth, but whole galaxies across the universe in the far flung future!

There are so many great characters: aliens in every size, shape, and color you can imagine. There were members on the team representing all corners of the vast DC Universe, and they all united as one giant super team. And just look at all of the amazing super powers these characters have, 12th Level Intellect! Super Strength! Flight! Shape Changing! Invisibility! Intangibility! Duplicity! Invulnerability! Electricity Generation & Manipulation! And so much more! You also can’t deny the appeal of not just planet Earth finally united and peaceful, but a whole collection of planets across the universe existing together in harmony. In the modern world you can't turn on the television without being reminded that the world is constantly at war; the Legion is a nice little escape into a setting where not only Earth is unified, but a whole Universe is capable of putting aside their differences for the benefit of all.

My favorite character is Superman, the first and greatest super hero of all, so I have always loved the idea that his super feats and incredible character continues to inspire young heroes to uphold truth and justice (and the United Planets Way) one thousand years in the future. Not only that, but a young Clark Kent that often finds himself an outcast due to his super-secret, gets the opportunity to travel to the 30th Century, and hang out with a bunch of Super Teens with powers as incredible as his own. Maybe it's my bias as a Superman/Superboy fan, but I always found the Legion of Super-Heroes as the premiere and most fun young super-team out there. They always just had that "it" factor that put them ahead of the Teen Titans for me. Whether it was the huge cast of incredible alien characters (complete with the handy note of name, planet, and power set) or maybe it was the futuristic action-packed fun; either way I was hooked after reading my first Legion adventure (Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes #242).

As far as favorite character from the Legion goes, that is a really tough one to narrow down, but if I had to pick just one (outside of Superboy of course), I think my favorite would have to be Mon-El (or Lar-Gand if you prefer). I’ve always dug that the Daxamites have nearly identical powers to the Kryptonians, except with their vulnerabilities flip flopped. The long lost brother dynamic that Mon-El and Superboy shared was always something I enjoyed. His situation of being stuck in the Phantom Zone to prevent his death by lead poisoning was always a tragic character dynamic. I especially enjoyed his post-Final Crisis and pre-New 52 run as the last member of the Green Lantern Corps in the 30th Century (Adventure Comics v2 and Legion of Super-Heroes (v6). He had a great costume design, I really wish DC Direct or Mattel would produce a figure with that fantastic costume (I even had a letter published in the pages of Adventure Comics #527 recommending such a figure!).

With a huge cast that offers at least one young hero that every reader can identify with, there is no way you can't love the Legion of Super-Heroes! LONG LIVE THE LEGION!!!


  1. Hm... a character I identify with? It's Brainiac 5, but I don't think I'm a particular Brainy fan (Vril Dox is another matter). Maybe some self-loathing there?

    I've really never been able to pin down who my very favorite Legionnaire was.

    What's not to love indeed. Maybe non-lovers just never get the taste they need to love it. So many flavors!

  2. I'm with Siskoid, I have a whole group of favorites. I have always been attracted to the "oddball" or "second tier" characters, so in the Legion that means Chameleon Boy, Chemical King, Tellus, Tyroc, and Sensor Girl. Actually, that would make quite an away team!!!

  3. Nice line-up. I'm even more enamored of the third tier, so people like Bouncing Boy, Matter-Eater Lad, and the Subs (who 5YL all joined). But also non-comedy characters like Ferro Lad and Triplicate Girl.