Sunday, May 31, 2015

LSH Covert to Cover 2: Curt Swan

Here's our second installment of our Legion of Super-Bloggers feature on all of the comic-book cover appearances of the Legion in chronological order.

Last time we went from their debut in Adventure Comics #247 (April 1958) until they had won the lead feature in Adventure Comics, from #300.  Still, they were not featured on every cover! For example, although they were on #307 (the debut of Element Lad), they were not on the cover of #308 (the debut of Light Lass)! In fact, after Element Lad's debut they were not cover-featured again until Adventures Comics #311...which, ironically, featured the Legion of Substitute Heroes! We therefore pick up with that issue.  

Sharp-eyed readers will notice that the Legion was not on the cover of Adventure Comics #315, either.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Version 6 Shadow Lass is HOT

Shadow Lass is hot, no matter which version of Legion of Super-Heroes you are reading. Case in point: LSH volume 6, which ran for sixteen issues in 2010 and 2011. Stories were by Paul Levitz, with art by Yildiray Cinar and Wayne Faucher and Francis Portela. 

Tasmia Mallor, the blue-skinned brunette wearing black leather, tends to stand out in group shots. 

Friday, May 29, 2015

5YL Legion of Super-Heroes #37

Recap: Five years ago, the universe became a darker place, the gleam of hope and optimism faded, and nefarious political organizations and galactic empires spread the influence over the universe like a shroud. The Legion of Super-Heroes, a last bastion against that darkness, disbanded; its members scattered, back to their homeworlds or seeking other opportunities. One of those Legionnaires, Thom "Star Boy" Kallor, put adventuring behind and became a batball coach. Meanwhile, Earth has finally shrugged off the control of the Dominion. But the planet is in shambles.

I have now covered three years of the 5YL Legion of Super-Heroes continuity. One of the parts of this series that has absolutely struck me has been the creative risks we, as readers, have seen. From none-page panels, to back matter, to text pages with a single illustration, to the dense nature of the story, the actual issues have been brilliant. And from a pacing point of view, the creators have done a great job of feeding interest and then pulling back a little, keeping the reader engaged and wanting more. Rest issues and side missions have been inserted in the oddest places, at points where I desperately wanted to read more of the main plots. It has been dizzying and fabulous. And, looking back at this series, now 20+ years old, it feels ahead of its time.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Superboy starring The Legion #221

Superboy starring The Legion of Super-Heroes #221 (Nov, 1976)
title: "The Trillion-Dollar Trophies!"
writer: Jim Shooter
penciller: Mike Grell
inker: Bob Wiacek
editor: Murray Boltinoff
cover: Mike Grell
reviewer: Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage

Mission Monitor Board:  
Superboy, Timber Wolf, Shadow Lass, Colossal Boy, Chameleon Boy, Light Lass, Shrinking Violet, Cosmic Boy

RJ Brande

Grimbor, Charma

On Earth, Superboy and Timber Wolf answer alarms from the Metropolis Fusion Powerspheres. Grimbor catches Timber Wolf by surprise, and Charma stops Superboy from helping his friend.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Who's Who: The White Witch

The White Witch
by Russell & Siskoid 

Real Name: Mysa
Super-Power(s): Sorcery
Planet of Origin: born on Naltor; raised on Zerox
Legion Seniority: White Witch was asked to join immediately after The Great Darkness Saga. She is Legionnaire #33.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #21

The Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #21 (April, 1986)
title: "Obsession!"
writer: Paul Levitz
penciller: Greg LaRocque
inkers: Larry Mahlstedt and Mike DeCarlo
lettering: John Costanza
colorist: Carl Gafford
editor: Karen Berger 
cover: Greg LaRocque & Larry Mahlstedt (signed)
reviewer: Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage

Mission Monitor Board:  
Brainiac 5, Element Lad, Quislet, Lighting Lass, Shrinking Violet, Chameleon Boy, Colossal Boy, Timber Wolf, Star Boy, Sensor Girl, Mon-El, Shadow Lass, Ultra Boy, Phantom Girl

Science Police officer Shvaughn Erin

Emerald Empress, The Persuader, various members of the Legion of Super-Villains and League of Super-Assassins

Monday, May 25, 2015

Memorial Day 2015

In the United States, the last Monday of May is set aside as a federal holiday called Memorial Day. It is a day to remember all of those who died while serving in the US Armed Forces.

In the 30th and 31st Century there is probably a similar holiday. Unfortunately.

Here at Legion of Super Bloggers we salute all members of the Armed Forces, in every country on Earth who have given the ultimate sacrifice so that we can sit here, drink Diet Mountain Dew, and argue over geeky fan-boy stupid stuff.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Art Institute of Zwen: Jose Luis Garcia Lopez (PBHN)

If a picture is worth a thousand words......Jose Luis Garcia Lopez merits an entire Encyclopedia Britannica worth of praise. It's a damn shame that you can count his actual Legion of Super-Heroes work on one hand.

In the meantime, let's play "Spot the Legionnaire" on a few of his wonderful PR stuff.

Here's the DC/Superman Fan Club poster circa 1978.  

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Invisible Kid I: Hot or Not?

What happens when we let a group of candid women with no real Legion knowledge deliver their first impressions of the original Invisible Kid? For entertainment purposes only. Rated PG-13.
Our honorary Legion members are...
Art Girl - Is invisible because she lives in the deep outskirts of town.
DJ Nath - Is invisible in that way librarians can be.
Havana Nights - Wears camouflage pajamas in an effort not to be seen by those who would have her do household chores.
Lip-Bomb - Has an invisible means of communication called telepathy. Follow her You-Tube channel, Mind Linked, which she shares with her sister Nath, along with her very MIND.
Shotgun - Not invisible. Definitely not stealthy.
Moderator: Siskoid - Wishes he WERE invisible.

Friday, May 22, 2015

5YL Legion of Super-Heroes #36

Recap: The war is finally over! The Dominion has left Earth! The planet is in shambles, but at least its people are free. And that means it's time for some reflection, some new beginnings, and some taking stock of things now that peace has been achieved.

Legion of Super-Heroes #36 is the finale of the epic Terra Mosaic storyline which has dominated the book for just under a year. It has been a tremendous tale to tell as we have been dealing with politics writ large, personal triumphs and tragedies on a smaller scale, and the usual sidetracks and creative risks that this book is known for.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Superboy starring The Legion #220

Superboy starring The Legion of Super-Heroes #220 (Oct, 1976)
title: "The Super Soldiers of the Slave-Maker!"
writer: Jim Shooter
penciller: Mike Grell
inker: Bob Wiacek
editor: Murray Boltinoff  
cover: Mike Grell
reviewer: Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage

Mission Monitor Board:  
Wildfire, Ultra Boy, Phantom Girl, Superboy, Mon-El, Lightning Lad, Element Lad

The dictator of Tharrg and his war-loving race; cowardice

On Murgador, the people are enslaved. One of them, a young man named Pollor, has called the Legion for help, and they have finally arrived. However, although Pollor would rather die than live enslaved, the majority of the people want the Legion to go. Dinda, the leader, demands that they leave. Legion leader Mon-El counter-demands an explanation before agreeing to do so. Dinda explains that the warrior race from the nearby planet Tharrg planted a bomb in Murgador's core that will be detonated if the people disobeys Tharrg's commands.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Who's Who: Invisible Kid (II)

Invisible Kid
by Russell & Siskoid

Real Name: Jacques Foccart
Super-Power(s): Invisibility
Planet of Origin: Earth
Legion Seniority: Invisible Kid (II) was asked to join the Legion after he helped them defeat Computo. He was originally nominated by Brainiac 5 to take his place, but Brainy's resignation was not accepted. Invisible Kid, however, became Legionnaire #32.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #20

The Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #20 (March, 1986)
title: "To Control A World"
writer: Paul Levitz
penciller: Greg LaRocque
inker: Larry Mahlstedt
colorist: John Costanza
lettering: Carl Gafford
editor: Karen Berger 
cover: Greg LaRocque & Larry Mahlstedt (signed)
reviewer: Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage

Mission Monitor Board:  
Ultra Boy, Phantom Girl, Chameleon Boy, Shrinking Violet, Element Lad, Sun Boy, Dawnstar, Wildfire, Mon-El, Lightning Lass, Shadow Lass, Brainiac 5, Sensor Girl

Tyr and his mobile planet of war, Tyrraz

Monday, May 18, 2015

Adventures in the DC Universe #10

Adventures in the DC Universe #10
starring the Legion of Super-Heroes!
"The Blobs"
Written by Steve Vance
Pencilled by John Delaney
Inked by Ron Boyd
Colored by Tom McGraw
Lettered by Tim Harkins
Released on November 19th 1997

I believe this marks the first appearance of the Legion of Super-Heroes in the DC Animated Universe. In addition to this series, Adventures in the DC Universe, the DCAU at the time this issue went on sale (November 1997) consisted of Batman the Animated Series, The New Batman Adventures, and Superman the Animated Series, as well as their comic tie-in series Batman Adventures, Batman & Robin Adventures, and Superman Adventures. The Legion of Super-Heroes wouldn't make their onscreen debut in the DCAU until the 1998 episode of Superman the Animated Series titled, "New Kids in Town."

Monitor Duty:
Apparition, Brainiac-5, Chameleon, Bouncing Boy, Ferro Lad, Cosmic Boy, Saturn Girl, Gates, Invisible Kid, Livewire (Lightning Lad), Spark (Lightning Lass), Kinetix, Sensor, Shvaughn Erin (Science Police Liaison), Star Boy, Matter-Eater Lad, Triad, Ultra Boy, Violet (Shrinking Violet), and XS.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Art Institute of Zwen: Steve Garcia

Steve Garcia is a talented artist who does silhouettes of various super-heroes on his Deviant Art page. 

Here are a few from the Legion of Super-Heroes!

First, here's the gang together....

And here are the ones available individually, better to see and appreciate them....

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Hot: Emerald Empress

While there are tons of beautiful ladies among the Legion, sometimes it's the bad guys who take our breath away! A prime example is the Emerald Empress!

Friday, May 15, 2015

5YL Legion of Super-Heroes #35

Recap: The Dominators are fighting a two-front war on Earth, dealing with the UP fleet in orbit as well as the insurrection of the rebel troops on the ground. In deep space, the Dominion homeworld of Elia is being overrun by the Khunds. Their empire is reeling. Meanwhile on Earth, the SW6 Legion has joined the Earth war, aiding the rebels and trying to reclaim Earth for its people. After simmering, and then boiling over, this particular Earthwar seems to be steamrolling to its conclusion.

Legion of Super-Heroes #35 basically ends the UP/Dominator war. After months of buildup, after intermittent skirmishes, after different groups jockeying for position, we get a conclusion. The creators of this book have really done well over the course of this arc, making sure we check in on all the factions, giving everyone their moment to shine, while weaving a complicated story looking at the tragedy of war. But this issue brings us to a sort of conclusion. And it includes one of those "ka-pow" moments that dot this series and make it special.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Superboy starring The Legion #219

Superboy starring The Legion of Super-Heroes #219 (Sept, 1976)
title: "Plunder Ploy of the Fatal Five!"
writer: Jim Shooter
penciller: Mike Grell
inker: Bob Wiacek
editor: Murray Boltinoff  
cover: Mike Grell (signed)
reviewer: Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage

Mission Monitor Board:  
Shrinking Violet, Superboy, Colossal Boy, Brainiac 5, Lightning Lad, Light Lass, Saturn Girl, Mon-El, Sun Boy, Ultra Boy

The Fatal Five

On Imsk, Shrinking Violet is on vacation with her boyfriend, Duplicate Boy, when Validus and the Persuader raid a micro-circuit factory. Duplicate Boy stops the Persuader using Superboy's strength, but when he tries to "absorb" Validus' power, he blacks out long enough for the Persuader to rip him open with his atomic axe. The Legion picks up Duplicate Boy, but he is in bad shape. They leave him at Legion HQ as they head to Imsk.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Who's Who: Blok

by Russell & Siskoid

Real Name: None
Super-Power(s): Super-strength, near-invulnerability, tremendous mass
Planet of Origin: Dryad
Legion Seniority: Blok was asked to join after he reformed and helped the Legion defeat The Dark Man. He was originally a member of the League of Super-Assassins, making him the only Legionnaire with an actual criminal record. He is Legionnaire #31.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #19

The Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #19 (Feb, 1986)
title: "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished!"
writer: Paul Levitz
penciller: Greg LaRocque
inker: Larry Mahlstedt
lettering: Agustin Mas
colorist: Carl Gafford
editor: Karen Berger 
cover: Greg LaRocque & Larry Mahlstedt (signed)
reviewer: Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage

Mission Monitor Board:  
Phantom Girl, Ultra Boy, Element Lad, Chameleon Boy, Shrinking Violet, Colossal Boy, Timber Wolf, Blok, Mon-El, Shadow Lass, Sensor Girl, White Witch, Brainiac 5, Wildfire, Dawnstar; cameos of others

A discouraged Controller, the planet Tyrraz

Monday, May 11, 2015

Adventure Comics volume 2 #0

This era of the Legion of Super-Heroes comic stars the original Legion, the same Legion that was brought back into the DCU in the pages of Justice League and JSA during the Lightning Saga by Geoff Johns. After the Lightning Saga, this same incarnation of the Legion of Super-Heroes would be seen again in the pages of the Geoff Johns penned Action Comics #858-863 published in 2007 & 2008.

After the Superman & the Legion of Super-Heroes arc in Action Comics concluded in March of 2008, this original incarnation of the Legion next appeared in the Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds five issue mini-series by Geoff Johns and George Perez. The series debuted in August of 2008 and concluded in July of 2009, with Adventure Comics volume 2 #1 hitting stands the following month. However, heralding the return of an ongoing Legion feature and the return of the historic Adventure Comics was a #0 that was released in February 2009 with a $1 price tag.  Adventure Comics volume 2 #0 reprinted the origin of the Legion of Super-Heroes from Adventure Comics #247. (For our LSB round-robin review of that issue go HERE)

When the second volume of  Adventure Comics launched, it embraced the historical role of the previous series, and carried two sets of issue numbers on the cover. In addition to the numbering for volume 2, the covers also carried the numbering of the first volume of Adventure, which had ended with issue #503 in 1983. So Adventure Comics vol 2 #1 also listed #504 on the cover. After issue #12 of the series, which also sported a #515 on the cover, the series fully embraced the original series' numbering, dropping the volume 2 numbering completely.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mothers' Day 2015

Happy Mother's Day!

There have been quite a few important mothers in the Legion of Super-Heroes universe, but none have held a more high profile and long-lasting position than the mother of Legionnaire Colossal Boy, Marte Allon. This is because she was elected President of Earth in Superboy/Legion #271 and served until President Desai was elected in Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #10. During that time (and even after that!) she was an integral part of several Legion stories, including the following, from Legion of Super-Heroes (v2) #308. 

In honor of Super-Hero mothers everywhere, we reprint the story in its entirety. 
Long Live the Legion! 

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Colossal Boy: Hot or Not?

It's their first Earthman! We let a group of candid women with no real Legion knowledge deliver their first impressions of Colossal Boy. May the Luck Lords be kind to us.
Our honorary Legion members are...
Art Girl - Painting and costuming is her thing. One day she'll make her own boy.
DJ Nath - If you can't tell, she's into music. But are there Legionnaires she would like to make beautiful music with?
Lip-Bomb - Tells me she's only in it for the free access to Brainy's Time Bubble. With Nath, operates the You-Tube channel Mind Linked for the telepathically gifted.
Shotgun - Has her own car so doesn't need to call her own code name, which would just seem awkward.
Moderator: Siskoid, 6'4" and empathizing.

Friday, May 8, 2015

5YL Legion of Super-Heroes #34

Recap: The Dominators, who have secretly been controlling Earth for the last several years, find themselves suddenly fighting a two-front war. Their domination of Earth, as well as the atrocities they have committed, have been revealed to the universe. Rebel forces on the planet as well as the United Planets fleet in orbit above the planet are fighting to free Earth. With a bulk of the Dominion military near Earth to defend their position there, the Dominion homeworld of Elia is vulnerable and the Khunds have taken advantage and started a war there. The main Legion has been sitting out this war, but the SW6 Legion on Earth have been getting more and more involved. Something has to give.

After last issue's side trip where we met Kid Quantum, Legion of Super-Heroes #34 brings us back to the war on Earth and it is clear that the slow burn of this Terra Mosaic storyline has finally reached a boil. There are multiple factions who have been circling this confrontation with the Dominators. The Rebels led by the Substitute Legion, the SW6 Legion, the United Planets, Universo, the Dark Circle, even the Khunds in their own way, have all been getting more and more involved.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Superboy starring The Legion #218

Superboy starring The Legion of Super-Heroes #218 (July, 1976)
title: "The Secret Villain the World Never Knew!"
writer: Cary Bates
penciller: Mike Grell
editor: Murray Boltinoff 
cover: Mike Grell (signed)
reviewer: Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage

Mission Monitor Board:  
Tyroc, Superboy, Cosmic Boy, Dream Girl, Colossal Boy, Brainiac 5, Element Lad, Light Lass, Shrinking Violet, Sun Boy, Star Boy; flashbacks of Shadow Lass & Karate Kid, cameos of various other Legionnaires

Zoraz, Absorbancy Boy

At Legion HQ, Tyroc arrives just as three rejected applicants walk away. Inside, Brainiac 5 is explaining about Tyroc to Colossal Boy, Light Lass, and Element Lad, who were off planet when Tyroc met the Legion so do not know him yet. With a shout of "OYUUUUUU!" Tyroc joins them. Just as they are all being introduced, Zoraz attacks, quickly knocking out the five before turning his attention to Tyroc. Tyroc uses an explosive yell that Zoraz absorbs, then Zoraz blasts the alarm and escapes as Tyroc is distracted.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Super-Blog Team Up: Legion Who's Who Top Ten!

Usually Wednesdays here on The Legion of Super-Bloggers is Who's Who Day. However, today's we're participating in the latest SUPER-BLOG TEAM UP! This time out the blog crossover celebrates top ten lists! So we decided to look at the original Who's Who profile pages for the Legionnaires and pick our Top Ten "Best" profiles. Our judging criteria was simple: artistic merit (was the art good?), artistic design (was the page layout good?), coloring (were the surprint color and the main figure color coordinated?), and the character's pose (was s/he just standing there?). After that, it was mostly a free-for-all about which characters we all liked better....!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Happy Birthday, Chemical King!

According to the 1976 DC Calendar, today will be the birthday of Condo Arlik, better known throughout the galaxy as Chemical King.

Chemical King was the 26th member of the Legion of Super-Heroes, and served with distinction for nearly three years. He made the ultimate sacrifice to save Earth when the power-mad dictator named Deregon started the detonation of a nuclear power sphere. Chemical King used his powers to slow the reaction and to absorb the remaining radiation into his own body.

Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #18

The Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #18 (Jan, 1986)
title: "Has Any One Noticed A Crisis Going On?"
writer: Paul Levitz
penciller: Greg LaRocque
inker: Larry Mahlstedt
colorist: John Costanza
lettering: Carl Gafford
editor: Karen Berger 
cover: Greg LaRocque & Larry Mahlstedt (signed)
reviewer: Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage

Mission Monitor Board:  
Brainiac 5, Element Lad, Mon-El, Shadow Lass, Dawnstar, Ultra Boy, Star Boy, Tellus, Lighting Lass, Magnetic Kid, Sun Boy, Wildfire, Polar Boy, Blok, Invisible Kid, Dream Girl, White Witch, Quislet

Rond Vidar, Circadius Senius

The Infinite Man; members of the Legion of Super-Villains, Persuader, Validus, Darkseid

Monday, May 4, 2015

Convergence: Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes #1

By Anj

Convergence: Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes #1 was one of the books I was most looking forward to when the Convergence mini-series were announced. I am a lifelong Legion fan. I cut my teeth on the Bates/Grell books. And I remember a Legion that was optimistic and a future that was bright. So of course I would want to revisit this time.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Legion Fact Files: Greg LaRocque

In the back of Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #17 Greg LaRocque and Mike DeCarlo drew profiles of the then-current membership. All twenty-five members get "fun facts" of official name, real name, and power. Some poses are very static, but others are quite fun. Oddly enough, there is no particular order for the members, which makes it difficult to find someone you are looking for. 

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Hot: Saturn Woman

Grant Morrison helped launch DC's The New 52 by writing one of the flagship titles, Action Comics. These stories chronicled the early days of Superman's career in this new universe. Wow, that series came out of the gate swinging! I loved the first handful of issues. Superman kicking butt while wearing a t-shirt, jeans, boots, and a towel-sized cape. Even though the storytelling was modern, it evoked the spirit of the Golden Age Superman.

Then we got to issue #6. Whoa. What happened here?!?! This issue was packed full of psuedo-science, time travel, multiple Supermen, the adult Legion, and much, much more. This issue was so densely-packed and confusing, I'm not sure if it was brilliant or a train-wreck.

Regardless what you thought of the story, this issue most definitely had one shining beacon of joy... smokin' hot adult Saturn Woman! Yup, Imra is all grown up and looks gorgeous!

Friday, May 1, 2015

5YL Legion of Super-Heroes #33

Recap: The Dominators are losing control of Earth and may be losing control of their home world, Elia. The UP and the rebels on Earth are gearing up for all out war. The Khunds are invading Dominator space. And while the older Legion seem to be sitting this war out, the young SW6 Legionnaires are in the thick of it, active in the rebellion and paying the price. Meanwhile, the older Chameleon Boy leaves to try to track down his father R.J. Brande.

I don't know how many people come here to read these 5YL reviews I write. But for those who do, I must sound like a broken record, bringing up the creative risks this book takes and admiring the creators for taking those risks. Legion of Super-Heroes #33 is another example.