Monday, January 15, 2018

Scooby-Doo Meets The Legion

Scooby-Doo Team Up #33 
"The Ghost of Ferro Lad"
Writer: Sholly Fisch
Penciller/Inker: Dario Brizuela
Colorist: Franco Riesco
Letterer: Saida Temofonte
Cover Artist: Brizeula and Riesco
Editor: Kristy Quinn

Continuing the trend of Legion crossovers in 2017, DC paired up the Legion with none other than Mystery Incorporated in their “Scooby Team-Up” series. That particular series has seen the Scooby Gang teaming up with just about everybody DC could think of, as well as other Hanna-Barbera characters like Atom Ant and Hong Kong Phooey (Number One Super Guy). It was just a matter of time before they got to the Legion. But while this was a really fun issue, a small part of me is still disappointed.

Not to be nitpicky, but, I’d always hoped that if or when DC was gonna pair up Mystery Inc. with the Legion, they’d use the cartoon Legion. I mean COME ON, look at Garth.

Who here HASN’T made the Shaggy comparison? Back in 2008 I even tried to write a crossover story with Scooby Doo but, unfortunately, I never made it past the first couple of chapters.

That said, my dashed hope hasn’t stopped me from enjoying this story, which is utterly adorable and humorous in a way different from the Bugs Bunny crossover and the Batman 66 crossover.
This is a modernized take on a Silver Age Legion story, “The Ghost of Ferro Lad,” in Adventure Comics #357. Only, while the ghost of Ferro Lad is used as the main plot, the story doesn’t end anywhere similarly to the original tale.

The Scooby Gang has wrapped up another case and is in the middle of getting the standard “You meddling kids” send off when a Time Bubble appears in the air. The teens wonder if Rip Hunter has come back (that team-up was in #30). Only this time, it’s none other than the Legion Founders, Cosmic Boy, Saturn Girl, and Lightning Lad.

Shaggy and Scooby freak out because they’re not only dealing with aliens, but aliens from THE FUTURE. Cosmic Boy and Saturn Girl use their abilities to calm them down long enough to explain to Fred and the others that Mystery Inc.’s help is needed in the 31st Century. And it seems the Legionnaires know exactly who Mystery Inc. is.

When the Time Bubble returns to 31st Century Metropolis, Shaggy throws some impressive snark about Legion HQ. 

Saturn Girl explains that they need the aid of the legendary Scooby Doo because the Legion doesn’t have any detectives in their roster just yet. If they did, they would’ve figured out why the Legion… is being HAUNTED!

The founders try to hold off the apparition of their former team-mate, Ferro Lad, but none of their abilities work. Magnetism doesn’t hold it down, lightning goes through it, and it doesn’t have a mind to read. But it can certainly smack around some Daphne and Velma. Ferro Lad’s ghost leaves with a venomous sting about how the Legionnaires are incapable of protecting anyone, even themselves, and warns his ex-teammates to disband the Legion before somebody else dies like he did.

Four more Legionnaires appear just as Ferro Lad’s ghost departs, and poor Shaggy and Scooby get even more spooked when they meet Phantom Girl and Chameleon Boy.

Cosmic Boy also gives us a brief rundown or where some of the other Legionnaires are.
Let’s review:

·        Mon-El and Ultra Boy are stopping the Khunds (reasonable)
·        Colossal Boy and Element Lad are fighting the Time Trapper (well… Jan’s powers WERE instrumental in stopping the Trapper back in Adventure Comics #338)
·        Darkseid is up against the combined might of… Bouncing Boy and Shrinking Violet?! (That, that is ridiculous and hilarious and I demand a follow up issue showcasing this entire battle!)

Daphne decides that if they’re getting anywhere with this case, they need a rundown on who Ferro Lad was and how he died. 

Daphne commends Ferro Lad for his bravery, and Phantom Girl admits his ghost’s attempts to prey on their guilt is working pretty well. Velma decides that their first suspect should be Ferro Lad’s brother, Douglas. Velma then shows the snark’s strong in her as well.

Upon visiting Douglas Nolan, Ferro Bro expresses his surprise and confusion that the Legion would suspect him of posing as his brother’s ghost. Daphne postulates that he might’ve been jealous of his brother’s fame, or enraged about his death. Douglas humbly admits that he’s a simple accountant while Andrew was the hero in the family, and he’s incredibly proud of him, not jealous. Back at Legion HQ, Saturn Girl confirms Fred’s belief that Douglas Nolan isn’t the ghost by revealing she read his mind during the brief interrogation.

Velma ponders whether the ghost is a hologram, recalling how lots of the bad guys they’ve unmasked used projections and light equipment to stage hoaxes. Brainy, however, is all “Holograms are soooo 23rd Century” and says his analysis of Ferro Lad’s ghost has a unique energy signature unlike light projections.

Oh and hey it’s Tenzil! 

And now watch as he disappears for another five years.

Anyway, the Gang inquires with Princess Projectra if she thinks the ghost is an illusion. And Jeckie, ever the princess, scares the heck out of the Scoobies by giving a brief demo of her powers.

Velma starts to draw a conclusion, remembering a past team-up with Green Lantern and his constructs of green energy. Does the Legion know of anyone with such powers? Weeeeeell-OH SHIT THE GHOST IS BACK. But it’s Shadow Lass to the rescue!

Meanwhile, Brainy, who figures that Velma is a credit to her time, points out something vital. Every time the ghost manifested, the Legion’s attention was drawn directly towards it, so no one ever stopped to wonder if maybe there wasn’t ANOTHER uninvited guest at the Legion HQ. Say, a giant, disembodied floating eye?

And if the Emerald Eye of Ekron’s here, guess who’s not far behind?

The Empress gloats to Cosmic Boy how this wasn’t a prank but an attempt to drive the Legion apart by making the Legionnaires feel guilty about Ferro Lad’s death. And unfortunately, as the Legion knows, if the Emerald Empress is here, then so is the REST of the Fatal Five.

After Shadow Lass finishes the run down, Tharok shows that he’s by far the most sensible villain the Scoobies have ever encountered when he pulls a freaking gun on them.

And while the Emerald Empress plans to blast them to smithereens, a very important question is answered.


Proving their love transcends continuities, Lightning Lad electrocutes Tharok’s robot-half to stop him from shooting Saturn Girl. Cosmic Boy disarms Persuader, who then gets judo flipped by Daphne using a move she learned from Hong Kong Phooey (Number One Super Guy).

Fred uses his mask pulling expertise to remove Mano’s helmet before he burns anyone, subjecting the hand-obsessed fiend to fresh air and knocking him unconscious. That just leaves Validus, who gets taken out in the most unorthodox way possible, by none other than Shaggy! See, Shaggy points out that if Validus is a brute with the mind of a child, you handle him the way you would an ACTUAL kid.

And to think Lyle Norg would still be alive if they gave Validus candy.

And the issue ends with backhanded apologies and certificates of valor (no not THAT Valor).

Final Thoughts: Again, we’ve got another fun, short romp back to the 31st Century that wasn’t heavy on making Superman references.

That thing about the Emerald Eyelashes is still the best thing about the issue, and I wonder if the thing about Validus’ “child-like mind” was a stealth reference to his true identity as Garridan Ranzz.
It’s also nice to know Douglas Nolan’s made something of his life… instead of inexplicably shifting between dimensions and driven catatonic by his brother’s death. Or whatever the hell was going on in #300.

I still demand that follow up on Chuck and Vi fighting Darkseid.


  1. The artist for this story should do ALL Legion flashbacks whenever the new series begins. So clean, shiny, and optimistic-future-y!

  2. This series is consistently one of the best being put out by DC. And it seems to have no trouble handling characters that DC can't seem to figure out what to do with in its mainstream books, like Shazam family of characters and Legion.

  3. So this story is not canon to Pre-Crisis Legion, right? It's a different incarnation of Legion from different timeline?

    1. It kind of has to be. Shadow Less in pre-Crisis continuity never met Ferro Lad.

  4. They also both showed up in the "Batman '66" book.

  5. That was a lot of fun. I'll have to track down that issue.