Tuesday, April 2, 2019

TOS: Adventure Comics By The Numbers

As the Legion of Super-Heroes series in Adventure Comics comes to a close, please join us as we take one cold, calculating look at the series as a whole in a way that would make Brainaic 5 proud....

Number of Issues: 81
Adventure Comics #300 (Sept 1962) thru #380 (May 1969) inclusive

Number of Writers: 5 

Jerry Siegel
Edmond Hamilton
Jim Shooter
E.Nelson Bridwell
Otto Binder

Number of Artists: 10* 

John Forte
Sheldon Moldoff
George Papp
Al Plastino
Curt Swan
George Klein
Jim Mooney
Pete Costanza
Jack Abel
Win Mortimer
(*We aren't counting Jim Shooter, who provided layouts but didn't do any specific art work)

Number of Cover Artists: 5
Curt Swan
George Klein
Jack Abel
Neal Adams
Mike Esposito

Number of Legionnaires in #300: 16
Cosmic Boy, Saturn Girl, Lightning Lad, Duo Damsel, Phantom Girl, Chameleon Boy, Colossal Boy, Invisible Kid, Supergirl, Brainiac 5, Superboy, Ultra Boy, Star Boy, Shrinking Violet, Sun Boy, Bouncing Boy

Number of Legionnaires in #380: 26 
The 16 above plus Mon-El, Matter-Eater Lad, Element Lad, Light(ning) Lass, Dream Girl, Princess Projectra, Karate Kid, Shadow Lass, Chemical King, Timber Wolf

Number of Legion Leaders: 6
Cosmic Boy (incumbent)
Saturn Girl (twice) (elected in #304, then again in #323)
Brainiac 5 (elected in #337)
Invisible Kid (elected in #348)
Ultra Boy (elected in #s 370-371)

Number of Expelled Legionnaires: 13*
Sun Boy
Ultra Boy
Bouncing Boy
unnamed criminal Legionnaire from #327
Command Kid
Dynamo Boy
Size Lad
Blackout Boy
Magnetic Kid (I)
Star Boy
Nemesis Kid
Byron the Bowman
Blockade Boy
(*we don't count Dream Girl, who quit, or Stone Boy & Dev-Em, who refused membership)

Number of Legionnaires Who Died: 3

Lightning Lad
Triplicate Girl
Ferro Lad

Number of Legionnaires Who Died But Who Got Better: 2
Lighting Lad
Duo Damsel

Legionnaires With the Most Story Appearances:
Superboy (70)
Saturn Girl (56)
Brainiac 5 (56)
Sun Boy (51)
Cosmic Boy (50)
Chameleon Boy (46)
Ultra Boy (40)

Legionnaires With the Least Appearances: (*)
(*It's not quite fair to count the newest members, as Chemical King and Timber Wolf joined the Legion less than a year before the series ended. Clearly, Supergirl and Dream Girl are the two biggest losers here.)
Chemical King (5)
Timber Wolf (7)
Shadow Lass (7)
Polar Boy (7)
Ferro Lad (8)
Dream Girl (12)
Supergirl (12)
Princess Projectra (12)
Karate Kid (19)
Matter-Eater Lad (21)

Legionnaires With the Most Cover Appearances: 
Superboy (79)
Saturn Girl (27)
Cosmic Boy (23)
Lightning Lad (18)
Ultra Boy (18)
Duo Damsel (17)
Brainiac 5 (17)
Sun Boy (17)
Superboy missed only three: #318, #374 (where his small face appeared near the logo), and on #380 where his empty suit was featured

Legionnaires With the Fewest Cover Appearances: 
Chemical King (1) 
(who appeared only on his debut cover when he was already dead!)
Timber Wolf (2) 
Dream Girl (3) 
(ironically, two of her appearances featured Baby Legionnaires!)
Invisible Kid (5) 
(he may have appeared on more, but we didn't see him)
Matter-Eater Lad (5)

Join us next week as we Legion of Super-Bloggers share 
various memories and opinions on this run....!


  1. * Supergirl was appointed honorary Legion leader in issue #313 to help deal with the threat of Satan Girl.

    * I would classify the "Expelled Legionnaires" as Sun Boy, Ultra Boy, Bouncing Boy and Star Boy, as they were legit members. The others I would list as "Legion Infiltrators", as they entered (or tried to enter) the Legion under false pretenses. And I'm not sure that I would name Byron the Bowman and Blockade Boy at all, since the Legionnaires knew all along that they were Comet and Proty, so their admission was more of a-wink-and-a-nod to allow them to find out the Super-Pets were being played.

    * Polar Boy was not an actual member during this run, except in the Adult Legion story. Should he really be on the "Least Appearances" list?

    1. I almost didntd include the members you mention, but in order to fool them there had to gave been some sort if induction ceremony etc. So I left them. And Command Kid and Dynamo Boy and Nemesis Kid for sure were legit members for at least a little bit of time.
      The Legion only found out later that they were bad.

    2. Okay, I can accept that, particularly in the cases of Command Kid and Nemesis Kid. My only point was that the ones I mentioned joined to further their own agendas, not to be actual Legionnaires.

    3. BTW, you left out Superboy and Supergirl from Adventure #350, the classic K-cloud story, and Colossal Boy from Adventure #371.

  2. The "unnamed criminal" is often referred to as "False Pretenses Lad".

  3. As I was looking at the list of team leaders, it made me think how cool it would be a for a fill-in style book of stories akin to John Byrne's "X-Men: The Hidden Years", telling stories from back in the day during the early tenures of each of those leaders.

    I'm sure it'll never happen, but I like to think about that kind of thing...

  4. Actually, it did happen (sort of). Paul Levitz' run on Adventure Comics Vol. 2 focused on untold tales of Clark Kent/Superboy and the early years of the Legion