Monday, February 10, 2020

Karate Kid The Series Aftermath

commentary by Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage
dedicated affectionately to Glenn "Continuity Kid" Walker

What happened to Karate Kid after his solo-series was cancelled? Let's find out!

In the last issue of Karate Kid (#15) our hero tried to travel to the 30th Century in order to cure his friend Iris of being Diamondeth, a mutated menace created by the Lord of Time and Major Disaster.  However, due to the machinations of the Lord of Time (and desperate DC editors) Karate Kid instead found himself in the days of the Great Disaster.
Karate Kid then returned in the pages of Kamandi #58 (which was the penultimate issue of that series; is Karate Kid the DC equivalent of Cousin Oliver?) Kamandi and his friends helped the Legionnaire get back on the right track, and the last time we see solo Karate Kid is him in a time bubble with Iris (Diamondeth) heading back towards his "future." 
Two months later in "real" time, Karate Kid returns to the pages of Superboy/Legion of Super-Heroes #244, when his time bubble manages to return him to 30th Century Metropolis....right in the middle of Earthwar!
Iris Jacobs (still stuck as Diamondeth) is forgotten until the Khunds and the Big Baddie are disposed of. She is left at Science Police head-quarters, I guess, as Karate Kid and Officer Erin head off to help Superboy, Lighting Lad, and Saturn Girl defeat Mordru. And Karate Kid: the series gets an editor's box reference (see lower right-hand caption above).
Karate Kid's travels continue in the next issue, Superboy/Legion of Super-Heroes #245. An interesting scene occurs while the four Legionnaires are trying to outwit Mordru: due to his magics, Superboy is temporarily put under a spell. Karate Kid then fights the Boy of Steel to subdue him...and makes a comment about having recently done the same thing to a different era's Superboy (as shown in Karate Kid #s 12-13!)
After the Khunds and Mordru are defeated, Karate Kid finally takes off to visit the medical facilities on Mercury, much to the consternation of his fellow Legionnaires.
It turns out that he is fine, but had taken time to bring Iris for medical treatment. She is finally cured! This occurs in Superboy/Legion of Super-Heroes #246. She actually meets more Legionnaires before Karate Kid escorts her away on a tour of the 30th Century universe.

I do wonder why Princess Projectra or some other Legionnaires didn't join them, though....I mean, she had met Cosmic Boy and Sun Boy already (in the pages of Karate Kid).

With the disappearance of Iris, that seems to be the end of the Karate Kid time-travelling story. We never find out what Major Disaster and the Lord of Time were trying to do by tormenting the Kid. Nor do we ever see any follow-up meeting between Karate Kid and King Voxv of Orando where the Kid has to report back to His Majesty how he had fared in the past, or how he had "suffered" enough to prove his worth to the King. He simply returned to the ranks of the Legion and continued to date Princess Projectra.

Until the dark day when King Voxv passed on, and Princess Projectra became Queen Projectra. Suddenly, Karate Kid was expected to marry the Queen and become the official Royal Consort. So a wedding was planned. And *that* is why there is one more Karate Kid: The Series post that needs to be written....!

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