Friday, February 14, 2020

Reboot: The Legion #18

The Legion #18 (May 2002)
title: "Revival of the Fittest, Part Two"
writers: Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning
penciller: Alejandro Barrionuevo
inker: Andy Lanning & Simon Coleby
lettering: Comicraft
colorist: Jason Wright
seps: Digital Chameleon
editor: Stephen Wacker
cover: Kev Walker
reviewers: Siskoid & Shotgun

Mission Monitor Board:  
Apparition, Brainiac 5, Chameleon, Cosmic Boy, Gates, Gear, Invisible Kid, Kid Quantum II, M'Onel, Sensor, Shikari, Spark, Star Boy, Timber Wolf, Triad, Ultra Boy, Violet, Wildfire, XS

Atmos, Chuck Taine, Dr. Gym'll, Insect Queen, Kinetix, Shvaughn Erin; Legion World personnel, Science Police

Ra's al Ghul

Ra's al Ghul has apparently been pulverized trying to escape custody on Legion World, even as he was being escorted to Sensor's side to see if he could help her survive the evolutionary hypertraxis wave that has put her in critical condition...

Brainiac 5, Star Boy and Invisible Kid run some tests to try and determine why Ra's al Ghul killed himself trying to escape Legion custody, and discover that Ra's al Ghul is still alive, his blood and essence having escaped and rushing towards the clone bodies stored on Legion World. When Star Boy and M'Onel go to the storage area, all the stasis tubes open, freeing the clone bodies. Ra's quickly possesses one of them and activates the others as a smokescreen. He steals Star Boy's flight ring and flies off.
As the Legionnaires scour Legion World to recapture the clone bodied and look for him, Ra's ditches the ring so he can't be tracked, but by then, Shikari has pinpointed him with her powers and brings Gates and Kinetix to his position. Gates is weak from the teleport, and Ra's makes quick work of Kinetix, but M'Onel arrives and they go toe to toe, the ancient despot surprisingly able to beat the Daxamite. He then tries to force Shikari to open a threshold to take him somewhere else, but realizes M'Onel will never stop hounding him, so he surrenders, preferring to stay in custody, everyone knowing he could escape at any time.
He agrees to help Sensor recover from the evolutionary changes that have put her life in danger, though she will never be the same again. XS calls from Xanthu where all the Terrorforms and pods have returned to human form, but also sparked the slow rejuvenation of the planet, hoping for good news about Sensor as well. She made it, but now looks quite different. She seems upset and confused. Ra's is put in a cell on Legion World and M'Onel promises to visit from time to time.
I don't know about you guys, but I can't help but think about all these naked Ra's running around Legion World. Imagining it makes me giggle. That guy seems to be very comfortable with his body to be able to just go on his merry way without even trying to find clothes to wear. Climate control must be very performant on this artificial planet/moon for him not to freeze. I'm not sure I'm buying his demonstration though. I get that he sees no point in running away from M'Onel for eternity – or at least until the hero dies – but to end all this just asking for respect... Come on! I'm sure the writers could've found a better way to have him cooperate before disappearing instead of going for that ending.
I'm not sure how I feel about Sensor's new appearance. I mean, I think the look is great and would be so down if she would've looked exactly like this from the beginning. But I also liked that she was not a humanoid; they are a very small minority within the group and even more so now.  Her new look is amazing in my opinion, but I can't imagine going through such a transformation. I hope, at the very least, that she retained her powers so she can still look like her old self if she needs to. I suppose she will struggle a lot with her new appearance in the next issues. I feel so very sorry for her.

Behind a horrid cover is the Dark Legion finale some readers had been waiting for. Starting next issue, the book gets a new logo and brighter art (but not new writers). Indeed, #18 closes the door on a number of story strands - Ra's al Ghul is imprisoned never to be seen again, and all things Terrorform (except Kinetix) - is fixed/resolved. I have to agree with Shotgun (though my mind's not in the gutter about Ra's al Nude) that this is an odd ending. Maybe they had plans for him beyond this point that never materialized, but it's weird to think he'll be on Legion World as other things happen from this point on. Still, it's fun that he can rummage around as five kilos of magic blood.
As for Sensor, it may depend on what they do with her body dismorphia, but I don't like her needless sexyfication. It's a cool design and all, but I LOVE LOVE LOVE the original look (well, the Reboot look, I'm not going back to Projectra), and like Shotgun, I think it's a loss to the overall diversity of the Legion. I makes me wish they'd done more with the relationship potential between her and Cham, for example. I dunno, maybe it feels a little worse because Kinetix has also been recently transformed, and her new look is dead boring.
Science Police Notes:  
  • Ra's al Ghul uses "Talia", the name of his daughter, as a command word.
  • Chameleon quotes from the 1989 Tim Burton Batman movie when capturing one of Ra's clones - "I'm Batman."
  • Sensor's form is changed dramatically as of this issue.
  • In spite of M'Onel's promises, Ra's al Ghul is never seen in the series again.

First appearance of "new look" Sensor.

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