Monday, November 23, 2020

Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century #14

Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century #14 (
July 2008)
title: "See Me"
writer: Jack Briglio
pencils: Adam Archer
inks: Adam Archer
letterer: Sal Cipriano
colorist: Heroic Age
editor: Jeanine Schaefer
cover art: Alexandra Serra

Mission Monitor Board: Brainiac 5, Element Lad, Phantom Girl, Superman, Timber Wolf, and Triplicate Girl

Phantom Girl is training with holographic simulations when she becomes distracted by mysterious voices, one of which sounds like Element Lad. They warn that her President Wazzo, who is Phantom Girl's mother, must be stopped. At first she thinks it is part of the simulation and gets angry at Brainiac 5 for adding them, but he does not know what she is talking about. He explains that Element Lad is on a mission and that he did not add any other voices to the program.

Phantom Girl visits her mother and tries to warn her that she may be in danger, but her mother is skeptical. The President also becomes worried for her daughter when Tinya explains that she was hearing voices. 
Phantom Girl returns to Legion headquarters to try to warn her teammates but a new emergency arises when she finds herself stuck in her phantom form. Brainiac 5 is unable to discover the source of the problem, but is concerned when Phantom Girl begins to see ghosts that no one else can see. She tracks the ghosts to her mothers ship and several Legionnaires follow to help. While her mother is at first dismissive of her daughter's concerns, she listens to Superman when he warns that her life may be in danger. She allows them to accompany her to a ceremony where she will sign a treaty that will allow Xavier Ro's company to ensure continued supply of natural resources for the United Planets.

During their flight, the ghosts reappear and yell "attack," after which the ship begins to experience technical problems. The Legionnaires help, but afterwards the President still does not believe that the ghosts exist as the problem appears to her to have merely been a mechanical malfunction. Phantom Girl feels dejected but her teammates try to reassure her.
Timber Wolf senses the presence of the ghosts but Phantom Girl remains the only one who can see them. It appears to her teammates as if she is fighting nothing but thin air. She sees the ghosts disappear into her mother's room and follows. Her mother is awake and cannot see the ghosts but finds herself unable to move or get out of bed. At first she remains skeptical of her daughter's claim that the ghosts are present, but Phantom Girl reminds her that she is a member of the Legion and her daughter, her flesh and blood, and would not make up something like this just for attention. She finally gets through to her mother, who gives Phantom Girl the encouragement she needs.
Phantom Girl is able to reduce the temperature to safe levels and her mother can once again move. She apologizes to Tinya for not believing her and the two make up. She returns to her teammates and is once again visited by the ghosts, who insist they need her help and are not the enemy. They explain that her mother cannot sign the treaty because their planet will be razed of natural resources until it is dead. They beg her to come to the planet Trom to stop the ceremony, and she recognizes Trom as the home planet of Element Lad. At just that moment, Element Lad returns from his mission.
Phantom Girl interrupts the ceremony and warns her mother that if the crystal formations are destroyed so will be the soul of the planet. Timber Wolf has plant samples to prove their theory, but her mother believes her. Xavier Ro is furious and runs to find a bulldozer. Fortunately, he is stopped before he can cause further mischief, but not before he drops a business card identifying his company, Roxxas Energy, as a subsidiary of Lexcorp.
I was very happy to see Phantom Girl get showcased in this issue as she has always been one of my favorite Legionnaires. Her frustration at getting her mother to believe her was an intriguing aspect to the story, but I was very glad to see she did not have to prove herself to her teammates. Even though they could not see the ghosts, they believed her from almost the outset and consistently stood by her. The strong level of trust between Legionnaires was both refreshing and touching to see.

One aspect I glossed over a bit was the revelation that Tinya could communicate with the dead, which was what the ghosts turned out to be. At first, she was frightened but eventually made peace with it, and when Brainiac 5 informed her that he had an idea how to fix her "condition," she declined.

Getting back to her mother, I was relieved Tinya did not have to go through too much to convincer her. After all, she is not some immature child, she is a member of the Legion of Super-Heroes. Whatever issues may exist between her and her mother, the deference that her mother gave to Superman showed how well-regarded the Legion are by the United Planets. So I liked that it ended up just taking a few words to remind her mother that Phantom Girl was a valuable member of that team when she was in danger.

One of the things I most loved about this comic series, and most comics adapting DC cartoons, was how well they handle the one-in-done format. There were rarely stories that continued over multiple issues, which was perfect for fans of the cartoon that may have been picking up an issue of the comic for the first time. And the artists consistently did a wonderful job of sticking to the style of the cartoon, as happened here.  At the same time, the creators frequently slipped in some nice Easter eggs for long-time comic fans to enjoy, such as the Lexcorp business card.

In closing, I should mention that my reviews of the actual cartoon are about done, but the comic series has six more issues that have to be covered. So I plan to do several more entries of the comic series before finally wrapping it up with a return to the cartoon. I hope you stick with me because that leaves us with quite a few further adventures of our heroes from the 31st Century to look at!


  1. Phantom Girl has always been on of my 5 favorite Legionnaires. I prefer her in the Original Run, where her mother is a non-factor, and she is a calm & cool headed veteran. I loathed how she was treated as leader when she finally got elected at the tail end of the New 52. Lastly, I do not care for how she is drawn/animated in this particular series, but I'm glad she is a part of it!

  2. This cartoon brought back my move of the Legion. I actually think the character designs are the best they’ve ever been.

  3. Tinya is my absolute favorite and agree after waiting decades for her to be elected leader she was treated appalingly. Still hoping for follow up to fix that!