Tuesday, September 2, 2014

It Takes A Legion....of Super-Bloggers!

Welcome to 
The Legion of Super-Bloggers!

Bilingual Boy: Russell Burbage
Unique powers: Super-Editing, Flash Writing, Micro-Detailing, Ultra-Scheduling

Please consider this your pass-key to the magical world that is the Future of the DC Universe. We hope to introduce you to some of our favorite characters, so that they perhaps become some of your favorites, too. If you are already familiar with the Legion of Super-Heroes, we hope to re-introduce you to the magic and wonder, and get you to appreciate again just how cool the DCU future was...er, I mean, WILL BE.

The first Legion of Super-Heroes comic I ever bought was Superboy #212. I happened across it at an airport while I was on my way to a family reunion. I was definitely in the right place at the right time, because although I had been reading comics regularly for about a year at this point, this series was totally new to me. The cover features a dozen characters I had never seen before, telling a shocked Superboy (not SuperMAN?) that they had won the right to take the others' places. I knew this wasn't Nick Cardy or Jim Aparo, the only other two cover artists I was familiar with at this point. All I knew was that I had to have this comic!

Superboy #212 turned out to be the best "jumping on" Legion story I could ever have hoped for. Quick recap: six rejected Legion applicants get together to challenge the right of their countrymen to represent their planets in the Legion. Superboy disapproves, but a battle royal is called for the right to earn Legion membership, winner gets the flight ring. So not only do we get a quick origin of Cosmic Boy, Saturn Girl, Phantom Girl, Chameleon Boy, Shrinking Violet, and Matter-Eater Lad, but we get important Legion lore such as each member is from a different planet, each member has atleast one unique super power, and team-work is what counts most. The story itself was well thought out; let's face it, First Come First Served is not necessarily the best way to pick a super-hero. As I had never heard of any of these six characters, each of them was new and exciting. Re-reading it now, years later after I "know" the characters, it still stands up remarkably well.

The back-up story featured Legionnaires Shadow Lass and Cosmic Boy and his girl-friend, a  non-Legionnaire named Night Girl. In this story, I was introduced to the Legion of Substitute Heroes. Night Girl was super-strong, but only during the dark. She insists on fighting the good fight, even though she would lose her powers at the breaking of dawn. I think I fell in love with both Shadow Lass and Night Girl in this story, and I know I had a man-crush on Cosmic Boy, too. He stuck by his girl-friend, even though she wasn't "good enough" to be a Legionnaire. Talk about a nice guy!

Although the main story was set in the Legion's headquarters, the back-up story is set in and around 30th Century Metropolis. Artist Mike Grell lit a fire in my imagination with his futuristic architecture, space ships, and costumes. This issue served as a gateway to a whole new world of heretofore unknown adventures. Before I read this comic I thought the DCU revolved around Superman and Batman. After reading this issue, I knew that the Legion owned the future.

When I got back to my hometown I tracked down other Superboy/Legion comics and subscribed. For more than 15 years, I never missed an issue. I grew up with the Legion of Super-Heroes.

When Zero Hour started, I made the difficult decision to jump ship. By that point I felt that the stories that were occurring in Legionnaires were re-treads of stories and characters I already knew. Like watching re-makes of favorite movies or TV series cast with new actors, I just didn't want to join in.

Then a few years ago, Geoff Johns brought back "my" Legion. Sure, they were "adult," and bore some resemblance character-wise to the Five Years Later personalities. The tone was darker, but the characters were still identifiable. I bought all the new Legion issues after that. And now, here we are, in a world without any monthly Legion of Super-Heroes series again! For the time being, all we have is the past. The good thing is, where the Legion is concerned, the past is still the future!

So we here at The Legion of Super Bloggers promise to cover all of the different Legion eras and characters. We are working on reviews of each of the different eras, and will post them in chronological order within each series. And we promise to have something NEW every day, so check back often! Here are some of our basic scheduling plans....

Sunday
We will feature some of the greatest art of the greatest characters by the greatest artists. As we don't all agree as to what makes some art "great," this should be a fun column for ALL of us!
Monday 
We promise to rotate themes here, with essays on a variety of subjects taking this day. This first month we will introduce each of ourselves and try to explain our love of the Legion (like this one right here!)
Wednesday
As we owe part of our existence to The Fire and Water Family of Pod-casts, specifically The Who's Who Pod-cast, we will feature the classic Who's Who profiles here, one for every Legionnaire until we are through! We will also feature highlights of each characters' history so if you like the character you can try to track down some of his/her best adventures.

Friday 
Profiles of HOT Legionnaires. This will go on forever.
Saturday
"Fun" posts for the end of the week. We wrote about the Substitute Heroes last week. You'll never know what to expect on Saturday!

So strap yourself in, cuz The Legion of Super Bloggers is at the controls of this Time Bubble and we're out to have FUN! Onward to the future...!   

Long Live the Legion! 

8 comments:

  1. I still remember my first issue of the Legion (in the 80s) but that's a story for another day.

    Question: What two languages does Bilingual Boy speak? Is one of them Interlac?

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    1. I speak English and Japanese, with a smidgen of Interlac on the side. ;-) I used to be Trilingual Boy but I just couldn't master Russian.

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  2. My first Legion story was 'The Doom of the Super-Heroes' in Adventure Comics #310 ('inherited' from a neighbour, I'm not QUITE that old) and I was hooked for life. So hurrah for a new blog about the team. How about a feature on Legion fandom, probably the fandom that's had the most influence on the direction and sheer survival of a strip.

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    1. Martin, we have a review of the book The Best of Legion Outpost coming up soon. :-)

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  3. Funny thing Russell, Cosmic Boy and Night Girl play heavily in my first encounter with the Legion too, but more on that in an upcoming post!

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    1. Sounds like fun! Can't wait to read it! ;-)

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  4. My first LSH was Superboy and the Legion #204 with Anti-Lad, and Brainiac 5's Supergirl sexbot. Later, I had a teacher that brought his old comics in on rainy days, that was my first exposure to the Adventure classics.

    Best of luck guys, and Long Live the Legion!

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  5. This issue is right in the middle of my introduction to the team.

    The best part of this issue! Calorie Queen!

    Expect to see her in my 5yl reviews.

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