Saturday, January 31, 2015

Justice League United #7

The Infinitus Saga continues with Part 3 (of 5) in the pages of Justice League United #7.
Released December 10th 2014
Written by Jeff Lemire
Penciled by Neil Edwards
Inked by Jay Leisten and Keith Champagne
Colors by Jeromy Cox
Cover by Andrew Robinson
Darwyn Cooke Vintage Variant




Synopsis:
The story opens where the last issue left off, the JLU are on the moon Ryngor in the Polaris system battling the storm of energy beings that Bythe has just unleashed on the Universe. But luckily for the JLU, the members of the Legion Lost team have joined the fray and come to their aid. Black Mass teleports Ultra back to Byth’s inner temple while Byth attacks Dawnstar and the other Legionnaires. Just as it looks like the heroes are about to be overwhelmed, they are transported to safety on Rann, where the other members of the team reside. Brainiac-5 informs them that once Sardath was able to get through the interference caused by the cosmic storm of energy beings that Byth released, they were able to lock onto their position and teleport them to safety. The team regroups and introductions are made while Martian Manhunter tries to telepathically contact Ultra the Multi-Alien. As Manhunter and Ultra converse telepathically, Byth hijacks their astral chat and kicks Martian Manhunter out of Ultra’s mind. Martian Manhunter reveals to the team that all they thought they knew about Byth was wrong, and that he is much more powerful than they ever dreamed. After a little more discussion, the members of the Legion and Justice League United teams agree to re-enter the fray and try to put an end to Byth’s plan once and for all.

Meanwhile, Byth and Hawkman prepare a ship to take Ultra close to the black hole where Byth’s forces are pouring out. Once in position, they can take the final steps to Ultra’s evolution into Infinitus, and bring about the end of everything. And that is where they meet the combined forces of our assembled heroes. However, in a final ominous splash page, our heroes are told by an armored Hawkman that they are too late, for “THE END IS HERE.” To be continued...! 





Closing Thoughts:
The story really comes to a screeching halt in this issue. Not a lot happens this issue, and the result is a very short $3.99 read. The art is very good and pretty to look at, very detailed and action packed. It feels like it was stepped up a bit since last issue. That may be in part due to the additional inking support provided by Keith Champagne, an industry mainstay for the last 20 years and one of my personal favorite inkers of the modern era of comics. There is a lot of action in this issue but not a whole lot of plot development or story. The issue opens a midst a battle, the heroes are temporarily teleported out of battle to safety, they regroup, then they teleport back in. Throw in a reveal of Byth being more powerful than they imagined, and you pretty much nailed all that happens as far as moving the story along. It's great to see the Legion Lost cast of characters back in action, but what started off as a plot and character driven mystery surrounding, Ultra, Byth, and his Cult has become a casualty of the "write for the trade" story.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Hot: Super-Heroines On A Mission

Shadow Lass, Phantom Girl, and White Witch heading out into space to help fellow Legionnaires in trouble. The bad guys don't stand a chance against Mysa's magical cleavage!
Later in this issue, Ayla Ranzz aka Light(ning) Lass gets a close-up that is pretty darn hot, too!
And Dream Girl shows up, too...and she is *always* hot!
(Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #3, art by Steve Lightle & Larry Mahlstedt)

5YL Legion of Super-Heroes #20


5YL Legion of Super-Heroes #20 is one of those issues in this run that makes me smile as a critical reader. This series has sort of pushed the boundaries of comics since its inception, making creative decisions that were interesting and innovative. And this issue showcases that sort of elan.

Last issue, the Dominators' Triple-Strike, a sort of doomsday plan to raze Earth should they be in danger of losing control, was accidentally triggered. We see the moon destroyed, the debris from Luna smashing into the planet. We then learn that all the fusion power-spheres on the planet explode. We just get a sense of how horrifying the devastation is on planet when the story shifts to Jo Nah's adventure in the past.

With that issue behind us, I assumed that this twentieth issue would exclusively focus on the destruction and chaos on Earth. But we again only get a sliver of what is happening on Earth. Instead, much of this issue is spent catching up with all the different Legionnaires who are recovering from the Khund War. There are deep character moments (like Venado Bay as seen on the cover) and humor in the Legion HQ while we cut back and forth to the anarchy on Earth. It is a fascinating decision and as a reader is different than what I am used to. It is odd to laugh at Kono's antics and then watch Dominators slaughter SciPo officers.

Keith Giffen, Tom & Mary Bierbaum, and Al Gordon are all on board this issue. 9 panel pages are here. And the wonderfully dense feeling of the book is there as well.


One thing the book may have introduced to comics is the concept of text pieces and back matter.

In this issue, it isn't back matter. It's front matter. We open with a decree from the Dominion.

Their fleet is to abandon their missions in space and come to Earth to quell rebellions that are occurring in the face of the Triple Strike fallout. But the Dominators want to somehow maintain a 'behind the scenes' control. Keep Earthgov 'in power' but submissive. Keep the propaganda going. Keep the Science Police active as riot control, working for the Dominion. It shows just how much Earth is under the thumb of the Dominion. How did it get this far??

I think it would be hard to maintain a level of invisibility when a fleet of Dominator battle wagons are in orbit above Earth. And the creative team knows it too ...

The other thing that the creative team has done is upped the ante in terms of the danger of this new universe. In the old Legion, it was rare for there to be a death or maiming.

In the 5YL universe we have seen Blok, Power Boy, and Northwind die. We have seen Vi lose a limb. We have seen Celeste beaten to a pulp.
Now we see Sun Boy dying. The null radiation from Triple Strike has made his powers go out of control. He is burning himself up from the inside. Awake, in agony, slowly losing his life ... brutal.

Of course, Sun Boy's character in this series isn't great or heroic. He is the voice of the Dominion, living in opulence while acting as a shill for the fascist aliens. I was disgusted by him and how far he strayed from the Legion code. But I don't think I would wish this on him.


Unfortunately, the Dominion propaganda machine continues to churn, even if no one else in the universe is buying it.

When the United Planets want to come to the aid of Earth given what is going on, they are rebuffed. "Earthgov" sends a message telling the UP to stay away. The Dominion will help Earth recover from this 'Khund' attack.

Maybe in an older Legion story the UP wouldn't care and would swoop in to help. But this is a more serious, more realistic interpretation of things. Their hands tied, they can only sit back and watch.

On the planet itself, between blackouts, SciPo rebellions, and general disasters, things aren't going well.

Legion friend Devlin O'Ryan is injured, bleeding out, and trying to find help so he can report on the Dominion death squads.

Before he can find safety, he runs into .... someone.

Cloaked in shadows, this group knocks him out with some sort of blast, but then tends to Devlin's wounds.

We only see a snippet of leg coloring in that first panel. We get a sense of their attitudes in wondering why someone attacked him, of wanting to help him. Who are these people??

Way back in 1991 ... I had no idea.


But I was able to figure out that they must be from the mysterious chambers we first read about last issue. Right after seeing them knock out Devlin, we get a page where the Dominators learn that the Chambers were breached and the 'perfect specimens' within are on the run, and before they could be mind wiped.

So within the destruction, a very very large subplot begins to take root.

Once again, just as I am ready to dive into the Earth disaster, Giffen and the Bierbaums take a left hand turn. We head to the Legion HQ where the team seems blissfully ignorant of everything that is going on back home.

We leave this mystery, this devastation ...


And we see that Brainy teleports Celeste to the HQ because he wants her quarantined. But the teleportation leaves her clothes behind.  Meanwhile, Kono is phasing into the men's shower to catch a peep of Kent Shakespeare.

Locker room shenanigans and nudity jokes.

After we see SciPo getting gunned down.

Yes, this is funny. But the juxtaposition is stark.


Meanwhile, Mysa has a dream that insinuates that Amethyst and the Gem World, or maybe Wizard's World, is still out there. It is great to see Mysa smiling again.

And we see Vi and Ayla flirting with each other while Vi models her new smooth blue artificial leg.

And we learn that Imra delivered healthy twins - Dacey and Dorritt.

And we see that Night Girl has moved into the Legion headquarters.


At least Cham seems to be aware of Earth's issues.

For the second time this issue we see that there is footage of Superman on the moon when it exploded. Could he have caused it? Cham chooses to simply ignore the footage. You can't sully the image. This universe needs its symbols of heroism and goodness.

In my mind, I think this somehow tied into the Time and Time Again arc in Superman. There was an explanation why he might be visible. But he didn't do it.


In the most poignant vignette, we see Rokk visiting another soldier who had been at the Venado Bay battle in the Imsk-Braal war. We have heard about this fight. We know both Rokk and Vi were there. We know the Braalians were slaughtered. That Rokk lost his powers. But now we see it up close.

The Imsk army fires its power damper which makes the Braalian magnetic powers seem to go amok. The soldiers bodies compress, explode, fry. Rokk is knocked into a ravine ... by a piece of someone. And that somehow lessens the effect on him. He survives ... barely.

Giffen does a fine job in the panels here. You have to look closely to understand what you are seeing. It mirrors the chaos of the scene. And keeping it all in rust tones, even the gutters, gives it a scab-like feel.


Dazed, he stumbles back to his basecamp only to find it overrun with Imskians.

He is saved from death by Vi who is a commanding officer here. But then, in his incoherence, Rokk lashes out with the one weapon he has, slashing Vi in the face.

Rokk gave Vi her scar.

Whoa ...

No wonder they have felt so awkward and sad around each other. It is this depth of character and nuance that makes me love this book.

Plus, having the Imsk army have violet visors is a nice touch. Having them colorful in the brownish-reddish background is also a nice touch. They aren't effected by this as much as Rokk and his men.

But who was this little trip down memory lane for?

Even Rokk knows that this was Brainy's way of examining him ... not the other patient. I love Rokk in this book. He is powerless. But he has skills that are incredible. And this back story of tragedy is a great wrinkle for him.

So we have caught up with just about everybody. There are some funny scenes. We get great personal character moments. Some new subplots are introduced. All this while Earth burns.

I think the purpose of these vignettes of the Legion show that they simply cannot rest in this 5YL universe. There is no downtime. This 'rest' is the calm before the newest storm.


But then we are back to Earth.

Things are unraveling. Weather is horrific with a planetwide cold snap effecting everything. Riots are everywhere. Science Police officers are being murdered in the streets by Dominion death squads. The Dominators are crushing opposition violently.

But their grip is slipping. The resolve of those who worked with them is slipping. And no  scene shows that better than this one. Circe, one of the Dominators patsies and Sun Boys paramour, kills a Dominator official. These SciPo troops were under her charge. She isn't going to work for these bastards any more.

And there is Bounty, watching the whole time, intrigued by this change in loyalties. But look closely. Bounty is looking through a scope, holding a rifle. Was she there to assassinate Circe?? This is a darker world. Heroes might just have to be killers in this war.

So this is a great issue and sort of reignited my love of this title. There is story progression and new subplots and wonderful character moments that give depth to the cast members. The creative team really shines here, giving us just enough of each are to tantalize us and make us want more.

How is this run not beloved by everyone??

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Superboy starring the Legion #204

Superboy starring the Legion of Super-Heroes #204 (Oct, 1974)
A Review by Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage
title: "The Legionnaire Nobody Remembered"
writer: Cary Bates
artist: Mike Grell
editor: Murray Boltinoff
cover: Nick Cardy

Mission Monitor Board:  
current: Mon-El, Lightning Lad, Cosmic Boy, Saturn Girl, Superboy
past: Cosmic Boy, Saturn Girl, Lightning Lad, Colossal Boy, Phantom Girl, Chameleon Boy, Brainiac 5

Opponents: 
convoluted time travel theories

Synopsis: 
In the 75th Century, a young man doing a Superboy biography realizes that his time-scanner was defective, as it has been warping the time stream instead of just observing it. His father is on the Science Court, so tells his son that he will take it up with them on how best to rectify the problem. The son feels responsible, however, so he decides to use a time machine to go back to the 30th Century to solve the problem himself.

Calling himself "Anti-Lad," he shows up at LSH HQ and shows off his "anti-power" against Lighting Lad, Colossal Boy, and Cosmic Boy. He passes the initial tests, and gets his commemorative picture taken with them. However, Brainiac 5 does not trust his story. That night, Brainy wakes him up and finds out that his visor is his power source. They also realize that it had recently manufactured kryptonite.

The Legion thinks Anti-Lad went back to 20th Century Smallville and sabotaged Superboy's initiation, planning on taking the Boy of Steel's place. Anti-Lad disappears, and the Legion decides to give Superboy another chance.

Due to his post-hypnotic suggestion, nobody remembers ever meeting Anti-Lad.

Commentary: 
Cary Bates has written quite a few silly and stupid Legion stories, but this is probably his worst issue ever. The lead story has absolutely nothing going for it other than Mike Grell's wonderfully fresh art. A time traveler from the future who has mucked up the time-line should be a great story idea, but Anti-Lad is handled so badly it's not even worth talking about. The set-up and lead-in takes way too long, the pay-off is rushed, and worst of all, the Legionnaires are portrayed as idiots.
Let's hope the next story is better....(sigh)

title: "Brainaic 5's Secret Weakness!"
writer: Cary Bates
artist: Mike Grell
editor: Murray Boltinoff

Mission Monitor Board:  
Star Boy, Brainiac 5, Saturn Girl, Supergirl, Cosmic Boy

Opponents: 
un-requited love, Zotron radiation, the Seventies' "Me" generation  


Synopsis: 
Brainiac 5 has been complaining of needing a vacation (all those nights he stayed up perving on Anti-Lad are coming back to haunt him). Now he and Star Boy are scheduled to go off together to Recreation Asteroid 7 via Rainbow Rockets. Saturn Girl, herself up nights perving on Timber Wolf, notes that Brainiac 5 hasn't been getting enough sleep lately. Star Boy promises that they will get plenty of sleep. As soon as this odd couple departs, a stranger arrives at LSH HQ.
On Recreation Asteroid 7, Star Boy goes off to make reservations at the club La Cage Aux Folles when Supergirl shows up and convinces Brainiac 5 to go away with her. Star Boy is broken-hearted, but reluctantly lets them go. In their cruiser, they suddenly run afoul of the deadly Zotron radiation belt. Supergirl wraps her cape around Brainiac 5 (not *too* tight!) to save him.
When the rays pass, Brainiac 5 finds that the woman he thought was Supergirl was actually an android he had made. For two weeks he has been sleep-walking, building this Supergirl android to fill the void left by Kara's absence. Coincidentally, the real Supergirl has arrived and saved him, and they fly off as his cruiser explodes. Supergirl tells him that unfortunately she is there to resign from the Legion.

Star Boy, left to his own devices, joins a Village People Fan Club and sees CATS every single night that he is off.

Commentary: 
...So if the first story establishes that Brainiac 5 is an intelligent man whose "hunches" should be trusted, what does the back-up story tell us? I remember the first time I read this, I thought: Brainiac 5 is crazy! It's one thing to have an obsession or a crush or an unrequited love, but how many of us who feel that way then go out and build an android that we then make-out with!? This is definitely the stupidest story I have ever read. How the editor allowed it to get green-lit, I have no idea. I never trusted Brainiac 5 again after reading this story.

And why in the world are Star Boy and Brainiac 5 furloughing together? I would think that these two guys don't even like each other very much. Can you imagine *anything* that these two guys have in common? I think Cary was taking the "military" idea of the Legion a bit too far with this. Of course, Star Boy would want to take his vacation with Dream Girl....and Brainy would want to hang with Rond Vidar!

Besides these bits of silliness, I can't approve of the coincidence of having the real Supergirl show up on the very day Brainiac 5 has completed his Supergirl android. And why have Supergirl leave the Legion at all? It's not like she was burning up the pages of her own magazine or Superman Family. Oh, well. Mike Grell does another great job on the art (I especially like those two "hands-on-hips" poses he uses), but that is it.

Bad, Cary, very bad.

Science Police Notes:  
  • Showing Brainiac 5 as a member before Superboy lends credence to the idea that Supergirl joined before her cousin. Regular readers of our Who's Who profiles will recall that Brainy joined at the same time as Supergirl. 
  • In a poignantly ironic moment, the father from the 75th Century voices what the majority of LSH fans thought Post-Crisis, but what DC management *still* chose to ignore. (Sigh)
Status: 
Reprinted in The Legion of Super-Heroes Archives vol. 11

Milestone: 
Supergirl resigns from the Legion in this issue.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Happy Birthday, Colossal Boy!


According to the 1976 DC Calendar, today will be the birthday of Gim Allon, better known throughout the galaxy as Colossal Boy.
Colossal Boy was the 7th member of the Legion of Super-Heroes. He served with distinction through the Magic Wars, for a duration of approximately sixteen years.
Colossal Boy is an Aquarius. An enchanting presence will let him know he is wanted, not needed, today. The pressure is off, and he knows he can really be himself.
(When your wife is a Durlan and your best friend is a Durlan, too, it's hard to be yourself....haha!)

As an extra bonus, here's the scene where Colossal Boy decides to stay married to Yera (Legion of Super-Heroes #305 with art by Keith Giffen & Kurt Schaffenberger)

Star Trek/Legion of Super-Heroes



CROSSOVER! Everybody loves a crossover! 
Today the Legion of Super-Bloggers joins the illustrious Super-Blog Team-Up! 
Several different blogs have combined forces today under the banner "Parallel Worlds and Alternate Realities." Each blog in this crossover will focus on alternate versions of their favorite characters and niches. 
We are happy to present our own Tim Wallace as he reviews the Star Trek-Legion team-up from 2013. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Legion of Super-Heroes (v3) #10

Legion of Super-Heroes (vol 3) #10 (May, 1985)
a review by Russell "Bilingual Boy" Burbage
title: "Election Day!"
writer: Paul Levitz
penciller: Steve Lightle
inker: Larry Mahlstedt
letterer: John Costanza
colorist: Carl Gafford
editor: Karen Berger
cover: Steve Lightle & Larry Mahlstedt (signed)

Mission Monitor Board:  
Sun Boy, Star Boy, Chameleon Boy, Element Lad, Dream Girl, Blok, Invisible Kid, Timber Wolf, Lightning Lass, Lightning Lad, Saturn Girl, Wildfire, Shrinking Violet, Cosmic Boy, White Witch, Mon-El, Shadow Lass, Phantom Girl, Ultra Boy, Colossal Boy

Opponents: 
four Khund warriors: Ghorbak, Wharlik, Khirdrack, and unidentified
  
Synopsis: 
The election for new Earth President has begun, and the Legion has been asked to protect the candidates as the Khunds have promised to assassinate the President.

In Acapulco, Sun Boy easily defeats Ghorbak, sent to kill the Mexican candidate. Element Lad and others are in orbit in case the Khunds attack Earth en masse.

In Yangtzopolis, Invisible Kid faces another Khund warrior sent to kill the Chinese candidate. He starts off fine, but allows the Khund to get the better of him and is faced with the possibility of his own death.

In Tokyo, Timber Wolf meets up with Karate Kid's Sensei, who agrees to help him on Karate Kid's mysterious mission/request.

Back in Yangtzopolis, Invisible Kid, under threat of imminent death, opens a dimensional portal and suddenly teleports him and the Khund warrior into orbit around Earth. Invisible Kid's transsuit kicks in, but the Khund is killed by exposure.

Saturn Girl and Lightning Lad are preparing to return to the active roster, but discuss wanting to raise their son, instead.

In Hyperbad (India/Pakistan), Wildfire is protecting Mojai from another Khundian assassin. Wildfire absorbs the energy bombs, then causes the Khund to smash the air-mansion down on himself.

With each of the candidates having survived an assassination attempt, Cosmic Boy takes the opportunity to announce his long-delayed vacation with Night Girl. All of the others wish him well.

In the Old Boston Sector, Colossal Boy and his wife are spending time with his mother, the President of Earth, as her term expires. Suddenly another Khund warrior attacks, reminding them that they had promised "to kill the President." Colossal Boy manages to stop him, as Mojai is announced as the next President.

Commentary: 
This issue is not much more than a "place-holder," as nothing really note-worthy happens except that Invisible Kid is given yet another new, unwanted power. I really don't understand why Paul Levitz insisted on tarnishing this character with unwanted side effects like teleportation and dimensional portals. Did he think this made Jacques Foccart look sympathetic? Basically it makes him look incompetent. If Invisible Kid is not up to the job of guarding a political candidate, then he should not have accepted the assignment. If he can't do the same things as others like Wildfire or Sun Boy, then he should not have been a Legionnaire. I had hoped that Invisible Kid would have used his powers and his wits to defeat the Khund, and I was very disappointed to see that his power-set was re-imagined again instead.

When I first read this story I thought that Colossal Boy was gravely injured during his battle with his Khundian warrior. Of course, he turns up next issue feeling perfectly fine.

Science Police Notes:  
  • Mojai Desai is elected President of Earth in this issue. 
  • No mention is made of Brainiac 5 and Dawnstar, who are still missing in current issues of Tales of the Legion. 
Status: 
Reprinted in Legion of Super-Heroes The More Things Change TPB

Monday, January 26, 2015

The Legion of Substitute-Heroes Special

Legion of Substitute-Heroes Special #1 (April, 1985)
a review by Siskoid
title: You Can't Keep a Good Villain Down
storytellers: Paul Levitz & Keith Giffen
inker: Karl Kesel
letterer: John Constanza
colorist: Carl Gafford
editor: Karen Berger (she's sorry, she swears it won't happen again)
cover: Keith Giffen & Karl Kesel (signed)

Mission Monitor Board: 
Matter-Eater Lad calls in Polar Boy, Chlorophyll Kid, Color Kid, Fire Lad, Stone Boy, Infectious Lass, Porcupine Pete

Guests:
Proty, Gigi Cusimano

Opponents:
Tusker, Eyeful Ethel, Pulsar Stargrave, Computo
 
Synopsis:
The Subs are called to Bismoll on Matter-Eater Lad's hunch, and end up saving the planet from Pulsar Stargrave. If you can believe it.

Out on the week of April 1st 1985, The Legion of Substitute-Heroes Special is a sequel of different sorts. First, it's a sequel to DC Comics Presents #59, in which Keith Giffen first turned the Subs into a joke of near Ambush Bug proportions. Based on the popularity of that issue AND that of the Sword of the Atom Special's format, DC commissioned (or allowed to happen, depending on how you want to see it) the Subs' own special. Its reuse of classic LSH villains, and our catching up with the retired Matter-Eater Lad, create sequels for those characters as well. Even if the canonicity of this story is in doubt. Well... you decide.

Giffen and his word-slave Paul Levitz quickly catch us up to who the LSubH are, and why Matter-Eater Lad, currently a drafted senator in Bismoll's government apparatus, would call them in. For me, this issue is pure gold if only for the insight it gives us into Bismoll.
Matter-Eater Lad has a bad case of not seeing the forest for the trees, but he knows SOMETHING is up with the computerization bill.
The reader is likely more astute. That's right, Bismoll just acquired a pile of Computos to run the planet'a infrastructures. Nothing good can come of this. I'm actually relieved M-E Lad didn't call in fellow loser Legionnaires Bouncing Boy and Duo Damsel. If you know what I mean. Back on Earth, the Subs are getting ready to go to Bismoll, their new Science Police liaison in tow - one Gigi Cusimano, quite clearly being punished by Chief Zendak for something. Alas, she'll be mostly wasted on this trip. But then, this isn't a particularly good story for the female characters. Gigi is largely useless and Infectious Lass is the only Sub not to make it on the surface of Bismoll, leaving all the female action to... Color Queen?
Color Kid caught a bug from Infectious Lass, you see, and woke up with a different gender. And then didn't notice in the shower. Meanwhile, back on Bismoll, Tusker and Eyeful Ethel, two Legion rejects who turned to villainy, are going to sabotage the new computer central to make their reputations.  They get there just in time to see a powerful figure materialize. This is Pulsar Stargrave, a possibly Coluan villain from the Jim Shooter age, called by Computo to help subjugate Bismoll.
Well, he doesn't know it's Bismoll. I'm pretty sure he was expecting a better planet. Giffen really is poaching from all across Legion history, and one classic bit he brings back is the Planetary Chance Machine, which the Legion once used to select their leader. The Subs aren't questioning Polar Boy's leadership, of course, they just want to use it to decide who gets to land the cruiser.
It doesn't really matter, because the cruiser's run out of gas. As the action continues Sub-less down below, the planet's power grid is shut off and Stargrave starts making demands. It's up to Matter-Eater Lad - whose costume still fits thanks to Bismoll's stringent calorie control laws - to do something.
And that something is biting off Stargrave's nose. Was it worth it? No, it was not. It just makes him angrier, and he's ready to blow the planet to bite-sized smithereens. M-E Lad could sure use some help, even from the Subs, but where are they? Well, co-writer Paul Levitz would like them to be on the planet already.
Writer's fiat, if you will. Before Karen Berger gets involved. So suddenly, the Subs start popping up on the planet as if they'd been infected by something Ambush Bug had left behind in their previous engagement. POP! Fire Lad is in a huge garden sneezing up an inferno. POP! Stone Boy crashes through the trees and a few buildings, sleeping through the experience. POP! Color Kid finds him/herself in a veritable death trap.
Or something. POP! Chlorophyll Kid appears at a weighing station and is promptly taken away by the Calorie Patrol. POP! Officer Cusimano drops into the sea. POP! One of the few Legionnaires to pop up close to Pulsar Stargrave's position, Porcupine Pete is the first to engage him in battle.
Polar Boy's around here somewhere as well. Look, here's a map. Maybe it'll help you get your bearings.
Even Tusker and Ethel try to stop Stargrave, but to no avail. He's even able to bust out of Polar Boy's absolute-zero ice. So how do they beat him? Would you believe team work? Of a sort.
Brittle from the ice, Pulsar is no match for Stone Boy falling on him from a great height. So basically, the day was won by Matter-Eater Lad pushing a big rock off a ledge. Sounds about right. So what happened after? Fire Lad was arrested for arson, Chlorophyll Kid was sentenced to mandatory jogging, Color Kid became a dude again, the incident was expunged from Gigi's record, Porcupine Pete struggled to get out of a hole, Stone Boy got a medal, Polar Boy reconsidered what he was doing with the Subs (does this lead directly into his re-application to the Legion? Better not put it on his C.V.), Infectious Lass was left wondering how it all ended, and editor Karen Berger apologized profusely and made sure to tell us the regular LSH books were nothing like this. And all you got, gentle reader, is this lousy HQ blueprint:
A few snarky laughs to be had, but perhaps it didn't trust its audience enough. There's just one too many moments where the editor has to tell us not to judge the Legion based on this. Well, I thought it was pretty clear this was a spoof just from the cover. Was there really a concern at DC that this Special would somehow drive sales DOWN on the LSH? It was greenlit because of the characters' comedic appeal in DCCP, after all. Well, had this been my first Legion book, it would have made me buy more, not less. But then, I'm that kind of Legion fan.