Thursday, June 21, 2007

Superman and the Legion (updated)

Apparently I stopped reading this ComicBloc thread too soon.

According to Geoff Johns, we haven't seen the last of the Lightning Saga Legion, as mentioned at the cons over the weekend:

You'll see more of them soon...

...it's called SUPERMAN AND THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES.

We'll find out more today at Newsarama, and of course we'll update this. A change in the Supergirl/LSH title, or a whole 'nother title with a whole 'nother group?

(hat tip: Scott at Legion Clubhouse)

Over at Newsarama, they've got a "post-game wrapup" with Johns and Meltzer. They discuss the JLA/JSA/LSH crossover, how it all came about, how they were originally going to do it One Year Later, how Countdown dovetailed into it, how the return of the Flash was conceived, and lots more. The newsy Legion bits:
NRAMA: ... Let's talk Legion of Super-Heroes. Wally wasn't the only one who came "back." When you were looking at how this story would end, how did you pick which Legion characters would stay behind?

GJ: I’d always planned on using Starman in Justice Society of America since my early discussions with Alex Ross about the book. Originally, we weren’t going to delve into Starman’s backstory as quickly, but since the crossover was happening earlier on and the original Legion was involved, we ended up focusing on him quite a bit more — which incidentally is fine with me. Thom’s become one of my favorite JSoA members in record time. And for that reason, I was always intent on keeping Starman in the Justice Society — and we needed him for our second major story arc "Thy Kingdom Come" (the prologue to that begins with #9). So Starman was always going to stay.

BM: I actually had planned to have Karate Kid return. But then they liked the idea of him being here as they were building Countdown, so he remained.

NRAMA: So if Geoff has always planned on using Starman, was that the reason for the Legion tie-in?

BM: The interesting part here is, I think I pitched Geoff the Legion part before I even knew that Starman was on JSA. His first reaction was, “oh, that’ll be perfect with Starman…” For awhile, we even plotted out that each Legion member would be “hidden” as a new character in seven different One Year Later books. So Dawnstar would be some character with wings in Teen Titans, and etc, etc. And that seemed cool. For a day. But in the end, it just seemed overly coincidental that every team had a new Legion-ish member and nobody noticed.

NRAMA: Now that we have a few members staying behind here in the current DCU, will we see the Legion again anytime soon?

GJ: Well, as I said earlier, Starman is a member of the Justice Society for the foreseeable future. And they’re moving Karate Kid into Countdown. But the Legion of Super-Heroes, the team that Superman spent time with when he was a teenager, have retreated back to the 31st century. What happened to them? Why are they reluctant to tell Superman? Why won’t they ask Superman for help? These are all questions that’ll be answered in "Superman and The Legion of Super-Heroes," which is Gary Frank’s first arc in Action Comics, beginning with issue #858.

We’ll find out what’s happened to the Legion since the first Crisis hit and why we haven’t seen them since then – but more importantly, it’s a story about how a man helps his childhood friends and how vital Superman and the Legion are to the future.

NRAMA: You dropped a hint about that Action storyline when you had the Legion members talking about "not telling Superman" about their future. Were there a lot of Easter eggs like that in this storyline? Things that will be followed up on later, in other stories?

BM: As with every issue we’ve done so far, there’re nuggets and hints for the future.

Go read the Newsarama article for more.

Hmmm... "We’ll find out what’s happened to the Legion since the first Crisis hit and why we haven’t seen them since then"? I thought that Paul Levitz (with Steve Lightle and Greg LaRocque) took care of that with issues 19-63 of the v3 series, and even Giffen/Bierbaum in the v4 series. Is that all being retconned away now? No Pocket Universe, Universo Project, Magic Wars, Black Dawn, Five Year Gap, Dominator Chambers, SW6 Legion, Legion on the Run, or Zero Hour?

12 comments:

Allen said...

Um. Whoa.

Seems unlikely it'd be a revamp of the existing SatLoSH title since it'd involve changing out... well, everything... but having two books with such similar titles and two totally diferent Legion teams doesn't sound like the greatest idea, either.

Whatever, I'm really, really curious to read the Newsarama article now whenever it gets post.

Mr. Kayak said...

i think it will just be a miniseries about superman's past in the legion. and since what we saw on action comics #850, maybe it will tie in with the future AC episode with the lightning saga legion.
anyway, miniseries or not, i can't wait for this book to happen! :-D

Jonathan Miller said...

The article's up: http://forum.newsarama.com/showthread.php?t=117681 Warning: spoilers for Flash:FMA #13 as well as the JLA/JSA.

Essentially, the "Superman and the Legion" story will be in Action following Johns and Donner's departure. Also, they do not address the "different Legion" question at all, nor whether it'd be addressed in the future. (We can hope....)

Matthew E said...

Is that all being retconned away now? No Pocket Universe, Universo Project, Magic Wars, Black Dawn, Five Year Gap, Dominator Chambers, SW6 Legion, Legion on the Run, or Zero Hour?

The way I look at it is this: from one point of view, Zero Hour already retconned all of that away. From another, it hasn't been retconned away; it just happened to a different version of the Legion. Much as the JLA/JSA crossover Legion resembles the original Legion, they just aren't the same group.

Jonathan Miller said...

It occurs to me that no one has mentioned that Wally's kids are dressed like the pre-Crisis Tornado Twins (circa that issue of Adventure whose number I can't remember off the top of my head) at the end of the crossover. Which I found amusing. :-) Makes you wonder where the Speed Force took them....

Michael said...

I noticed those costumes right away, I just didn't mention it (because I haven't done my review recap yet). But the kids aren't going to be the new Tornado Twins, they're now different ages and have non-running powers.

Terence Chua said...

It's pretty clear that this can't be the pre-Crisis Legion, unless they can explain why Val is alive again, why the weird mix-and-match of eras/costumes in the statue display in the Fortress, how the original Supergirl fits into all this, etc.

Not that it isn't screwed up already, but I'm worried that Legion continuity is going to take another real beating.

RAB said...

It's not the wreckage of continuity that bothers me so much as complete bafflement at the marketing logic here. DC now has three Legions running around: the Waid/Kitson (et al) version, the animated version, and now this "sort of like the pre-Crisis version but arbitrarily different where we felt like it" version. And if we step away from that tiny group of readers who recognize and can sort out all these different versions...where's the putative jumping on point for hypothetical new readers? Where's the logical flow allowing those hypothetical readers to say "Oh, this has the Legion in it, I like the Legion from that other thing, therefore I should read this"? Instead they're left puzzled, because these other heroes are called the Legion and have the same names but are otherwise unrecognizable.

Geoff Johns is writing for one very specific audience consisting of 34 year olds who thought the Legion hit its peak when they were 14 years old and still remember everything about those issues vividly but don't want to know about anything since -- and screw anyone foolish enough to read the two Legion comics DC currently publishes. In other words, he's like this.

I wouldn't care if DC picked the Waid version or the Bierbaum version or this Johns version; what's madness is that they don't pick any one and stick to it. They're just indulging themselves and driving off potential readers in confusion.

Terence Chua said...

I'll probably go back to try very, very hard and pretend that everything after the end of the Magic Wars never happened. That really should be where they start off.

murrfox said...

"Where's the logical flow allowing those hypothetical readers to say "Oh, this has the Legion in it, I like the Legion from that other thing, therefore I should read this"? Instead they're left puzzled, because these other heroes are called the Legion and have the same names but are otherwise unrecognizable."

I don't agree. To a new reader, its' not much different than what ws going on at the end of the Conway years when they were publishing the Digests. Different looking characters... different kinds of stories... all it made me want to do was seek out more. I think that we have to give new readers more credit. If the story is good, they aren't going to be so confused that they run away screaming.

Jason said...

Here's what I expect will be established:

We will find out that the Waid/Kitson Legion is an early version of the Legion that appeared in "The Lightning Saga." We will learn that most of the old, original Legion stories are again canonical on "New Earth," with minor differences (i.e. Kal-El could never travel through time on his own so he had to use a Legion Time Bubble). Everything printed since LOSH Vol. 3 #18 is non-canonical on "New Earth." No Pocket Universe etc. etc.

And maybe eventually we'll get new stories, maybe even ones written by Levitz, that take place right after the CRISIS issues from LOSH Vol. 3.

Michael said...

Jason - I don't think so. Remember, we've still got this thing out there called "Legion of Three Worlds".