Friday, February 13, 2009

DiDio comments on LSH #50, Legion's future

From his weekly column at Newsarama:

7. One question that came up a few times in the thread – what happened with Legion of Super-Heroes #50?

DD: It’s pretty clear, and I answered this at one of my panels at the con, but I’m more than happy to address it again. What happened was that upon the author’s request, there was a name change and a pseudonym used and we obliged that request. We made those changes at the very last minute because we did not want to miss our shipping date on the book. We made a couple of changes in order to get the book out on time, and we felt that it summed up the story to the best of its ability, and we’re ready to move on to the next chapter of Legion wherever that may be, following the conclusion of the series.

12. Moving on to a question about something you said about DC having an increased commitment to the Legion of Super-Heroes in 2009. Last year at this time, there were two series, and an animated series. This year, the regular book has been cancelled, and they’re going to be doing what looks to be a time-share thing in Adventure Comics. What’s the increased commitment going to consist of, coming up?

DD: Well, we also have Legion of 3 Worlds coming to a conclusion too, which is a very important book for the Legion franchise. But the commitment is that we’re bringing a level of clarity to the Legion and one direction that shows the potential for the future of the Legion, but also how that future is springing from the current storylines in the current continuity.

So what you’re going to see is how the Legion has ties to our current timeline, and once we establish those ties to the current time, we’ll spring forward to the future an d see what the future holds for those characters.

NRAMA: So mostly, we’re going to see more of firmly-established clear-line continuity than it’s had previously?

DD: Right. One of the things that I found most interesting about Legion of 3 Worlds was that the delineation between the three Legion teams were slighter than we had originally thought. They were variations of each other rather than different focus, different plans between them. What we’re trying to do right now is to bring a level of clarity to everything, the Legion included. Following Blackest Night, we’re looking at a much clearer, iconic interpretation and a much more committed determination to the direction of our characters. Legion is no exception, and we wanted to clear the decks a bit, straighten things up and get things rolling again.


Erik Hancock said...

So it was more important to have a crappy issue of the end of this title out on time than to - oh lets say have the L3W out less than 3 months late??

He was surprised to learn that the 3 legions were similar - with similar focus and events WTF Mate? Looks like he never read any of the books and has no clue about the Legion.

I understand that many fans want stronger ties to the 20th cent - superman/boy/girl in particular but then this leads to the slew of retcons - Valor, pocket earth and other "events" Bloodlines anyone?

I'm feeling that DC editorial has no clue on the legion or the future.

Matthew E said...

I can sum up my reaction to DiDio's comments in two words:

Uh huh.

It all sounds vaguely positive but there's nothing to hang your hat on. Typical.

snell said...

Great moments of saying absolutely nothing:

"But the commitment is that we’re bringing a level of clarity to the Legion and one direction that shows the potential for the future of the Legion, but also how that future is springing from the current storylines in the current continuity."

So many words, so little meaning. Bravo, Mr. DiDio. The only thing missing is "optimizing our core efficiencies" and "shifting our paradigm."

Anonymous said...

Its all very dandy, but their forcing the Legion into certain roles... I noticed with B5s in L3Ws that the two younger are opposites and the elder is a middle ground. Yet Reboot B5 was not always like how he is being portrayed and B5 of Threeboot was more like Vril Dox 2nd thoughout it. Yet that has been lost and he is just "negative" and Reboot B5 "positive". About the only one in character is Gates so far, but you can't go too far wrong with him since he has a very percific character.

murrfox said...

And Didio still seems to miss the point of the question. Why did the book *have* to be canceled at issue #50? Why not let the storyline play out and put out three or four more issues?

md said...

to murrfox: Because 50 looks prettier.

I am a man of simple tastes. Just give me a monthly/bi-monthly All-Star Legion of Super-Heroes which follows the continuity of All-Star Superman and I'll be happy. I don't give a rat's about continuity; I want GREAT stories that I'll never forget.
Also, throw in Grant Morrison (I'd love to see him do a Legion book!) and Frank Quitely.

murrfox said...

to md:
50 may look prettier, but Didio isn't being consistent. Why not end Birds of Prey at 125 (which would fit his fondness for pretty round numbers) instead of letting it limp on for another couple of issues? Why not end Robin at 180 (another round number)? clearly something else went on behind the scenes, and Didio wants to distance himself from whatever it was by not talking about those issues and pretending that if he doesn't talk about them, they won't have existed.

Andres said...

DDs comments read like this to me: "We decided the reboot Legion is the CORRECT Legion (like Barry is the CORRECT Flash, no matter what Flash you grew up with, and Hal is the CORRECT GL) and all the others don't matter. The fans will get used to it."

Meerkatdon said...

Aww. come on everybody, take a deep breath. One thing I've learned in the last 42 years of being a Legion fan: these things pass.

Cancellations, exile to backup features, crossovers, five year gaps, inconsistent characterizations, reboots, deaths, resignations, visits to other centuries, bad writing and lousy art, boneheaded editorial decisions, stupid marketing tricks, changes in costumes and/or code names...they all pass. Wait a few years and whatever's bothering you about the Legion will be over with.

I suspect that the LSH title ended at #50 because that's when L3W was originally scheduled to end. It was probably a decision made many months ago. The publication schedule of L3W slipped, but LSH didn't...but by then it was too late to keep LSH going.

I also suspect that Shooter wrote #50 himself, then insisted on the "Justin Thyme" pseudonym as a statement, but I have no proof of that.

And really...of course Didio doesn't read the Legion. I'll bet he seldom finds the time to read ANY comics. How many books does DC publish each month?

No, I don't like the way the threeboot version was dealt with at the end. I don't particularly care for the way the original Legion was treated by Giffen & the Bierbaums, either. I haven't been happy with any of Karate Kid's deaths (except maybe the first one). I thought M'Onel was a stupid name, the whole Blight storyline made me want to hurl, I didn't like it when they turned Element Lad into an insane god and murdered Monstress. The fact that we will probably never see any more adventures of the Lil' Legion is a lasting regret of mine, I thought Vi and Duplicate Boy made a great couple, and dammit, Lyle Norg is gay and I don't care who says he isn't.

My point is, there will always be things that drive you crazy about the way DC handles the Legion. And sooner or later, they will all pass. That's why it's Long Live the Legion.

So go ahead and complain, and feel ill-used by DC (we always will)...but don't give up hope. Because these things, they always pass. And the Legion always comes back.

Anonymous said...

In other words the Legion's future outlook is part-time temporary employment as a sideshow act in Superman, Action and Adventure Comics. Way to go, DC Comics! You've finally convinced me you don't want my money.

- Sam H. -

Jim Drew said...

It isn't that #50 is a nice round number. It's that February closes the Legion's 50th Anniversary, and Three Worlds was originally supposed to be completed in January (I think). LSH #50 was likely intended to be a capper and a tie-up for the threeboot continuity, but other scheduled mucked that up.

(I would go so far as to say that Dan & Andy were likely booted off the book almost five years ago because someone -- maybe Waid -- lined up the numbers and said "If we start a new series in December 1994 and don't screw it up, we can have #50 at the end of the 50th anniversary. Wouldn't that be cool!" So aiming at a date 4 years in the future, they tossed a series that had refound its storytelling footing, put in a couple decent done-in-one's by Keith Champagne and and a bland 4-parter by Gail Simone, and here we are today.)