Saturday, June 30, 2007

The iPhone is the iOmnicom

Hey, did you hear that there's this new thing out there called the iPhone? I don't know if you've been paying attention, but I think it's been on the news or something the last couple days.

I tested out the demo models in the store today and they look pretty cool. But as a Legion comics geek, it struck me how this is really the first generation Omnicom (the iOmnicom?). You can use it to communicate with others via voice, text, images, or video; get your news and information; look up the Encyclopedia Galactica; play your latest mp3s that previously only Antennae Boy could get (including the future hit single "Three-Eyed Sam from the Planet Wham"); use it as a tracking device; and more.

Here's what this Omnicom looks like on the iOmnicom (with allowances due to my crappy cellphone camera):

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Animated stuff

Not a whole lot going on with regards to the animated show, so here are a few bits 'n' pieces:

  • Comics Continuum reports that The Batman and Legion of Super Heroes will have a combined 90-minute panel at San Diego next month. More on that in a couple weeks when San Diego announces their full schedule.

  • I found the press release from McDonald's that came out last month, about their Happy Meal promotions for the summer. We know that the Legion will be appearing in August. Here's how it was described:
    Accompanying Polly [Pocket]™ for the last "Summer of Happy Meal Fun" event is a BIG mystery toy collection. But, like every good surprise celebration, this Happy Meal event remains a secret for now!

    I think that's corporate speak for "We're not sure who we're going to get yet". The press release says that the promotion will be from August 4-31.

  • Apparently I also forgot to note that Comics Continuum has an image of the DVD back cover, to go along with the front cover. The DVD goes on sale August 28th.

  • Wil Wheaton has had a couple of non-spoilery things to say about the Legion over the last couple months: "That is so cool!" and "We are the Legion!". It sounds as if he'll be in at least 3-4 episodes this season, including one that's Cos-centric.

  • I'm sure there are other places as well, but besides the US and Great Britain, the show is also aired on RPN in the Philippines.

  • The Animation Guild blog notes that season 2 will be 13 episodes just like last season.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

S/LSH #31 review roundup: Giving 110%

In retrospect, I'm sorry I didn't do the recap for issue 30, the end of the Waid/Kitson run. I've still got a bunch of the links but I never got around to recapping it, which is too bad because there was some interesting stuff. Maybe later.

So in his first issue, Bedard re-introduces both Tenzil Kem and what is presumably Chuck Taine, and presents them as unlikable characters? Way to pander to the crowd!

Anyway, first off, a tip of the hat to Jim Doom at the Legion of Doom regarding the leader election this issue:

Brainiac 5: 7%
Cosmic Boy: 23%
Lightning Lad: 26%
Supergirl: 54%

Congratulations, Supergirl! And may it never be said that superheroes in the future aren’t willing to give 110%.

Starting off with our reviews...
  • Matthew at the Legion Abstract:
    Tony Bedard delivers us a nice straightforward storyline. It's a perfectly conventional way to kick off an arc of several issues. But... it's called a 'prologue'. I'm a fairly patient reader, but when I open a comic book and I see that it's a prologue, the message I get from that is, "thanks for buying this comic book, but the one you really want is the next one."

    I wanted this comic book to be better than this. Bringing Calero aboard for the art might help. Bedard may acquire enough of a rapport with the characters that he can cut loose more than he did here. And this was, after all, only a prologue. This issue wasn't bad. But I'm tired of the Legion being 'not bad'.

  • Walking Through Destiny's Garden:
    I have no real complaints. Tenzil Kem (formally Matter-eater lad/ chef of the Legion cafeteria) shows up as does Chuck Taine (formally Bouncing Boy/ chief administrator for Legion World and pilot of the Bouncing Boy.) All in all a very good issue, the Legion feels alot better than they have in previous issues and Supergirl is not a whining emo freek. Still wishing I could be reading out the Post boot legion, but more issues like this one may go along way to making me feel better. Though they really need to bring back Gates. I mean how can you not like a Marx spewing space-bug.

  • Dave van Domelen:
    Bedard and so-so artist Kevin Sharpe take over for an intermezzo of sorts, dealing with some of the fallout from the Dominator War and maybe setting up for the next storyline...or wrapping things up for cancellation and relaunch. It's okay, and I do like the way a Legion longtimer is brought into the new timeline.

More reviews as they pop up...

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

JLA 10/Flash 13: "I thought it was going to be someone else"

Previously: discussion here (in the comments) about Tle Villain Is tle Lero in lis Own Story, and the return of the Lightning Saga Legion later this year.

Well, even though everything's been said about JLA #10 and Flash #13, I'm gonna go ahead and do my shtick anyway. Yes, I'm a week late and about to be drowned out by the new week's stuff that comes out Wednesday afternoon, but what the hell. And even though Flash #13 doesn't actually contain any Legion stuff, it's very relevant to the big picture.

So it's the end of the Lightning Saga story, but certainly not the end of the story. There are too many loose ends, not the least of which are Starman and Karate Kid. Nice bit of misdirection there by Johns and Meltzer, making everyone think that the Legion went back in time to revive Barry Allen (Flash II). In fact it was a double-reverse: they dragged us through the whole issue and practically told us they were going to revive Barry, then hit us upside the head with Wally and family. And as the kicker, they really did revive Barry after all, but they never anticipated Wally to begin with, and he's in the future now.

I think DC did a disservice to the fans by practically telegraphing the endings to JLA and Flash with their spoilers last weekend at the conventions. They had kept the secret so well, everyone would have been shocked - shocked! - by the endings had they not known about Bart and Wally and the status of their books.

So we have questions, now that the story's over. In no particular order:

  1. Why did the Legion travel back in time to capture Barry within the lightning rod in the first place? That was what they wanted all along - as Brainy said, he was surprised that Wally came out of the lightning, but "we got who we wanted".

  2. For that matter, as Terence says in the comments, why did they need to send people rather than robots?

  3. Why did they lie to the JLA and JSA about what they were doing? Why was the mission so secret?

  4. They made some cryptic comments about Superman's future and how things are in the 31st century. What's going on there?

  5. What Earth or alternate dimension is this Legion from? They're not the "original" pre-Crisis Legion - Wildfire was never "related" to Red Tornado, Karate Kid is still alive, Ayla is apparently dead, Projectra never wore the Sensor Girl costume while Val was still alive, Dream Girl's powers are related to the Dreaming, the flight rings look different, etc. Starman mentions that Karate Kid "died too and came back". On the other hand - hey, Proty died after all, he didn't reanimate and take over Lightning Lad's body!

  6. What's the current version of Legion continuity with regards to Superman and the rest of the 20th/21st century super-heroes? Superman said that he never saw the Legion again after the first Crisis. I suppose that's true, if you don't count the time when the post-Crisis Superman (rebooted John Byrne version) met the post-Crisis Brainiac 5, Blok, Invisible Kid, and Sun Boy; and when he bounced around time by the Linear Men in "Time and Time Again", meeting the Adventure-era Legion, the 80's Legion, and helping to destroy the Moon in the Glorithverse v4 timeline. Plus, it's not like nobody ever heard of the Legion before - half the team was trapped in the 20th century for a while, and they took part in Final Night. Hell, even Batman met the post-Zero Hour Legion in Final Night, the Lightning Saga Legion, and next issue of Brave and Bold he'll meet the current v5 continuity Legion. (I wonder if he'll mention that?)

Some of these questions will be answered later this year when the Lightning Saga Legion returns later this year.

Part of the story was the return of Wally West, Flash III, and the apparent death of Bart Allen, Flash IV. Bart, of course, showed up prior to Zero Hour but was retconned to be from the post-Zero Hour Legion's future along with his cousin Jenni "XS" Ognats. Barry retired to the 30th century prior to the Crisis, fathered the Tornado Twins Don and Dawn Allen, then died in the Crisis. Then, when the post-Crisis Legion became the Glorithverse Legion and then the post-Zero Hour Legion, the extended Allen family was retconned to the post-ZH future (and thus when Barry retired to the 30th century, it was actually the post-Zero Hour pre-Crisis, not the pre-Crisis pre-Crisis or even the post-Crisis pre-Crisis). We had Bart as Impulse in the 20th century for a while, and Jenni in the 30th. Post-Infinite Crisis, I suppose the Allen family saga stayed the same but shifted to another new future, but Impulse (and his duplicate Inertia) never got their story told, and Jenni hasn't been seen since Earth-247.

I assume much of this (some?) will be covered by Mark Waid in his new Flash series later this year. He answers some questions over at Wizard:
WIZARD: Are you expecting joyous jumping in the streets with his return, or are you expecting people scratching their heads, or are you just going to stay off the Internet for a while?

WAID: Dude, believe me, I’m staying off the Internet. I’m actually having the DSL modem taken out of my house. I don’t know. It’s a complete crapshoot. We live in a world where people are celebratory about the fact that Tony Stark is a villain. I just can’t worry about that. All I can do is be true and faithful to how I perceive the characters. All I can really do is try to make something interesting out of Wally’s new status quo and try to give you stuff that you’ve never seen before in a Flash book.

WIZARD: One last thing about Bart's death: with the multiverse stuff in play are we seriously never going to see Bart again?

WAID: [Laughs] I plead the 5th on that. That's all I can say.

Bottom line, the whole Impulse chronology makes my head hurt almost as bad as keeping track of Legion chronology. Which may be a moot point, now that he appears dead. Now, the Lightning Saga Legion of some Earth's 31st century has Barry, and the JLA of Post-Infinite Crisis New Earth has Wally, while Bart is headed for parts unknown. In retrospect, "Lightning Saga" referred to the plan to resurrect Barry somehow in a manner similar to how they revived Lightning Lad, with Wally & co. riding the lightning.

Did everyone catch that the twins costumes are duplicates of what Don and Dawn originally wore in 1968?

(pictures via)

A sampling of reader reactions that ran the gamut of "best book of the week" to "worst book". I'll cover them in the order I found them:
  • Blurred Productions:
    So I read the JLA #10/Flash #13 one-two punch that was released today. And these were bad, bad comics.

    Let’s start with Justice League. I have been wondering what the fucking point of this whole JLA/JSA/Legion-that-isn’t-supposed-to-exist-anymore crossover was. I guess now we know, it was to bring Wally West back (and trap Barry Allen’s soul?). What Wally West and the old Legion of Superheroes have to do with each other I will never know...

    Which, of course, brings us to Flash #13. Honestly, was there any point to all of this? The last 12 issues of this series have been a complete waste of what had once been an interesting character...

  • Graeme the Savage Critic:
    So, am I the only one who feels that DC has truly fucked up The Flash? Not the character necessarily, but I'm really referring to what was revealed this past weekend... because the shocking end that everyone's worked so hard to keep a secret was revealed last weekend at Heroes Con and Wizard World and then online (And again, what the fuck? They couldn't have either kept it secret for another week, or else managed to make the book ship on time?), there's absolutely no tension in the book.

    Maybe even more confusing, in terms of DC's knack of spoiling their own comics online before they're released, is what isn't in this comic - An announcement that fans should probably check out JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #10 for the next part of the story. The final part of "The Lightning Saga," you see, ends with the triumphant return of the Flash.

    Justice League of America #10 is an Awful ending to the JLA/JSA crossover. The return of Wally comes out of nowhere - well, kind of nowhere, in that lots of people have been expecting this particular misdirection due to the name of the storyline - and isn't given any attempt at explanation in the story at all. The fact that we're seeing an entirely different Legion of Super-Heroes from the ones who have their own series isn't really given any attempt at explanation (There's one line of dialogue which kind of suggests that they're from Earth-2? Maybe?). Why this alternaretroLegion came back in time to resurrect a character that wasn't definitively dead in the first place is given no attempt at explanation, either; instead, we're given scenes that hint that the Legion had an ulterior motive, but, of course, that's not explained either. It's hard for me to say how truly sloppy this final chapter is, even compared with the earlier parts of this story. It's truly fan-fiction that somehow got published by a real company.

  • Tom Bondurant, the Grumpy Old Fan at Blog@Newsarama:
    Instead, Bart dies almost as an afterthought, killed by the Rogues’ Gallery. “Killed by Dan Didio is more like it,” I can hear you saying. “First the JLI, now Young Justice.”

    Those patterns are certainly present … and if the Great DC War On Fun is behind these deaths, here’s my explanation: fun is a luxury. Fun is for people who don’t have to worry about the real world. Fun is for characters whose existences don’t have to be justified. Fun can also be pretty hard to pull off, especially when a character’s corporate owner gets concerned about “realism.”

    That naturally brings me to Justice League #10, an issue which made very little sense except as part of a larger shared-universe storyline. ... As the conclusion to “The Lightning Saga,” JLA #10 was bewildering. As the reintroduction of Wally West, though, I found it surprisingly affecting. ... I’m glad Wally’s back, because his circumstances didn’t need fixing in the first place. However, I’m sorry Bart had to be wrecked in the process.

  • The Comic Book Revolution (Flash review, JLA review)
    Now that I have praised Guggenheim for delivering the best issue he could with what DC gave him, I’m now going to address the huge mistake that I feel Flash #13 was. Was it really necessary to kill Bart Allen?

    I was really hoping that Bart would be sent back to the future to work with the Legion of Super Heroes. Or maybe that since the Multiverse is back and better than ever, that it would provide DC the perfect literary vehicle to place Bart in another universe where he could be the Flash. Unfortunately, it is the long dirt nap for Bart. Oh well, honestly, I’d much rather have Barry or Wally than Bart as the Flash. But, that doesn’t mean that I wanted to see Bart killed off.

    Justice League of America #10 was a great ending to a story arc that I have completely enjoyed. Meltzer gives us a well paced issue. The issue gradually builds in intensity and gains speed with each page as we tick down to the moment of impact.

    Yeah, DC teased us with the return of Barry Allen. Especially with the visions that Batman and Hal Jordan had just prior to Wally making his grand return. And Batman was visibly stunned that it was Wally who the Legion was bringing back and not Barry. But, maybe Batman was right after all. Because, after Wally’s dramatic return, Meltzer then drops another bomb on the reader. Wally West was not the person that the Legion was trying to bring back to life.

    There are some many questions with regard to the Pre-Crisis Legion. What is the great threat that they are facing? What happened to the Legion that caused them to sever their ties with Superman? I am fascinated with the return of the Pre-Crisis Legion and I cannot wait to see what DC has in store for the Pre-Crisis Legion. Personally, I’d be thrilled if we found out that the current version of the Legion of Super Heroes is actually from an alternate universe and that the Pre-Crisis Legion is the Legion from New Earth’s future.

  • I Was a Bronze Age Boy:
    Whacking superheroes is all the rage these days. It’s like the Sopranos have infiltrated the upper echelon of Marvel and DC editorial.

    So, Bart croaks in this week’s issue #13. It would have been a shock, thanks to DC’s loose-lips-sink-ships tactics if...IF THEY HADN’T SPILLED THE BEANS AT A CONVENTION FIVE DAYS BEFORE THE FRIGGIN’ BOOK CAME OUT!

    And over in the sleep-inducing Justice League of America #10 (where Power Girl’s, uh, power must be the ability to make those puppies defy gravity), Wally West and his family are brought back to Earth by 31st Century Legion of Super-Heroes technology. Don’t Ask. Two books. Two Flashes. Two comics that won’t make this week's Best Of list.

  • Jimmy Olsen's Blues, channeling the late Bart:
    Just in time to not save me, Wally's back. Maybe if the Legion of Super-Heroes hadn't spent so much time keeping their plans secret for no good reason, they could've brought him back a little quicker and I'd at least still be alive. Mark Waid would never have gone for this kind of shabby treatment of any Flash. If he was writing the book, I'd be back as the Fastest Man Alive any month now...

    DC News of the Week: Mark Waid Returns to Flash; Wally West on Cover of First Story -

    ...God damn it.

  • All About Comics:
    Gosh, my heart is overcome with the tragedy of Bart’s death — or would be, I guess, if this had any sense of poignancy or drama, and didn’t just seem like a soulless corporate reaction to the current lack of interest or sales to this version of the character.

    This offers the conclusion to the JLA/JSA/LSH crossover, and it turns out the Legion was trying to bring back… Wally West. Um, OK. This makes no actual sense, since West has never had any connection to the Legion (where bringing back Barry Allen, say, would at least have had the tangential connection offered by the Tornado Twins...), and the feel is that West is back because… well, because DC wanted him back; no other reason. This whole crossover just sputters to a close, and it’s convinced me to drop this title
  • Kalinara and the Occasional Superheroine and their respective commenters weigh in on Bart vs Wally and how it all went down.

  • Comics Should Be Good at CBR:
    Okay, this is the conclusion of the big JLA/JSA crossover, “The Lightning Saga.” Oooohhhh, that means there’s some terrible threat to the world that necessitates the two teams getting together, right? That means this is going to be a big smash-’em-up, because when two superhero groups get together, they have to fight something that challenges them really seriously.

    Let’s look at the obvious problem: there’s no villain. This is a crossover between the premier team of the DCU and one that for the past decade has been shoved down our throats even though they’re made up of geezers, plus the added bonus of having a bunch of heroes from the future, and they don’t fight anyone! I can’t speak for the rest of the crossover, so maybe they cleaned up the villain last issue and it turned out the villain was just a ruse, but this the climactic issue, and the closest we get to a fight is the tentacles at the beginning. What the crap? Added to this is the fact that the actual point of the issue is handled really poorly. The Legion comes back in time to bring someone back from the dead. The League thinks it’s Lightning Lad, but the clues in this issue point to Barry Allen. But really, it’s Wally. Fine. But why is the League fighting them? Why, even after they realize that they’re bringing someone back from the dead, do they try to stop them? Why is the Legion trying to deceive them in the first place? Why would Superman be so offended? “You can’t bring anyone back from the dead - dead means dead!” “Yeah, Superman, tell that to Doomsday.” I mean, why on earth is the entire issue devoted to two groups of superheroes trying to stop a third from bringing someone back from the dead?

    I really, really apologize for going on so much about this horrible comic book. It has to be said, though: this sucks. It sucks worse than The Flash #13, because although that ended with a stupid death rather than a stupid resurrection, at least there was a villain that Bart defeated (sort of) before he got kicked to death. This has no bad guy, no big fight, no character development, no humor, no sense of grandeur, and no point beyond bringing a character back from the dead. It’s astonishing that this comic is DC’s best-selling comic. The only reason I can think of that is that people simply are desperate to see their favorite characters in a book together. That’s a terrible reason to buy a comic book.

  • FanBoyWonder:
    But we talk about the death of “Bart Allen” in quotes because this character who filled these pages for 13 issues was NOT the Bart Allen we knew and loved. This Wally West Clone (we don’t use that word by chance) appeared in issue One and there was an expectation, a demand almost, that readers connect to this stranger with a familiar name (well two names, “Bart Allen” and “Flash”).

    “Bart Allen” was to the DC Universe what Ben Reilly was to the Marvel Universe. When we watched “Bart” die at the end of #13, we immediately recall feeling the same way when the clone of Peter Parker, one-time Scarlet Spider and replacement Spider-Man bit the dust (literally) quite abruptly when Marvel realized what the Spider-Clone story line was doing to the entire Spider-Man franchise.

    The Lightning Saga took a LONG time to get where it was going and while there was a rewarding payout at the end in the form of the return of Wally West/Flash and his wife and (now apparently teenaged) kids from the Speed Force or wherever, this JLA/JSA/Legion cross-over never really captured our imagination or frankly our interest for that matter.

    We did like the feeling of build up and the bit of a fake out where it seemed that it was Barry Allen that the Legion was going to bring back with their Lightning Rods. And apparently they thought so too—so Wally’s return is a happy accident.

  • Here are Don McPherson's annotations of the Lightning Saga.

  • Suspension of Disbelief shows us how Power Girl got a breast reduction between the time the original cover was solicited a couple months ago and this issue.

Final notes: I found this interesting post by Yonatan Bryant. He got into comics in the early 90s, practically a generation after me and the other old fogies who remember the Legion (and the JLA, etc.) of the 70s and 80s. We, collectively, are the main fans of comics today, and we are now the creators. But we're not the only ones.
See, while the Legion above might be a bunch of peoples Legion, they are not mine. My Legion is the post zero hour Legion. It is a strong and powerful Legion that does not need a Kryptonian to survive. It is a Legion that will get you to do something for them, as Cosmic Boy said in The Legion 3, not because of their powers, or their numbers, but because they are the Legion, and you follow what the Legion says. That is also my main complaint with the newest version of the Legion: They do not command respect. That and the fact that Gates is not a member.

But at the end of everything, Kyle is my Green Lantern, Wally is my Flash, Conner is my Green Arrow, my JLA kicks ass, my Legion of Superheroes are from the post boot era. Someday they will return.

We, the fans and creators, would do well to keep that in mind.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Legion TV schedule July 2007

All reruns until September.

Via Comics Continuum, here are the airdates and episodes for the Legion show for July 2007.

July 07 - episode 2 "Man of Tomorrow" (4th airing) - last aired 12/23/06
July 14 - episode 3 "Phantoms" (4th airing) - last aired 1/27/07
July 21 - episode 6 "Brain Drain" (4th airing) - last aired 5/12/07
July 28 - episode 5 "Lightning Storm" (4th airing) - last aired 4/7/07

Previously: all the other schedules

Episode reviews:
1.01 "Man of Tomorrow" (4 airings, last 7/7/07)
1.02 "Timber Wolf" (6 airings, last 6/2/07)
1.03 "Legacy" (3 airings, last 6/9/07)
1.04 "Fear Factory" (4 airings, last 6/16/07)
1.05 "Champions" (4 airings, last 6/23/07)
1.06 "Phantoms" (4 airings, last 7/14/07)
1.07 "Child's Play" (4 airings, last 6/30/07)
1.08 "Lightning Storm" (4 airings, last 7/28/07)
1.09 "Brain Drain" (4 airings, last 7/21/07)
1.10 "The Substitutes" (3 airings, last 4/14/07)
1.11 "Chain of Command" (3 airings, last 5/26/07)
1.12 "Sundown, part 1" (1 airing, last 4/28/07)
1.13 "Sundown, part 2" (1 airing, last 5/3/07)

Hmmm, I seem to have forgotten to do the season finale wrapup. I must get to it.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Mmmm, brains!

Arthur Suydam, who has painted all those wonderful Marvel Zombies covers as parodies of classic Marvel covers, was commissioned by Wizard Magazine to make his first DC Zombies cover. He produced the zombie version of the cover to Crisis on Infinite Earths #7, featuring the death of Supergirl (with a bunch of Legionnaires in the background). The result appears on Wizard's web site (and maybe even in their magazine too).

Ironically, the only live person on this cover is Supergirl. (Click to embiggen)


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...'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?

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Tle Villain Is tle Lero in Lis Own Story

Well, that's what it says in Interlac on the last page of JLA #10, anyway. I think someone mixed up the H with the L.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

50th Anniversary Countdown: T minus 8 months

It's only 8 months until the April 2008 issue of Supergirl and the Legion of Super-Heroes (or whatever the title might be called by then). That marks the 50th anniversary of the Legion.

The Legion was the very first super-powered super-team of the Silver Age, debuting in April 1958. It predates the Justice League of America (1960), the Avengers (1961), the Fantastic Four (1961), and the X-Men (1963) (not including the non-super Challengers of the Unknown or various war teams like the Blackhawks).

I think that within the last couple years, there's been a concerted effort to pump up "brand awareness" of the Legion, with varying degrees of success, as far back as 2005 when DC put one of their highest profile writers (Mark Waid) onto the book. Yes, it came with a reboot, but one that was supposed to allow easier access to the book, easier than the post-Zero Hour reboot. They added Supergirl (then one of the top-selling characters) to the book. They've got a huge appearance in a crossover with two of DC's top books by two of their top writers - one that has at least the comicsblogosphere buzzing. They've got a Legionnaire as a main character in their highest profile year-long miniseries that's Counting Down to something, and another as a regular member of one of their top team books. We've got promises of more coming soon, with appearances by the Legion(s) of at least two different continuities. Something big is coming.

And there's only 8 months until the official anniversary.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

LSH cartoon shut out at the Daytime Emmys

Back in March, the Legion animated show was nominated for three Daytime Emmy Awards, all for music and sound: "Outstanding Achievement in Music Direction And Composition", "Outstanding Achievement in Sound Editing - Live Action and Animation", and "Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing - Live Action and Animation".

Unfortunately, the teams were shut out (losing to Sesame Street and The Batman). Congratulations to the nominees, though.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Con reports, day 2: what's coming next?

Recapping the Wizard World Philadelphia's "DCU: BUILDING MOMENTUM" and Heroes Con's "DCU: COUNTDOWN & BEYOND!" panels:

From Charlotte (via Newsarama):

Back to Countdown, Didio said that the big questions now are: 1.) What's happening to Mary Marvel? 2.) What's happening with Jimmy Olsen? 3.) Why is Karate Kid stuck in the present-day DCU? "All of these things are building to something. We’re counting down to something, but I'm not allowed to say."

Is there any chance that, with Waid and Kitson leaving Supergirl and the Legion, will we see the "original" Legion members in their own series? The Legion members in "The Lightning Saga" will appear in an upcoming issue of Action Comics, while the regular Legion series will continue, DiDio said, and it will all be made clear coming up.

Newsarama didn't have anything from Philly, and CBR's report from Charlotte doesn't add anything new.

Con reports, day 1: Back in a Flash?

Update Saturday: Grumpy Old Fan Tom Bondurant and Scipio at the Absorbascon have more to say about the possible return of Barry.

Friday con blogging about Wizard World Philadelphia and Heroes Con in Charlotte...

It's looking more and more like the Flash (Barry Allen) just might be the one brought back in the finale to the JLA/JSA/LSH crossover after all, as had been suspected. At both Wizard World Philly and Heroes Con on Friday, it was announced that Mark Waid would be returning to write a Flash title in the fall (and Friday's announcement was the first anyone had heard about it - so people really can keep secrets in the internet age, even if it means cancelling the current Flash book with issue 13 and issuing fake soliciations for issues 14 and 15), a plan that has been in the works for about a year. Newsarama caught up with Waid for the announcement:
Those who pick up the last issue of Flash: The Fastest Man Alive next week will get a big part of it there, and those who pick up the end of the Justice League/Justice Society team-up the same day, when it ships, will get another gigantic part of the puzzle right there too. And then we just continue the momentum from there. We talked about a million ways to go with it, but this is going to be huge. It's really, truly huge.

If it really is Barry Allen, maybe they can explain where Bart (Impulse) and Jenni (XS) came from, and where Jenni is now. CBR has more on the announcement from Charlotte at the DC Nation panel.

This question came out of the Q&A portion of the WW:P panel "Counting Down: So Begins the End" (via Newsarama):
"Since JSofA brought back Starman, will he gets his own series soon?" Wayne said to wait for the end of the Justice League/Society crossover.

From CBR in Charlotte:
Are there any plans for the 50th anniversary of the Legion of Super Heroes coming next year? - DiDio confirmed there were plans for the Legion next year, and also that the Legion characters currently appearing in the "Lightning Saga" storyline in "JLA" and "JSA" will be making an appearance in "Action Comics" soon.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Toywatch: Mattel's action figures coming Real Soon Now

At long last, it looks like the action figures based on the Legion animated show (as opposed to the Justice League episode) might actually be coming out soon. Action Figure Insider has a look at a packaging concept (not necessarily the final product), along with some discussion by the locals:

Image removed by request of Mattel

One might infer that the first wave of figures would be Lightning Lad, Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, and of course, Superman. Interestingly, Lightning Lad has two "attack modes" - "spinning blade attack" (!?!) and "flight ring attack". It looks like the flight ring might be attached to his back somehow, and pulling a string attached to the flight ring makes his attack modes work? The figure itself looks nice from the photo, but we'll have to wait to see how it looks in person.

I suspect we'll see the previews of the figures this summer in San Diego.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

This weekend: Wizard World Philly and Heroes Con

This weekend features dueling East Coast cons: Wizard World Philadelphia and Heroes Con in Charlotte. Each has two generic DC panels, one of which is about Countdown. Expect some Karate Kid questions and some JLA/JSA/LSH questions.

In Philly:

Friday - 2:30-3:30
The Dave Cockrum Room (Room 103): Bob Wayne, DC VP-Sales, joined by Jim Calafiore (Countdown artist) and others, invites you to take a peek at the inner workings of Countdown and tease what’s coming up that’s sure to rock the DCU to the core!

Saturday - 2:00-3:00
The Dave Cockrum Room (Room 103): See what’s in store for your favorite characters in a universe changed by 52 and evolving from the events of Countdown. This all-encompassing DCU panel is moderated by Bob Wayne, VP-Sales, with Mike Carlin, Senior Group Editor-DCU, Eddie Berganza, Group Editor-DCU, Jimmy Palmiotti (Countdown, Jonah Hex, Uncle Sam & the Freedom Fighters), Amanda Conner (Supergirl), Dustin Nguyen (upcoming Superman/Batman artist) and others.

In Charlotte:

Friday 2pm
DC NATION, Room 217 A/B
DC Comics' Executive Editor Dan DiDio is joined by editor Michael Siglain and Coordinating Editor Jann Jones for a peek into what are sure to be the most talked about events of the summer. And with these guys in the room, it would scarcely be a surprise if some other DC creators happened to show up unannounced, would it? How exciting!

Saturday, 12:30pm
DC Comics' Executive Editor Dan DiDio is joined by editor Michael Siglain and Coordinating Editor Jann Jones, as well as any number of surprise guests, for a panel that's simply not to be missed. Catch up on the Countdown, as well as what lies ahead for your favorite heroes!

Saturday, June 09, 2007

What do Brainiac 5 and Paris Hilton have in common?

Brainy cried as he was led off to jail, too.

Here are some more pictures of the Legion in prison:

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Jim Lee does Saturn Girl

Well, OK, just one Legionnaire, Saturn Girl, but it looks darn good. Here's Jim Lee's rendition as drawn at the recent Planet Comicon in Kansas City. Read more about it here. "Hopefully, he'll get to draw her and the rest of The Legion of Super-Heroes someday too."

Interestingly, the piece is for Sidne Ward, who happens to be a good friend of mine and a fellow member of the Legion of Super-Gamblers. Check out Sidne's gallery of Saturn Girl sketches.

Trivia #12 answers

This month's theme: Legion tryouts and rejects. As usual, you guys did pretty good, but I did manage to stump you for once (nobody got #6). Here's a good summary of the Legion rejects from the Adventure era. I previously wrote about Legion rejects here and here.

1. Via the magic of retcons, who was the first Legion applicant to be rejected?

Arm Fall Off Boy, in the Fortress Lad story from Secret Origins Vol. 2 #46. The Legion had just formed and were seeking members. Arm Fall Off Boy was not one of them.

2. Which Legion rejects eventually became full-fledged members? (I had a little help on this one.)
From the Adventure run: Supergirl, Shrinking Violet, Bouncing Boy, Sun Boy, Storm Boy, Polar Boy, Chlorophyll Kid, Fire Lad, Stone Boy, Spider-Girl, Calamity King, and Color Kid. After that: Wildfire, Infectious Lass, Porcupine Pete, Crystal Kid, Nightwind, and Atmos. That's 18. I gave a bad hint before, I thought I had remembered that Lamprey had joined (she was always linked with Crystal Kid and Nightwind, but they joined and she didn't). Sorry.

Matthew did a hell of a job reciting all these from memory! He got every one.

3. Who was the first rejected Legion applicant who would later go on to be a member of the Legion of Substitute Heroes?
Antennae Boy, ADV 305. He appeared one issue before the Subs story. He later went on to join the Subs Auxiliary (which in my opinion is close enough).

4. Which Legion tryout rejects turned into villains?
Not counting the ones who were villains when they tried to join (Molecule Master, Dynamo Boy, Alaktor, etc.), here's what we collectively came up with: Jungle King, Ronn Karr, Radiation Roy, Spider-Girl, Esper Lass, Micro Lad, and Magno Lad. Post-ZH reboot gives us Ze Tongue and Cera "Emerald Empress" Kesh. I had forgotten about the Legion of Super-Rejects actually being rejected after tryouts, thanks Alan (and that was my very first Legion book, too!).

5. Back in the Adventure days, who was the very first applicant that we saw at the very first open Legion tryout?
Lester Spiffany, ADV 301. He tried to buy his way onto the team. This was the first "open" tryouts that we saw where the applicant identified himself and his power; previously we had only seen parts of the tryout process.

6. Who was the first applicant known to have been rejected for using a device as the source of his/her/its powers?
Anti-Lad! When Anti-Lad "applied", Brainy found out his powers were in his visor, which was a clear violation of the rules. This was just prior to Superboy's induction. Storm Boy appeared much later, chronologically.

7. Who was Fortress Lad, and what happened to him?
Another classic from Secret Origins #46. From the Comics101 mailbag:
In a nutshell - During Legion auditions for membership, a new character named Fortress Lad is introduced. His power - his alien race has the ability to transform into giant metal buildings for protection from meteor showers. Oddly, he is rejected. But later, Fortress Boy saves the Legion members from an attack of memory-erasing rays. The Legion stops the bad guy, but not before Fortress Lad's mind gets wiped clean, leaving him as a mindless living alien building. Since their memories of Fortress Boy were wiped out, the Legion members assume he's some sort of abandoned clubhouse and make him their new headquarters.

Let me repeat that - the Legion made Fortress Boy into their headquarters. Sure, he's brain-dead, but that doesn't give them the right to use him as their base. But apparently in the future it's OK to use people as building material. The coma wing in the hospital - they make them out of the coma patients.

8. Between his first and second appearances, what major physiological change did Double-Header undergo?
His first appearance (ADV 323) showed him with two heads on a single neck. For his next appearance (Legion Subs Special), each head had its own neck.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Trivia Quiz #12

This month's theme: Legion tryouts and rejects. As usual, you guys will probably have all the answers by tomorrow.

1. Via the magic of retcons, who was the first Legion applicant to be rejected?

2. Which Legion rejects eventually became full-fledged members? (With a little help, I was able to come up with 22 names!)

3. Who was the first rejected Legion applicant who would later go on to be a member of the Legion of Substitute Heroes?

4. Which Legion tryout rejects turned into villains?

5. Back in the Adventure days, who was the very first applicant that we saw at the very first open Legion tryout?

6. Who was the first applicant known to have been rejected for using a device as the source of his/her/its powers?

7. Who was Fortress Lad, and what happened to him?

8. Between his first and second appearances, what major physiological change did Double-Header undergo?

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Im in ur universe....

I'm sorry, I had to put this here.