Friday, October 19, 2007

Episode 2.04: Chained Lightning

First, I want to say that I love Shrinking Violet in this episode. Her little "snort" at the end of her laugh is very endearing, though I'm sure some will hate it. She had one of the best lines of the show, talking about Lightning Lad's new arm: "It fires explosive charges, lasers, and of course lightning, all powered and amplified by his own bioelectrical energy. In other words, it makes things go boom. Ha ha [snort]."

Of course, by far the most important thing we found out in this episode is that the people who have been pronouncing "Ayla" as "eye-la" like "Delilah" have been wrong all these years, and those who, like me, pronounce it as rhyming with "Layla" (as in the Eric Clapton song) have been right all along. HA!

Two interlac sightings this week. Scrolling interlac is hard to make out, even when I've got a TiVo, but I managed to get almost all of it. In one scene where the trio were approaching Korbal in flashback, the computer reads in Interlac (in part) "... BASED LIFE NON SENTIENT ENERGY FIELD ..." with pictures of a Lightning Beast on it. In another scene, as Lightning Lad stares at a map of the cloud, text reads "LIGHTNING BEAST STRIKE".

Here's the Legion Wiki article I wrote up, the torrent, and a page to download all season 2 episodes via Rapidshare.

Review roundup:

  • Legion Abstract:
    Mixed results on characterization. Shrinking Violet gets her first full speaking part in this episode, and is a breath of fresh air... but Lightning Lad adjusts to his new arm a little too quickly, and the writers seem to have taken their hands off the steering wheel when it comes to Superman-X's personality. In the first two episodes, he was all business, with no time for friendship or civility or even for simple tactics: it was all stuff that interfered with his Imperiex-fighting time. Since then, he's been callous when it's convenient for the plot that he's callous, and sympathetic when it's convenient for the plot that he be sympathetic. I was expecting Superman-X's emotional education as a hero to be the main arc of this season, but so far it's all been circumstantially driven.

  • Adventures in Comic Book Land:
    This week’s episode of Legion of Super-Heroes managed to recaptured some of that je ne sais quoi that was notably absent in last week’s Timber Wolf episode. It played the emotions of the audience well, and the writing was probably the best it’s been this season. That’s impressive, as this season hasn’t exactly been a downer.

    I couldn’t listen to anything [Violet] was saying because I just wanted her talking to be over. Other than that personal quirk of mine, it was difficult to get onboard with it because Vi came across as being desperately competitive, like rather than just being intelligent she craved proving it and being put on equal footing with Brainy. In the realm of Level 12 intelligence, equal footing is kind of a myth. So, I didn’t like that.

  • Fortress of Fandom:
    Brainy still has it bad for ‘our’ Clark. ;) He was dissing Shrinking Violet since she was taking the place of Superman during the latest mission. He learned, poor boy, he learned! J

    Kell-El grows on you. He’s all tough and “You’re not crying, are you?” but he was moved by the family reunion.

    This was a very interesting story. Mekt finally allowed his feelings for his family to trump his lust for power. Even when he flew away after Garth had been terribly hurt, he was upset and angry that Imperius had done such a thing, cloaking it “It was my fight”. Their sister was the bond between them, and I’m a sucker for redemption fic. J

  • Darklore Circus:
    I just have to say this morning that today's Legion of Superheroes was probably the best piece of American animation I've seen for quite some time. It had everything: siblings, limb loss, sexual tension, Superman being all Heero Yuy, monsters, electricity... it was really pretty good. I liked the whole thing with the brothers and Mekt's redemption, and the Braniac 5/Shrinking Violet thing was cute (he's still a creepy little dude, though).

  • Spandex Justice:
    The four episode, though, was terrific. "Chained Lightning" gave us the origin of Lightning Lad and his brother Mekt, while also updating the story of their sister, Ayla. It was both exciting and poignant. Plus, Shrinking Violet snorting when amused is just about the cutest thing I’ve seen so far this season. Her interactions with Brainiac 5 were also great fun.

    They really need to do a Legion Espionage Squad episode, now that they have Chameleon Boy and Shrinking Violet around.

    Overall, I am enjoying the new season, but the immediacy of Imperiex’s invasion seems to have waned quite a lot, and the new Superman seems more wishy-washy every time he appears (one week, he’s "We have to get Imperiex" and the next episode, Imperiex can wait. But I’ll keep watching.

  • Plus commentary from the LegionWorld, ToonZone, and ComicBloc forums.

Plus: some bonus pictures sent out by WB.


Anonymous said...


As the compiler of the original Legion pronunciation poll, I will not at all acknowledge that Ayla's name has now been established as rhyming with Layla -- anymore than I will acknowledge that Garth lost his arm due to Imperiex or that Timber Wolf has no hope of ever having a human appearance. I refuse to recognize the cartoon continuity as "official" in any regard. So, you can enjoy your perceived victory all you like -- because in every non-cartoon Legion continuity, she is now, and will forever be known as Eye-la. :)

On a more serious note, thank you for maintaining the Omnicom. I'm not really an active participant in the Legion fandom community anymore, but I do visit (and enjoy) your site on a regular basis.

Even if you do need some guidance when it comes to speaking the Legionnaire's names. :)

MaGnUs said...

Too bad Edmond Hamilton is dead, or we could ask him how he pronounced it.

But I prefer to pronounce it rhyming with Ayla, and if there's no canonical source, the cartoon is the next best thing.

As for Violet, I haven't seen any of the episodes of season 2 yet (only the first four of season 1), but she looks just edible.

Michael said...

Hey Mike, good to see you around!

Would you believe that I still have your poll results (dated Sept. 16, 1995)? Here's what YOUR poll revealed:

17) Ayla (Ranzz)
b) rhymes with "Layla" ---- 57.5
a) Eye-la ------------------------ 33.5

A-la ---------------------------- 1

Well, fellow "Eye" boosters, even though we won't surrender the war, we have apparently lost this battle. It wasn't even as close as I thought it would be.

I'll also note that there was a contestant on "American Idol" a year or two back whose name was Ayla and who pronounced it the right way (rhymes with "Layla") - are you going to tell her that she pronounces her own name wrong? Obviously her parents were Legion fans.

Since I found the poll in my archives, you mind if I post it here?

Anonymous said...

Hi Michael,

I admit that the evidence is piling up aganst the Eye-la Brigade, but I'll continue to say toe-MAH-toe, while the rest of you say toe-MAY-toe in this case. :)

Feel free to use the Legion Pronunciation Poll however you see fit. No permission necessary. As the unofficial Legion archivist, I think you have more right to it than I do at this point.

Thanks again for keeping the 30th century faith (whoops, I mean 31st century -- I'm dating myself there). I'll be around...

Bill D. said...

I thought this version of Vi was awesome. And the the fact that she's unapologetic of the fact that she snorts when she laughs seems very much in line with the personality they seem to have given her - her entire attitude just says "Look, I'm awesome. Deal with it." It's a fun dynamic, especially with Brainy... and did I see more than respect growing between them at the end? That'll keep the 'shippers happy, I'm sure... something new to theorize about since they pulled the trigger on the Robin/Starfire thing over on Teen Titans (and since TT is off the air now, anyway).

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know what the name of the nursery rhyme that Ayla sang?

'The monkey rode on the rocket ship, the rocket ship, the rocket ship, the monckey rode on the rocket ship and bumped his head on the moon.'

Anonymous said...

i think it's a revise (to suit the show) of "here we go round the mulberry bush" : here we go round the mulberry bush the mulberry bush the mulberry bush, here we go round the mulberry bush so early in the morning