Friday, September 19, 2008

Bad ideas

Via The BEAT, here's an article about "the five worst ideas in the history of comics".

Let's hear from you: what would you consider to be the five worst ideas in the 50 year history of the Legion?


Terence Chua said...

1. Superboy #235 - "The Legion's Super Secret" must top the list, surely.

2. Fortress Lad being the Legion's original clubhouse. Creeeepy.

3. Lightning Lad being secretly Proty. Sounds initially plausible, but made no fscking sense when examined.

4. Sean Erin. Not just not making sense, but as a way to reveal Jan's homosexuality, actually manages to be insulting to gays and transgenders. Trifecta!

5. (singing) And then there's Mayavale! Not just the goofiness of the character, but the WTF-ness of the Legionnaires' past lives concept.

Verification word: gqlnazs - Isn't that one of Mxyzptlk's cousins?

Dr. Michael J. MacArthur said...

The pocket universe. If Superboy and Supergirl never existed, fine. Either ignore all previous references or start over. Daxam still existed in the 30th century. Go find the encestor of the famous space exploter, Lar Gand, and induct him. Then when the DC editors decide to bring pack SB and SG, you can unduct them allover again for the first time.

Ricardo said...

1 - The First Reboot
2 - The Second Reboot
3- The return to spandex after TMK's 5YG
4- The Legion of Super-Pets
5- Gates, XS and the new Legionnaires of the reboot.

Anonymous said...

okay, scrolled down fast to NOT read previous 'til i've posted…

6. 'end of an era'. peeves me every time i reread, which is often.
5. 5YL timeshift-ravaged 'legion-on-the run'.
4. reboot bitchy tasmia. LOVE shady. HATE umbra.
3. threeboot.
2. jan-as-progenitor including death of monstress. (also spacy 'let's imagine silicon' jan)
1. fortess lad. when i FINALLY saw this story, i actually felt slightly ill.

okay, i ended up w/ six. sosumi.

Me said...

Some of the stories listed above I actually liked. Mayvale, of course, is classic. Fortress Lad has to be taken in the sense in which it was intended, I think. The Proty/Garth retcon was, I thought, a master stroke. I also liked other stories many Legion fans tend to revile, like the Space Circus, the SW6 batch, and the Reflector Saga.

But the ones that did not sit so well with me, in no particular order:

1. Emerald Vi. The story took an abrupt left turn when online fans guess the ending. The story as it was published ruined Vi, totally destroyed Kinetix, and derailed the entire reboot.

2. T20/T30. The year-long (or more) division of the team into 20th century and 30th century teams, coming hard on the heels of the Emerald Vi story, took all the momentum out of the reboot. The series never really recovered, IMHO.

3. Profem. Just dumb. Shvaughn was a great chracter as a strong female, as a broken, needy male . . . not so much. And I never understood why Jan has to be gay just because he wore pink.

4. Legion Lost. Reboot, space cadet Jan was a disaster almost from the beginning, but making him into an evil demented God was kind of a shark jumper, in my book.

5. Snekkie. I mean, really. Why?

6. Cub. Teenage parenthood seems a little outside the oeuvre for the Legion. The inexlicable aging should have been, oh, I don't, *explained* maybe?

7. The Anywhere Machine. Man, talk about your non-starters.

8. Preator Lemnos. Something happened behind the scenes that we still don't know about, I think. This first threeboot arc got WAY dragged out, then went nowhere, and wrapped up out of the blue. I still think the whole thing was supposed to tie into Infinite Crisis somehow, but then got pulled for whatever reason. Regardless, it cost the threeboot any chance it had of succeeding. Even with Shooter on board I wish this version would just go away.

9. Supergirl swap. Not really a story, but still, in hindsite, it seems that swapping the Legion and Supergirl features in Action Comics and Adventure Comics was a pretty poor publishing decision.

10. Legion on the Run. Of course, by this point there was not much the creators could do. The whole back half of v.4 pretty much sucks @$$, if you ask me.

Jim Drew said...

"Praetor Lemnos"

As I think of it, that is what sums up the uselessness of the Threeboot for me.

Four years into the new continuity, and he's the only super-villain they've faced. (And I can't remember jack-anything about him. Earth powers, was it?)

No Mordru. No Time Trapper. No Fatal Five. No Legion of Super-Villains. No Darkseid. No Dark Circle. No fricking Space Circus of Death or Dr. Mayavale or Tangleweb!

When Dan & Andy were cranking along giving us a run of what was finally some good Legion stories, to have ripped the reboot away and replace it with something which has added almost *nothing* to the canon in 4 years, that's criminal.

Richard said...

5. Gerry Conway writing the Legion.

4. That weird Baxter/Mando split publishing idea in 1984. I still don't know what that was supposed to accomplish.

3. Five Years Later. Kids think characters wearing trenchcoats and grim urban dystopias are kewl, so let's take a series the exact opposite of that and totally undermine its appeal!

2. Every reboot, followed by every attempt to adjust or tweak or reconcile the reboots, including what Johns is doing now.

And the worst idea ever...

1. Carmine Infantino's idea (as I mentioned here) that Dave Cockrum shouldn't be allowed to have the original art for the double-page spread from Superboy #200...thereby driving Cockrum to Marvel, giving the competition extremely lucrative new characters who could have been DC characters instead, and depriving us all of a Shooter/Cockrum team on the Legion.

Anonymous said...

1. I could just use the Pocket Universe Saga 5 times but I won't. Definitely on the list though.

2. (Tie) Furball. Poor T-Wolf. Keith Giffen must hate him too.

2. (Tie) Tyroc's outfit.

3. The ages-old Legion of S/LSH #235.

4. 5 Years Later. Not a bad idea, necessarily, but badly done I think. Too many people walking around in trenchcoats with their hands in their pockets, and Ayla and Vi of 5YL. I always like the "beauty and the beast" pairing of Ayla and Brin.

5. Reboot after reboot after reboot.

Ivory Bill Woodpecker said...

I didn't get online on a regular basis until 2004, so I never knew the Reboot Emerald Empress wasn't supposed to be Vi all along; I thought Kinetix was a mere decoy.

Rab's #1 choice reminded me of something that has occurred to me:

What If [oops, wrong company :)] instead of Cockrum going to Marvel, Claremont had come over to DC to write the Legion? Assuming that Claremont could have done the same kinds of things with the Legion that he did with the X-Men, C&C might have made the Legion DC's best sellers.

In that case, the Powers That Be would never have allowed John "Stimpy" Byrne to eliminate Superboy from continuity because they wouldn't dare mess up their best sellers' continuity, and the Legion might occupy the place in USAmerican popular culture that the X-Men occupy in reality.


Murray said...

Here's my list of five...
1. End of an Era
2. Zero Hour reboot
3. Shvaughn as Sean Erin
4. Steve Lightle on the Legion
5. Glorith

I'm with Duke, though. I love the Space Circus, Reflecto Saga, and Mayavale. Fun fun fun! Also liked the five year gap.


Anonymous said...

5- "Miniture men in your ankles"... WTF??? Excuse me for being a baby here and not growing up in this era. But how did people in those swallow some of the stuff that comics produced?
4- Computo's orginal design. Best they could have come up with? Again, I know the era, but still, a little work needed.
3- The way Lightning Lass suddenly became Light Lass. That was like going along at a million miles an hour in a car at a steady pace only to hit a wall and find yourself going long at a steady pace, but now you doing it on Unicycle.
2- Rebooting a second time (once was fine, but a second was stupid since I had only just got to like the 2nd reboot).
1- The 5yl era. I can read the newer Legion, I can reaed Legionaires... Can I read 5yl? No, the art is mostly ugly, the layout is boring and the time stuff doesn't help.

Anonymous said...

Another bad idea but not related to the comics: Stopping the Legion cartoon on the Legion's 50th anniversy.

Nikki said...

1)The Crisis. We are still feeling the pain from that crap
2) The Zero Hour Reboot
3) 5 years later
4) connecting the Legion to the Titans in any way just diminishes legion and introducing 'legacy' heroes outside the super family.
5)Cancelling legion in the 31st century. Everything is always better when its cute

Anonymous said...

I think everyone pretty much agrees the 5yl story arc wasn't the best idea ever...

...And most of us don't like the reboots for one reason or other. I personnelly like the Reboot Legion but hate Threeboot. A lot of political stuff but not a lot of Super Heroism actaully going on.

Half of us don't like the gay character (I could comment but I have never read that story and I think, I should never).

About a quarter of us didn't like Jan as a villian. Funny, I thought Legion Lost was one of the better arcs.

The same number again don't like fortress lad. I really honestly never heard of that character and I think thats another story to avoid. Badly!

Thats about 5 things we all agree on more or less.

Jim Drew said...

It's not "Jan is gay" that people object to so much as "Shvaughn is really a transsexual stalker" way that they actually told that story, and all the unexplored implications (and character assassination) that go with it. That one issue is an exemplar of what was wrong with the 5YG storytelling.

Rob S. said...

1) The Super-Secret of the Legion
2) Legion on the Run. Oh, the awful!
3) Sean Erin.
4) Let's send Timber Wolf back in time!
5) The horror that was Jamm.

Skeleton Munroe said...

The super-boring trio of Lamprey, Nightwind and Crystal Kid (they did get a little better eventually, but that's not enough).

Elevating the Time Trapper to any sort of importance.

Confirmation: lpgawk. I always feel compelled to point 'em out when they're comprehensible. I'd be more amused if I had a record collection.

Skeleton Munroe said...

Whoops, forgot to add the other three:

3. Not replacing Matter-Eater Lad with Calorie Queen. It would have been super-cool, trust me. If ME Lad had to leave, why couldn't we have at least gotten another female legionnaire in the process?

4. Blowing up Marzal. I didn't really mind 5YL, but there was a bit too much of this sort of thing. Killing the Tornado Twins falls under this, too.

5. Killing off Chemical King. Like exiling Tyroc forever or having ME-Lad drafted or shrinking Bouncing Boy, it was just a hasty way to get rid of a character. I know he was destined to die and yadda yadda, but his death in that story was pretty damned unnecessary.

Bonus: never telling me what those little round fish guys who kept showing up for tryouts in the Eighties were. It's still driving me nuts, dammit!

Ricardo said...

Why only anonymous commenters say "I think everyone pretty much agrees the 5yl story arc wasn't the best idea ever..." when it is clearly not true?
Come on! Show yourselves! :)
I can honestly say there is a split or even more people who likes 5YL than not. What we pretty much agree is that after Keith left, the book sank to unknown levels of blandness... until reboot came along and proved me wrong.