Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Annotated "Legion of Three Worlds" #2

Also check out the annotations by Douglas Wolk and Tim Callahan.

For first appearances and creators of all the characters, see these pre-annotations for the Pre-Zero Hour Legion (including Pre-Crisis, Post-Crisis, Glorithverse, and Lightning Saga), Post-Zero Hour Legion, Post-Infinite Crisis Legion, and villains.

My annotations for issue #1 (main, follow-up).

Written by Geoff Johns; Art by George Pérez and Scott Koblish; Covers by George Pérez

Geoff Johns and George Perez continue crafting the Crisis of the 31st Century! As Superboy-Prime leads the Legion of Super-Villains against everything and everyone inspired by the legacy of Superman, the Legion of Super-Heroes are forced to call for help from beyond their world. Meanwhile, contingency plans are created by Brainiac 5 as he attempts to overcome Colu's devastating betrayal, Dawnstar and Wildfire pull off a startling rescue, but at a horrible cost to the universe, and Saturn Girl uncovers the source of the Legion's troubles. DC Universe | 40pg. | Color | $3.99 US On Sale October 15, 2008

Cover (full version): Three Saturn Girls, the Pre-ZH/Lightning Saga one featured, with the Post-IC version and the Post-ZH one in the background.

Cover (sliver version): Lots of Legionnaires from all three groups.

From here on, I'm going to refer to the three Legions as L1 (Pre-Crisis + Lightning Saga), L2 (Post-Zero Hour), and L3 (Post-Infinite Crisis). The "Glorithverse" Legion I'll call L1.5.

Page 1
  • Shikari, of L2. They're still lost (a reference to the series "Legion Lost"). When last we saw them, they were lost in the time stream, but Shikari had discovered the L3 Earth. She briefly reunited with the team during the Infinite Crisis on Earth-247, but the team hasn't been seen since.
  • The Legion has faded out to white with each reboot; see examples here In particular, note the last one, with the L2 Legion fading out; they fade in here much the same way.

Page 2
  • Panel 1: The L1 White Witch is on the Sorcerer's World, held captive by Mordru. This echoes the Glorithverse version of the Legion; Mysa was held captive by Mordru at the beginning of the v4 series as well.
  • Panel 2: She's also the sister of L1 Dream Girl.
  • Panel 3: White Witch has somehow tapped into her sister's prophetic dreams. Shikari (misspelled here as "Shakari") and L2 Dreamer - not related to the White Witch in their continuity - can see into the L3 timeline.
  • Panel 4: Lightning Lad, Light Lass, and Star Boy at the memorial statue to the deceased Dream Girl, all L3. At the foot of her statue, in Interlac it reads "Nura Nal/Dream Girl". The "Light" of the Legion - a reference to Light Lass?
  • Panel 5: Superboy-Prime gives his rings to L1 Saturn Queen and Lightning Lord, in a dark homage to the Legion's flight rings.
  • Panels 6-8: The Time Trapper doesn't want anyone to see any future that he doesn't control.

Page 3
  • Panels 1-2: L1 Mordru and his mages have stolen her magics.
  • Panels 3-8: it's Blok, Wildfire, and Dawnstar to her rescue. Blok and White Witch had a relationship, as did Dawnstar and Wildfire. Due to their natures, Blok and Wildfire could not have physical relationships with their partners as other humans could.

Page 5
  • Panel 1: Rond Vidar, son of Universo, was a Green Lantern, a fact unknown to the Legion for most of the time they knew him. His father was a Green Lantern before him, and when he was expelled from the Green Lantern Corps, the ring passed to Xenofobe until Rond was old enough to wield the ring. By this time in the 31st century, Rond is one of only two Green Lanterns left.
  • Panel 5: Mordru. He's got a new helmet these days.

Page 6
  • Panels 2-3: Mordru calls up the dead - Glorith, Dragonmage, and Evillo. Glorith, in pre-Crisis continuity, was a minion of the Time Trapper. She failed in a mission and he turned her into protoplasm. In the L1.5 continuity, she was restored and took the place of the Time Trapper. Dragonmage was a magician who joined the SW6 Legionnaires. Evillo was another magician, the dictator of Tartarus. Mordru says that these three died at his hand; it's unclear how Glorith may have been killed by Mordru, as she was killed by the Time Trapper. This is the first we have heard that Dragonmage and Prince Evillo were killed by Mordru.

Page 7
  • Panel 1: "I saw Legions dying, and I saw a new one rising." A prophecy of the future.
  • Panel 3: The White Witch first appeared as the old crone The Hag, an associate of Prince Evillo. In her next appearance, she was young and beautiful. It was never revealed how this change took place; Mordru says here that he transformed her as he taught her magic.

Page 8
  • Panel 3: Rond Vidar says that he beat Mordru once in the past. The only time they met was in L1.5 after the reformation of the Legion, so something similar must have happened in the L1 past.

Page 9-10
  • The newest incarnation of the L1 Legion of Super-Villains, all wearing their S-rings. From top to bottom, left to right: Neutrax, Beauty Blaze, Golden Boy, Universo, Persuader, Terrus, Lazon; Zymyr, Tusker, Lightning Lord, Mist Master, Silver Slasher; Ol-Vir, Storm Boy, Superboy-Prime, Mano, Tyr; Emerald Empress and the Emerald Eye, Grimbor, Saturn Queen, Spider Girl, Black Mace, Esper Lass; Sun Emperor, Cosmic King, Micro Lad, Radiation Roy; Validus, Tharok, Echo, Dr. Regulus, Earth-Man, Hunter, Chameleon Chief, Titania, Magno Lad. Several of these have never been associated with the LSV before (such as Universo, the Fatal Five, Earth-Man's Justice League). There are some continuity problems with this lineup.
  • Beauty Blaze and Echo had never appeared in the L1 timeline before, they were members of the LSV during the Adult Legion story (later revealed to be an alternate timeline). Echo "appeared" and was a Legionnaire during the Five Year Gap in the L1.5 timeline.
  • Validus had been revealed to be the son of Lightning Lad and Saturn Girl, taken back in time and mutated by Darkseid, shortly after the end of the Crisis. He was later restored to his normal appearance as a child. Thus, it is unknown if Validus's parentage is still valid.
  • Tharok had been killed in a clash with the Dark Man, a clone of his. He somehow returned in the L1.5 timeline, the method of resurrection not revealed (as far as I can remember). It is unknown how Tharok has been resurrected.
  • Likewise, the Emerald Empress died immediately after the Crisis in the original L1 timeline.

Page 11
  • Panels 2-5: Some of the events of the Sinestro Corps War with the Green Lanterns.

Page 12
  • Panel 3: Superman says of Superboy-Prime, "... he lost everything. Earth-Prime was destroyed. His friends and family killed. He was banished to limbo for years. Who knows what that kind of isolation can do to somebody?" Umm, hello, how about Lar Gand, who you put in the Phantom Zone for a thousand years? He turned out OK.

Page 15
  • Panel 2: In Interlac, the sign with the Legion "L" symbol reads "anominaly vector 386"; the sign with Dr. Regulus's head says (in mirror image) "-ulugus"

Page 18
  • Panel 7: As mentioned earlier, Universo was a Green Lantern before he was expelled from the Corps. His son Rond Vidar was given his ring.

Page 19
  • Panel 10: Universo refers to Rond Vidar's son. That's new; in L1.5 continuity, he had a daughter with Laurel "Andromeda" Gand.

Page 21
  • Panel 4: Is Mysa saying "no" to Rond Vidar's death because she disagrees with Saturn Girl that he's dead, or is she saying "no" because she can't believe it?
  • Panel 13: That's the lightning rod that contains what is widely theorized to be Bart Allen's energy.

Page 22
  • Panel 4: The ruins of Oa. Last time we saw Oa was a flashback which showed why the Guardians were banned from Earth, due to interference from Green Lantern who would soon be known as Universo.
  • Panel 5: Statues of past Green Lanterns, including (facing the reader) Katma Tui, John Stewart, and Guy Gardner.
  • Panel 6: fallen statue of Hal Jordan.
  • Panel 9: we find out who this is at the end of the story.

Page 23
  • Panel 1: the Legion visits the original HQ of the Justice League of America. The cave had been used by other groups after the JLA, but appears to have been restored to the early JLA's decorations.
  • Panel 4: Phantom Girl uses Aquaman's old security code to deactivate the alarm.
  • Panel 6: I'm not a Silver Age JLA expert, so I'll miss many of these artifacts. That's Despero's chess set at left, Wonder Woman's shield at top, and pictures of the Demons Three (Abnegazar, Rath and Ghast) with their artifacts (the Green Bell of Uthool, the Silver Wheel of Nyorlath and the Red Jar of Calythos). The Legion met the Three and Mordru in the midst the annual team-up of the JLA and JSA when the two teams were on Earths-1 and 2, respectively (JLA 147-148).
  • Panel 7: that's Starro, Amos Fortune's card, Amazo, and the Time Commander's helmet. The JLA of this era never fought Darkseid and the Anti-Monitor.
  • Panel 10: With the JSA portrait in the background, Phantom Girl holds the "crystallized mexus of all earths from all parallel universes", which is how the JLA first contacted the JSA (JLA #21).

Page 24
  • Panel 1: Wildfire, Dawnstar, and Polar Boy are at the Time Institute to get a Time Bubble to travel back to the 21st century for reasons as yet unknown. The Time Institute, run by Chronarch Circadia Senius, housed (among other things) the Time Beacon which allowed time travellers to home in on the correct timeline. In the background are images of time travellers Rip Hunter, Goldstar (Booster Gold's sister), Skeets, and an unidentified man (Booster Gold?).
  • Panel 5: Mon-El and Shadow Lass are off to the Sorcerer's World and then to Oa. Those of you who have read the Sinestro Corps War should know who the Daxamite on Oa is.

Page 25
  • Panel 2: White Witch mentions a red sky, a reference to the red skies of the Crisis but also a reference to The Bleed, the space in between universes. The two Legions that assisted with the Tornado Twins must be a reference to the original team-up of the Legions of Three Worlds. The Tornado Twins are Don and Dawn Allen, the twin children of Barry Allen from when he and his wife Iris were in the 30th century immediately prior to the Flash's death in the Crisis on Infinite Earths. It's not clear here which timeline the Twins belong to; the Silver Age L1 Legion first met the twins, who said they were the descendants of Barry Allen. In the L1.5 timeline, the twins were killed by the Dominators. In the L2 timeline, the twins were the parents of Bart Allen (father Don), aka Impulse, and Jenni Ognats (mother Dawn), aka XS.
  • Panel 7: note the presence of lightning, a common symbol of the Flash family.

Page 26-27
  • On the left, it's the L3 Legion; on the right, it's the L2 Legion. On the L2 side, note that Livewire is still stuck in the crystalline body of the deceased Element Lad.
  • L3 Legion, left to right and top to bottom: Element Lad, Invisible Kid, Star Boy, Colossal Boy, Atom Girl, Saturn Girl; Triplicate Girl, Phantom Girl, Light Lass, Ultra Boy, Triplicate Girl, Lightning Lad; Projectra, Karate Kid, Chameleon Boy, Timber Wolf; Triplicate Girl, Brainiac 5, Shadow Lass
  • L2 Legion, left to right and top to bottom: Umbra, Karate Kid, Ultra Boy, Chameleon, Triad, M'Onel, Ferro; Brainiac 5.1, Andromeda, Sensor, Star Boy, XS; Spark, Cosmic Boy, Timber Wolf, Shrinking Violet, Dreamer; Kid Quantum, Saturn Girl, Apparition; Gates, Live Wire/Element Lad, Wildfire; Triad, Invisible Kid, Shikari, Gear, Kinetix.

Page 28
  • Panel 1: White Witch suggests that the L2 and L3 Legions may not be able to return home. I smell foreshadowing.
  • Panel 9: Heh, I like the Brainys bickering. L2 Brainiac 5 refers to his time travels to the 20th century while the team was split (the other half remained in the 30th century).

Page 29
  • Panels 1-6: Sun Boy is still moping. Wonder when he'll recover?

Page 30
  • It's AWWWNNN!
  • Panel 3: One of those Validuses is likely a Reep Daggle.
  • Panel 8: Don't forget, the Time Trapper is behind everything.

Page 32
  • See? It's Sodam Yat, the Daxamite Green Lantern. Geoff Johns has said this isn't just a Legion story, it contains elements of all the books he's worked on, whether it's just cameos (the Teen Titans last issue in the Superman Museum, the Rip Hunter/Booster Gold images in this issue) or major characters (Superman, from Action Comics) or storylines (the Green Lantern legacy and the Sinestro Corps War). At this point, Sodam Yat is over 1000 years old, having been introduced in the Sinestro Corps storyline, where he was destined to be one of the greatest Green Lanterns. He was last known in the 21st century as Ion.

One thing to note: Since we see Sodam Yat here, that pretty much confirms that this version of the 31st century is the future of the current DC Universe (or rather, that of New Earth of the 52-Earth Multiverse). Until recently, it had been strongly suggested that the L3 Legion's 31st century was the future of the mainstream DCU.


Anonymous said...

The helmet that Mordru was wearing. Was that the helmet that was worn by Jennifer Morgan in the old DC title The Warlord? It looks real familiar and I want to say that it is from that comic. If so that would be a Legion connection by way of Mike Grell.

Anonymous said...

Page 30 Panel 3: .... likely a Yera Allon, I would think :)

Anonymous said...

Actually, Mordru's comment on page 7 about changing Mysa from hag to beauty is either a retcon or means she somehow changed back to a hag after her last seen appearance in the Levitzverse. She was originally changed back from hag to her normal self in Adventure 351 due to the spell cast by Miss Terious aka Dream Girl.

Page 15, panel 11. Note that when Rokk rants about giving up his relationships, Night Girl is in the background. In L1 continuity, when last seen they were romantically involved (and in fact Night Girl became a superhero due to a rather stalkerish crush on Rokk).

Page 23, Panel 6: I think the four figures around the left and lower panel border are statues of the Appalaxians, aliens the JLA faced in their origin. To Brainy's left is a picture of the Tornado Tyrant/Champion. Originally an Adam Strange villain, the rather schzoid Tornado appeared next in JLA #17, then, in an origin story told around 12 years after Reddy was first introduced, the Tornado entity was revealed to be the real life force in Red Tornado. Above that is the bottom part of what I think is a picture of Snapper Carr, based on the hands. To Brainy's right is a dimensional projector Dr. Light used in his first fight against the League.

Page 30, panel 3, nope, Reep L1 is still among the missing. Yera Allon, aka Chameleon Girl, was among that team of Legionnaires though.

Page 32: While Sodam Yat was first seen in the present as a character in the Sinestro Corps storyline, he was first mentioned, and shown in a panel or two, as part of a prophecy told to Abin Sur by demons in an Alan Moore written Tale of the Green Lantern Corps back in the '80s.

Michael said...

@deforest: no, that's not Jennifer's head gear. See this page for an example.

@anon and tom: I didn't say that one of the two Validuses (Validi?) was L1 Reep. It could have been L2 or L3 Reep, or Yera like you said.

@tom: I knew there was one more Mysa appearance but I forgot where. Maybe the Miss Terious/Dream Girl spell didn't hold, and she turned back into a hag, then Mordru turned her normal again permanently. Or just add it to the other retcons like Mordru killing Glorith, Dragonmage, and Evillo. (Maybe they're original-style retcons, notes for things that happened in the past between issues that we just don't know about yet.)

Anonymous said...

If the extra Validus is any version of Reep, it's some surprisingly bad storytelling by either Perez (if it's L2 or L3) or Johns (if L1).

The L2 and L3 teams are still in the JLA cave. If they're meant to have popped over via Gates to the Metropolis battle, it's bad visual storytelling for there to only be an ambiguous appearance by a Reep and no appearance by anyone else on those teams.

If it's the so far unseen L1 Reep, his suddenly popping in at this point with no reaction from anyone wastes a number of possible scenes and plot points using the character.

On the other hand, we know Yera was part of this team of L1 Legionnaires. Occam's razor says it's Yera.

Btw, probably worth noting that Dragonmage is something of a retcon all by himself, as he's V1.5 continuity. Geoff did say, in response to my question at the SDCC Legion panel, that the divergence point for L1 Legion is in the post-Crisis time period, with an implied shortly after Crisis. It definitely doesn't include v4 Legion, as my question was phrased something like "It's obvious the Action Legion doesn't include the five year gap continuity; can you say when it diverged from what we'd seen". If it included v4 continuity, he would've corrected me.

Murray said...

I don't think that the Emerald Empress died immediately after the Crisis. She was around throughout the Levitz era (Who is Sensor Girl) and died shortly before the Magic War in a two issue story by Levitz and Giffen.
You're right that there's no explanation for Tharok's return.
I can't remember when Validus was restored to one of Garth and Imra's twins in relation to the crisis. Maybe (if it happened later than the crisis) it's a story point that didn't occur in this timeline. Do Garth and Imra even have children in this timeline? I'm having trouble figuring that out.


Anonymous said...

The Bickering B5's remind me of the missing panel showing the 3 teams in it, in which all three were bickering then. In the bottom middle panel B5(L3) has a pink spot on his finger... Was that meant to be his Legion Ring and they forgot to add it in?

Panel at the bottom of Page 25: Thats the creepest Brainy expression ever drawn in ALL the versions. Lets not encourage them to ever reproduce that image ever again. Then again, maybe once, for a halloween mask perhaps...

Anonymous said...

Michael, thanks for the image. I couldn't find an image of Jenifer Morgan last night.

That helmet still looks real familiar though. This is going to bug me until I either find out where I've seen it, or I find out I'm just imagining stuff.

Terence Chua said...

I was confused for a minute about Dragonmage as well... unless this is a pre-Crisis version of Dragonmage who never encountered the Legion. Or maybe even someone else who used the name.

That's a No-Prize right there.

Matthew E said...

Hey, I have a question. Why is Andromeda there with the reboot Legion? If she was part of the Titans/Legion Special, I missed it.

Anonymous said...

Andy was in one of the scenes of the Teen Titans/Legion special, but her reason for being there was never given. They left... A lot of gaps. I never liked the special just because it jumped from our normal Legion line up to the events of the special, it felt like they skiped a few issues.

Michael said...

@Matthew - the L1 White Witch did some handwaving (literally) to get all of the Legionnaires. That's how I rationalize it.

Matthew E said...

anonymous: Really? I'll have to look for that.

Michael: Well, if that's true, there are a few more she should have gotten. Like threeboot Sun Boy, or Thunder.

Anonymous said...

matthew: Yeah, I spotted her myself and wondered how she got there. Since Reboot Legion is *my* Legion I spent three days going over my Reboot collection trying to figure out what happened to her. There were a lot of random characters in there that hadn't been seen in a while or done much. I thought it was bad when just about every Legionaire (all the ones not dead) was in that story yet only about 8 or 10 of them actaully did anything.

Anonymous said...

I think Mordru's "Hag" comment was a reflection of his sick mind - he saw Mysa as ugly when she was whole and untouched by him, and beautiful once he, in his sadism, tortured her. Obviously the actual language of his comment was meant for us to read as a reference to when Mysa really was "the Hag."

Page 23, panel 7 - That helmet belongs to the Lord of Time, not Time Commander.

Anonymous said...

Page 23, Panel 10: Brainiac 5 has clearly never read JLA #21. In that story Batman states plainly that the artifact is indeed a crystal ball. "Why not fight magic-- with magic? Merlin gave us this crystal ball as a souvenir of our adventure with the Sinister Sorcerers*! Felix Faust used it to send his voice magically into our hideout--so it works!"

* Editor's note: See Justice League of America #2: "Secret of the Sinister Sorcerers!"

Where's Julie when you need him?

Anonymous said...

I checked, Mysa's original transformation and her backstory (well, the Levitz version) was told in the back-up in 'Tales of the Legion of Super-Heroes' (well, that's where it is in my collection) 314-16 August to September 1984.

Michael said...

@anon - I can't believe I forgot about that story. I even have one page of original art from that. Could you briefly summarize it?

Anonymous said...

heh even the levitz version of mysa's origin hand some retcons of the original adventure story of how Nura changed Mysa from The Hag.

And Michael you maybe missing a key to all this Legion of 3 worlds business...Starman aka Thom Kallor of L1 in the JSA...check out the black hole comments and his talking about his secret Mission in the latest JSA.

Anonymous said...

Oh I just realized...Pol could be still alive...i just wonder if Laurel Kent's still not a manhunter as she was originally not till after crisis.

Anonymous said...

In regards to your list of the L2 Legion: Brainiac 5 dropped the ".1" during Legion Lost. I am always annoyed that people keep calling him that.

And Salu Digby's code-name was Leviathan, not Shrinking Violet, for some time.

Anonymous said...

When the White Witch swears "By Fate" to get her revenge, I was wondering if it was foreshadowing of a Dr. Fate connection. He is a lord of order and was set up as an opposite of Mordru in the previous JSA series.

Ivory Bill Woodpecker said...

OFF-TOPIC: The state of Georgia is preparing to execute a man whose guilt is very doubtful.

Appeals can be made to the state board of Pardons and Paroles via

What would Superman do? ;)

Murray said...

***Likewise, the Emerald Empress died immediately after the Crisis in the original L1 timeline.***

That's not correct, is it? She died in Legion of Super Heroes #59 (baxter version) which was way after the Crisis hit the Legion.


Anonymous said...

Synopsis of Tales of the Legion back-up 314-16:

Mysa is born on Naltor, daughter of the High Seer. She does not have the Naltorian gift of prophecy, something that makes her out of place on Naltor. Having learned that the Naltorians came from Sorcerers' World originally, she travels there after her mother's death. Mysa is accepted by the leading sorcers (including Mordru) and trained. In the course of her training she offends Mordru, who is, unknown to his fellows, evil. When Mysa undergoes the flme of Testing, Mordur corrupts the flame with his own blood, and Mysa is turned into the Hag. She is banished from Sorcerers' World, and Prince Evillo recruits her for his Devil's Dozen. When Mordru's evil is discovered the chief Sorcerer tries to warn Dream Girl and tell her how to restore Mysa, but he is murdered by Mordru before he can tell her how to restore Mysa's original form. Nevertheless Nura restores her sister, who finally return to Sorcerers' World after Mordru is defeated.

Anonymous said...

Word verification: nazixs. Jenni Ognats of Earth-10. Weird

Anonymous said...

Michael, what makes your comment on Mon-El regarding Superman's "rant" on p. 12 even funnier, is that Mon-El is standing right there. To the right of Timber Wolf apperantly, so just across the table from Superman :)

Anonymous said...

Super boy prime is a teenage boy form a world removed form continuity.
Mon-El is an adult explorer who can still return to his world (or could until it was destroyed)so their is some significant differences.

Jim Drew said...

Several corrections to your comments, Michael (I finally got the issue by mail this weekend):

* Shikari's "lost" reference is to the Legion's limbo start after the Titans/Legion Special, not to Legion Lost, which was more than three years previous. The Earth-247 glimpse in Infinite Crisis is from the infinity of Earths created and then destroyed by Alexander Luthor, and would simply be a variant of L2, not continuity for L2. Now, whether that last scene from the Special was a view to the L3 Legion's world or part of Shikari's search from this one...

* This was the first L1 mention of Dragonmage

* Tharok was not necessarily killed by the Dark Man. The two of them simply vanished in an explosion. It's a no brainer to apply a dimensional change or a quantum field time travel a la Captain Atom to bring him back, with or without the Dark Man.

* Sarya died well beyond Crisis, when Jeckie got saddled with the Eye. The whole Fatal Five/Mentalla thing occurred between Crisis and Sarya's death, in fact.

* No mention that Rond and Universo's ring was apparently originally that of Mogo, the Green Lantern that was a planet?

* Among the groups who have met in the Happy Harbor cave: L2 in the 20th century, and possibly the L1 Subs!

viagra online said...

I think this is a pre-crisis version of Dragonmage, who never encountered the Legion, well unless I guess so.