Thursday, March 26, 2009

James Marsters, on being Brainiac (5)

IGN has an interview with James Marsten (Spike on "Buffy", Brainiac on "Smallville") in which he discusses his role as Brainiac and the possible evolution of the character into Brainiac 5 of the Legion. Note that he doesn't say that he's going to portray Brainy, just that it'd be a different take on the character for him.

IGN: It's been funny on Smallville this season, because Brainiac has been a presence, but you haven't been a presence unfortunately.

Marsters: [Laughs] They're sick of paying me so much money. They were very generous about offering me some money up front and something told me, "Yes, we're going to work with you James for a good amount of time..." But if you notice, it's been like that a lot. They talk about the character, but... It's a good group of people, but I think that may be over.

IGN: Ah, so you don't think there's much of a possibility of returning?

Marsters: You know what, who knows? That series just seems to be immortal. It's done so well. So if the future is long, I'm certainly open to it. If they need me, I'd love to come say hi to everybody. But at the same time, they may not need me. They're very imaginative about how they do things.

IGN: The last time they had your character, in some form, they sent him off to the future to become Brianiac 5 – the good character from the Legion of the Superheroes.

Marsters: Oh, cool!

IGN: Yeah, it seemed like there was a door there for you to come back in a very different way.

Marsters: That's cool! [Laughs]

IGN: [Laughs] I might be throwing you a curve ball here, but would that be something that would be fun for you, to play such a different take on Brainiac?

Marsters: Oh yeah. I think that would be wonderful. I would also like to go back and be evil for them too. It's fun to be evil! It's fun to play a robot who doesn't really care and who's only pretending to. But it would be fun to play a robot who actually did care at the same time...

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

A Couple Other Things

Newsarama has a preview of "Superman" #686 (out this week), starring Mon-El.

Following the startling events of "New Krypton" and the shocking occurrence in the Phantom Zone, Earth finds itself without its greatest protector! Luckily, Metropolis still has a few heroes, like Mon-El and the Guardian. But after years of knowing nothing but the solitude of the Phantom Zone, how will Mon-El acclimate himself to society? And the recently returned Guardian has his hands full with his new position in the Science Police. How can they fill Superman's shoes? They'd better figure it out fast, because dangerous mysteries abound which will carry all the way into 2010! The highly acclaimed writer-artist team of James Robinson and Renato Guedes continue their run on SUPERMAN with or without The Man of Steel!

Also, Murray sent me something last week which I forgot about in my inbox. This item from a Geoff Johns interview on Blackest Night:
NRAMA: In Adventure Comics #0, Scar says something about Superboy. Are we going to see that in Blackest Night?

GJ: If you want to follow that, you should read Legion of 3 Worlds #4. And then Adventure Comics #1.

NRAMA: Does Lex Luthor play into that? Because Lex Luthor was going to play a part in Legion of 3 Worlds, right?

GJ: No, you saw a scene where the Legionaires went back in time in the last issue and got a strand of his hair. But that's it.

Well, Luthor did appear in this ad from last summer (to the right of the Time Trapper):

Coming Distractions: June 2009

A few days late, but here's what's coming up in June (via Newsarama):

R.E.B.E.L.S. #5
Written by Tony Bedard
Art by Claude St. Aubin & Scott Hanna
Cover by Ed Benes & Rob Hunter
As the abductor of the intergalactic L.E.G.I.O.N. police force stands revealed, the entire sector mobilizes its forces. Vril Dox’s renegade team of freedom fighters joins up with the Omega Men, Durlans, Khunds and Dominators, but it all amounts to devastating consequences...
On sale June 10 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

Written by James Robinson
Art by Renato Guedes & José Wilson Magalhães
Cover by Andrew Robinson
What’s a young man to do when he’s told he’s going to die? See the world while he can, of course! Experience a whistle-stop tour of Earth with Mon-El as he tastes life and fights crime with some of DC’s international cast of Super Heroes.
Meanwhile, back in Metropolis, a media mogul takes to the airwaves. His goal: the banning of all alien life on Earth. His name: Morgan Edge. And just what is the Prankster planning?
On sale June 24 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

Written by Geoff Johns
Art and cover by Gary Frank & Jon Sibal
Superstar artist Gary Frank joins writer Geoff Johns for an epic story teaming Superman with an adult version of the Legion of Super-Heroes, originally presented in Action Comics #858-863 and now in trade paperback!
When he was a boy, Clark Kent was isolated and alone until he met this teen team from the 31st century. Today, it's been years since Superman saw his childhood friends. Why haven't they returned to visit him? What's become of the symbol of Superman in the future? And just why is the future so dangerous for Superman? They warned him away, but now he's determined to help his friends — even if it means his life!
Advance-solicited; on sale July 15 • 168 pg, FC, $14.99 US

Written by Alex Ross & Jim Krueger
Art by Alex Ross & Doug Braithwaite
Cover by Alex Ross
The spectactular 12-issue series by Alex Ross, Jim Krueger and Doug Braithwaite is collected in this amazing, oversized, slipcased Absolute edition. The members of the Justice League of America are about to learn they aren't the only ones who can band together toward a common goal. The greatest criminal masterminds of our time appear to be acting in concert — but with a surprising plan that seeks to achieve more good than the JLA ever could!
This Absolute edition features a new cover by Ross, plus sketchbook a section with previously unseen artwork and more!
Advance-solicited; on sale November 25 • 8.25” x 12.5”, 496 pg, FC, $99.00 US

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Bits of Legionnaire Business

Stuff and more stuff, thirteen items.

  • The Life and Death of Ferro Lad came out in hardback a couple weeks back, reprinting Adventure Comics #346, 347, 352, 353 and 357.

  • Last time I told you about the Space Canine Patrol Agents. Now Brian Hughes at Again With the Comics brings the awesome sequel, where the SCPA fights not only the Mutt and Meow Gallery (including Fido Felon and Kid Kitty) but also the Phanty Cats, who were so evil that when their owners got banished to the Phantom Zone from Krypton, their cats got banished too. No, really.

    They appeared in SBOY 136 (3/66). For what it's worth, over at Marvel the same month you could have read Fantastic Four #48 which introduced Galactus and Silver Surfer. That's the difference between DC's and Marvel's Silver Age.

  • The BEAT has sales for the end of the Legion title.

    01/2004: Legion #29 — 24,908
    01/2005: LoSH #2 — 42,261 [48,584]
    01/2006: LoSH #13 — 32,730
    01/2007: SLoSH #26 — 32,342
    01/2008: LoSH #38 — 33,045 (-27.9%)
    02/2008: LoSH #39 — 31,123 (- 5.8%)
    03/2008: LoSH #40 — 30,377 (- 2.4%)
    04/2008: LoSH #41 — 28,939 (- 4.7%)
    05/2008: LoSH #42 — 27,940 (- 3.5%)
    06/2008: –
    07/2008: LoSH #43 — 27,531 (- 1.5%)
    07/2008: LoSH #44 — 29,954 (+ 8.8%)
    08/2008: LoSH #45 — 25,783 (-13.9%)
    09/2008: LoSH #46 — 24,959 (- 3.2%)
    10/2008: LoSH #47 — 23,751 (- 4.8%)
    11/2008: LoSH #48 — 22,917 (- 3.5%)
    12/2008: LoSH #49 — 22,180 (- 3.2%)
    01/2009: LoSH #50 — 22,327 (+ 0.7%)
    6 months: -22.3%
    1 year : -32.4%
    2 years : -31.0%
    5 years : -10.4%

    The final issue of the property’s current incarnation gets a slight boost, presumably on the basis that its number is a multiple of 25.

    In one of those baffling management catastrophes that seem to happen all the time at DC, the entire creative team was exchanged on short notice, just one issue before completing a year-long storyline — according to the credits, the writer is one “Justin Thyme” (a commonly used pseudonym for hack jobs), while the title of the story is “Hack the Infinity Net!”

    I’m sure this guarantees people are going to be standing in line for the paperback collections for decades to come.

    I'll be updating my sales charts shortly.

  • Richard Caldwell at has a 2-part interview (part 1, part 2) with former Legion artist Mike Grell. He doesn't talk about the Legion, but I know that many Legion fans are also fans of Grell.

  • Did you hear that they made a movie about "Watchmen"? I keep getting these email alerts for various articles about the movie because it uses the words "legion of super-heroes" in close proximity, which in a way points out that the Legion is at the fringes of the mainstream. Some examples:
    Set in a gritty and alternate 1985 in US, it tells the story of Rorschach, a costumed vigilante who investigates the murder of an ex-superhero. His journey reunites him with his former legion of superheroes, thus unraveling some of the deepest darkest conspiracies and secrets about them.

    New York Newsday's Frank Lovece, in an article on Zack Snyder:
    “It may be too early to call him the next Ridley Scott,” he says of Snyder, “but visually he’s freaking extraordinary. Anybody who says he’s not, after they see the first 15 minutes, they’ll be eating their hats.” And unless you’re Matter-Eater Lad of the Legion of Super-Heroes - the very antithesis of “Watchmen” - that just won’t do.

    Black Voices:
    It took a legion of superheroes to bring Madea down. Dropping to second place after landing the top spot during the last two weekends was 'Madea Goes to Jail.'

  • Matthew at the Legion Abstract writes about what kind of Legion stories would he like to read.

  • The Legion Flight Ring made an appearance on the 3/12 episode of "Smallville" titled "Infamous" (read recap here).

  • The Bottle City of Kanga reminds us that Mon-El is starting his year-long(ish) run in "Superman", starting in issue 685.
    So this issue is the set up for Mon-El to take over as the lead in the Superman books which, supposedly, should have really taken place in the soon-to-be-relaunched Adventure Comics. But they can’t relaunch Adventure until Legion of Three Worlds finishes which will tell the reader which of three versions of the Legion DC are planning to stick with. That won’t conclude until George Perez actually pulls his finger out and finishes drawing the series though which already seems to be around a year behind it’s original conclusion date. Gah!

    So poor old James Robinson has to introduce Mon-El without giving away which version he’s supposed to be...

  • L3 Brainiac 5 returns in R.E.B.E.L.S. #2, where he tries to assemble his own version of the Legion.

  • Oklahoma's NewsOK has an interview with Yuri Lowenthal, voice actor of Superman on the animated Legion show. He talks about his audition for the show a few years ago. They also list his favorite episodes. In a third article, Lowenthal talks about his inspirations while voicing Superman.

  • The Idol-Head of Diabolu (a Martian Manhunter blog) looks back at DC Comics Presents #43 from 1982, featuring Superman and the Legion vs Mongul and a Sun-Eater.

  • Tilting at Pinwheels has a few more Legion sketches from what we saw last time.

  • Daily Scans looks back at "Legionnaires" #7 because everyone is drawn by Adam Hughes and is wearing a bathing suit. This is v4-era after the Earth had been destroyed.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Speculation: Reis on the Legion?

Chuck pointed out this Newsarama article on upcoming changes to Green Lantern, with emphasis added by me:

Ivan Reis, who's been the Green Lantern penciler since 2006, is now the artist on the Blackest Night mini-series, working months ahead with Johns for the July launch. And as Reis told Newsarama at New York Comic Con, the last issue of Blackest Night will mark the end of his run with the Green Lantern characters, although he said his next project (still unannounced) will reunite him with Johns.

"It is so much fun to work with Geoff. And if I can work with him for 10 years, I'll do it," Reis said.

Now, we've been told that former Legion artist Francis Manapul is the artist on the new Adventure Comics, which is supposedly Geoff Johns' next project. So either the Reis comment is for yet another new book for Johns, or Reis is replacing Manapul on Adventure.

I have no idea which (if either) of those is true, but that won't stop speculation. Anyone have any more info?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Devlin O'Ryan says Happy St. Patrick's Day

Thanks to Matthew Peterson at Major Spoilers for putting together this Hero History of the future's greatest Irish Legionnaire: Devlin O'Ryan.

LSH action figures coming May 15th

The new figures in the JLU line for the Legionnaires will be coming out May 15th, according to They will only be available online.

View the pictures on mattycollector's Facebook page, Toy News International, and Major Spoilers.

According to Major Spoilers,

The 4-pack goes on sale on May 15, and while no pre-order or pricing information has been posted, the Justice League Unlimited Gotham City Criminals Action Figure 4-Pack sold for $30.00.

It'll be Brainiac 5, Lightning Lad, Saturn Girl, and Cosmic Boy. Here's a sample:

Friday, March 13, 2009

Klordny Weekend in Las Vegas

We've set our annual Legion of Super-Gamblers trip to Las Vegas for the weekend of August 13-16 this year. For the first time, the trip will coincide with the last half of Klordny week, which is the week (Monday to Sunday) which includes August 13th.

Here's the announcement from last month, or you can click on the Las Vegas tab at the top.

Everyone's welcome to join. If you're interested, send me an email or leave a comment.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Trivia Answers #33

Questions 1, 2, and 3 were provided by the Cosmic Treadmill. They apply strictly to the Adventure Comics run and not any other series. Other than that, this was your quiz for March, which comes in like a Nitwonian Nibbybug and goes out like a Tulvanian Witch Wolf.

Too bad you guys are so smart, you got these answers pretty quickly.

1. Which Legionnaire was listed in the roll call with the wrong gender?

Bouncing Girl was in the roll call on the splash page of ADV 315.

2. Which two Legionnaires exchanged the first on-panel kiss during the Adventure Comics run?
Ironically, Element Lad and Light Lass, ADV 326.

Note that Light Lass could barely keep from LOLing.

3. Which Legionnaire(s) cross-dressed during the Adventure Comics run?
Chameleon Boy masqueraded as Cosmic Boy’s “date” in ADV 303, and Lightning Lass was disguised as her brother in ADV 308. Of course, it wasn't the fact that she looked, sounded, walked, talked, and smelled like a girl, it was the fact that she had no Adam's apple that gave her away. She would have gotten away with it, too, if not for those meddling kids!

4. What is the sound that Arm-Fall-Off Boy's arm makes when it comes off?
Not "Plop!", which might be expected, but "Plorp!".

5. Who was Quantum Queen's twin brother?
Via the Silver Age Legion Clubhouse:
Reader Dave Broomhead suggested the character Quantum Lad, who could project a laser beam, turn into a ray of light, pass through transparent objects, and dazzle foes (Bits of Legionnaire Business, ADV 337). Reader James Hankard asked Legion Editor Mort Weisinger if the Legionnaire on the cover of ADV 354 was Quantum Lad's girlfriend and Mort indicated that she was his twin sister (ADV 371 letter column).

6. During the Great Darkness Saga, Shadow Lass' costume was destroyed. What did she end up wearing?
She put on a Science Police uniform that was lying around. After that she found a new costume, which covered her from neck to toe in black.

7. Name three Legionnaires who gained additional powers after joining the Legion.
There have been lots of them. You guys came up with Kinetix, L2 Violet, L1 Lightning Lass, L2 Spark, L1 Karate Kid II, L1 Princess Projectra, Livewire, L1 Invisible Kids I and II, L1 Dream Girl, L1 Sun Boy, Apparition, Ferro, and probably more.

Legion to return to Smallville

Thanks to Murray for pointing this one out to me, from Entertainment Weekly:

Question: How about some Smallville news? --D-rick

Ausiello: The Legion will return in the May finale -- in some form. Also, I'm told this season's final two episodes will focus on a manhunt for Chloe and Doomsday.

Not sure what "in some form" means, but we'll find out.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

New action figure prototypes

Action Figure Hub has some photos of the unpainted prototypes for the Cosmic Boy, Brainiac 5, and Saturn Girl JLU figures coming this year (missing only the Lightning Lad one).

AFHub says that either the figures or the prototypes were seen at the New York Comic Con last month, but I haven't found pictures of them yet. This page has close-ups of all three figures.

Bruce Timm, on the alleged pilot episode

It's common knowledge that the "Far From Home" episode of the "Justice League Unlimited" series was supposed to be a back-door pilot for a proposed Legion series.

Well, common knowledge is wrong in this case.

Via ToonZone, here's an excerpt from a Feb. 2009 interview with Bruce Timm, animator and producer:

Q: I understand the episode "Far from Home" from Justice League was supposed to be some kind of a pilot for a Legion of Superheroes show?

TIMM: Not really. No...

Q: So the fanboys on the Internet have no idea what they're talking about?

TIMM: Imagine how THAT could happen! (laughs) No, we just wanted to do a Legion of Superheroes story, and again, going from the comics where Supergirl and Brainiac had a romance, we thought, "Oh, that would be an interesting thing to do with Supergirl that we hadn't done before." We hadn't really shown her as getting into more adult issues of romance and stuff, so it just seemed kind of like a fun thing to do. But it wasn't ever intended to be a backdoor pilot, no.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Trivia Quiz #33

Questions 1, 2, and 3 were provided by the Cosmic Treadmill. They apply strictly to the Adventure Comics run and not any other series. Other than that, here's your quiz for March, which comes in like a Nitwonian Nibbybug and goes out like a Tulvanian Witch Wolf.

1. Which Legionnaire was listed in the roll call with the wrong gender?

2. Which two Legionnaires exchanged the first on-panel kiss?

3. Which Legionnaire(s) cross-dressed?

4. What is the sound that Arm-Fall-Off Boy's arm makes when it comes off?

5. Who was Quantum Queen's twin brother?

6. During the Great Darkness Saga, Shadow Lass' costume was destroyed. What did she end up wearing?

7. Name three Legionnaires who acquired additional powers after joining the Legion (any era).