Sunday, October 04, 2009

Flashback: Bits of Legionnaire Business (part 3)

Remember, these are the BEST of what was sent.

Adventure Comics 310, July 1963
Dear Editor: I've been reading with a great deal of relish the letters in your SMALLVILLE MAILSACK, particularly the paragraphs at the end you call "Bits of Legionnaire Business". Inasmuch as I have had the privilege of writing several of the Legion of Super-Heroes stories for your magazine, I have been amused, startled and overwhelmed by the ingenious suggestions of your readers for new characters and the imaginative powers attributed to them. Would it be possible for me, in the near future, to write a Legion story in which I would try to give some of these proposed heroes a "guest try-out?" I'm sure it would be a lot of fun.
Edmond Hamilton
(Great idea, Ed. Go ahead - and we'll give credit to the fans whose ideas you use. As most of our readers are probably aware, Author Edmond Hamilton is a highly successful science fiction novelist and we are honored to consider him our most versatile staff writer. Ed has written some of our greatest 3-part novels, including that recent smash hit, " The Last Days of Superman." His wife, who writes under the name of Leigh Bracket, is one of Hollywood's most talented screen writers. Her recent picture, "Hatari," was one of the ten top box-office hits. She is currently busy writing a new picture for her producer, Howard Hawkes, which will feature Rock Hudson. -Ed.)
* * * *
"Bits of Legionnaire Business"
From Arthur Davis, Jr., Roanoke, Va.: "ESP KID - has extra-sensory perception powers." . . . Gregory Gallagher, Brooklyn, N.Y.: "WEAPONS LAD - can design ingenious new weapons without a workshop." . . . Steve Cohen, Newburgh, N.Y.: "DUPLICATE BOY - he has the ability to duplicate the power of any Legionnaire." . . . Gordon Thomas, Pilot Mountain, N.C.: "GEOGRAPHY GIRL - she has the unique talent of being able to exist in several different areas at one time!" . . . Phil F. Leibfred, Bronxville, N.Y.: "BACTERIA BOY - he can transmit a disease which gives enemies temporary sleeping sickness." . . . Jim Tilley, Rockaway, N.Y.: "SPIDER LASS - she has the power of converting her hair into a super web, and casting it around opponents." . . . Michael E. Colby, Long Island, N.Y.: "ILLUSTRATOR YOUTH - he can draw anything he has ever seen in seconds."
Charles Christesson, Rio Grande City, Tex.: "LUNAR LASS - she has the power to turn people into lunatics for short periods." . . . Jon Ingresoll, Cleveland, Ohio: "MIDAS MAID - she can transmute anything she touches into gold." . . . Roger Ho, N.Y., N.Y.: "VOCAL WHIZ - he can perfectly imitate anybody's voice." . . . Randy Steele, Tunkhan Rock, Pa.: "CYCLONE KING - he can create twisters, monsoons typhoons, etc."
[2009 note: a Sub, a member of the LSV, and powers of Infectious Lass and Element Lad.]

Adventure Comics 311, August 1963
From Mike Thompson, Dearborn, Mich.: "COPY BOY - he doesn't work on a newspaper, but he can copy anything he sees." . . . Billy Muffett, San Jose, Calif.: "WEIGHT LAD" - he has the power to make anything lighter or heavier." . . . Peter Sipchen, Richardson, Tex.: "SLOW-MOTION KID - he has the ability to slow down any moving object or person." . . . Michael E. Colby, L.I., N.Y.: "SPORT YOUTH - he is a champion in every type of athletics." . . . J. Adam King, Yellow Springs, Ohio.: "DEGREE DAMSEL - she has the power to alter the temperature of anything." . . . Leslie Leibow, Fair Lawn, N. J.: "COLOR KID - he can change the color of any object."
Daniel Camerford, Buffalo, N. Y.: "BIZARRO BOY - he can turn into a Bizarro and fight against the Bizarros for the Legionnaires." . . . Mark Wade, Livermore, Calif.: "EVOLVO LAD - he has the power of going back, or forward, the Evolution track. For instance, he can change from a boy to a cave-boy, an ape, lemur, amphibian, fish, invertebrate, amoeba, and then to protoplasm. Or, from boy to a big-brained future boy." . . . Edith Frome, Newark, N. J.: "EL LASS - she can give super-powers to anyone whose initials are L.L." . . . Ben Wright, Waltham, Mass.: "ENDURANCE GIRL - she can survive without air, water, or food for several years."
Karen D. Argis, Detriot, Mich.: "RADIO ROVER - he can connect with any radio in the Universe, without wires." . . . Mark Hawley, Burbank, Calif.: "COMPUTER KID - he can predict any future event." . . . Jeff Baker, Ft. Worth, Tex.: "MEDIC MASTER - he can cure any disease or illness ever shown on the Ben Casey or Dr. Kildare shows." . . . Jeanie Cox, Joplin, Mo.: "MIRROR MISTRESS - she can reflect, in her mind's eye, anything another person is thinking."
[2009 note: a Sub, a Wanderer, and the powers of Dream Girl. Note that Mark Wade, creator of Color Kid, is not the same as Mark Waid, the writer. These days, Wade is, among other things, a space historian who runs the excellent Encyclopedia Astronautica. Color Kid was first suggested in issue 309 with the same name and powers.]

Adventure Comics 312, September 1963
Bits of Legionnaire Business
From Dennis Persica, New Orleans, La.: "BIRD GIRL - she has the power of doing anything that any bird in the solar system can do." . . . Rex Osborne, Essex, England: "TIME GIRL - she possesses the power to alter time and evolution." . . . Mike Meridier, Kenner, La.: "BANISH BOY - he has the power to exile anyone to the Phantom Zone for a temporary time, without the need of a projector."
John Maynard, Columbus, Ohio: "AIRLESS BOY - he can live anyplace without having to breathe." . . . Gary Haught, Akron, Ohio: "SPELL BOY - he has the power to cast a spell on any outlaw." . . . Tom Holberg, Forest Park, Ill.: "E.S.P. KID - he has the powers of second sight, telepathy and hypnotism." . . . Maggie Fraser, Pleasantville, N. Y.: "WEIGHT WIZARD - he can make himself weigh any amount, from an ounce to ten tons." Tom Kegley, St. Paul, Minn.: "BLOCKADE BOY - he can change himself into an invulnerable steel wall of any size or shape."
[2009 note: a Wanderer and two of the imprisoned people in the Super-Stalag of Space.]

Adventure Comics 314, Nov. 1963
"Bits of Legionnaire Business"
From Karen Hailey, Gholson, Miss.: "WISH GIRL - she gets anything she wants by wishing for it." . . . Billy Ilhany, Roanoke, Va.: "LANGUAGE LAD - he can translate any language in the universe." . . . Vincent Auleta, Long Island City, N.Y.: "HISTORY HANNAH - she can remember the exact date, year, hour and minute, in which any event occurred." . . . Philip McCrum, Chula Vista, Calif.: "INSECT KING - can duplicate the powers of any insect." . . . Charlie Hendrix, Greenville, S.C.: "GAS GIRL - she can change herself into a vapor and go under doors, through cracks, etc., and change herself into tear gas, laughing gas, etc." . . . Mervyn La Floyd, West Orange, N.J.: "NASAL HAZEL - she has the power of super-smell." . . . Dale Jenkins, Chicago, Ill.: "DAZZLE DANNY - has the power of temporarily blinding any person or animal with blinding colors." . . . Bill Schupp & Jim Cooper, Hinsdale, Ill.: "ROBOT MASTER - he can control any robot."
[2009 note: one of the Heroes of Lallor, and the powers of Insect Queen.

Adventure Comics 315, Dec. 1963
Bits of Legionnaire Business
From John Vogel, Silver Spring, Maryland: "ORBIT KID - he can hurl any object in perfect orbit around any world." . . . Greg Flood, Needham, Mass.: "EARTHQUAKE LAD . . . has the power to create earthquakes." . . . Arthur Collins, Crystal Lake, Ill.: "A.G.BOY . . . he can make any object float via his power of transmitting anti-gravity." . . . Frank Jennings, Eufaula, Ala.: LANGUAGE LASS . . . she has the power to speak in any language in the Universe." . . . Ernest Fode, Medicine Hat, Canada: "BIZARRO BOY - he can make a Legionnaire's powers work in reverse."
Virginia Bruce, Bennetsville, S.C.: "CALENDAR GIRL . . . she knows every important date in past and future history." . . . R. Goo, San Bernardino, Calif.: "OMNIBOY . . . he can travel on and under land, beneath the sea, and in air or space." . . . Robert N. Behnke, Cresskill, N.J.: "GHOST GIRL - she is able to pass through any solid object."
[2009 note: there was an Earthquake Lad of sorts in the Waid/Kitson Legion, but wasn't there someone with those powers (besides the Earthquake Beast) before that? Don't know why they put Ghost Girl here, that's the same as Phantom Girl who had already been introduced years before.]

Adventure Comics 316, Jan. 1964
Bits of Legionnaire Business
From Mike Jones, Orlando, Florida: "BAT BOY - like his namesake, the bat, he has the power of hearing super-sonic frequencies." . . . From Carol Ogden, Hawthorne, Calif.: "CURSE KID - he has supernatural powers and can put hexes and spells on his enemies." . . . Eddie Jones, Rogersville, Tenn.: "DIMENSION DAMSEL - she has the power to visit the 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th dimensions." . . . James Vincent, Fairfax, Va.: "BLACKOUT BOY - he has the power to blackout vast areas." . . . Glenn Rifkin, Paramus, N. J.: "TRACK LAD - he can track anything in the Universe."
[2009 note: one of the spies from Murra as well as the powers of Shadow Lass, and the powers of Dawnstar.]


Michael Jones said...

I am really enjoying these bits.

Terence Chua said...

And now, they will all sue for past royalties.

Jonathan L. Miller said...

Both Evolvo Lad and Duplicate Boy were Heroes of Lallor, not Wanderers or Subs, weren't they?

Michael said...

Yeah, you're right. It was late and I was tired (that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it).

Jim Drew said...

Nasal Hazel: I think you can draw at least a dotted line from her to Eyeful Ethel. The name parallel is mighty strong.

Skeleton Munroe said...

There was a Quake Kid who applied at the same time as Absorbancy Boy and Infectious Lass (second try). He never got to use his powers, though, just macked on IL and got the flu.