Friday, October 13, 2017

365 Days of Defiance, Day 286: We Are Legion, Day One: The simple things you see are all complicated / I look pretty young, but I'm just back-dated

Perhaps the finest single issue ever of Legion of Super-Heroes begins with a somber portent of only nine words, one of which is is honkin' great big-ass set of letters hewn out of the very earth:

Panels from Legion of Super-Heroes (1980 series) #294 (December 1982), co-plot and script by Paul Levitz, co-plot and pencils by Keith Giffen, inks by Larry Mahlstedt, colors by Carl Gafford, letters by John Costanza

LSH #294 is "the epic conclusion to The Great Darkness Saga" (and if you haven't never read it, then boy howdy, it's a good time and price to get it now), wraps up the multi-issue adventure in which the Legionnaires of one thousand years from now are pitted against dark, twisted versions of heroes from the past (coincidentally, from a thousand years past). Who's behind all this villainy? Aw, just look at the panel (above).

The remainder of this action-packed double-sized issue is a comics masterwork of raging against the machine: everybody, and I pretty much mean everybody, rushes selflessly into the battle against Darkseid. It's got battles, philosophy, nods to classical art, jokes, Polar Boy, a couple super-gueststars, and if you aren't careful, you just might learn something. Why, there's pretty much everything in here except the Legionnaire's kitchen sink, and sadly, Matter-Eater Lad. Since practically every other page is a salute to defiance, rebellion, and just plain standing up against the approaching darkness, I'm gonna devote the better part of the next week (and maybe beyond) to show you the full Legion and worlds of the United Planets versus the guy who shoulda been in the Justice League movie. Why, look who's fighting against Darkseid's mind-controlled hordes of unstoppable Daxamite soldiers: the Science Police (of Science!) and...the Hawkmen of Thanagar? Geez, fellas, we thought your origins were too messed up to make a guest appearance, but welcome aboard!

Look, even the Little Heroes Who Can (they thought they could, they thought they could), the Legion of Substitute Heroes, is joining the battle! Go go go, Infectious Lass!

Tomorrow: The Legion! More Legion! And yet even still more Legion! Gosh, I sure hope you all like the Legion.

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