Friday, December 22, 2017

365 Days of Defiance, Day 356: Rush, rush / I wanna see, I wanna see ya get free with me

The fun thing about choosing a favorite member of the Legion of Super-Heroes is not only that there's gosh-so-many, but there's also wow-even-more era of Legion history to choose from, so you can have a favorite from every age! My favorite original Legionnaire: Saturn Girl! My favorite of the classic era: Phantom Girl! (Or, more important, the love-struck team of Tinya and Jo, Ultra Boy!) My favorite Baxter hero: Saturn Girl! My favorite Five Years Later-LSHer: Matter-Eater Lad! My favorite animated cartoon Legionnaire: Bouncing Boy! And hey, I just all around love snake-Jeckie, modern-day Ferro, Triplicate Girl, and even Hate Face, the hero with "the face of a devil, the soul of an angel." Let's not forget Brainiac 5! Dawnstar! Gates! Shikari! Infectious Lass! False Pretenses Lad! Paste-Eater Pete! Light Opera Lass! And the poor guy who has to keep track of 'em all, Roll Call Roy!

But by far, my favorite Legionnaire of my favorite era of Legion of Super-Heroes of them all: direct descendant of the original Flash and possessor of the Speed Force in the Thirty-First Century, Jenni Ognats, XS! Because in the darkest moment of the Legion, who can better save her teammate than the fastest girl alive?

Panels from Legion of Super-Heroes (1989 series, Earth-247 reality) #123 (January 2000), script by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning, pencils by Olivier Coipel, inks by Andy Lanning, colors by Tom McCraw, letters by Comicraft

As a Flash fan, I loves me this sequence even more than I hate the covers of the last nine issues of the original Barry Allen series for not even showing him running. This tier of four panels not uses speed lines and compressed panels to not only show the immense speed XS is traveling, but the pressure she's under and, in the last panel, the danger she's about to encounter...

...the danger of mind-controlled Legionnaires! And I think we all know how painful that can be. Maybe the whole schtick of this villain is that "no one can escape the Stem!" but honestly, there's always someone who's going to defy you and resist. Now it's Saturn Girl's turn.

And — I've said this before, especially in relation to Legion comics — I am a sucker for the last minute arrival of the cavalry, just as all seems darkest for our defiant duo. (Not to be confused with Duplicate Damsel.)

This segment was once again suggested by a pal who knows more about the Legion than Computo, and who certainly puts my surface-knowledge of the LSH to shame: Matthew Elmslie, your friendly host of the totally excellent Legion Abstract, which keeps the spirit well alive of the franchise seemingly forgotten by DC Comics. (Seriously, you guys: super-powered teenagers in the future. Is that not a great enough concept for you to hang one book on?) Thanks again, Matthew. And we've got at least one more Legion storyline suggested by Matthew comin' up in this last couple weeks of 365 Days of Defiance, because hey, it's the freakin' Legion!

Matthew was especially careful to suggest I include this coda from several pages later, which spells out the whole story so clearly and cleanly in teh same space it reminds you of the mission of the Legion of Super-Heroes. They do the impossible every day, one thousand years after you've had breakfast

Thanks, Matthew! Long live the Legion again!

1 comment:

Blam said...

I was gonna correct you on the use of "Duplicate Damsel", as I only know her as Duo Damsel (or Triplicate Girl, or Triad), but I looked it up just in case and, sure enough, apparently she used that and "Duplicate Girl" at some point too.