Sunday, September 30, 2007

Legion of Super-Heroes #2-2 Review

What Happened That You Have To Know About:

The Legion's recon of their smashed-up HQ leads to a fight with the Fatal Five and Legion of Super-Villains, who Imperiex released from Takron-Galtos. It's a costly battle for the Legion and the villains get away. In the wake of the battle, the Legion brings Superman back to the future from the 21st century, and there's an argument with Superman-X about whether the Legion should go right after Imperiex or rescue their trapped comrades on Takron-Galtos. Eventually they decide to save the other Legionnaires, and get the Fatal Five and LSV back into cells where they belong. In the meantime, though, Imperiex plunders the Legion's data banks (Computo, basically) and forms an alliance with the Dominion.


It seems that some of my qualms about how much screen time the female characters would get have been allayed; both Duo Damsel and Phantom Girl were quite prominent in this episode and Saturn Girl was certainly present. In fact, the whole roster was there. So that aspect of things looks okay so far.

Another good episode, anyway. It doesn't present a complete story, because after all we need to have Imperiex still at large to drive the rest of the season. But the introductory phase of the season has definitely come to an end. One thing that's definitely changed is the basic character point at the core of the stories: last year, it was Superman learning the ins and outs of being a superhero. This year, Superman is much more confident and comfortable in himself (secret handshake!), but Superman-X has to learn to be a person and teammate and not just a war machine.

I wonder if there's something about the process of writing for television that forces the writers more rigourously to build or portray scenes which should logically happen, in a way that comic books can get away with not doing. Comic books, for instance, never gave us anything like the Brainiac-Superman friendship that exists in this series, despite that many of its ingredients were always there to be used. This episode's example: Matter-Eater Lad chomping into the Emerald Eye like it's a big cocktail onion. Why did that never happen in the comic book? It's perfect!

One thing I did not like. This whole subplot with Lightning Lad going all Charles Bronson on Esper because she put Saturn Girl in the hospital? Trite. We have seen this a thousand times before. And it always ends the same way. "If you kill her, you'll be as bad as they are!" Except, in this case, Phantom Girl's exact words were, "She wouldn't want you to go down this path." What, are we lost in the woods here? Eesh. I could have done without that whole thing. We need a moratorium on this particular plot element.

Other points:
- does this older Superman know who Brainiac is yet? It's an important point!
- in the last fight on Takron-Galtos, why did none of the Legionnaires start letting their teammates out of the cells? It's obviously the best tactical thing to do, and none of 'em even tried it.
- when did Light Speed Vanguard start calling themselves the Legion of Super-Villains?
- Cham's rich dad! I was wondering if he'd show up.
- unlike most people, I'm no expert on the exact mechanics of time travel. But I wonder about Bouncing Boy's notion that Triplicate Girl's third body is recoverable once Imperiex's 31st-century tampering is fixed. I think it's gone forever, unless it was somehow secretly saved before being antimattered out.
- it took me a few seconds to realize that Superman was comparing Superman-X to Batman. He really has learned a thing or two between seasons.
- one nice touch was the rescue of Phantom Girl at the start of the episode. Being trapped under rubble with a girder phased through your arms? Doesn't sound comfortable at all.
- an even nicer touch was the scene where Luornu tries to recreate the feel of being three people by standing angled in front of a mirror. This show is wasted on eight-year-old boys.

Keep 'em coming!

Membership Notes:

Superman rejoins this episode. I was hoping that Superman-X would join, because he'd be the only Legionnaire who had never been a Legionnaire in the comics. But he very specifically didn't join the Legion. Oh well; maybe later.

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