Monday, February 20, 2012

Legion Lost #6 Review

I'm backed up on posts here, but at least I can get this one out of the way tonight. I've got two more reviews and a long rant coming up; watch this space.

What Happened That You Have to Know About:

The Legionnaires, aided by the Martian Manhunter, stabilize Yera's form and bust her and Timber Wolf out of the government's facility. Tellus lets Alastor escape. Oh, and apparently we're supposed to be surprised that there's no way for the Legionnaires to go back to the 31st century.


I'm not really sure what Nicieza thinks he's accomplished here; the status quo after the first six issues isn't a whole lot different from the status quo partway through the first issue. Trapped in the past, hypertaxis released, Alastor on the loose.

To me, that's not a good status quo, because it's so obviously unstable and unsatisfactory. The Legion in the 31st century has a settled role in society, a headquarters, and an established modus vivendi. The lost Legionnaires don't. They have a mission that they don't understand very well and they have a motel room. They can't stand pat on that hand. I think the title needs to either establish some kind of stable situation for them to be in, that can be a basis for their stories to take off from, or abandon the idea of such a status quo altogether and have things keep changing on them. I think the second choice is much more plausible, much more interesting, and much truer to what I see as the basic premise of the book.

But that's not what Nicieza is turning over to DeFalco. If there hasn't been much motion in six issues, was there going to be much at all? I mean, I'm willing to believe there was, but we'll never know.

Anyway. On the one hand I like it that they're trying something new with the Legion. On the other hand, it isn't that new, and I have to scratch my head over just how they're going about it. What with everything, I don't know if I see this series lasting much longer, and as it stands now I won't miss it when it goes.

- Lenny Kravitz
- Tellus is getting left off easy for letting Alastor get away. Not cool, Tellus
- I'm going to start getting sick of Alastor, aren't I? The signs are all there
- Crossover with other titles coming up soon. I'm only going to get the LL issues, though
- so: Durlans exist right now; therefore they weren't invented by hypertaxis

Art: 88 panels/20 pages = 4.4 panels/page. 1 2-page spread of 5 panels.

My problems with this series don't extend to Pete Woods's art, which is pretty good and isn't like any other Legion art I've seen. Steady, too: no one page or panel stands out to me as being above or below average.

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Blogger Murray said...

I can't really argue with anything you've written. I'm enjoying the series more than you seem to be, but I can certainly see where you find flaws. Keeping Alastor as the constantly escaping macguffin for the team to chase seems like weak sauce. I would have rather had the team defeat him and then move on to other issues (presumably this hypertaxis jibber jabber which I generally find to be another weak element. We need to come up with someone for the team to fight... fortunately we've got the hypertaxis out there ready and waiting to create someone just in the nick of time).

I would guess that the first six issues were designed to introduce us to each of the characters and reinforce the fact that even though we know that they've travelled in time lots and lots in the past, now they're really stuck there. And while that probably could have been done in a shorter amount of time, I don't feel like we're getting short-changed in the storytelling. There's certainly lots going on.

It's not necessarily stuff that's going to have a long term impact on the stories being told, but we've had two deaths, two rebirths and a battle every issue. We're seeing more opposition to the team appear (in the form of that black ops group) which is only going to complicate things. And we know that there's a crossover coming up that will presumably upset the status quo.

Like you, I think I would prefer a constantly changing status quo. Keep everything up in the air and always moving. I think back to the first year of L.E.G.I.O.N. when there was a major cliff hanger every issue and you never knew what was going to happen from page to page. More of that would be a good thing.

8:41 AM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

I would have rather had the team defeat him and then move on to other issues (presumably this hypertaxis jibber jabber which I generally find to be another weak element. We need to come up with someone for the team to fight... fortunately we've got the hypertaxis out there ready and waiting to create someone just in the nick of time).

Well... the virus and hypertaxis are not my preferred kind of conflict in superhero, or really any kind of, story. But I'm not going to reject it on that basis, because clearly it does appeal to some and clearly it is the kind of thing that a writer can do interesting things with. I don't insist that DeFalco do things my way; just that he does things in some way that produces those interesting things.

8:45 AM  
Blogger karl said...

Not much has changed in the past six issues, but I do agree it was all about introducing the characters individually [waste of time, as LSH fans already know them]. This new 'black ops' team seem guaranteed to cause a few headaches for our LostLSHers and I have a feeling they will pop in and out as the series goes on, though why on Earth the LSHers dont go to any regular heroes in this timeline I dont know - surely they can explain their predicament?!? Mayhap this upcoming Teen Titans crossover will help them integrate more.
As for the Durlans; glad they werent part of the hyped-up-taxis mash-up; I always feel the Durlan race was truly alien and not connected with humans.

4:41 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Why not introduce the characters while actually doing other stuff?

5:16 PM  
Blogger Dylan said...

I'm sure there's a story planned, but I am rather concerned by Gates' reluctance to explain what happened to him or where he was...

6:51 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Yep. Could be hiding something.

10:37 PM  
Blogger Cayomagnetking said...

Iagree...Gates has been very mysterious about what he's been up to AND Tellu seems to have just let Alastor obvious battle and no precautions taken to prevent it from happening. It seems most of the important action is taking place off-stage! Perhaps editorial wasn't happy with Nicieza's plans and told him to just leave things as they had been when the series got started. Time will tell if the future plots will be good enough to save this comic. Even long-time Legion fans aren't very enthusiastic so far.

7:50 AM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

I wonder if it's Gates at all, as opposed to someone disguising himself as him. Someone like Yera's other half. For some reason.

8:41 AM  
Anonymous stile86 said...

After this issue I started to wonder if Gates and Yera's changes weren't due to the hypertaxis, and that we were supposed to gwt that all along. If so I think it's poor writing because I sure didn't get it. If not, then why aren't the team more curious? TW is the first to actually ask, and he only asks where Gates ahs been, not how he changed. Are they trying to be polite in not mentioning it?

11:28 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Probably someone should have mentioned it, at least.

8:51 AM  
Blogger Jim Drew said...

My biggest complaint with this issue was the online reviews and such that took the Martian Manhunters comment about "you're all going to die here" as something important.

Please. Time travel technology doesn't exist in the 21st century, not that could get them home. That's all he was saying: "If your friends don't come get you, you're all going to die here (of old age if not before)."

Whatever, J'Onn. I hope we don't see one word of wailing about that later on from the Legionnaires. Every one of them should know better.

3:24 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

The interesting thing is, it came out the same month as Action Comics, in which the Legion travels back in time to the present-day with every expectation of being able to leave normally. I think some writers have to play by different rules from others.

4:19 PM  

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