Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Justice League United #10 Review

What Happened That You Have to Know About:

Brainiac 5 comes up with a pretty good plan to save Thanagar; he rigs up a way to teleport it to Rann's orbit. That works, and the Legion goes home.

Review:

So this issue turns out to be more of a denouement than a conclusion; the important issues were all wrapped up last month, and this is just cleaning up details. Which I guess is okay.

Brainiac 5's solution to the black hole threatening Thanagar was very well done by Lemire. He wasn't just retegulating the framistat; the zeta beam has been a factor all through this story and its properties are well established. Lemire didn't pull a rabbit out of a hat. He pulled a rabbit out of plain sight.

(Why send it to Rann's orbit, of all places, by the way? Just because DC, that's why?)

(Note: the White Witch's spell to amplify the effect of the zeta beams to work on the whole planet is reminiscent of the spell she cast in the Great Darkness Saga to switch the people from... was it the Sorcerer's World?... to Apokolips and vice versa. I'm sure this was intentional.)

The whole sequence where the Legion shifts from evacuating Thanagar to teleporting Thanagar underlines the tremendous advantage the Legion has in many situations because some of their members are just so useful. They get invaluable information that's just not available to a group like the Legion of Substitute Heroes from Saturn Girl and Dream Girl. R.J. Brande is another huge advantage. Brainiac 5 is a tremendous advantage. Element Lad and the White Witch, to a lesser extent. Dawnstar can be a huge advantage when the writer permits it. Mon-El, obviously.

If my summary above is a little brief, it's because there's a lot of this comic book that's been turned over to Justice League character stuff, which is certainly welcome, but not of primary interest to me with my Legion-centric perspective.

So how was The Infinitus Saga as a story? I don't think it was anything much. There were a lot of superheroes. There was some fighting. A couple of nice touches. Not something that's going to have me rereading it much. Certainly it was stretched out beyond its natural length, which I loathe. It was okay and now it's over and I'm looking forward to the next thing.

Tell you the truth, I had a notion that DC was going to use this series to kill off the Legion. Not forever. Just to clear the decks for whatever the next version of the team was going to turn out to be. (Probably some retro Legion from this Convergence stuff.) Not sure how I would have felt about if they did. But they didn't, so that's fine.

Anyway. See you next month for the Legion-related issues of Convergence. Hope there's more to come after that. But I have another blogpost brewing anyway that I hope it won't take me too long to finish.

Art:

I like the black hole effect. I like how the colorist got White Witch right. Some impressive forced perspective on Colossal Boy on the splash page.

The layout faked me out a couple of times, making me think it was a double-page spread when it wasn't, or vice versa. The panel arrangements were creative, but I couldn't tell what end was being served by having done the way they were. Just thought it looked good, I guess.

I was pleased with how the characters were rendered, for the most part. Brainiac 5 was done well. Also the Martian Manhunter. Not sure if I can say the same about Animal-Man.

I dunno. I've seen a lot worse art than this on Legion comics. I'm not complaining. But it does seem to add up to less than the sum of its parts.

Membership Notes:

The Lost Legionnaires return to the future with everybody else, and we also see a few of the SW6 and reboot Legionnaires again, so, you know, whatever. The Legion also takes Ultra with them, but I don't think we can really call him a Legionnaire.

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10 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

While this wasn't the greatest of Legion stories, I liked how the Legion was portrayed. Good team work last issue and this one. I wonder how many times Dream Girl saves the day by foreseeing what the Legion should do?

4:45 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Well, that's why they keep her around.

I wonder, was this a portrayal of the Legion that was better at giving existing Legion fans what they want or at introducing the characters to people who don't know them yet.

4:56 PM  
Anonymous Tim said...

I wonder, too, if some of the initial bombast in the solicitations and the premise of the story re: The Legion must kill this child before he becomes Future Evil! was a calculated measure.

Lemire did exhibit some familiarity with the Legion (perhaps to the detriment of the story at times?) and he never seemed to want to reinvent or New52 (whatever that nebulous adjective means exactly) the Legion.

But that bit with the Legion having to kill a child preemptively seemed to stick out enough that I wonder if it was meant to goose existing fans enough to get them to come and view the potential slight.

Just a thought. Lemire seems to be on his way out of DC but his parting gift was to remind everyone that the Legion exists. I say, kudos for that anyway. :)

6:32 PM  
Anonymous stile86 said...

The planet switching spell from the Great Darkness Saga was with Daxam. The point of the spell was to get the Darkseid-controlled Daxamites back under their own red sun so they would lose their powers. (Darkseid had previously swapped Daxam with his won Apokolips which was orbiting a yellow sun.)

This one is certainly reminiscent of that and I agree with you that it was written that way on purpose.

Also, just like here, Mysa couldn't do it by herself. Here she amplified five thousand ships' zeta beams (with Brainiac 5's tweaking), and in the Great Darkness Saga she was controlled and empowered by High Father (Darkseid's opposite number). Even then the narration said that swapping the planets was beyond her and she could only swap all the inhabitants. (This was something that later was forgotten and when we next see the Daxanites they are on Daxam under a red sun without powers repairing the damage Darkseid did to their world.)

11:50 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

That's the one.

10:31 AM  
Blogger Dylan said...

Decent issue, if nothing spectacular. I did like Dawnstar's fangirling, though. And I'm always up for Brainy and Kara.

There was one Legionnaire I couldn't recognize though. On the spread after they shift planets, there's some blonde (what looks female) Legionair in black and orange with a comet-looking insignia. Andromeda, maybe?

7:03 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Andromeda, yeah.

What is it that so many people like about the Brainy-Supergirl romance? I mean, I don't have a problem with it or anything, but I've never seen what makes it some people's favourite thing.

7:39 PM  
Blogger Dylan said...

Well, I think for many people, they like the idea of the Superman and Brainiac legacies coming together, despite a history of antagonism between the two.

As for me personally? I got my start reading the Legion from my dad's Bronze Age stuff, and then various Silver Age bits where they were very much a thing, so to me, it's just part and parcel of what the Legion's supposed to be. Nostalgia for nostalgia's sake.

7:45 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Nostalgia for nostalgia's sake.

Them's fightin words! I dast you to step across this line.

8:20 PM  
Blogger Dylan said...

...That sounds like it might be dangerous. I think I'll stay on this side.

7:36 PM  

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