Sunday, October 07, 2007

Legion of Super Heroes #2-3 Review

What Happened That You Have To Know About:

Dr. Londo, while speaking at a scientific conference about his new nanotech-powered supersoldiers, is confronted and attacked (fatally?) by Timber Wolf. Timber Wolf is put on trial for this by the Legion, and found guilty, but escapes to clear his name. He finds that he really did do it, somehow (he's been suffering from headaches and blackouts), and retreats to Rahl so he won't hurt anybody. But once he's there he finds that his dad's alive and used his mind-control nanotech to set Timber Wolf up, because he wants Timber Wolf as a bestial general for his monstrous nanodrone army. The Legion shows up, and there's a fight, during which Timber Wolf asserts his individuality and allegiance, but Dr. Londo gets away.

We do get a couple of hints about the overall arc of this season. The Legionnaires trying to keep the lid on Timber Wolf include Cosmic Boy, Colossal Boy, Sun Boy, Tyroc, Superman X, Phantom Girl and Chameleon Boy, because others like Brainiac 5, Bouncing Boy and Lightning Lad are off fighting Dominators. Also, Dr. Londo announces that he's 'formed an alliance with men who share [his] vision of what this galaxy can be,' which I presume refers to Imperiex and the Dominators.


It was an all right episode. There were continuity bits for people who like that stuff, there was atmosphere, there was action, there was a serviceable story with some character moments... the problem for me is that I don't care for the subject matter. I don't like this feral Timber Wolf. I don't think he should be an animalistic character; I'm just not interested in that angle. To me, the difference between Basic Original Timber Wolf and Extreme Feral Timber Wolf is like the difference between Batman and Man-Bat. And, "Now I do what I do best"? That little reference was neither necessary nor desireable. I think Blok said it best when he said, "Plaugh."

Phantom Girl, as a character, is coming along nicely. It's the second episode out of three this season in which she has to be the one to try to talk an overenthusiastic male Legionnaire down off the water tower. Sort of a stereotypical role, but that's not all she does: she also has an admirably haughty attitude. I particularly like the way she absently brushed Chameleon Boy out of her face in one scene this week. I wonder if they're going to try to develop a Timber Wolf/Phantom Girl relationship as was hinted at in the DnA Legion comics... the Drax episode last season also suggests it. And she showed off a new power stunt in the opening scenes, phasing a section of floor quite far from where she was to allow Timber Wolf to escape.

Other nice touches:
- Phantom Girl, Timber Wolf and Chameleon Boy working together naturally suggests the Espionage Squad. Too bad Shrinking Violet wasn't along, and of course Invisible Kid isn't part of the Legion at the moment.
- the scientific conference took place on the planet Heisenberg 7. I guess all the scientists who were there must have been unaware of how fast the planet was going.

Membership Notes:

We haven't seen Superman-X officially inducted into the Legion, but he was certainly acting like a Legionnaire in this episode. In particular, he was one of the members of the tribunal who judged Timber Wolf, and you can't tell me that Cosmic Boy, who after all is portrayed as quite the stickler for protocol in this episode, would allow a non-Legionnaire to participate in something so official and important. So I say he's a Legionnaire. (At least until I hear something else definitive.)

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Blogger Michael said...

Good point about his being a Legionnaire, that part hadn't occurred to me.

But I did see some parallels with the Kenz Nuhor story, when Star Boy was expelled from the Legion for killing (I guess the self-defense angle was good enough to not have to get sent to Takron-Galtos back then). Also, some parallels with the original Timber Wolf story, back then he kept himself apart from humanity because he thought he was an android, this time it's because he's too bestial.

"Yin Des Neerg" backwards is "Sidney Green". Dunno who that could be. The only "Sid Green(e)" I know is the DC Silver Age Green Lantern inker.

On Heisenberg-7, the crime scene tape read "CRIME SCENE DO NOT CROSS" in Interlac.

The scientists may also have known how fast they were going, but not where the planet was in its orbit around the sun.

2:00 AM  
Blogger Luke said...

I caught this episode with my wife on Saturday morning, and for a done-in-one superhero story we both enjoyed it. I liked Cos's "apology" at the end and Sun Boy's hair metal character design. Although, I must admit, I found it a little hard to swallow that 1) a group consisting of Cos, Sun Boy, and this clone of Supes couldn't take down Timber Wolf, and 2) that they couldn't track him through his LOSH ring. But beyond that, I thought it was a fun half an hour.

On a totally unrelated note, there's a funny little LOSH reference in the latest issue of Bongo's Futurama Comics (#33). In it, Hermes' son Dwight accidentally shrinks himself using Pym Particles. He shrinks down to the subatomic level, and finds himself (for one panel) in a tiny version of The Nighthawks, only with the Atom, Ant-Man, and Shrinking Violet. That made me laugh so hard I had to put the comic down for a minute.

8:47 AM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Who was it who introduced the animalistic Timber Wolf? Was it Giffen and the Bierbaums with Furball? Levitz had Brin's deepest fear being discovering he's a robot as late as Great Darkness. I guess the bestial thing was implicit in Cockrum's design, but that was always just cosmetic, right?

I think Cosmic Boy's characterization was more a reflection of what the plot demanded than anything else.

As for Sun Boy, I hope he gets a speaking part sometime this season. And he's not the only one.

10:59 PM  
Blogger Luke said...

I'm with you regarding Sun Boy. Maybe he'll get a spotlight episode (by my count, Timber Wolf has had 2 already). His costume design is very ostentatious, almost the opposite of his look in the current series. I like it. Mix things up a bit.

I can see Cos as the "authoratative" guy. That would fit in with Saturn Girl being the "empathic" one and Lightning Lad being the awesome... err, I mean hotheaded one. May not be 100% accurate to the material but makes a good dynamic for the show, ya know?

8:13 AM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Ah, well. If we're being honest with each other we can say that a few of the characters are only there to fill out the background and delight people like you and me. If we really want to see them in action, we can pick up the Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century comic.

10:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Best part of the episode was how it was Superman-X who tried to calm Brin down.Takes a living weapon to know how another war-tool feels.
If T-Wolf's creators hadn't wanted him to go feral sometime,they shouldn't have given him a moniker with the word "wolf" in it.Let's face it,going the wolfman route is more visually striking than going robotic.What happens there,you go "click"? Not much to look at.

2:51 AM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

If T-Wolf's creators hadn't wanted him to go feral sometime,they shouldn't have given him a moniker with the word "wolf" in it.

I say it's spinach and I say to hell with it.

8:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't say for certain that was Imperiex that Dr. Londo was referring to. However, I highly doubt these "people" are the kind of people you have milk and cookies with.

12:27 AM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Yeah. Oh well; nothing came of it either way.

9:53 AM  

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