Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Adventure Comics #520 Review

What Happened That You Have to Know About: Lightning Lad gets killed fighting Zaryan. The Legionnaires mourn him and clean up some of Zaryan's men.

Review: There's really not much here we don't already know about. If you've read the original Lightning Lad death story, you've covered about the same material. This one is told in flashback and we get a 21st-century-style look into Saturn Girl's head as opposed to an early 1960s-style look into her head, but that's about it.

Interesting choice on Levitz's part to end the meet-the-Legion arc on Lightning Lad's death but leave out his resurrection. Especially since it's another example of one of his big points here, that Saturn Girl doesn't want anyone else to die for her. Does he figure that, what with the Lightning Saga and stuff, we already have it fresh in our minds? Does he just want to leave people wanting more?

Of course Mon-El was the ghostly voice in the clubhouse a few issues ago. Anybody who read the original story should have known it, too, although I think Levitz did an excellent job of showing it to us in a way that seemed fresh.

Sorry I don't have much more to say about this issue. But there's not much new here, and there isn't much of it (see below). Next month: Green Lantern stuff; yippee skip. Oh well; maybe it'll be good.

- nice touch on the cover: the three L-symbols (on the flag, the building, and the coffin) in a line, as a silent "Long Live the Legion."

Panel Count: Back to Kevin Sharpe this issue; oh well. 70 panels/20 pages = 3.5 panels/page, noticeably less than the last couple of issues. Two single-page panels and one double-page spread. What's Ultra Boy got in his mouth on page 11? I don't want to be too harsh; Sharpe does a pretty good job by his own standards here.

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Anonymous Darrell Lawrence said...

I liked the emphasis on the aspect that it was Mon-El telling Garth.

Indirectly, Mon-El is just as responsible for Garth dying as Imra was, maybe more-so. Tht'd be a cool follow-up story, along with the Garridan version of Validus having killed Lyle.

...hmmmm Both cases involved Imra LOL

As for the art, has there ever been an in-comic image of Mon-El, a young Kal-El and Kara Zor-El standing next to each other? I dunno why, but I just thought that was awesome seeing the three youngsters together like that.

10:41 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

has there ever been an in-comic image of Mon-El, a young Kal-El and Kara Zor-El standing next to each other?

I dunno. There are probably a lot of times where they're all there at the same time, weddings and funerals and what have you, but not necessarily grouped together.

8:43 AM  
Blogger Ken said...

Having read the original storyline many times over the years, I feel my money was kind of ill-spent on this issue. I didn't learn anything new, and since the art was unremarkable, it was actually less enjoyable than the original story. That being said, if it helps bring more new readers to the series, thus extending it's life, I am happy to make that small contribution.

3:22 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

I can't really disagree. The good news is there aren't supposed to be any more like this.

3:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seems I didn't miss anything by not getting this ish.But I went to my LCS to at least thumb thru a copy,only to find they were out of copies! Maybe an indicator of more readers buying Legion books.

7:41 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

That'd be good. As opposed to if it was a sign of stores ordering fewer copies.

7:43 PM  
Anonymous Jpm37 said...

I did love the two page spread of the legion around the casket and also the pages of the legion cleaning up what was left of the space pirates were well done.
Two editing errors I noted, on pages 1 and 2 it goes from Sun Boy to Colossal Boy carrying the casket, later on the "bubble" identifies Invisible Kid as Jaques not Lyle.

12:32 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

I wonder if I'll ever be able to look at a page of Kevin Sharpe's art and just like it. He is getting better, although he's clearly not there yet. But I think it might be one of those things where my eyes are prejudiced against him and his stuff will just never look all that good to me, no matter how much he improves.

1:10 PM  
Blogger Dylan said...

Interesting to see both Clark and Kara in this, after Brainy expressly said in the Supergirl annual that the two of them weren't allowed to visit at the same time.

2:09 PM  
Anonymous Darrell Lawrence said...

I knew Brainy saying that would not hold, because by virtue of that Supergirl Annual, her pre-Crisis stories are now in play, and there have been stories with the two of them together.

So I see it as a "decree" by Brainy that didn't work out.

Speaking of that Annual, why no review of it?

2:22 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

I noticed that too. Of course, it was kind of a special occasion.

2:23 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Oh, and, I got that Annual just this Wednesday, and I'm going to review it as soon as I have the time. This weekend, probably.

2:24 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Glad to hear that; I was wondering if you would, since it was way more Legion-y than that Legacies title you did review.

6:39 PM  
Blogger Jim Drew said...

At this point, the Lightning Saga is, what, 3 years old? If this storyline had included the resurrection, I would see a stronger tie-in there.

As a stronger tie-in to recent DC continuity, Mon-El just got pushed back into the Zone 6 months ago for us, so this reminds us what led up to him getting out.

Was it established continuity before this story that the Zaryan warning came from Dream Girl? That isn't explicit here, but certainly obvious to those who know. She didn't join the Legion for another 28 or so issues.

More to the point, though, I strongly expect that this story (or these stories, including the Brande will and such) are laying groundwork for Levitz' next year. I'm assuming we will see Zaryan show up in the main Legion book, and maybe the freeze ray will be used in restoring Polar Boy's arm. (Which itself then echoes into a Starfinger return, right? Garth's robot arm was restored by Stargfinger's minion.) With a handy recent story in collected form to point readers to, a Zaryan return becomes more doable. And he's definitely a major past foe who hadn't been updated to modern times.

8:14 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Was it established continuity before this story that the Zaryan warning came from Dream Girl?

No, definitely not. Originally it was just some random aliens. Dream Girl and the Naltorians hadn't been invented yet.

As for Zaryan, didn't he die when Lightning Lad took out his spaceship? I always thought so.

8:20 PM  
Anonymous Jim Davis said...

Which itself then echoes into a Starfinger return, right? Garth's robot arm was restored by Stargfinger's minion.

I thought the doctor that restored Garth's arm was Evilo's minion?

12:58 AM  
Anonymous eddie blake said...

Adv #351, right? 'the forgotten legion', featuring evilo's devil's dozen (tho only if you counted sugyn several times) garth gets an arm back and chuck gets to bounce again...

8:41 PM  
Anonymous Jim Davis said...

The double page spread on pages 4 and 5...

Is there any significance to the fact that three Legionnaires (Phantom Girl, Saturn Girl, and Brainiac 5) are not raising their hands in the "Long Live the Legion" salute?

Saturn Girl is understandably subdued due to guilt and plans to leave the Legion and Brainiac 5 perhaps does not indulge in these emotional displays. But why Phantom Girl?

The salute can obviously be given with either the right or left arm. The armbands are always on the left arm but are not consistently present on the first 5 pages.

1:48 AM  
Blogger Murray said...

The armbands are always on the left arm but are not consistently present on the first 5 pages.
Something inconsistent from this artist? Shocking! I was more disturbed by the number of smiling Legionnaires at Garth's funeral. Ultra Boy seems positively giddy.

5:05 AM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

I don't think it's significant.

10:27 AM  
Blogger Murray said...

I'd agree. The smiling Legionnaires isn't significant in that it's supposed to be hinting at some future plot line. It's not. I think it's just a weird artistic choice/mistake.

6:11 AM  
Anonymous Darrell Lawrence said...

Regarding the Naltorian's message in regards to Zaryan: Pay close attention to what the Naltor leader says in the issue they first sent that message.

They used a network of some type. So the classic Legion story received the message from the end result of that network. Now the Legion itself may know it originated from Naltor and knew it was done via network so that if it was intercepted, people wouldn't know it came from Naltor, thus Naltor can remain unknown.

If Zaryan or other enemies found out it came from Naltor, they would try to figure out how the Naltorians knew, and thus expose Naltor as having the ability to see into the future.

4:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Having just read the tpb that reprinted Adventure #515-520 dealing with the Legion's early days,I'm at a loss as to what the point of these issues was.There were a couple instances of future storylines seeming to be set up,but otherwise this came off as unpublished fan-fiction finally seeing print.

4:53 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

I think the point was mostly to catch new readers up on Legion backstory. Now, whether it did that or not...

6:35 PM  

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