Saturday, June 04, 2011

Adventure Comics #527 Review

What Happened That You Have to Know About:

The Academy students continue their training, and Comet Queen tells Glorith her origin story. Some of us have seen it before, and some haven't; basically, she always wanted to be a Legionnaire and let herself get strafed by a comet, Star-Boy-style. And it worked. Then there's the part we haven't heard before: she graduated from the Academy, was assigned to the Subs, and got nailed by Saturn Queen after Titanfall. Saturn Queen damaged her mind so much that it stripped out all her training and a lot of her memories, so now she's back at the Academy to start over.


These comic books are too short and it's ticking me off.

We've been having The Comet Queen Story teased at us for a while now, and I have to admit I was expecting something a little different. I figured she would have suffered all that mental damage while doing something heroic. Maybe she threw herself on some psychic bomb or other, to save a bunch of trapped children, or like that. Instead she was an unlucky victim. Granted, we do get the added bonus of amping up Saturn Queen's villainous status, which is worth doing.

The other thing we get is a more sustained focus on Comet Queen herself. Visually, she is, as always, striking: alien and weird and lithe, but not exactly sexy. Her dialogue, well... that needed to change. When she was first introduced, she spoke basically in Valspeak, but that won't fly in 2011, so Levitz had to come up with something analogous. Now she sounds more affectionate and, oh, cosmic, I guess, which is weird and may be all Levitz was hoping to achieve. Personality: she used to be meaner than this, I recall; now she's flighty and oddly attracted to Bouncing Boy, a radical interpretation of previous texts.

Maybe I'll take a minute here to kick around the big announcements from DC. The digital-release thing is okay by me. I don't plan to take advantage of it, but I like to see people try stuff. As far as the mass reset to #1 issues of 52 different series, well... I suppose I'm going to lose some things I like, such as Bryan Q. Miller writing Stephanie Brown as Batgirl, but in general the only thing I care about is whether there's going to be a Legion comic or not. And my understanding is that there is. (Rumour has it that it's going to be some kind of Legion Lost deal, at least at the start.) So that's fine.

What do I expect from this Legion comic? Honestly, I just want it to be interesting. Interesting and good would be better than interesting and not good, but I'd rather interesting-and-bad than uninteresting-and-good.

I wonder if Levitz is going to write it. (We know Cinar is moving over to the new Firestorm comic; best of luck to him.) I don't mind if he doesn't, tell you the truth; I always like to see someone new get a shot at it, and Levitz is something of a known quantity.

I also wonder if it's going to be a reboot or not. There's been speculation that this whole effort is commercially driven and the big idea is to make all the new comics maximally commercially viable. (Which would be sensible enough.) As such, do you leave the Legion pretty much as it is? You might. Or you might strip them down even more, make them a group of, oh, ten alien-futuristic superheroes trapped in the 21st century, and let all that complicated 31st-century stuff with the hundreds of characters boil away. It could happen! Anyway, I don't really care so much if the thing does get rebooted; the retroboot hasn't been around long enough for me to really get attached to it. I'm still waiting for it to grab me. And if it doesn't, well, maybe the new thing will.

As long as it's interesting.

- Not really a fan of Grava's attitude toward the Subs, but I accept that she might think that way
- One of the letters in the lettercol was written by intrepid correspondent Martin Gray
- Does anyone else think that Levitz missed an opportunity by not having Comet Queen come from Tamaran? Would have been easy to do, back at the time
- Comet Queen was the fastest to graduate from the Academy, ever? I find that hard to believe

Art: 108 panels/20 pages = 5.4 panels/page. No single-panel pages! That hardly ever happens.

Actually the comic book wasn't that short; the panel count was significantly up, which I appreciate. Borges was especially good rendering Glorith, but I appreciate how he let us know exactly how Comet Queen's skull was shaped; the whole hair-energy-contrail thing makes more sense to me now.

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