Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Adventure Comics #528 Review

What Happened That You Have to Know About:

Graduation day for the previous class of Academy students, and they all get assigned to the Science Police, which nobody is happy about.

Meanwhile, Cosmic King, on a mission for Saturn Queen, raids the empty Legion HQ. Bouncing Boy, Duplicate Girl, and Night Girl show up to stop him and he makes short work of them, but some of the current Academy students are right behind them.


For some reason this one didn't seem short to me. I don't know why. The panel count wasn't that high and it was still only twenty pages. But it seemed like (the first half of) a substantial story.

Levitz has shuffled Jed Rikane, Lamprey, Nightwind, and Crystal Kid off to the Science Police. I wonder if that's because he doesn't have much use for the characters or because he has plans for them in their new roles. I dunno. In general I'm not a big fan of any of 'em either, but I can see a couple of useful features in Nightwind. No big deal, though.

The basic idea here, that nobody's happy about the graduates joining the SPs, is a natural one, and one that's developed in multiple sensible ways, which is nicely characteristic of Levitz's writing. A single event that spins out implications in all directions, like the destruction of Titan. We must never forget that Levitz does actually know what he's doing.

Next issue's fight could be an interesting one. There's no reason to expect that Cosmic King knows anything about the students' powers, so they may have an advantage there. Plus there could be spare Luornus kicking around who can coordinate. I don't see Dragonwing's powers as much of a difference-maker in this fight, and Comet Queen could be worse than useless: a Venusian might be right at home in amongst the comet gases. But Chemical Kid could be just the thing. Are Cosmic King's transmutation powers chemical changes, or controlled by a chemical process in his body? If so, he's in trouble.

I'm curious about Cosmic King's mission here at Legion HQ. Was he specifically trying to take the reservists off the board, or was that just something he was doing so that he could do what he really wanted to do?

Final issue coming up. I'm about ready to move on to the next thing anyway. The Academy students aren't that interesting, yet anyway, and the Adventure title has been pretty much a dog's breakfast all the way through, despite some very good work from time to time. So let's put it to bed with thanks to all concerned and bring on Legion Lost.

- we finally get details on Jed's new powers. Personal density control, huh? Like Kono, I guess?
- confirmation that Jed and Gravity Kid are a couple. Fairly unambiguous, too; we probably can't hope for anything more definitive out of Levitz
- who exactly was that presiding over convocation?
- nice touch on Cosmic King: he doesn't like sunshine! Of course he doesn't
- the lettercol this issue contains a missive from MaGnUs, one of my co-authors on Teenagers from the Future
- I really don't like Gravity Kid's looks. I don't know why anyone would make their head look like that. It's profoundly unappealing. It's like if Friar Tuck was a speedskater

Art: 89 panels/20 pages = 4.5 panels/page. 1 single-panel page.

The art this time was split between, and I'm assuming that the inking was split the same way the pencilling was, Borges and Alquiza for some of it and Getty and Hunter for the rest. They don't tell us who did which pages but it's easy to spot the difference in styles. (And jarring.) Occasionally it was kind of underdetailed, although more effectively so than I remember getting from Kevin Sharpe. One thing I particularly liked was the panel arrangement on page 5, with Dragonwing's breath. Sometimes the features were a little exaggerated, like Duplicate Girl on pages 16 and 17... but I kind of liked that anyway. I don't think the blending of the two styles was handled as well here as it was in that Supergirl Annual, but the quality of the work is still pretty high. Oh: the way Cosmic King's powers were rendered was also pretty cool.

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