Saturday, June 16, 2012

Legion Lost #10 Review

What Happened That You Have to Know About:

Apparently the "The Culling" story ended for the Legion when they took off in that time bubble and went home. Except when they get there, they find that 31st century Earth, a couple of years after they left, is an abandoned wreck. Tyroc knows a prophecy that's made him special all his life. Wildfire's containment suit is leaking and he can't get a replacement. The Legionnaires return to the present day, where the government has questioned Oz and sent the Metamerican squad after them; at the end of the issue, their sniper shoots Timber Wolf.


A lot happened in this issue that seemed like it could be good setup for future stories. Which is exactly what you want in issue #10.

One thing I liked: Gates referring to Earthgov (I guess) as "fascist fools." It's just one phrase, but it rang true; it's more than Levitz or Johns or Nicieza or even DnA did.

I'm also hopeful about this notion that the Legionnaires have to prevent this alternate future. It's an appropriate theme for this book; not a traditional Legion theme, but one very compatible with the Legion. Which is good, because if you think about it, most if not all of the other pillars of Legion storytelling have been discarded.

The reactions of others to this issue that I've seen have been quite positive. I don't see it. There are promising signs, to be sure, but it's way past time for promising signs. At this point it's either a good comic book or it's not, and it's not. Next issue could be, though.

No, really. It could.

No, really.

It could.

Art: 79 panels/20 pages = 4.0 panels/page. 1 double-page spread.

Pete Woods with his usual credible effort. I hope we're not going to be stuck with these white costumes too much longer. Woods's depiction of the 31st century was... I don't know. I mean, good, yes, but there's a particular quality that Woods's style has that I know exactly what it is but don't know how to put it into words, and it's unusual to see the Legion future drawn that way. Even after ten issues, I don't know if Woods's style is a good fit for the Legion, but I like it whether it is or not. (As you may recall, I thought much the same about Dennis Calero.) If they really are getting rid of Portela on the main title, I'd a lot rather see Woods get the job than Scott Kolins. Nothing against Kolins, but my overwhelming memory of his art is that hideous cover on LSHv5 #34 that I still can't bring myself to look at again.

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Blogger RicG said...

had higher hopes for DeFalco's writing on this, but it's so generic that the cast are barely characters if you have no history with the Legion, not a great sign for #10 of a book.

The trip to the future was strangely written. It's like they looked at Wiesinger Plaza and HQ and couldn't be bothered looking any further. Maybe there were some people left in Asia? Maybe they could've phoned the Moon or, I don't know, one of the other hundreds of worlds in the U.P. and galaxy beyond? Maybe looked at some of that newfangled tv type stuff to see if there was a news report? Checked their diaries to see if they'd left notes to themselves?

7:01 AM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

I think they did do some of that (note the part where Gates gets sent out to scout around the world), but they also seemed to be under some kind of time-travel-related time pressure to get out of there before, I don't know, the possible future solidified or something.

11:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's more logical that Defalco wasn't real interested in keeping the lost Legionnaires in the future for more than a couple of pages. While the new storyline might turn out to be somewhat interesting, DeFalco didn't have to rush it. He could have let the Legion stay in the future for an issue or two to try to find out what had happened. A trip to the time institute might have provided some answers, or Dawnstar could have taken a quick trip to a number of Legion home worlds to gather more info. Was the crise confined just to Earth and it's near orbit, or was it universe wide? Who knows, Dawnstar might even have met up with other Legionnaires off world. There are so many interesting storylines that could have developed with the Legion lost in the future without having to immediately rush back to the past and fight the metamericans. This book is quickly running out of steam being located in the present. The only way to save this title would be for Harvest be part of the Dominion from the future, and for Levitz and DeFalco to work together to tie the storylines of the two books together in some way.

5:00 PM  
Anonymous brainypirate said...

Did they ever establish that Hypertaxis is no longer contagious? If so, then there's no reason they can't finally approach Supes for help. But if it is contagious, then by this point, it has to have spread across the USA, and the Legionnaires just gave it to the Teen Titans and the Ravagers. Plus, it's hard to imagine an outbreak like the one we saw didn't have the entire metahuman community converging on Minnesota to find out what was going on.

That plotline makes no sense once you think about it, unless they've established that it's no longer spreading.

5:45 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Anonymous: No, I'm sure DeFalco wasn't interested in the Legionnaires being in the future for any length of time. For better or for worse, that's not what this title is about. It's about them being stuck in the present day. It might not work, but it's what's being tried.

brainypirate: I think what we've established is that DeFalco doesn't want to write about the hypertaxis virus.

5:54 PM  
Anonymous brainypirate said...

Yah, I figured he didn't want to write about it, but it was mentioned a couple times in the Culling, and I hoped it had been removed from the story in a logical way. Otherwise, we're left with a major plothole that makes DeFalco AND his editor look really, really lazy!

6:01 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Well, that's serial comics; if DeFalco can get this series going in a legitimately interesting high-quality way, nobody should care what plot holes he leaves in his six. I for one will not quibble about it at all.

6:12 PM  
Anonymous brainypirate said...

I guess I got confused because Brin was infected but no one else was? Or did I miss something.

But yes, a good new story would make the old one easy to set aside....

6:33 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

I don't think you missed anything.

7:01 PM  
Blogger Oxymoron X said...

You missed something. The Hypertaxis was unstable and decayed to a harmless version in a few mutations. I thought Gates & Tellus also are infected; that explains why their bodies keep changing.

7:56 AM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Well, that, yeah. I took that to mean "the hypertaxis is a problem that will eventually solve itself" and not "the hypertaxis is a problem that is now solved." Either way, the point is "the hypertaxis is a problem that we're moving on from."

8:04 AM  
Anonymous AJay said...

ortu 84

11:41 AM  
Anonymous AJay said...

I guess that since the effects of the Hypertaxis have atrophied that Brin will no longer be shooting (ouch!!)off his claws. I hope.

11:42 AM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

Yeah, I don't want to see that again either. I had been assuming that it was now a permanent... I don't want to call it a superpower... a permanent _thing_, but obviously DeFalco can discard it with no explanation if he wants.

11:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think one thing we have to accept with this book is that it has long been held that one of the reasons the Legion became a hard sell was that it was disconnected from the rest of the DCU. (Remember the hoops the Legion jumped through to connect to that Manhunters story, or the bare nod to Neron event -- a holo D&D game.)

This book attempts to solve that by forcing the Legion into the present day, although it also for a while jumped through hoops to avoid actually connecting with anything. The Culling should have removed some of that concern.

(Of course, people who have bought into the Legion know that that separation is a strength, allowing more growth than most connected books can manage.)

4:10 PM  
Blogger Matthew E said...

I suppose that's true. Which, fine: if you want to connect with the rest of the DCU, go ahead. Just do it well.

4:31 PM  

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