Hal Pictures Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!: Oh, Those Wacky Legionaires!

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Monday, February 09, 2009

Oh, Those Wacky Legionaires!

I admit it. I just don't get the Legion of Super Heroes. I understand the concept of course, super-powered teenagers from the Future! A spiffy and exclusive little club for the gifted! Something for the younger kids reading comics to identify with, perhaps more readily than with the grown-up superheroes.

They all had such funky names, and colorful outfits, and amazing powers, and came from different planets and had flight rings, and a clubhouse, and...and STUFF! And yet...I never connected. Partly I suppose, because I was an adult when I started picking this up out of curiosity, so I never had that emotional connection with it. Partly, because I couldn't get over all the "lads" and "lasses" aspect. And partly, because they were all such utter jackasses!

It was as though whenever they got bored, they'd get together and decide to hold a "competition" or tryouts for new members. Of course every loser in the galaxy decided to show up, because for some reason, being a member of the Legion was glamorous. Then they'd all go out of their way to humiliate and heckle the poor kids trying out. Heck,they even tortured Superboy! They made Superboy CRY! And they're all so smug about it afterwards.

But I guess the real reason I have reservations about the Legion is because of this...
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I don't care if you ARE from the Future, Cosmic Boy. That outfit is NOT becoming! And I'm just sure that Saturn Girl and Lightning Lad are secretly laughing at you behind your back. And for once, with good cause.

If the Legion would stop having those bloody tryouts, perhaps they wouldn't end up with so many enemies among the former wannabees. Stop humiliating those poor teenagers, you're just making trouble for yourselves down the line. However, I fear that teens, even super-powered teens are not known for thinking ahead.

The Green Lanterns don't pull this sort of thing. Sure, Kilowog and Guy Gardner may mock you in training, but if you are there, you are there because you are WORTHY of being a Green Lantern. And the costumes are so much better. And nobody calls you Lantern Lad.

16 Comments:

At 9:10 AM, Blogger Sea_of_Green said...

I had a couple of Mike Grell-era Legion comics when I was a kid -- and I didn't get them THEN. I thought then -- and STILL think -- the Legionnaires were all jerks. I liked the Justice League and the X-men much better.

Of course, the Justice League and the X-men were ALSO full of jerks, so I'm not exactly sure why I singled out the Legion for my disdain. Maybe it WAS the bad costumes.

 
At 9:19 AM, Blogger GL2814E said...

I'll bet the Legion tried to make Rond Vidar go by the name Lantern Lad once, and tried to haze him exactly once.

And then there was a whoopin' the likes of which hadn't been seen since a Crisis...

 
At 9:22 AM, Blogger Duskdog said...

Well, adults have earned the right to be jerks occasionally (though not as much as some seem to think they have). But teenagers being jerks just come across as being juvenile, arrogant little punks in need of a spanking.

I bet Guy has all sorts of fun with the rookies, though. They're not allowed in the bar, so suddenly its become tradition for them to try to sneak their way inside and order a beer without getting tossed out. Only it's almost impossible because Kilowog is always in there.

Sometimes Guy and 'Wog let them get pretty far just for the fun of it, though. They wait until the beer is raised and then lay down the smackdown just before that first sip!

 
At 9:26 AM, Blogger Th. said...

.

Unrelated: You have to see this ad.

 
At 12:53 PM, Blogger MetFanMac said...

On the minus side, Lanterns have to contend with being bossed around by retarded Smurfs :-)

 
At 2:31 PM, Blogger SallyP said...

Sea, I admit that the League and the X-Men had their fair share of jerks, but they never as a group went in for the sadistic hazing that the Legion did on a regular basis. I wonder how they ever found time to go out and fight the bad guys, since they seemed to spend such an inordinate amount of time thinking up ways to humiliate poor Superboy.

Although I have to admit that Arms-Fall-Off Boy probably DID deserve to get mocked.

GL2814E, my dear, I like the way you think.

Duskdog, I would imagine that Guy and Kilowog are having all KINDS of fun in the bar torturing the rookies. But it isn't mean-spirited, and a good time is had by all. Except Stupidcat, who is confused by the shenanigans.

There IS that little problem Mac. On the other hand, the Guardians, as stupid as they may be, don't go out of their way to make up a bunch of stupid rules...oh...wait!

 
At 2:33 PM, Blogger SallyP said...

Th, that was the greatest Hostess Fruit Pie ad, I've ever seen.

 
At 2:37 PM, Blogger ticknart said...

"And in this issue, Cosmic Boy will be played by Tim Curry fresh from playing Dr. Franknfurter!"

 
At 3:59 PM, Blogger notintheface said...

Apparently, "Rokk" is short for "Rocky Horror".


I always loved the old " Legionnaire X acts completely evil or dickish but then we find out at the end it was to prevent other Legionnaires from going out on a mission that a computer or Dream Girl predicted they would die on, except we find out that the computer or Dream Girl missed one key detail that made Legionnaire X's evil/dickish ruse completely unnecessary" storyline. Couldn't Legionaire X just ,oh, I don't know, TELL the other Legionnaires
of their impending doom? Rube Goldberg had nothing on the Legion.

 
At 6:48 PM, Blogger Maverick said...

There are heroes who are defined by their villains.

Then there's the Legion who act like jerks and cause the team and the entire universe to have villains.

Cosmic Boy's costume is something even the Doom Patrol will find absurd.

 
At 7:02 PM, Blogger SallyP said...

Rokk's costume just makes me burst into derisive laughter, which is probably not the reaction he was going for.

Face, if the Legionairres TOLD the others about their impending (but not really) doom, then where would the plot be?

 
At 9:56 PM, Blogger notintheface said...

I remember reading this story when I was a kid. It's how a Legion espionage mission goes wrong and some Legionnaires get captured by the Emerald Empress. Light Lass tries to recruit Cosmic Boy to assist her, but the day just happens to be a holy day when Cos' people are forbidden to use their powers. The really creepy part in this story is when Light Lass starts chewing Cos out for not wanting to use his powers and he just backhands her across the face Pym-style.

 
At 7:52 AM, Anonymous Rich said...

Ah yes, the legendary Mike Grell costume design skills at work. Really a tossup as to whether poor Cosmic Boy is the worst example or not. I mean, there was that fool Warlord comic, where pretty much everyone dressed like an idiot.

 
At 7:56 AM, Anonymous Rich said...

Off topic, may I state for the record how terribly, terribly disappointed I am to discover that our hostess Sally is not, in fact, making out with a swan.

You darn tease, you.

 
At 8:03 AM, Blogger SallyP said...

Hush, Rich! Let's just keep that our little secret. Besides, every swan I've ever known has a mean streak a mile wide.

 
At 10:59 PM, Blogger Cove West said...

I don't know what's worse: that someone made a costume out of Mister Terrific's face, that Emma Frost lives forever and crosses over into the DCU to design superhero fashion like an evil Edna Mode, that I never realized just how homoerotic the Punisher's shirt was (seriously, that IS Frank Castle's shirt, just without sleeves!), or that after being exiled from the state of Illinois, ex-governor Rod Blagojevich became a male space-hooker.

The way I've always looked at the Legion, they're a futuristic group of heroin addicts who've run away from their homes and joined together to hallucinate that a giant green eye is trying to kill them. It'd be like trying to make an adventure comic out of Woodstock with a little less flower-power and a little more random sex. So you get these stories where they freak out when someone finds their crackhouse and tries to horn in on their stash, but if said newcomer turns out not to be a narc or affiliated with the giant green eye and its hot concubine, then said newcomer is free to shoot up and laugh at the guy with the worst munchies in the history of matter. Oh, and they periodically think they're different people or in another space-time -- woah, man, lay off the brown, Trip Girl, yer trippin'!

Would explain Cosplay's outfit there, anyway (oh my God, to think he might've forgotten to put his gloves on and left his fingers exposed for all the world to see!)

 

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