Review: Legion of Super Heroes #1

Written by Paul Levitz, Art by Francis Portela, Cover by Karl Kershl

Solicitation Info (from Previews): The Legion of Super-Heroes has been decimated by the worst disaster in its history. Now, the students of the Legion Academy must rise to the challenge of helping the team rebuild – but a threat of almost unstoppable power is rising at the edge of Dominator space, and if the new recruits fail, the Legion Espionage Squad may be the first casualties in a war that could split worlds in half!

Bias: The large cast of the Legion of Super Heroes has always been a daunting affair. Combine that with the fact that I haven’t read the most recent series (which was also written by Paul Levitz), and whether or not I collect this book will really depend on how introduction friendly this book is (not to mention, of course, whether it’s any good or not.)

What I liked: Though it was subtle, and mostly in the background, I enjoyed the political aspect of the comic. I’ve also always loved Vril Dox from the L.E.G.I.O.N. and R.E.B.E.L.S. comics, and Brainiac 5 seemed very similar (I’ve usually seen him portrayed as more altruistic in the past, whereas Vril Dox was more of a jerk.)

What I disliked: Too many characters. This has long been a problem for me with the Legion of Super Heroes, and nothing has been done to alleviate this concern in this issue (the blurb telling us who’s speaking does little to help, and there are a ton of characters in the background that we never see even this much about.) Also, this really felt like the continuation of a story rather than a jump on point.

Verdict: I’m dropping this title.

As always, SPOILERS in comments, including my favorite scene, thoughts on what happened, and questions about what’s to come.

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One response to “Review: Legion of Super Heroes #1

  1. My favorite scene was the opening sequence. A “military watchworld keeping an eye on the Dominators’ empire” had a lot of promise, and before we were inundated with all the other characters in the title, it really did have a lot of potential.

    They did focus on this group through out the rest of the comic, with only one to four pages spent on other teams in the Legion of Super Heroes, but that was enough to confuse the matter for me, and make up my mind to not collect this title.

    The focus on the various characters’ reactions to the deaths of Oaa and Niedrigh was especially telling that this was just a continuation of the previous story, and that little was to be done to explain anything to new readers, such as myself.

    As for the mysterious, hooded woman from Flashpoint #5, she appears on the far left of the first panel on page 9. Interestingly, there were a few things of note in this issue concerning the hooded woman. First, she appears on another planet. This is the first time (even in the Green Lantern books) we’ve seen her off of Earth – I’d thought her interest in the DCnU was limited to Earth, but this proves that theory incorrect. Secondly, a few people online have noted the similarities between her and Glorinth. While the look is similar (and her flight ring would explain the flight we’ve seen previous), nothing so far explains her elongated hands/claws. So, perhaps in the future (of the Legion of Super Heroes’ future), something happens, she goes back in time (like she expresses an interest in doing this issue), and somehow grows claws.

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