Girl lifts and separates.
12/05/05 page 3
1 here, page
Mark Waid added tons to the saga of the Marvel Universe
Fantastic Four, so we wouldn’t expect any less from
him on Legion of Super-heroes #12,
Well, he did
set himself up with the task of opening the story up to
brand new readers and continuing to attract them with storylines
that actually resolve in a single issue, but, having delivered
so many great issues that performed as both standalone episodes
and chapters in the larger story, this outing drives us
full force into the war that’s been brewing for the
Having some consideration
for new readers and those of us who missed an issue or two,
Waid and company start off with a two-page summary detailing
where the Legionnaires are and the odds they face, but then
we’re plunged right into the twisting plotlines. As
one team takes control of the United Planets’ communication
planet, another attempts to knockout galactic teleporters,
and yet another has to tackle the army of thousands preparing
to launch attacks throughout the galaxy.
Earth and the remaining Legion reserves are being torn apart
by Elysion, Dream Girl has been killed and Braniac 5 has
started talking to rocks. Atom Girl appears on the scene
and proves that she really does exist, Projectra uses her
newly acquired powers of illusion to rescue Brin Londo (Timber
Wolf, to the oldtimers), Ultra Boy and Karate Kid get in
the largest fistfight we’ve seen in... well, it has
to be a little while, at least...
Long story short:
this book is rockin’.
started this cycle of the Legion of Super-Heroes with a
big bang (back in the Legion/Teen Titans team-up),
but he let the easily approachable style of the early issues
take center stage for quite a while. Now, we’re seeing
the larger story at hand, and it’s just as smart and
exciting as we hoped it would be. Waid’s encyclopedic
knowledge, pseudo-science leanings, and understandings of
the conflict and tenderness found in any family unit put
this book right up there with his work on Flash
and Fantastic Four.
This arc wraps
up next issue, but I’d still advise jumping on as
soon as possible. It’s worth it.
#647 also finds us at a rather crucial point
in a long-running story. Batman lost his proteges and Gotham
allies back during “War Games," then discovered
Jason Todd, the second person to bear the mantle of Robin,
was truly back from the dead and taking back the streets of
Gotham as the Red Hood.
the Butch Cassidy to his Mozart.
Gotham kingpin Black Mask has joined forces with the Society
to take out Red Hood, and Batman ponders whether he should
aid his former apprentice or not.
it wouldn’t be a good fight if Bats didn’t make
an appearance, but the interesting part is how he and the
Hood fall into their old maneuvers from when they were a
but I never thought I would enjoy the return of Jason Todd
like I did in this issue. The whole notion of constantly
bringing characters back from the dead is pretty repugnant
to me, but writer Judd Winick has used it to define Batman.
Does he need
Jason as a symbol of his failure to protect the innocent
any more? No, Stephanie can fill-in that role, now.
So, with Jason
back, we see how Batman failed as a mentor. Not how he couldn’t
train someone to beat villains, but how he unwittingly trained
someone to BE a villain. More to the point, the difference
between the two is pretty dodgy in the world of Gotham.
As long as Jason remains a perversion of everything Batman
strives for, he’ll be haunted by both his failure
and how far over the line he himself may be going.
Sure, this all
comes through in a fight against Captain Nazi, Hyena, and
Count Vertigo, but it rings through loud and clear. As long
as Batman can use events like this resurrection for actual
character development rather than cheap trickery, it’s
going to get a gold star from me.