"You cannot overcome my laser-proof breasts!"

§ May 27th, 2008 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on "You cannot overcome my laser-proof breasts!"

from Legion of Super-Heroes #9 (July 1990) by T. & M. Bierbaum, Keith Giffen, Paris Cullins & Bob Lewis

This is Laurel Gand, the Supergirl-replacement/continuity implant that popped up in the Legion’s “soft” reboot (a magical reconstruction of the universe’s history — don’t ask) that followed the previous soft reboot (the “five year gap” that 1) pushed the Legion from 1000 years in the future to 1005 years in the future, and 2) made everything darker and grittier).

That particular image was from the flashback issue explaining just who this new Laurel Gand person was. I sorta liked that costume, reflecting the color scheme and design of her ancestor/teammate Lar Gand (AKA Mon-El), as well as the costume of the no-longer-in-that-particular-continuity-for-the-time-being Supergirl. Laurel Gand’s regular costume also reflected the original Supergirl’s, sort of, in that she wore a headband…but she also had some serious butt-floss shorts, which did not reflect Supergirl (at least not until Michael Turner got his hands on her).

She also took on Supergirl’s romance with Brainiac 5:

That’s from one of the many text pages from early in the post five-year-gap issues, usually explaining what the readers missed in said five years. In this case, this “Legion Confidential” report (for in-story fans of the Legion — a nice touch of realism, I always thought) adds further continuity-plug support for this new character.

Well, I wasn’t expecting to churn out a couple paragraphs about Laurel Gand today. See what reading tons of Legion comics can do to you?

Another thing I’ve been meaning to address is the multiple reboots of the series. We know the big reboots, where Legion continuity was started from scratch (Zero Hour, the recent reboot with the Mark Waid series), and there were, as I mentioned, soft reboots …attempts at revitalizing/reworking the series without ignoring what came before (the five year gap, Legion Lost, etc.). The Legion Omnicom has a good overview of all these shenanigans. It all feels like a desperate flailing-about — repeated attempts at trying to find a take on the Legion that’ll click with a larger fan audience than the die-hard Legion fans who’ll read anything with the Legion logo on it. The Teen Titans franchise sort of went through this after the New Teen Titans series ended, but sales are reasonably strong for the new Teen Titans book(s) now.

The most recent Legion series reboot started strongly enough, but now sales seem to be back down to what pretty much every other Legion series has sold over the last ten or fifteen years. (Judging by our store’s sales, anyway…I haven’t checked actual sales figures — or what passes for ’em — but I expect they’ll at least in part reflect my observations.) DC’s been trying to build interest and curiosity (and, apparently, some measure of frustration) in the team, by having at least two or three distinct, and mutually-exclusive, versions of the Legion running around in current titles…leading into a tie-in to the imminent Final Crisis crossover. Whether that’ll revive interest in the Legion again remains to be seen…I’m thinking likely not, though there ain’t nothing wrong with publishing a George Perez-drawn Legion comic in the attempt.

Lemme ask you guys…I’ve been a die-hard Legion fan for nearly 30 years now. I’ve stuck through the reboots and continuity brouhahas all this time because I happen to like the concept of the team, and the interactions among this particular group of characters, and all the goofiness that comes with it. How many of you have been reading Legion for an extended period of time? How many of you were Legion fans, but had enough of the various tinkerings with the formula and dropped the book? How many of you came on with one of the various reboots, attracted by the fresh starts they offered? Please let me know in the comments.

And please forgive my “laser-proof breasts” joke. But, honestly, look at that panel! How else am I supposed to take that? (EDIT: And I’m apparently not the first to point out this panel for a little good-natured mockery, which surprises me not in the slightest.)

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