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Legion of Super-Heroes: 1050 Years of the…
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Legion of Super-Heroes: 1050 Years of the Future

by Anton Kawasaki (Editor)

Other authors: Jack Abel (Inker), Dan Abnett (Contributor), Dan Adkins (Guest Artist), Howard Bender (Guest Artist), Otto Binder (Contributor)26 more, Ron Boyd (Inker), Dave Cockrum (Guest Artist), Olivier Coipel (Penciller), John Forte (Artist), George Freeman (Inker), Frank Giacoia (Guest Artist), Keith Giffen (Penciller/Co-Plotter), Dick Giordano (Guest Artist), Mike Grell (Artist), Edward Hamilton (Contributor), Stuart Immonen (Penciller), George Klein (Inker), Andy Lanning (Inker), Andy Lanning (Contributor), Paul Levitz (Introduction), Paul Levitz (Contributor), Larry Mahlstedt (Inker), Tom McCraw (Contributor), Al Plastino (Artist), Kurt Schaffenberger (Guest Artist), James Sherman (Penciller), Jim Shooter (Contributor), Jerry Siegel (Contributor), Joe Staton (Guest Artist), Curt Swan (Penciller), Mark Waid (Contributor)

Series: Legion of Super-Heroes

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This collection came out in 2008 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Legion of Super-Heroes. As a result, it contains stories spanning (most of) the full history of the Legion, from their first adventure to the first reboot. There are some weird omissions, though: nothing from the Five Years Later version (1989-94), nor anything but a cover from the "threeboot" (2004-09). That's a full fifth of Legion history not represented, and some key parts of it to boot. I've never read anything from either version, so just for my personal edification, it would have been nice to have.

Focusing on what is here, though, there's some good stuff. Of course, there's the first Legion story... which on reading it, I don't think I'd ever read the whole thing before, just synopses and excerpts. There's a lot of Silver Age goofiness here, of course, and though what I like about the Legion is nascent in that, I'm starting to realize that what I really like about the Legion doesn't really click until the Levitz/Giffen run, when the Legionnaires are finally written as real people, and not Silver Age assholes pranking each other. But I did enjoy seeing Saturn Girl, possibly my favorite Legionnaire, lay the smackdown on all the others in "The Stolen Super-Powers!"

It was also nice to see a number of historically important, oft-referenced stories, like the death and resurrection of Lightning Lad, or Superman's trip into the future of the future to meet the "Adult Legion" (Cosmic Boy's receding hairline is hilarious). The inclusion of "The Future Is Forever!" (which I already read in The Curse: The Deluxe Edition), on the other hand, is just dreadfully confusing out of context. To be fair, I'm not totally sure I got it in context; it seems to have been written for the hardcore Legion fan who's been there since Day One. A hard-hitting standalone like "The Day after Darkseid" seems like it would have been a better choice to represent the Levitz/Giffen era. On the other hand, to a parliamentarian like myself, getting to read the Legion charter is totally fascinating!

I also really enjoyed my peeks into the reboot Legion, who've I've previously encountered only in Legion of the Damned and the excellent Legion Lost. Here are three of their tales: their very first issue (which I really liked), a short story of the Legionnaires reflecting on Superman (it felt very Elliot S! Maggin to me), and a glimpse of the Legion's reunification after Legion Lost. These were all really solid comics that seem to make the Legion work for an audience of newbies and oldies alike; I look forward to reading more from this era someday.

So overall, a decent primer on Legion history, with only one "bad" inclusion. Swap out the overly-long "The Future Is Forever!" for a different Levitz/Giffen tale, a 5YL tale, and a threeboot tale, and this book would have been perfect.
  Stevil2001 | Nov 6, 2015 |
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» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kawasaki, AntonEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Abel, JackInkersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Abnett, DanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Adkins, DanGuest Artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bender, HowardGuest Artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Binder, OttoContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Boyd, RonInkersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Cockrum, DaveGuest Artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Coipel, OlivierPencillersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Forte, JohnArtistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Freeman, GeorgeInkersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Giacoia, FrankGuest Artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Giffen, KeithPenciller/Co-Plottersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Giordano, DickGuest Artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Grell, MikeArtistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hamilton, EdwardContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Immonen, StuartPencillersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Klein, GeorgeInkersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lanning, AndyInkersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lanning, AndyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Levitz, PaulIntroductionsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Levitz, PaulContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Mahlstedt, LarryInkersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McCraw, TomContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Plastino, AlArtistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Schaffenberger, KurtGuest Artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sherman, JamesPencillersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Shooter, JimContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Siegel, JerryContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Staton, JoeGuest Artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Swan, CurtPencillersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Waid, MarkContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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"Celebrate the 50th anniversary of DC's futuristic super-team with some of the greatest stories starring the guardians of the 31st century: The Legion of Super-Heroes! 1,000 years from now, teenaged super-heroes from nearly every world in the United Planets have banded together against evil! Now some of their greatest tales can be told in this jam-packed collection..."--p. [4] of cover.… (more)

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