Posts tagged ‘Star Boy’

Action 387 – Superman at the end of time, and the Legion vs tax laws

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Bates, Swan and Roussos conclude Superman’s travel through time in Action 387 (April 1970).

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He encounters some astronauts, frozen in suspended animation for centuries, and revives them in the year 801,970.

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Travelling even further into the future, he reaches a time when the entire planet is dead and devoid of life.  If those are different.  Anyway, he cuts the planet open and terraforms it, and brings life forms, including humans, from other worlds to populate it and start the cycle again.

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There is a very unexpected attack from Lex Luthor.  He had never believed Superman dead, and left behind a weapon, powered by his eternal hate, to kill him.  It fails.

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Superman travels even further ahead, but Time Trapper loops him, and sends him back to the start. He blacks out, waking to find himself a baby in his parents arms on Krypton.  A few more blackout time jumps, and Superman is back to where he was at the start of the saga.

Which is a bit of a let-down finish, if you ask me.

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Bridwell, Mortimer and Abel share one of the oddest Legion stories.  Every single member appears.  Even the Super-Pets appear.  And I’m tagging them ALL.

And the board is also worth noting, on the first page. The Legionnaires appear in the order they joined the team.  Supergirl is located between Star Boy and Brainiac 5, while Superboy is later, between Shrinking Violet and Sun Boy.

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An evil tax man shows up, and the Legion discover that they have to get rid of one member, or have to pay taxes.  As they do not actually make money by being the Legion, I’m not sure what they would be taxed on, but it’s enough of a threat that they all start vying to be the one to leave.  Timber Wolf and Chemical King are the first to offer, being the most recent to join.

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The team attempt to hold a random draw, but it gets rigged, and then everyone starts claiming responsibility for rigging it.

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Supergirl insists that she should be the one to leave, as she attends the fewest meeting.  Brainiac 5 is not happy, and the Super-Pets all but revolt, insisting that they will disband if she leaves.

Brainiac 5 is selected by the computer as the hero who performed the fewest feats, but everyone insists his mind is worth more than just feats.

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Finally, it is Superboy who chooses to leave.  His powers are duplicated by Mon-El, and he has no romance or clinging pets, as Supergirl does.  Notice that Krypto would resign if Supergirl left, but not Superboy.

Duo Damsel is the one most upset about his departure. Luornu’s unrequited love for Superboy would be touched on again in the future.

For many of the characters, this was the last appearance they have before the end of the Legion’s run in Action Comics.  Ironically, this is also the last appearance of the full line up of the Super-Pets, as Beppo does not appear again, aside from flashbacks in comprehensive Superman origin tales.

 

Action 385 – Superman gets really old, and Star Boy goes home

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Bates, Swan and Roussos begin a three-part story in Action 385 (Feb. 70), which sees Superman age into the far future.

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It begins with a giant, metallic hand that carves a request for help in the door of the Fortress of Solitude.  Superman takes a damaged time bubble to get there.  Because when you are dealing with something as delicate and dangerous as time travel, why bother taking a working method?

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So he gets to the 102nd century, and helps them with their currency thefts.  But his body aged during the trip, and he now looks extremely old.

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Superman attempts to get back to his own time, but neither the bubble, nor he alone, can get through an impenetrable time barrier, constructed by the Time Trapper, who is enjoying Superman’s distress.  This is the first time the Time Trapper has dealt with Superman, as opposed to Superboy, with the Legion.  This also marks the Time Trapper’s first appearance since his weird “defeat” story in the early 60s.

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So Superman is stuck in the 102nd century.  His body has super-strengthened itself over the years, and he is no longer weakened by kryptonite, magic, or even virus x.

The story continues in the next issue.

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Star Boy gets the starring role (hah!  did you catch that?)  in this Bridwell/Mortimer/Abel story.

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An emergency call comes in from Xanthu, Star Boy’s home planet, and he requests to be sent on the mission.  Karate Kid agrees, and sends him along with Saturn Girl and Colossal Boy.

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The emergency was real, but designed to draw Star Boy there.  The brother of Kenz Nuhor, the man Star Boy killed years earlier, has drawn him here for revenge.  He traps Star Boy in a weightless environment, thinking that was neutralize him.  But Star Boy’s powers affect mass, not weight.  Which are different.  I vaguely recall that from high school.  Different enough that they work, and Star Boy takes down the brother as well.  But doesn’t kill him.

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