Things go from bad to worse, but at least there’s new Legionnaires to keep us company. Your Major Spoilers review of Legion of Super-Heroes #6 from DC Comics awaits!
LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES #6
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Penciler: Ryan Sook
Inker: Wade von Grawbadger
Colorist: Jordie Bellaire
Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Editor: Brian Cunningham
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: Jun 10, 2020
Previously in Legion of Super-Heroes: Meet the latest crop of Legionnaires: Gold Lantern! Monster Boy! Doctor Fate! Each a new face in the DC Universe, each with dark secrets, and each with a reason to be part of the Legion’s goal to bring the values of the Age of Heroes to the 31st century. And one of them has a surprising connection to Jon Kent, a.k.a. Superboy. All of this and the tensions between the United Planets and the Legion of Super-Heroes have gone public!
“THIS IS A LEVEL-FIVE EMERGENCY!”
This issue opens with all-out panic, as Brainiac 5 broadcasts the Legion distress call over all frequencies, ordering an evacuation of the entire planet. New Earth is quick to respond, thanks in part to the Legion’s quick thinking, but as the Horraz Pirates enter Earth’s atmosphere, it’s the team in orbit that becomes our focus. Ultra Boy, Wildfire, Colossal Boy, Dawnstar, Saturn Girl and Superboy meet violence with even more violence, but before they can strike a decisive blow, Gold Lantern arrives and evens the odds against Aquaman’s trident. Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad and Mon-El join the orbital response team, with Mon rushing in to divest the pirate king of his weapon, completely disregarding Brainiac’s orders to “not grab the trident!” A sudden interstallar explosion takes place, and we cut to Daxam, where the United Planets council and President RJ Brande are confronted by a very angry Crav Nah of Rimbor. Before he can finish his complaint about the Legionnaires, Brande shows him the galactic feed and one of the great moments of her nascent United Planets: The return of Earth’s oceans.
THAT’S OUR FIRST ARC DOWN
So, first and foremost, the cover promising that we would “meet the new Legionnaires” is mostly metaphorical, as we get a brief scene with Monster Boy, a slightly less brief scene with Gold Lantern and Doctor Fate appears in a couple of panels. Superboy, however, is still front and center, so that’s cool. This issue also has a quick moment that seems to show Bouncing Boy using some sort of blasting powers, a clear look at The White Witch and Rimbor pulling out of the UP and declaring war. (That last one seems like it might be the most important part, story-wise.) Bendis’ script manages to pull off a big, unexpected moment of triumph without giving things away beforehand, but it almost feels like an unearned moment. Mon-El didn’t seem to know what was about to happen, but the fact that President Brande did makes it feel like the kids are being manipulated by her. There’s also not a lot of character time for anyone in these pages, which makes the sudden focus on the incredible power and awesome visual of Gold Lantern feel a little out of place. Sook’s art is good at conveying the look and tone of this shiny future, but there are some very stiff figures to be had in these pages, especially a Saturn Girl battle sequence where she looks like she’s posing for the cover of ‘Vogue’ I enjoy some of the designs more than their actual implementation, as well, notably Ultra Boy and White Witch.
BOTTOM LINE: A *LOT* OF UNANSWERED QUESTIONS
Any writer would have a time balancing 30 team members, but Bendis’ tendency to focus on one conversation while the larger plot goes on in the background emphasizes that challenge, and this issue, like the previous five, feels like it’s intentionally teasing us about revealing information about the team, the UP and the greater scheme of things, leaving many questions still unaddressed. That said, Legion of Super-Heroes #6 is about the grand gesture of giving New Earth the oceans of its past, thus allowing the Legion a big PR win, and it does that quite well, with art that works more often than not, earning 3.5 out of 5 stars overall. If nothing else, the resolution of the pressing plot from issue #1 could mean that people start actually telling each other things rather than shouting that there’s no time to talk about it, which makes me curious about what comes next.
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LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES #6