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Author Topic: Saddest Superman  (Read 33753 times)
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Captain Kal
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« Reply #16 on: August 30, 2005, 04:24:59 PM »

Since we're discussing Chem, controlling chemical reactions would be an awesome power if written properly.  He could halt or suspend the chemical reactions of living beings.  He could cause reactions to occur that normally wouldn't happen in nature.  He could weaken or strengthen the molecular bonds in matter on a whim.  And using his power in these ways would be a great chemistry education for readers in the great tradition of the Silver Age always dropping tidbits of real science in the books.

FYI, Chemical King was based on a character that a fan suggested in a lettercol for a Legionnaire who could control time.  The creative staff wisely decided that would be too formidable a hero so they weakened to concept to just controlling chemical reactions.
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Captain Kal

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JulianPerez
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« Reply #17 on: September 01, 2005, 10:20:08 PM »

Quote from: "Captain Kal"
FYI, Chemical King was based on a character that a fan suggested in a lettercol for a Legionnaire who could control time. The creative staff wisely decided that would be too formidable a hero so they weakened to concept to just controlling chemical reactions.


Speaking of which and not to get off topic, I heard a piece of vague gossip that perhaps someone with access to the actual issue lettercols (instead of Archive Editions like mine) can confirm or deny.

According to the rumor, Shadow Lass was a concept originally contributed by a reader in the lettercol. The original reader's concept was one that was paranoid and insanely racist: Shadow Lass's original origin according to the suggestion was that she was originally from a planet that black Africans settled after they were forced off earth by a gigantic Race War.

This TURNER DIARIES-style concept is one that, thankfully, the Legion writers discarded even as unspoken backstory, obviously, as the second Invisible Kid was stated to be from the Ivory Coast, and perhaps more embarassingly, Tyroc's island of all-Africans that don't want integration or something.

This rather sinister theory might account for why the Legion future is so ruthlessly caucasian. Then again, I always thought there were probably some non-whites (and a large mixed race population, which may likely be the dominant group on earth) puttering all around in crowd scenes, but they were never really shown that way because of "errors in reporting."  Cheesy
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Uncle Mxy
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« Reply #18 on: September 01, 2005, 10:36:22 PM »

http://groups.google.com/group/rec.arts.comics.dc.lsh/msg/0cdbf27d454809e7?hl=en&
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TELLE
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« Reply #19 on: September 01, 2005, 10:46:14 PM »

Wow, that's weird.  Thanks for the link Mxy.

I remember that in the Michael Fleisher/Comics Journal trial, Shooter drew attention to how Playgirl magazine had listed him as one of the most eligible bachelors in the US.

On topic: how could I forget that the first Bizarro Superboy story is one of the saddest ever?!?
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Maximara
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« Reply #20 on: September 02, 2005, 01:20:15 PM »

Quote from: "Captain Kal"
The Legion constitution was later revealed to have the caveat that Superboy's and Supergirl's powers were the exceptions to the no duplicated power rule. (It wouldn't do to rule out a guy with one or two powers of theirs since they had so many in one person.)  Anyway, even without that caveat, it may be argued that the difference in gender made their powersets different just as real men have greater strength but lesser stamina and the reverse applies to women, etc.  Push comes to shove, Kara could have children and Kal couldn't. Wink


But so can every female on the legion which would make that fall under the 'dupliated power' rule. :lol: Then there was Lightning Lad and Lighning Lass (she got in by fooling them into believing she was her then dead brother. They then brought him back and she stayed on as a member)

Quote from: "Captain Kal"
The red K incident was a technicality.  The Legion used a physiological equivalency age scale given the various worlds and races in the U.P.  The red K had made her physically too old for application at that time.

But the deal with Bouncing Boy being originally rejected was an example of them being jerks, IMHO.


The Red K incident really rubbed me the wrong way because it was temporary. Why didn't the LSH have simply waited the 48 hours it took it for the stuff the wear off. Created just before Civil Right Movement took off the there were plenty of time LSH behaved like total jerks.

I mean one year they make Jimmy Olsen a member for crying out loud back when he was Elastic Lad. Never mind that they had to know (either via historical records or their Time Viewers) that is might wear off (which it did as before). Never mind it 'filled' the one member per year requirement (when did they finally drop that idiocy?) and prevented someone else from being a member. Oh on Bouncing Boy it took him three tries before the LSH finally made him a member.

The biggest example of the LSH behaving not only like jerks but idiots as well was Adventure Comics #267 where the Legion imprison Superboy because thanks to their time viewer they see him performing superfeats for the government out of context and think he has gone outlaw. Double checking what they have seen especially as by what history they have says Superboy will become Superman never occurs to them. In fact in these comic using any kind of common sense as well as using anything rembaling a brain does't seem to occur to the LSH.
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Captain Kal
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« Reply #21 on: September 02, 2005, 02:42:03 PM »

The Legion Constitution
(From THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES [second series] #308-310)

http://www.fanzing.com/mag/fanzing35/hoj.shtml

See this particular section:

3.1 To qualify for active membership, a candidate must:
(i) be at the time of proposed admission under the age of eighteen (18), as measured on the Terran comparative physiological age scale (as periodically revised by the United Planets);
(ii) have at least one genuine super-power not activated, assisted, or powered by extrinsic means and not possessed by the contemporary Terran population; and further, such super-power must be distinct from the super-power(s) possessed by any active member other than Superboy;
(iii) be able to fully control such power; and
(iv) be courageous and good of character.


As I said, the Constitution had the caveat about Superboy and Supergirl.  It was also later suggested that Superboy had both honorary and active status which allowed another with his powers to be in the Legion.  It must be noted that both Superboy and Supergirl really weren't fully active Legionnaires as they still had their -- historical -- lives to live in the 20th century.  Active LSH'rs were supposed to be on duty, oncall, 24/7 which was impossible for the super-cousins.  The Legion had to make special caveats for them to join.  They even later amended the Constitution about part-timers like Superboy, Supergirl, and Karate Kid (on a mission in the 20th century at the time) so they couldn't qualify as Legion leaders.

I recall they offered membership to Dev-Em -- who declined -- and he had Superboy's exact powers.  That underscores the caveats in the Legion Constitution re: Kryptonian powers and the part-time status of the super-cousins.

And I was talking about super-pregnancies not normal ones. heh heh

Lightning Lass actually was on her way out when her brother was revived.  It was only Dream Girl's changing her powers that let her stay with a new unique power.  Before Garth's return, she did indeed qualify for unique powers.  When she regained her electrical powers, she remained because it was understood Garth and the other charter members were soon going into Advisory inactive status.

I suppose the red K incident could be explained this way.  The tryouts had specific dates for them.  The Legion did hold them only once a year as established.  Delaying them would be like delaying the Olympics after they've already started -- and the tryouts had indeed already started.  It would be a form of favouritism if they bent things a few days just so Kara could join.  To be completely fair to the other applicants in that period, they'd have to keep to the established schedule and precedent.

Elastic Lad was admitted as an Honorary member not fully Active, so they fully knew of his temporary, serum-dependent powers.  Jimmy was admitted more for his sterling character and resourcefulness, and for being such a good friend to Superman helping him.  No bending of the rules was involved here.  Honorary members are also Legion Reservists.

Completely agree re: Bouncing Boy.  That still grates on me.  And I'm not fat myself.  I just have a real problem with discrimination of any kind.  Interestingly, when Marvel's Quicksilver was ricocheting around to nail baddies, fans thought it was 'cool'.  But let the original fat Chuck do the same thing and he's a clown to them.  *urgh*
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Captain Kal

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Maximara
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« Reply #22 on: September 06, 2005, 09:45:04 AM »

Quote from: "Captain Kal"

I suppose the red K incident could be explained this way.  The tryouts had specific dates for them.  The Legion did hold them only once a year as established.  Delaying them would be like delaying the Olympics after they've already started -- and the tryouts had indeed already started.  It would be a form of favouritism if they bent things a few days just so Kara could join.  To be completely fair to the other applicants in that period, they'd have to keep to the established schedule and precedent.


Except that the Olymics have been delayed due to 'acts of nature' - high winds have delayed their opening, bad weather has on occation delayed events like the ski jump. Furthermore Supergirl became a member along with Brainiac 5 showing the one 'active' membership per year rule  to be a crock. Also the 18 year old rule only applied to active membership as per this part of the Legion Constitution:

2.4 Honorary members shall be those worthy individuals who do not qualify for active membership hereunder, but whom the active membership wishes to honor with inclusion in the Legion of Super-Heroes.

So Supergirl could have still been made an Honorary memeber as thanks to the Red K she no longer qualified for active membership but instead the Legion denighed her even this.

Futhermore thanks to retcons the LSH became bigger jerks as it was revealed that Brainiac 5 was a member when the Legion approched Superboy. This creates all sorts of problems as the Legion constitution only excluded power similar to Superboy's not Supergirl's. By the Legion's own constituion they could not have Superboy as a member until Supergirl left as she was a member before him. No matter how you sliced it the Legion were jerks.
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Captain Kal
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« Reply #23 on: September 06, 2005, 02:29:20 PM »

When it comes to acts of Nature or God in the Olympics, those affect everybody equally.  No one would hold up an event just because the Romanian team had a cold or missed their flight.  That would be pandering to a particular person or team.  The only person who would benefit from a delay in proceedings would be Supergirl as it has no beneficial effect on the others; indeed, it would have a very negative effect on the other applicants as the rules were bent to cater to a particular applicant without giving any advantages to them.  It would be like letting a gymnast redo the beam event after a nasty fall -- it's just not done 'cause it's blatantly unfair to all the other competitors.  The fall was a tough break but it counts.  The same counts for red K at Kara's first application.

At the time, the one member per year rule and annual open tryouts was the policy.  The Legion had experimented with a number of different options over the years including an adult advisor, Marla Latham, when it came to testing out Ultra Boy.  Some candidates had to go through the Legion Academy after Ultra Boy's time (such as Timber Wolf and Chemical King), while others didn't depending on the policies of that time.  During the time of Karate Kid, they had allowed four members to join at once (KK, Princess Projectra, Ferro Lad, and Nemesis Kid).  Polar Boy, Quislet, Magnetic Kid, and Sensor Girl had joined at the same time.  The rules at the time for Superboy was a single member per year.  They had evolved by the time of Brainiac 5.

Actually, the Honorary membership section was a later amendment not part of the original Constitution.  Please note that the version we're looking at is the latest and final version that was ever shown in the books.  It includes all the changes over the years.  For instance, the original one had a non-married clause that was removed many years later when Saturn Girl and Lightning Lad proved during the Earthwar that marriage didn't compromise their commitment to the LSH; that clause is not in the final Constitution in that link.

Moreover, Bouncing Boy/Chuck Taine was the first member to be granted true Reserve/Honorary membership status when he lost his powers.  He was such an asset to the Legion and a great guy that they seemed to have invented the status just so Chuck could still be around.  Honorary status did not truly exist in Supergirl's application time. (Adventure Comics No. 321 (Jun 1964) "The Code of the Legion")

Again, this was the latest version of the Constitution re: Supergirl and duplication of powers.  That version was Post Crisis when Supergirl had been retconned out of existence so there never was a Supergirl in the Post Crisis Legion.  I've seen an earlier Pre Crisis version that includes Supergirl with Superboy in the no duplicated powers clause (you can find it in the Mayfair DCH RPG LSH Sourcebook #2).

In retrospect, maybe they did treat Chuck badly when he applied.  But they more than made up for it by inventing the Honorary status just for him.

EDIT: Also, they granted Reserve/Honorary status -- which includes many membership privileges including living allowances and health care -- to the Legion of Substitute Heroes when they learned that these Legion rejects had created their own organization.  Surely that showed respect for the Subs to be so inclusive of them.  And the LSH usually gave a token of their esteem to worthy rejected candidates like a flight ring (man, that's big of them).  Overall, the Legion was a pretty decent organization not a bunch of jerks as some would try to paint them as.
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Captain Kal

"When you lose, don't lose the lesson."
-- The Dalai Lama
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