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Author Topic: Jimmy Shooter 1976 Interview on Silver Age Legion  (Read 6597 times)
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JulianPerez
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« on: May 24, 2006, 05:02:33 PM »

I just discovered the website for the Legion Amateur Press Association that's been working since the 1970s (which Todd and Mary Biernbaum ran before they became actual writers). Amazing how in all their website they talk about "a community for young fans to get together" but say absolutely nothing about how APAs were pretty much how gay slash fanfiction was sent around before the invention of the internet.

Still, they managed to get Jimmy Shooter, the greatest Legion scribe of them all, to talk Legion with them back in 1976, and his insights into the characters are incredible. Jimmy wrote at a time when plot was more important than characterization, so he never really got into the Legionnaires' inner heads. One need only look at STAR BRAND to see that Jim Shooter was someone with incredible skill for characterization, and here he's making up for it in a big way, telling the APA everything all the tabloid details, stored here:

http://members.aol.com/interlac/legionnaires.html

They also post thoughts by Todd and Mary Biernbaum, I suspect mostly to show a contrast between the sacred and the profane, like those Renaissance artists that draw Hell and the Angel of Death next to Heaven.

Some of the more interesting quotes:

Imra "Ironass" Ardeen. Bwa-hahahahaha! Oh, that's beautiful. I will call her that forever from now on.

Quote from: "Jimmy Shooter on Chameleon Boy:"
Hmm. A little paranoid, but he is a fighter. He knows people stare at him, but he is almost defiant. His personality is reminiscent of a slightly militant black, circa 1969. His relationship with Proty I and II should not be overblown. Cham of all people would not patronize a truly intelligent creature. Despite the Weisinger-era "dialogye" of the Proteans, I suspect they communicate simple feelings or pictures and are not human-equivalent.  Cham is unique, for a shape shifter he can identify with beauty the other Legionnaires misss. He could turn up with a shaggy, horned alien chick as easily as Elwinda. Liberal, he is -- even philosophical. And probably a little kinky.


Quote from: "Jimmy Shooter on Superboy:"
This could take volumes. But it won't. He is the most complex character, and the best. Not for nothing is this guy the greatest hero ever. He is control of himself, his life and his power, incredibly so. A fantastic person.


Quote from: "Jimmy Shooter on Dream Girl"
I never believed that she scientifically changed Light Lass' power. It could only have been White Witchcraft -- and for some reason W.W. didn't watch the Legion to know about her.


Yeah, that always seemed very out of character. As much as I like Levitz, I never could accept Dream Girl as this hypercompetent leader type that was always in control.

Quote from: "Jimmy Shooter on Princess Projectra"
Was not a political admission.


I KNEW IT!
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"Wait, folks...in a startling new development, Black Goliath has ripped Stilt-Man's leg off, and appears to be beating him with it!"
       - Reporter, Champions #15 (1978)
Permanus
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« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2006, 05:52:19 PM »

Sounds like old Jim has a bit of a thing for troilism, doesn't it? I'm surprised he didn't just call it "Superboy and the Legion of Swingers".
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Klar Ken T5477
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« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2006, 06:30:35 PM »

This isnt the old say so about Element Lad being gay - the tip off being he wore pink or such nonsense?

Jimmy Shooter? The guys a giant- Julian - physically well over 6 feet 6" - I dont know if he;d take kindly to being called Jimmy.   :wink:
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« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2006, 07:48:56 PM »

That's Mr. Shooter Smiley
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DoctorZero
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« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2006, 02:37:35 AM »

Interesting.  Scooter read a lot of things into the characters, things he never got to use at all.
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JulianPerez
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« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2006, 01:51:08 PM »

Quote from: "Klar Ken T5477"
This isnt the old say so about Element Lad being gay - the tip off being he wore pink or such nonsense?


Yeah, Shooter is the guy that OFFICIALLY "outed" Element Lad, though in the 1970s and 1980s after Shooter left, E-Lad was characterized as heterosexual, strangely enough - apparently Paul Levitz and Cary Bates didn't get that particular memo.

Isn't Jim Shooter a member of the Gay and Lesbian Comic Creator Organization or something like that?

Quote from: "Klar Ken T5477"
Jimmy Shooter? The guys a giant- Julian - physically well over 6 feet 6" - I dont know if he;d take kindly to being called Jimmy.   :wink:


He'll always be cute little Jimmy Shooter to me, who wrote Legion of Super-Heroes when he was fourteen.

Jim Shooter's column in the Marvel Soapbox are truly interesting because Jim goes on these utterly bizarre tangents, like that one where he says that he will never, ever sue DC for characters he created when he was a minor, because that's not something Peter Parker would do, or that one he started the New Universe line off with, where he explains that he, Jim Shooter, has a superpower because of his incredible height.

Jim Shooter, along with Jack Kirby, is in the category of "brilliant but crazy."
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« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2006, 02:49:16 PM »

Last I heard of him, was when Valiant Comics went under.
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« Reply #7 on: May 25, 2006, 04:17:20 PM »

He launched two more comics lines after Valiant was wrested from him - Defiant Comics and Broadway (with Lorne Michaels).  I interviewed with him when he was at Valiant and I had been so out of touch with comics I had no idea he had headed Marvel.


He asked me what artist I thought was the best storytller.  I thought about it for about ---all of two seconds -- and blurted out "Curt Swan!"

He said "Close but no Jack Kirby."  He then pulled out a reprint of an early Torch- Cap meeting and pointed out panel by panel that you could follow the action without being able to read the words.

Same thing's true of Swan but less dynamic.

A couple of years ago I had heard he was involved with Phobos Entertainment doing something.
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