Monday, November 03, 2008
Saturn Girl and the Prisoner of the Super-Heroes: Adventure Comics #267
I'm really starting to hate Superboy. The Legion of Super-Heroes' first appearance was pretty much all about Superboy's being so cool that he was still worshiped and adored in the 30th century. In order to get to that happy moral though, we had to endure the Legion's being jerks and Superboy's emo whining about not being as special as he thought he was. Unfortunately, the Legion's second appearance is more of the same.
The story opens with Saturn Girl, Cosmic Boy, and Lightning Boy's coming back in time once again to visit Smallville. Only Lightning Boy is Lightning Lad now and Saturn Girl has a new outfit. Each of them performs some sort of heroic feat and when Superboy tries to congratulate them on jobs well done, they snub him. And eventually, the rest of Smallville - including Ma and Pa Kent - start to get down on Superboy too.
All of which leads to the most awesome panel of all time.
Boo hoo. Poor Superboy. Even Krypto the Superdog blows him off a couple of panels later.
Superboy becomes so pitiful that he exiles himself from Earth because nobody loves him anymore. Then, in just one of many things about this story that make absolutely no sense, he sees a crowd of super-beings flying through space and follows them to a planet that's been converted into a global Superboy shrine.
Just as he's getting his hopes up though, he learns that the Superboy world is controlled by the Legion. He's arrested and put into a Kryptonite cage, sentenced by the Legion to life imprisonment for a crime he hasn't committed yet. I guess they don't have Minority Report in the 30th century version of Netflix, because the Legion has totally bought into the idea that the soundless, out-of-context images their Futurescope has shown them depict Superboy committing random acts of violence against innocent people. That's why they created the elaborate hoax designed to bring him to their prison world.
I really hate the Legion too.
Eventually, a catastrophe strikes the Superboy planet and Superboy escapes his cage. Instead of fleeing though, he saves the Legion and the rest of the world, which of course lets them see how stupid they've all been. Forget about the rest of Superboy's squeaky clean record, this is the event that makes them doubt the Futurescope. I guess it's all about "what have you done for me lately?".
Anyway, in another ridiculous turn of events, Saturn Girl mentally intercepts a radio message from the President of the US saying that Superboy is now released from his "security oath." Superboy then explains that the Futurescope hadn't seen his future, but his recent past as he carried out a secret mission to dispose of military assets that had been exposed to a deadly poison gas. No word about why Superboy is now able to talk, but what timing!
Hearing this, Cosmic Boy checks the Futurescope and, "By Golly... there is a flaw! The machine did not work properly!" No apologies for turning Smallville against their friend and locking him away for life without a trial. Just, "Huh. What do you know?"
Fortunately, Superboy's too distracted by his renewed status as the object of everyone's adoration and worship to hold a grudge.
What a bunch of buttholes. Every single person in the story.
Maybe the Legion will be more likable in their next appearance where they get to hang out with Supergirl for a change.