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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Legion of Super-Heroes Key Comics List

This key issues series has been requested a few times, and I've been pecking at it here and there. Actually, I dreaded doing a Legion of Super-Heroes key comics list or series, because I knew it would be massive.

And it will be a beast! It will be a long key issues series, because the Legion isn't really a super-hero's a friggin' army. The world that is built around this team as it evolves throughout the Silver Age and beyond is quite impressive.

A lot of this will be first appearances, because for some reason during this time, creatives just pumped out new characters like the world was ending concerning early Legion appearances. For just a supporting group for Superboy and Supergirl at first, the Legion of Superheroes comics are rich with key issues.

You'll see what I mean. So expect a long key series concerning this one. Let's start get on with the madness.

1st appearance of Legion of Super-Heroes
1st Cosmic & Lightening Boy
1st Saturn Girl

The first appearance of the Legion of Super-Heroes apparently only had three original members that included Comic Boy, Lightning Boy, and Saturn Girl. They are a group of super teenagers from the 30th century.

Of course, this is the first published meeting of Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes. I'm pretty sure that has been retconned later.

Lightning Boy is later known as Lightning Lad and then Live Wire. His real name is Garth Ranzz and is from the planet Winath. Garth is the twin brother of Alya Ranzz and the younger brother of super villain Mekt Ranzz.

Like his codename states, he can generate electricity within his body to a high enough degree that lightening bolts can be dispensed from his body.

Cosmic Boy has been the leader of the original incarnation and most every other incarnation of the team, though others have taken his place at various points in the team's history. He has the power to create magnetic fields and his real name is Rokk Krinn from the planet Braal.

Rokk Krinn also has a brother named Pol Krinn that became a Legionnaire as well. Cosmic Boy would later be known as Polestar and Cosmic Man.

Saturn Girl is also a founding member of the Legion of Super-Heroes and her home world is on Titan, the largest moon in Saturn's orbit. She is a telepath and her real name is Imra Ardeen. She would later marry Garth Ranzz.

In the 30th century, the Legion of Super-Heroes were an organization of teenaged heroes formed to honor the legacy of Superboy. They were created by Otto Binder and Al Plastino. I think this issue is when Superboy joins the team as well.

This key issue is already up there in price. No idea why that is or why it's in such high demand currently. Adventure Comics #247 was published April, 1958.

2nd appearance Legion of Super-Heroes
Lightning Boy changed to Lightning Lad

Quirky issue, this one is. So the 2nd appearance of the Legion pretty much means the 2nd appearance of Cosmic Boy, Lightning Boy and Saturn Girl as well.

In this issue, they are villains of Superboy and fight against the hero. For some reason in the 30th century, they see Superboy as a criminal. Of course, this all gets sorted out in the end and they go back to being friends.

The 2nd appearance of the Legion of Super-Heroes in Adventure Comics #267 was published  December, 1959, and in this issue Lightning Boy's name is changed to Lightning Lad.

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3rd appearance Legion of Super-Heroes
1st appearance Chameleon Boy
1st appearance Invisible Kid
1st appearance Colossal Boy
1st meeting with Supergirl

This one here is a pretty big one for a Legion of Super-Heroes key issue. Action Comics #267 introduces three new members and they are Chameleon Boy, Invisible Kid, and Colossal Boy.

Colossal Boy is Gim Allon and has the ability to increase his size. He would also be later known as Micro Lad with the opposite ability.  Created by Jerry Siegel and Jim Mooney, Colossal Boy is a human member of the Legion.

Lyle Norg is the Invisible Kid, and you can pretty much guess what his power is. He got it by creating a serum, so that means he's super intelligent and he got along well with Brainaic 5. Lyle Norg is from Earth as well.

Chameleon Boy is Reep Daggle and not of Earth. He is from the planet Durla where everyone of his species can change their physical form into any object or organism that their antennae can scan. It doesn't matter whether the mass is larger or smaller. Chameleon Boy can elongate his body as well.

In this issue, Supergirl first meets the original Legion members Saturn Girl, Cosmic Boy, and Lightening Boy as well as these three new ones. They want her to join the ranks, but Supergirl is transformed into a woman during a feat in which she tries to prove herself to them.

A chunk of Red Kryptonite was somehow the culprit in doing this. Since the age limit is 18 years of age, Supergirl is not eligible to join the Legion of Super-Heroes at the time and is unable to apply for membership for a full year.

August, 1960 is the publishing date for Action Comics #267.

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4th appearance Legion of Super-Heroes
1st appearance of Pete Ross

This is the 4th appearance of the Legion, but only the original three appear in this issue. No Chameleon Boy, Colossal Boy, or Invisible Kid are in this issue.

So basically the 4th appearance of Saturn Girl, Lightning Lad, and Cosmic Boy. Superboy #86 was published January, 1961, and this issue does have the first appearance of Pete Ross. He would become an honorary Legion member.

5th appearance of Legion of Super-Heroes
1st appearance of Star Boy
Origin of Star Boy
2nd appearance of Chameleon Boy

This is the 5th appearance of the Legion of Super-Heroes, but Cosmic Boy, Saturn Girl, Lightning Lad, and Chameleon Boy are only shown in flashback. The character that is actually in the main story is Star Boy, and this issue has his first appearance and origin.

Apparently, Star Boy has the same powers as Superboy in his first appearance, but later on throughout the character's evolution, those powers would fade. His main power would be the ability to temporarily increase the mass and density of any object or person.

Star Boy is from the planet Xanthu and his real name is Thom Kallor. He would later become Starman.

This issue may also be the 2nd appearance of Chameleon Boy. He is in flashback, but I have no idea if that is considered an actual appearance or full appearance or cameo nowadays. Since the other Legion members of Saturn Girl, Cosmic Boy and Lightning Lad are also only seen in flashback, I suppose it does count.

So, I'm noting this issue as having the 2nd appearance of Chameleon as well, though it could just be a cameo. March, 1961 is when Adventure Comics #282 was published.

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1st Phantom Girl & Triplicate Girl
1st Sun Boy & Bouncing Boy
1st appearance Brainiac 5 & Shrinking Violet
Supergirl joins Legion of Super-Heroes

We got more first appearances of Legion members. This one is a pretty big one as it has the first appearance of Brainiac 5. Another supposed descendant of the original Brainiac, Brainiac 5 is Querl Dox from the planet Colu and it was later revealed that he is actually a descended from Brainiac 2 or Vril Dox.

Much like the Brainiac legacy, Brainiac 5 is a super genius of universal proportions, meaning he's super smart. There is a likeness of the character that appears in a single panel in Adventure Comics #247. Not sure if that cameo is actually him or not.

Brainiac 5 has been a long-standing and well-known member of the Legion of Super-Heroes, so no slouch of a key issue right here just for his first appearance alone. Of course, his first is not the only one.

Phantom Girl also makes her debut in this issue and she is a native of a planet named Bgztl that exists in the 4th dimension. Her real name is Tinya Wazzo and she has the power to phase like Kitty Pryde. She is supposedly the 5th member to join this team.

Luornu Durgo is Triplicate Girl and like her name states she can split into three identical bodies. Wow! That just put my mind in the gutter.

Anywho, she comes from the planet Cargg and would later become Duo Damsel when one of her triplicate bodies was killed by Computo the Conqueror. Her Post Zero counterpart is known as Triad and has purple/orange eyes instead of the original's brown eyes.

We got another Earthling in the Legion and his name is Dirk Morgna also known as Sun Boy. Of, course, he is able to unleash solar energy as hot as desires it. Chuck Taine is another Earthling and this guy can inflate like a ball and bounce, hence the name Bouncing Boy.

Serious. That's his super power, but it seemed good enough to impress Duo Damsel or Triplicate Girl. The two would later get married.

Since we have a dude that can increase to gigantic size, we need a character that shrinks to a tiny size. Enter Shrinking Violet from the planet Imsk, and the natives of her planet also have the same ability.

Shrinking Violet's real name is Salu Digby and she has been a long-standing member of the Legion. She is later known as Atom Girl and Virus Post-Zero Hour.

All these characters in this issue were created by Jerry Siegel and Jim Mooney. This issue also sees Supergirl finally inducted into the Legion of Super-Heroes, or at least that's what it's noted as. Action Comics #276 was published May, 1961.

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This is just a little taste and there are definitely more parts to this Legion of Super-Heroes key comics coming sooner and later. Part 2 to this series is ready so just click the link below, and yes I'll be keeping the end blabber quite short to save time.


  1. Thank you; for making this list of legion. I've been looking forward to this. I want to see what books to pick.

    1. Heya Oraldo, hope it helps and it's been a struggle. Never realized how many first appearances this super hero team has, and unfortunately it seems that not too many are interested in this group. But, I gave it my best shot for someone who literally knows zilch about them.

  2. Really enjoyed this - thanks for such an awesome post!

    Chris @ marvel unlimited blog