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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Legion of Super-Heroes Key Comics Part 3

Some important and minor key issues in Part 3 to the Legion of Super-Heroes key comics series. There is one that holds the 1st appearance of a group that's greatly tied to the backdrop of the Legion's world or universe, and it's an important key.

If you missed Part 2, just click that link. If you're ready to continue on with this batch, enjoy.

1st appearance of Legion of Super-Pets
1st appearance of Comet the Super-Horse

Yep, even the pets get to form their own team also. Actually, both Superboy and Supergirl has two pets in this team - Streaky and Comet. Comet has superpowers but isn't from Krypton.

He was actually a centaur from Greece who drank a potion given to him by the witch Circe. It was suppose to turn him fully human but it turned him into a horse instead. Circe was unable to reverse this, so Comet was given super powers.

Of course, Krypto the Super-Dog is a member and Beppo the Super-Monkey. If you don't know Beppo, he was the test animal used by Jor-El to see if his son could survive space travel.

There are not that many appearances of the Legion of Super-Pets thankfully. Adventure Comics #293 was published February, 1962.

1st appearance of Ultra Boy

Ultra Boy is considered one of the Legion's Big 3 alongside Superboy and Mon-El, and he makes his debut in this comic issue. He is not a member of the Legion in this issue, but is sent back as an applicant to prove himself worthy of joining the team.

How was he to do this? Ultra Boy was going to learn Superboy's secret identity, although most of the Legion already knew his secret identity.

In this issue, he is only shown as having x-ray vision powers or Penetra-Vision. Later, his ultra-energy could be channeled to provide him with other powers such as superhuman strength, flight, heat vision, Penetra-Vision (he can see through lead unlike Supes' X-Ray vision).

Ultra Boy is basically another Superboy character, but that's not surprising since Jerry Siegel co-created him. Curt Swan also helped to create this character as well.

His real name is Jo Nah, and yes that is a play from the biblical name of Jonah. Jo Nah is from the planet Rimbor. July, 1962 is the publishing date for Superboy #98 and the first appearance of Ultra Boy.

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Jimmy Olsen first meets Mon-El

Jimmy Olsen was a superhero by the name of Elastic Lad, and the character as Elastic Lad did share adventures with the Legion of Super-Heroes. Hell, he even became an honorary member of the team.

In this issue, Elastic Lad is somehow able to access the Phantom Zone and first meets Mon-El there. Not a terribly important key issue, but just wanted to point out that the character of Jimmy Olsen as Elastic Lad is a part of the Legion's mythos.

Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #62 was published July, 1962.

Mon-El joins Legion of Super-Heroes
Begins Legion of Super-Heroes backup series
1st appearance of Science Police

A formula is created for Mon-El called Serum XY-4 which helps his lead poisoning, but in the story they find out it's only temporary. Mon-El is freed from the Phantom Zone to help stop a robot named Urthlo.

However, after Mon-El helps to defeat the menace, he is sent back since the serum is only temporary. This issue would start the Legion of Super-Heroes being a regular feature in Adventure Comics

The Science Police would be an important aspect to the Legion of Super-Heroes' mythology. Many members are tied to this organization. Colossal Boy and Saturn Girl served as Science Police officers before they joined the Legion...information added later and by later writers.

So in the 30th century time of the Legion, the United Planets is a governing body that is composed of Earth and other planets within the Milky Way galaxy. The Science Police is the law enforcement agency for the United Planets.

This comic was published September, 1962.

Origin of Bouncing Boy
1st appearance of Storm Boy

As an applicant of the Legion, Bouncing Boy has to tell his origin story. Apparently, he got them by drinking a super plastic formula.

Bouncing Boy is admitted to the ranks of Legion when he uses his powers to stop a criminal in his tracks. Not sure if this is the first origin story told for Bouncing Boy or not.

Storm Boy makes his first appearance in this issue and was rejected by the Legion, because he was found to have no super powers but was faking it with a hidden weather control device. Myke Chypurz as Storm Boy would later become a member of the Justice League of Earth and become a Legion nemesis.

Adventure Comics #301 was published October, 1962.

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1st appearance of Matter-Eater Lad

Matter-Eater Lad makes his first appearance in this issue, and his powers is just as his name suggests: He can consume all and any form of matter just like all his people can on the planet Bismoll. His real name is Tenzil Kem and he was created by Jerry Siegel and John Forte.

December, 1962 is the publishing date for Adventure Comics #303.

1st appearance of Antennae Boy

Antennae Boy or Lad makes his first appearance in Adventure Comics #305. He applies to the Legion of Super-Heroes but is rejected from joining their ranks. Instead, he would join the Legion of Substitute-Heroes.

Real name is Khfeurb Chee Bez and he can pick up sound waves from anywhere and from any time era. That's gotta be an annoying power to have.

He didn't have very good control of it and thus wasn't accepted into the Legion. He did join the Legion of Substitute-Heroes though. Minor character and key issue. This comic was published February, 1963.

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In case you didn't get the key I was referring to in the intro, it is the first appearance of the Science Police. This group would later evolve to a bigger degree during the Bronze Age.

An unnamed officer of the Science Police appears in Adventure Comics #300, but the chief appears in Adventure Comics #303. That may be the group's 2nd appearance.

So far that key issue is not being noted by anyone and is over-looked in that regard. However, it begins the Legion of Super-Heroes as a regular back up feature and is when Mon-El joins the team, it's not cheap in higher grades. 
Of course, there are other keys to consider in Part 3 as well and some to over-look. Depends on your preference, budget, or fandom.

Alright, click the PART 4 link below to continue onward and that PREVIOUS link below will bring you back to Part 2 if you missed it. See you soon.

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