Wednesday, April 02, 2008

SARLSH, Part 3, By Johnathan


There was a point not long before this guide was released that the three charter members of the Legion of Super-Heroes had all semi-retired. Lightning Lad and Saturn girl had gotten married and had a baby (and a Validus!) and Cosmic Boy was... doing stuff. I don't know, maybe he was working on his music or something. In any case, this paved the way for the newly re-electrified Lightning Lass, the somewhat-telepathic Tellus and Magnetic Kid, who was Cosmic boy's little brother, Pol.

Now, Pol had been kicking around Legion continuity for a while. He got blown up pretty good in the late Seventies (by terrorists, I think) and kicked around the Legion Academy for much of the early Eighties, which might provide a clue as to why Cosmic Boy retired all of a sudden: his parents called him up and told him that it was Pol's turn to be a super-hero.

Pol was okay, I guess. He was a bit wide-eyed and inexperienced, which was refreshing, but the group was pretty big while he was on it, and therein lay the problem: when he wasn't saying anything, Magnetic Kid was indistinguishable from Cosmic Boy. It's kind of puzzling, actually. I mean, if I had the same superpowers as my brother (note: I think my brother's powers are headbutt-based) and I joined a group in which my brother had been a charter member and served on for years, I think that I might dress a little differently than him, rather than wearing, oh, the same costume. Seriously Pol - you went so far as to use a different hero name, so why not mix up the outfit a bit, too? A little blue instead of pink, maybe a hat? A vintage pinstripe suit with a horseshoe magnet on the lapel? Hell, if you're ripping off Rokk's costume designs why not kit up in the one with the fishbowl helmet? Kids (nine hundred and seventy-odd years from) today...

Not a bad picture, though. A lot more action than the last few have had, for one thing, and for another, I like the swirly blue magnetism. I also like that Magnetic Kid is using his magnetism to levitate what is patently a stone block. I'm sure that if we were to examine it we'd find a cannon ball lodged in the far side or something, but still.


Magnetic Kid also had what was possibly the most pointless Legion death ever. During the Magic Wars (which I found somewhat dreary to begin with) the team tracked the awful evil totally forgettable bad guy to one particular planet (was it the Sorcerer's World? I can't remember. Probably - writers love blowing that place all to hell) only to find that it was encased in a magical shell that could only be opened by the sacrifice of a human life. Magnetic Kid bravely gives his life to open the shield... and it turns out that that was exactly what the evil guy wanted. Further, from what I gathered from reading the rest of the story, he was eventually going to bust out of there himself. So Pol Krinn died so that the Legion could get to the bad guy maybe half an hour earlier. Whee!

For pointless deathery and bad costume decisions, Magnetic Kid is:


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