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Monday, 11 February 2019

Legends 6 - a new Justice League

Ostrander, Wein, Byrne and Kesel conclude the Legends miniseries with issue 6 (April 1987), with the creation of a new Justice League.

Darkseid and Phantom Stranger begin this issue by discussing everything that has happened so far. Yup, another recap. But at least this one is sort of functional, as it allows the two to debate whether people will stand up for the heroes that have served them for so long.

Things do not look promising. Glorious Godfrey has a huge crowd of fanatic supporters. The Martian Manhunter shows up to join the heroes that Dr Fate has gathered, and briefly informs everyone that the Justice League has ceased to exist.

The Suicide Squad are off to the side of things. Deadshot is more than willing to kill Captain Boomerang, but Rick Flag stops him, and has Enchantress use her powers to turn the warhounds into jello, allowing them to rescue Boomerang.

The fighting breaks out across Washington DC. Godfrey even opens a Boom Tube and brings parademons to Earth. And as the heroes do what they can to calm things down, Wonder Woman just pops up out of nowhere. Her own book had already started, so this was not her character's debut, but it was the first time any of the other DC characters had encountered her in the post-Crisis universe.

Godfrey's mindless horde besiege the White House and almost kill Reagan. They fail only because the Martian Manhunter has shape shifted to impersonate the president. After this, Reagan decides to rescind the order banning superheroes.

Things are turning against Godfrey. Robin leads a group of children to plead with their parents to stop the riots. Godfrey doesn't help his situation by hitting one of the girls. One of the parademons has grabbed Dr Fate's helmet, and Godfrey thinks that by wearing it he can take control of Fate's abilities. Silly man. He puts on Dr Fate's helmet, and Nabu, the Lord of Order who resides inside the helmet, slices through Godfrey's mind, leaving him a vegetable.

The story closes with the heroes deciding to form a new Justice League. Wonder Woman, Flash, Changeling, and Superman opt out, and Wonder Woman takes off in the middle of the discussion. Guy Gardner is cagey about joining, but will become a founder of the new League, along with Batman, Dr Fate, Martian Manhunter, Black Canary, Captain Marvel, and Blue Beetle.

I love that it closes on the Phantom Stranger narrating events, much the way he appeared in his old book. The faults this series has are mostly to do with starting with one cast, and concluding with another. Only the Suicide Squad arc really carries through. Legends did function very well as a lead in to the new Justice League book, as well as Suicide Squad, Wonder Woman, the Flash, even the rebooted Superman books. AsI said at the beginning, Legends was the birth of the post-Crisis DC universe.

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