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Friday, 12 October 2018

Legion of Super-Heroes Annual 2 - the secret of Validus

Keith Giffen, Curt Swan, Mahlstedt and Colon join Levitz for Legion of Super-Heroes Annual 2, which resolved the Validus/Darkseid plot.

Darkseid opens the issue. He is revealed to be the one who had Boom Tubed Validus away from Takron-Galtos during the Crisis on Infinite Earths.

His faithful minion, Ol-Vir, the renegade Daxamite, accompanies Validus as the creature goes on a rampage to various locations around Earth.

The Legion battle Validus over and over again in this issue, in little groupings, allowing as many members as possible to appear. On the down side, this makes the annual kind of repetitive for the middle of it. At one point, Ultra Boy and Phantom Girl notice the crib they gave Graym in the wreckage of one of Validus' attacks. That's about the biggest hint as to where the story is going, though honestly it's not that hard to guess at the big revelation.

The climax sees Lightning Lad and Saturn Girl facing off with Validus and Ol-Vir. Saturn Girl makes telepathic contact with Validus, and discovers who he really is.

Validus is the son of the two former Legionnaires, Graym's twin brother. Saturn Girl pleads with Darkseid to return her son to her, and, surprisingly, he agrees, turning Validus back into a normal child.

Ol-Vir does not fare so well. Darkseid can find no further use for him, and Ol-Vir gets reduced to dust.

The story closes on Saturn Girl coming to visit Darkseid. She admits she does not understand the rationale for his behaviour, but thanks him, and even admits to having respect for him.

Although it was a real shame to lose the character of Validus, it's hard not to love this finally paying off. It was suggested in a lettercolumn in Adventure Comics waaaaay back in the 60s that Validus was really their child, and it had been discussed ever since.

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