Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Legion Lost #1 - A Review

I’m not sure what to make of Legion Lost. It doesn’t feel at all like a first issue, much less the first issue of a book that is part of a line aimed at new readers. I did not feel welcomed or reassured as I did with other New 52 titles. I felt more like I’d walked into the theater in the middle of a bad play.
The action centers upon a group of heroes who travel back in time to our era to catch an escaped villain. Presumably they are part of the Legion of Superheroes, though that name is never used in the whole book. For a variety of reasons, they wind up arriving 30 hours after said villain but they do manage to recapture him… after he’s already enacted his plan to change their time by releasing a virus in their past. The issue ends with the team stranded in the past and some of their number having disappeared after their time machine broke down.
It’s really hard to care about any of these characters. There’s barely any introduction to the characters and there’s little attempt to give any of them characterization past “team hot-head”, “angry loner” and “sensitive girl”. And unlike previous Legion comics I’ve read, there is no helpful list of character-names, code-names and powers at the start of the book. I don’t think this sort of thing is a necessity for a team book but it really could have helped in this first issue. Characters address one another by first name while looking at entire groups and it isn’t clear who is speaking to whom in several scenes.
This brings us to the artwork, which isn’t anything to write home about either. The proportions and perspective are weird at times, with most of the characters looking very inorganic and posed. It’s not the worst art I’ve ever see. It’s not even the worst art I’ve seen in the New 52. It’s just… standard.
For the life of me, I can’t understand why anyone would want to continue reading Legion Lost after this first issue. The characters are bland and presented as being utterly incompetent, spending more time fighting one-another and repairing their broken equipment than tracking down the bad guy. Heck, they don’t even fight the villain! He just passes out after being confronted by a little girl and they retrieve his body while he’s out cold! All in all, this is a complete mess. If you haven’t bought it yet, don’t.

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