The Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century #1 (DC Comics/Johnny DC imprint)
by J. Torres & Chynna Clugston
When I pre-ordered this comic book, I hadn’t yet seen an episode of the new Legion of Super-Heroes cartoon upon which this new comic series is based. I managed to catch the first episode just last week (though as yet, no Canadian channel has picked it up, as far as I know), and it’s fortunate that I did. J. Torres’s script retells the events of the first episode of the TV show from different points of view. Though I like the storytelling method, one really has to be familiar with the plot ahead of time in order to get at what Torres is doing. It’s a shame there’s not a strong visual cue to distinguish between the divergent viewpoints as well. Nevertheless, Torres manages not only to convey the same personalities we’ve seen in the cartoon, but to add to them and flesh the characters out more clearly. I can see why Torres opts to retell the story of the show’s pilot, as it introduces the core concept of adding a young Superman to the team lineup. Still, I felt a little cheated; I wanted a new story, not a rehashing what’s already been presented on the tube. I expect future issues will deliver in that regard, though.
Chynna Clugston’s art captures the designs and style of the TV show adeptly, but I was thrilled to discover that her own unique, energetic and appealing style wasn’t overwhelmed and engulfed by the strict guides of the cartoon. When I watched the pilot episode of the cartoon, one of the characters I was the least taken with was Triplicate Girl, but Clugston’s take on her brought more personality and style to the character. Guy Major’s colors bring an appropriate level of energy and brightness to the mix, but the lower grade of the paper dulls them somewhat, making for a flatter, slightly darker look. 6/10