Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Happy Klordny!

I hope everyone's enjoying the festive Klordny season, I know I am! In fact, looking at my last post I think I might've had too much kono juice. That post took HOURS, and that was just to READ it! My ravings require a certain brevity I've never learned to cultivate, otherwise my week of praising the Legion of Super-Heroes will create more wordage than the 5 decades of the comic book itself.
So without further meandering preamble, I give you the
How do you make a fantasy book into sci-fi? Add garnishes that sound like science. And the Legion excells at this, updating the pseudo-science to match the times. Here's my five favorites:

5. INTERLAC- It's a universal language from a thousand years in the future that caught on better than Esperanto- spoken on the many alien worlds of this comic. Written Interlac is a simple English cipher so if you have more free time than friends (or you just love puzzles) you can work out futuristic signage which often contains in-jokes from the artist. I love this. Impress and terrify your Hero Clix buds by learning it today!

4. TRANS-SUITS- Love to show off your snazzy cape and gloves ensemble but you don't want to explode in the vaccuum of space? How about the trans-suit? It's a nearly invisible layer of impervious saran-wrap that gives you protection from the elements while still keeping your togs on display. Who wants to see Phantom Girl covered up in an Apollo-style moon suit? Nobody, that's who.
3. TELEPATHIC EARPLUGS- Most of you speak Interlac and your native tongues, but who's going to hear you inside your trans-suit? Just pop in a telepathic earplug and tune in the right mental frequency: your surface thoughts become vocal for your teammates. Just don't think too hard about Phantom Girl if her super-strong boyfriend Ultra Boy is around.

2. EVOLUTION = SUPERPOWER- The Superman writers created the concept that moving someone from under a red sun to a under a yellow sun would give them new abilities. And the Legion writers ran with this AND HOW! Invent a bizarre environment or a color of solar radiation and, hey, BAZINGO!... you have the basis for a human colony that have gained a super-power. Such as Braal: it's a planet rich in heavy metals populated by a race of Magnetos (only less crazy by volume, and also Cosmic Boy and his 'magnetic eyes' existed 5 years before the X-Men's foe.) Or how rays from the rings of Saturn gave telepathy to the colonists on its moon, Titan. Hey presto- Saturn Girl and her foe, Saturn Queen. The triple suns of Cargg gave Luorno Durgo the powers of Triplicate Girl. On Winath nearly everyone is born a twin. Planet Daxam is populated by a Kryptonian offshoot people immune to Kryptonite but for whom lead is a deadly poison. And so on. Plenty of Legionaires got their powers in one-off accidents or mutations as well, but the environmental change for a whole race remains a good concept.

1. FLIGHT RINGS- Rings are resonant symbols. School rings, club rings, wedding rings... the one ring to rule them all. The rings of DC's characters are as ubiquitous as their overuse of monkeys. (Yeah, right, like you could over-use monkeys! I kid.) The Legion has a club ring that gives its members the power to fly. Created by Querl 'Brainiac 5' Dox to replace the jet packs and flight belts of earlier times, this anti-gravity metal bestows man's oldest dream on the wearer. Well, the oldest dream not involving Phantom Girl.

Of course, there's plenty of other pseudoscience and even (especially from Abnett and Lanning) cutting edge real science extrapolations. You Geeks (or the geek in your life) will find such things exciting. I didn't want to mention the Miracle Machine, as the guy who invented the Deus Ex Machina invented it first.
And that's it for today, Legion Lovers. Be well and celebrate Klordny according to your own traditions.

1 comment:

Brainy Pirate said...

This question came to me this morning:

With the LSH in the 21st century, are their communicators designed to work without the requisite communication towers and satellites that we use?

Or would Tenzil need to use a telephone to call Jeckie?