Legends is a DC Universe crossover event written by John Ostrander and Len Wein, with illustrations by John Byrne. The series' involved include Action Comics, Adventures of Superman, Batman, Blue Beetle, Cosmic Boy, Detective Comics, Firestorm, Green Lantern Corps, Justice League of America, Secret Origins, Superman, and Warlord.
The story deals with an operation by Darkseid to discredit the heroes of Earth. This is a plot to destabilize Earth's power structure so Darkseid can harvest the Anti-Life Equation. His agent Glorious Godfrey is sent to turn the people of Earth against their heroes. To accomplish this, Godfrey uses his persuasive powers and poses as a TV psychologist.
Darkseid decides that humanity will be easier to control if he destroys the legends that inspire them. His first attack sent to Earth is a giant monster called Brimstone, who begins destroying New York. Doctor Bedlam also poses as a villain named Macro-Man to attack Captain Marvel. They trick Captain Marvel into believing he has murdered Macro-Man, and Captain Marvel is so traumatized that he gives up being a hero. Darkseid and the Phantom Stranger argue over humanity's nature. Brimstone defeats the Justice League. Glorious Godfrey poses as a psychologist named G. Gordon Godfrey on TV, and turns the public against super-heroes. This rhetoric incites violent riots across America. President Reagan issues an executive order declaring that all costumed super-heroes must cease their activities. Superman is personally told to stand down, and he agrees. Batman is attacked by a crowd, and Robin is hospitalized by the mob. Amanda Waller puts a new Suicide Squad together under Task Force X. This group includes Blockbuster, Bronze Tiger, Captain Boomerang, Deadshot, Enchantress, and Rick Flag. They are sent to destroy Brimstone, who is attacking Mount Rushmore. Blockbuster is killed in action. Deadshot shoots Brimstone with an experimental rifle and Brimstone explodes. The riots get worse and super-villains go on crime sprees with no heroes to oppose them. Godfrey convinces his followers that they must overthrow the corrupt American government. Captain Marvel uses his powers again when he has to protect Lisa Sutton. The "wisdom of Solomon" helps him realize that Macro-Man's death was a trick. Doctor Fate gathers a group of heroes including Batman, Black Canary, Blue Beetle, Captain Marvel, Changeling, The Flash, Guy Gardner, and Superman. They challenge Godfrey during a rally on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.. Godfrey releases an army of Parademons and Warhounds to fight the heroes. Wonder Woman reveals her existence to the other heroes so she can help them. Reagan ends the ban on super-heroes when Martian Manhunter saves his life. In the aftermath of this battle, the heroes are attacked by the angry mob. They are defended by a crowd of children who still believe in heroes. Godfrey angrily slaps Lisa Sutton in the face, and the mob turns against him. He tries to regain control by stealing the Helmet of Fate, but the Helmet knocks him unconscious. Doctor Fate unites the remaining heroes, and they decide to become the new Justice League. Darkseid is disappointed that his plot failed, but he promises to return.
Batman and Robin help Commissioner Gordon take down Magpie. Bruce Wayne and Gordon meet Godfrey at a social event, where they argue about vigilantism. Godfrey threatens Gordon's career for supporting Batman. Batman and Robin later attend a Godfrey rally at Gotham University. The Penguin is also at Gotham University, attempting to steal a group of valuable rare falcons. They hunt the Penguin down and stop him with the help of a local ornithologist.
Guy Gardner returns to Earth, having escaped his imprisonment with Appa Ali Apsa on Maltus. Gardner tries to take over leadership in the Green Lantern Corps of Earth. The other Lanterns fight him off, recognizing that he is brain-damaged. Appa tries to strip Gardner of his rank and power ring. Gardner's girlfriend Kari Limbo pleads with Hal Jordan to help Guy. Jordan convinces Appa that they can rehabilitate Gardner if they let him stay on Earth.
The Justice League of America in Detroit is severely weakened. Following their defeat by Brimstone, President Reagan makes superhero activity illegal. Professor Ivo decides that this is the time to take his revenge. Martian Manhunter disbands the Justice League, stating that they do not work well as a team. Ivo sends murderous androids to assassinate them one at a time. His first victim is Vibe, who is strangled to death in the streets. Ivo sends an android to kill Gypsy, but the android develops a conscience and helps Gypsy fake her own death. Gypsy finally goes home to her family, who she had run away from. Steel refuses to obey the presidential order, and walks around openly to find Vibe's killer. He is an attacked by an android posing as a police officer, who destroys most of his robotic body. Martian Manhunter carries Steel to his grandfather Hank Heywood, but they are unable to revive him. Steel is left in a permanent comatose state, and they choose to pull the plug on his life support. Vixen hunts down Ivo and finds his secret headquarters. Martian Manhunter helps her battle an army of androids to get to the real Ivo. They discover that the deranged Ivo was overpowered by his androids, and they locked him in a padded cell. His irrational impulses still dictated their behavior, and he is haunted by the atrocities they committed. Vixen decides to retire as a superhero because two of her friends are dead and violence perpetuates violence. Martian Manhunter says that there must always be a Justice League, and vows to rebuild the team. He decides to disobey the President, and rallies with the other heroes in Washington, D.C..
Legion of Super-Heroes
Cosmic Boy and Night Girl go on a vacation from the Legion of Super-Heroes. They leave the 30th Century in a Time Bubble, to go on vacation in the 20th Century. Cosmic Boy teams up with the Justice League to battle Brimstone. Brimstone defeats them, and the Teen Titans nurse Cosmic Boy back to health.
Cosmic Boy is shocked to learn that Superman does not remember their adventures together. They worked together when Superman was Superboy, but there is no historical record of Superboy. Cosmic Boy realizes that there are several things wrong with this era, and he needs to fix history. They visit Houston to see why NASA is behind on where the space program should be. Cosmic Boy's ancestor Jason Krinnski is a scientist there. NASA is attacked by violent protesters, and Cosmic Boy helps Krinnski protect the facility. Cosmic Boy and Night Girl try to return to the future, but they cannot get past a barrier in the timestream. Cosmic Boy harnesses the power of Earth's magnetic field to punch through the time barrier. They land at the end of time, where it is revealed that the Time Trapper has been manipulating history. The Trapper forces them to battle through his citadel as a game. Cosmic Boy and Night Girl escape to their own time, where they can warn the Legion. It is revealed that "Superboy" never actually existed. Time Trapper created a fake Superboy for unknown reasons.
Darkseid sends DeSaad to Skartaris, and orders him to ruin the legend of Warlord. Warlord has briefly left his kingdom with Mariah and Shakira to find the cure for a plague. DeSaad begins to impersonate Warlord, and commits villainous acts of murder to ruin his reputation. Together with the assassin Y'smalla, DeSaad creates a Citadel of Fear to hold his victims. They begin capturing innocents and DeSaad tortures them using Apokoliptian technology. DeSaad kidnaps Warlord's wife Tara to hold a public execution. Warlord is able to break into the Citadel and stop DeSaad's plans. DeSaad escapes before Warlord can pursue him. Despite the failure of his plans, DeSaad is satisfied that he has made many citizens of Skartaris despise Warlord.
Items: None known.
Vehicles: None known.
Weapons: None known.
- This series begins a long-running trend of annual crossover events at DC. It is followed the next year by Millennium.
- This series is the DC Comics debut of writer John Ostrander, who previously worked at the company First Comics. Len Wein was a veteran DC writer, having started at DC on Teen Titans in 1968. John Byrne is relatively new to DC, having worked at Marvel Comics for a long time prior. Byrne's DC work at this point included Untold Legend of the Batman and The Man of Steel.
- Though Captain Marvel's battle with Magno-Man seemed to have taken place in Fawcett City in the Legends mini-series, the tie-in mini-series Shazam!: The New Beginning Vol 1 (which retold the origin of Captain Marvel in the New Earth setting prior to The Power of Shazam! (Graphic Novel)) implies that it actually took place in San Francisco.
- Legends spawned several spin-off titles including:
Links and References
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 Legends #1
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 Legends #2
- ↑ Legends #3
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Legends #4
- ↑ Legends #5
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Legends #6
- ↑ Batman #401
- ↑ Detective Comics #568
- ↑ Green Lantern Corps #207
- ↑ Justice League of America #258
- ↑ Justice League of America #259
- ↑ Justice League of America #260
- ↑ Justice League of America #261
- ↑ Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 3) #23
- ↑ Cosmic Boy #1
- ↑ Cosmic Boy #2
- ↑ Cosmic Boy #3
- ↑ Cosmic Boy #4
- ↑ Warlord #114
- ↑ Warlord #115