Tuesday, December 1, 2009
The 2007 Legion of Heroes Reunion
The 2007 Legion of Heroes Reunion
by Chris Elam
(DISCLAIMER : The following story is non-canonical, and probably ghost-written by the spirit of Bob Haney!)
Dateline : MAJOR CITY - In light of the recent interest in their past exploits, former Legion of Heroes leader Ferro Man called up his old arch-nemesis the Black Terror and proposed a joint reunion of the Legion of Heroes and the Legion of Villains. It didn't take long for the Black Terror to warm to the idea, and the wheels were quickly set in motion.
"The time just seemed right," Ferro Man explained. "There've been a few hints of revival before, but this is the most attention the Legion has gotten in over 20 years! I mean, obviously we're not going to be headlining our own title or anything, but this way we can satisfy the new fans while giving back to everybody who made the old days so much fun. Sort of like Duran Duran's reunion tours, except good."
The Black Terror agreed. "Speaking just for the villains, we thought it'd be a blast!" he enthused. "We had so much fun back then - rampages, sinister laughing, just being all around bad eggs. Of course, we were baked half of the time - using the Conqueror's helmet for a bong, it was hard not to be! We'd have a big blowout and then go out and ambush the Legion of Heroes when it was done. You can't buy good times like those!"
The reunion was designed to be an all-inclusive affair, which presented a problem for the Legion of Villains alumni. Their membership had been so loosely-defined that no one was quite sure who actually belonged to the group. For example, had the giant alternately known as Klaytron and Slaytron ever really been a member? Bird Man was charged with delivering invitations to all of the former baddies he could find. "It was hell!" he exclaimed. "How do you go about finding other-dimensional entities like the Claw and the Evil Eye? They aren't exactly in the phone book! D10 was moonlighting as the take-out screen at the Jack-In-The-Box around the corner from my house, but not everyone was so easy to find. And Zero Wolf! Hoo boy, we weren't even sure if they were going to let him in the hotel for the get-together. Fortunately, Blue Square and Sting Bee convinced the staff that he was house-broken."
Though the heroes had been a shade better organized than their foes, they felt it only right to invite some of their trusted allies as well. Among their honored guests were the Exploding Man and the alien hero Aeyear, both of whom had distinguished themselves in assisting the Legion. But perhaps the biggest surprise of the entire evening came with the arrival of Reddy, Red Circle's one-time boy sidekick.
"Reddy was reluctant to attend," Elastic Man said. "After all, the act had broken up years ago. I finally talked him into it, and BOY, you could just see the grin on the Circle's face even through his mask when the little guy walked through the door. In no time at all, they were yukking it up and trading noogies and wedgies. I'm smelling a comeback for those two if they stay in touch."
There was a bit of a ruckus later in the evening due to the antics of a few members of the Secret Society. Their inclusion in the festivities had rankled some Legion members in the first place. "Man, those guys!" Mr. Tough fumed. "We cross universes ONE TIME to save their bacon, and they're forever pestering us for team-ups afterward. What are we, a superhero group or a charity?"
"Oh, don't mind Toughy," Muscle Man dismissed. "He's just bitter because he's a second-stringer himself. Most of the Society guys are swell. Bat Eater and I were roommates in college, for crying out loud, and you'd never meet a nicer guy. Plus, and most people forget this, I was part of the first version of the team with Avenging X and Aeyear before it broke up. X and I joined the Legion shortly afterward, but the Society has a special place in my heart."
"Yeah, my brother Black X formed the second Society and moved it to a parallel Earth," Avenging X explained. "Unfortunately, most of the guys he got to sign up were the, er, misfits of the old gang. Look, Conehead and I were in the same fraternity - GO DELTAS! - and I love him to death, but the guy's just odd."
As it turned out, the same could be said of many of Conehead's teammates. Whether it was Octopus Man boring Black Knight with tales of his new gig as a goalie in a professional soccer league or Redman annoying Neutro so badly that he threatened to write himself out of continuity, some of the Society members contributed to the least memorable portions of the proceedings. Finally, it all came to a head as the hired band plodded through an uninspired rendition of "Baker Street".
"It was that shape-shifter guy whose name nobody remembers," commented Force Field. "He's already obnoxious, and adding in roaringly drunk just makes for an unbeatable combo. He ended up passing out in the middle of the refreshment table and that just ENRAGED the Viking. It took both Unknown Man and Sherman Tank to hold that Nordic nut back. Car Man loaded the chameleonic jerk into his trunk and drove him home. Good riddance."
For his part, the Viking only had this to say : "FORSOOTH, THERE IS NOTHING THE VIKING ENJOYS MORE THAN CHEESE DOODLES, AND THOU ART SPILLING THEM ON THE FLOOR??!!?? I SAY THEE NAY!!!!!!"
There was another brief hiccup in the evening, and that was when an uninvited hero crashed the proceedings. "My creepy ex-boyfriend Brickman," groaned Amazing Girl. "I told him we were over after he deserted me while we were fighting the Purple People Eater. But does he listen? NO!"
"But it's OK," she smiled. "Muscle Woman, ahem, ejected him in such a way that even his magic bricks couldn't help. Now I just need to wipe my phone number and e-mail address from his memory."
Despite these minor (and perhaps inevitable) potholes, most of the attendees declared the evening a success. "Yeah, definitely very memorable," said Ferro Man, who was wearing an extremely tiny party hat. "We need to see about doing something like this again, or maybe even staging an inter-team battle."
"I'm game!" a clearly toasted Black Terror announced as he turned and punched the hero in the jaw. This touched off a fierce post-reunion hero/villain skirmish that wrecked the hotel and was agreed by all to be the highlight of the evening. After it was over, Ferro Man and Black Terror shook hands and embraced, laughing the whole time.
It was just like the old days.
As you might recall, I did some giftart for my friend Sara in 2007. I posted that pic on my blog back in May. As I mentioned there, I had been intending to do a big picture like that all along, but my original idea had been to do a Legion of Heroes "reunion". I was so pleased with the outcome of Sara's picture that I decided I would do that reunion picture. And of course, things snowballed from there.
My original intention was to only depict the Legion members and perhaps a few of their villains. But I found myself adding more and more characters - the Secret Society guys, to name seven - until I wound up with 36. THIRTY-SIX! Clearly, I am mad.
As if to prove my absolute insanity, I subsequently posted a series of 24 inked pictures that depicted the 30 characters that hadn't already gotten the updated treatment on dA. I probably won't post every single one of those here, but I may provide links so interested parties can check them out. 2007 was a very fertile period in terms of generating artwork of my stable of characters.
Your key to the cast of characters :
1. Blue Square
2. The Claw
3. Sting Bee
6. The Evil Eye
7. The Purple People Eater
9. The Black Terror
10. Octopus Man
11. "that shape-shifter guy whose name nobody remembers" (Chameleon? "Carm"?)
12. Bat Eater
13. Ferro Man
14. The Avenging X
15. Unknown Man
16. Bird Man
17. The Exploding Man
18. Elastic Man
20. Red Circle
21. Black Knight
22. Muscle Man
23. Muscle Woman
24. Amazing Girl
25. Car Man
27. Black X
28. Zero Wolf
29. Force Field
30. The Conqueror
31. The Viking
32. Sherman Tank
35. Mr. Tough
Thanks to everyone who has supported the Legion and their friends over the years. And thank you to all the readers of OWARI. There's more to come, so stay tuned!