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mygif

…awesome. Although it should totally be Ben Reilly, he doesn’t get used enough.

Also, if you hadn’t heard (you’re not gonna like this, I don’t think): http://forum.newsarama.com/showthread.php?t=144005

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mygif

It’s Wonder Woman, right?

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mygif

It’s totally Resurrection Man.

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mygif

My geek-sense says Mr. E!

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mygif

If someone guesses it, will you confirm? Or are we just guessing for our own entertainment?

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mygif

Ambush Bug FTW!

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mygif

RJ Brande is Red Tornado
Keeper of Truths is John Constantine

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mygif

I’m kind of hoping you have a contract already and this is your way of grass-roots kind of promotion

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mygif

That would be awesome, wouldn’t it?

But no.

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mygif

Grant Morrison :)

I haven’t really kept up with the Legion in years, and I’d read your Legion comic in a heartbeat.

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mygif
El Bastardo Magnifico said on January 22nd, 2008 at 3:09 pm

It’s obviously Destiny. After having his book returned at the end of Waid’s Brave and the Bold run he becomes fearful of it’s knowledge being lost to him again and memorizes every page before he destroys it. Unfortunately Destiny’s memory isn’t as good as he thinks it is and thus some “hiccups” happen whenever he tries to recall the exact events of the past and future and thus Hypertime is born (and an excuse for why no one has accurate documentation of the past thousand years, he can’t remember what went on save for some things here and there and thus what he doesn’t remember never happened, although it’s ramifications did) It also explains why the Legion goes through so many reboots (“Wasn’t there a fat kid on this team? No, how would a fat kid be any use to fighting evil?”).

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mygif

R.J. Brande is plenty interesting in the original version (even pre-Durlan) without having to be masquerading. He’s a self-built rich man, somewhere between Uncle Scrooge and John Galt, except that in his old age, when his battles were over, he founded an organization to keep the universe safe and inspire it to improve. He’s the wise old man of the Legion; every time he shows up, he gives a little speech at the end of which the Legion and the reader cheer.

His existence makes the huge problem of the Legion’s funding just go away (what could be more boring that the Legion’s budget conference in c3 after Jeckie’s trust fund gets blowed up?). He’s a valuable tool, because you can just bring him on screen any time you need a cheap juice, like a trauma case on E/R.

As for the Keeper, the Legion went twenty-five years without anybody surviving from now til then, and when someone did, he was a shadow on a burnt-out world. Of course, they spent most of that time getting their 20C fix from time-travelling members and a few legacy characters, but still, I think the Legion can survive handily without 20C entanglement; and given the continual continuity flux of 20C, entanglements can wrench anything you’re trying to do out of your control.

I also tend to despise “Who is it” reader-teases. Readers can generate endless speculation which is of no point whatsoever, since a writer can do anything he wants.

Not to say don’t do it, but make sure you have lots of escape hatches built in, and make sure that you can always give a satisfying answer to the question “Why does this need to be a 20C character?” (Just to give a bad example, the bomb that killed Chemical King was a 27C leftover, not a Polaris missile.)

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mygif

Excellent points, Greg, and I’d answer the last question by also giving a hint: I think one of the themes of the Legion that I’d like to explore is that they’re the spiritual heirs to Superman specifically, rather than just being inspired by the 20th/21st heroes in general.

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J. Bryan Shoup said on January 22nd, 2008 at 4:14 pm

I think that’s an important element of who the Legion is. In our time (and…reality), North Americans know Julius Caesar, but most of us can’t name the Romans of the Republic Era whose form of government has shaped the past 2000 years of Western history. We’re dimly aware of them, but most of us just know Augustus, Nero, Julius Caesar, etc.

Likewise, the Legion appeals to me most when they highlight the blank spots in their knowledge of history, and highlight that Superman and a handful at most of other heroes are the legacies they follow.

Some of us obsess over the minor figures of Roman history, and there’s a place for us, but the Legion members should only be familiar with the big events and big names.

You got a thing for Frankenstein, so maybe it’s him.

It’d also be cool if it was someone like Uncle Sam. I like the idea that a folklore figure of the United States would eventually be a part of the future consciousness, like the Greek gods now. But unfortunately, we don’t have an American pantheon.

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mygif

It’s the Phantom Stranger, isn’t it? I mean, c’mon, it’s gotta be Phantom Stranger, right? Right?

… Please?

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mygif

It’s not the Phantom Stranger. The Phantom Stranger can’t be improved upon as a concept. You don’t need to disguise the Phantom Stranger. He just shows up when things are really, really bad and helps out.

And yes, I think it’s well past time that the Phantom Stranger showed up in a Legion story.

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mygif

Wasn’t R.J. Brande later revealed to be somebody else? I’m not a Legion guy, so I may be wrong or two reboots behind, but wasn’t he J’onn J’onzz or some such?

If the Legionnaires are the spiritual heirs of Superman, the Keeper of Secrets could be a somehow-preserved Lex Luthor. Luthor, having lived a thousand years, is not the man we know and loathe today. Rather, he has become a man of tremendous perspective. He may or may not be a “good guy.” After all, he’s still Luthor, but he isn’t the petty jerkwit and waste of talent we know today. He’s seen too much to be that narrow. His take on the Legion would be interesting. He may have a leftover anger towards Superman and resents his “heirs,” that he balances with his understanding of the value of the Legion. Plus, face it, “Brain in a Jar Luthor” is way too cool an idea not to use.

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mygif

In the reboot Legion, he was never explicitly revealed to be anybody, but there were very, very strong hints that he was J’onn, and I believe Tom Peyer later confirmed that after he finished writing the series that that was the intent.

As for Lex, I am a huge fan of Lex Luthor, but he’s not the Keeper, because although I want some way for Lex Luthor to eventually show up and continue fighting Superman when Superman emerges from the sun in DC One Million, I love the concept of Alexis Luthor too much to have her be overshadowed by her paterfamilias.

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mygif

Jimmy “Mister Action” Olsen.

How the heck did he survive a thousand years? What the heck is he doing? Why is he an immortal hermit? Why is he acting like that? And does he still pepper his speech with “Super-Duper”?

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mygif

And yes, I think it’s well past time that the Phantom Stranger showed up in a Legion story.

And when he does, will he still dress like it’s 1940, or will he finally update his wardrobe?

Or was he working the fedora and opera gloves back in 1000 BC?

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mygif

Steven, I think it safe to say that the fedora, at the very least, is fucking timeless.

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mygif

[i]Jimmy “Mister Action” Olsen.[/i]

*takes a shot*

It’s actually kind of frightening to think about how many characters there are in DC (not even counting Vertigo) who are either immortal or could become immortal in a way the fans would buy. Including Jimmy the Bugfucker. (I said “buy”, not “like”.)

When you sit back and think about it, the Legion has gone so long without tripping over the remains of the 20th century at every turn that it would be surreal for someone from the past to show up, just because it then throws the obvious question in the reader’s face, “Where the heck are all the other people who should also be here?” It lends an awkward feel to the idea for me. Holes in the logic of a story aren’t so bad as long as your attention isn’t suddenly drawn to them. Then they’re like that one kid with the ugly face that you want to make feel accepted and normal, but damn, you can’t look away.

Also, I’d like to change my answer from Mr. E to Niles Chaulder. Because it would be awesome to watch him verbally fence with Brainiac.

Justin Corwinrwinn:

Feels kind of cheap for John to live that long. Part of the weight of the Constantine name is that each and every one of them is a magic bastard and each generation has to bear their own unique one. The Baby Boomers have John, we have Gemma, the end of time has the physical manifestation of The Fool… John is unique to his time and place. It’d be totally cool for a Constantine of the future to bother the Legion in his own individual way, I’ll give you that.

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mygif

“Where the heck are all the other people who should also be here?

See, the simple answer is “they died.” A thousand years is a long time to survive even for somebody who’s naturally long-lived, what with the excitement level of the DC universe.

This also means that anybody surviving to one thousand years later should be really, really hard to kill. Jimmy Olsen doesn’t make the grade. Plastic Man, on the other hand, might.

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mygif

Its gotta be the fraggin’ main man Lobo!

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mygif

I’m wondering why they think R.J. Brande and The Keeper of Truths are HEROES?

R.J. I can see being Booster Gold (returned a few decades earlier) but The Keeper of Truths would be some annoying minor villian that got in WAY over his head, had serious crap fall on his head, and decided to hide out for a few years…

Only to discover he wasn’t aging.

(Did I miss

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mygif

GRRR!

(Did I miss “Why you should write…” #31 and 32?)

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mygif

Bryce, try clicking on the “I Should Write The Legion” tag. Tags are neat!

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mygif

I’m trying to remember who was still around by DC One Million. Platinum. Resurrection Man. You could bring back robot Hourman. J’onn and Shade and Savage. But you’ve already said not them. Some version of Braniac can work. Or other robot characters. I mean if freaking Spartan can evolve into the god-head or whatever the hell he was in finale for The Establishment, who knows what you could do with Red Tornado or Amazo or even L-Ron…

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mygif

L-Ron would be *awesome*

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mygif

Skeets would be great, and he already has ties to the Legion…

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mygif

MGK brings up a point about a thousand years being enough time for ANYBODY to be killed. Especially with all those interstellar wars going on. Either you get caught up in the fighting and die, are the kind of immortal where nothing can kill you, or are extremely good at surviving; or you run and hide.

With new planets being discovered (and new technologies as a result) and magic playing a big part in the DCU, any thousand year survivor would almost certainly have had to go underground.

I think most long lived or unkillable beings would try to exist under everybodies’ radars. So as for what happened to all the 20C stuff? They hid, blended in, or fled to the deepest mosr remote parts of the universe. Or died, whatever.

Just curious. You have the Keeper’s identity already established in your head right? It’s not like we keep guessing and you just choose someone that sounds good or no one guessed?

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mygif

Well, if it’s a Superman-themed character, my guess of “Ra’s Al-Ghul” is shot…and Beppo the Super-Monkey is, sad to say, out of continuity.

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mygif

Oh, come on, John. Ra’s has been done. So has Darkseid, for that matter. I’m firmly anti-retreading the same old damn stories, no matter how good they were.

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mygif

You know who I think it might be, just looking at those eyes?

Tawky Tawny.

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mygif

MGK: Being the Superman heirs specifically is potentially a very useful notion. At the very least, it helps satisfy the “Legion needs Superboy” theorists (e.g. Matt Rossi here), and as a fan of Maggin’s Superman, the notion of the Legion as a set of peers that Kal-El didn’t otherwise have is very appealing, and puts his JLA membership into an important context that isn’t otherwise obvious. But you need Superboy to do that.

How do you envision them using the Superman legacy?

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mygif

Using Supergirl instead of Superboy is a big part of it. Alexis Luthor is a big part of it. The history of the Super-legacy and the feud between the houses of El and Luthor is part of it. The trick is to make the Legion the heirs of Superman, I think, without having them meet him a whole lot. Preferably as little as possible.

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mygif

I didn’t actually know they’d used Ra’s, to be honest. My Legion knowledge comes from a) the Showcase Presents volumes, b) the recent trades I’ve picked up, and c) whatever my room-mate, a rabid Legion fan, has told me. :)

I notice you ducked the “Beppo the Super-Monkey” issue…

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mygif

I dunno if you’re aware of this, but the Shade in fact does live for-goddamn-ever. During the “gotta save my girl’s idiot brother” arc, Jack Knight and Mikaal get flung into the 31st century, where he meets up with Starboy, Shadowlass, and a couple of their contemporaries. While there , they discuss the relation fo Sahdowlass and Mikaal (same species, different planets) her powers similarities to the Shades, and help the Shade out with a problem that’d been occupying all his time. MUCH later on, like in the 41st Century or something, The Shade’s hanging out in a golden city of light, wearing a suit if white and benevolently telling adorable urchins stories about how cool the 20th Century was. So while Yeah, the Shade’s around at the time, he couldn’t be the Keeper of Secrets, ’cause he’s busy dealing with personal shit. Of course, thais was all before the reboot, so I suppose none of it happened now. Except that it happened in Starman, and not Legion, so it’s still in continuity. Fuck, I hate reboots.

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Alex Jay Berman said on January 25th, 2008 at 8:08 pm

Actually, there’s another solution that makes sense in terms of certain other troubling things.

It’s Superman.

We know nothing about how living one’s entire life under a yellow sun affects a Kryptonian’s longevity, after all. And if he is indeed nigh-on immortal, think how much a constant millennium of soaking up solar radiation would overclock his powers. Now, with only thirty years of soalr soak, he is the closest thing to a god the planet Earth has seen. Now multiply that three hundred times over.

Might he not be hounded into hermitry simply because he became too powerful to move without unleashing catastrophic repercussions?

And this would also explain why he has not been seen since his time in the 20th and 21st centuries.

(Other DC beings [mostly on the side of good] who quite simply have no reason not to be immortal:
Wonder Woman
Donna Troy
Shazam
Captain Marvel
The Immortal Man
Jason Blood
Black Adam
… and I’m blanking, but I know there are a lot more.)

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Danny Sichel said on January 26th, 2008 at 7:58 pm

The last of the descendants of Stanley Dover has long since faded into history… but Stanley’s Monster is still around.

“Dover”, he’d be called.

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mygif

Hob Gadling from Sandman?

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mygif
lance lunchmeat said on November 14th, 2008 at 4:43 pm

Clearly, the keeper of truths is Rex the Wonder Dog. He is naturally long-living; he’s been around since WWII (520 dog years) and has not aged past his time-locked physical peak. And he survived into Legion time because, as has been established in the past twenty crises, NO villain ever sees Rex the Wonder Dog as a viable threat.

The fools.

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mygif

Shade could be it were it not for MGK saying no – remember that as Starman was ending, Jack applied the cure he applied in the future, so that could easily be averted..

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mygif

I know I’m a little late to the party here, but I’ve got a guess for the Keeper of Truths: Lois Lane.

First, she’s a world-class investigative reporter, thus Keeper of Truths.

It’s impossible to believe that someone with the skills and access to resources that Lois has (the investigative skills, the Fortress, connections with the JLA/JSA/STAR Labs, Batman) cannot figure out how to find and replicate the effects of a Lazarus Pit.

It’s a direct connection between the Legion and Superman, and a direct link to the conflict between Superman and Luthor.

We know from DC 1,000,000 that Lois is still around (10 centuries down, 843 to go!), so it fits within continuity.

And it allows MGK to shit all over Kingdom Come, since it takes away Superman’s motive to go away and pout in the Fortress while the world goes to hell.

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mygif

…It’s a penitent Hank Henshaw, hidden away far from the civilisations he once longed to destroy, meditating on his sins and his place in the universe, and wearing the S once again as a reminder of what he could have been.

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