Deck Log Entry # 226 The Silver-Age Challenge---the Legion of Super-Heroes Edition II

At the conclusion of last year's Silver-Age challenge, I told you guys that I already had the questions for this year's quiz prepared.  Well, I did, as in past tense.  Last week, when I gave them a final scrubbing, I discovered that I had forgotten that I had already asked one of them in my first Legion quiz seven years ago.  Another one was so similar to a question from that 2013 LSH quiz that it would have been too easy to find the answer. 

 

And when I checked a third poser to see how Google-proof it was, one of the hits took me back to a comment I posted three years ago on one of the General Comics Discussions threads, a comment which gave away the answer.

 

So I had to generate three new questions to throw at you.  Fortunately, one of them turned out to be better than any of those I tossed out.  By "better", I mean that it's strong in that "Hey, I didn't know that!" quality which makes the answers fun for folks to learn.  The other two, alas, are clearly from "the Legion of Substitute Questions", but they'll serve in a pinch.

You old vets of my Silver-Age challenges are already flexing your typing fingers.  But, as always, for any test-takers who're here because they landed on this page while looking for something else and decided, "What the hey, I 'll give it a go!", here are the rules---with one special change that even the veterans should note:

 

1.  All of the questions, and answers, are drawn from Silver-Age material.  Ordinarily, that means anything produced by DC from the publication of Showcase # 4 (Sep.-Oct., 1956) to December, 1968, which I demark as the end of the Silver Age.  However, just as with the last Legion quiz, I draw a special demarcation for this one; the parameters are slightly narrowed from the usual beginning-to-end of the Silver Age envelope.  Here, all the questions and all the answers will fall between the time frame marked from the Legion’s first appearance, in Adventure Comics # 247 (Apr., 1958), to the last Silver-Age Legion story penciled by Curt Swan, in Adventure Comics # 372 (Sep., 1968).

 

Note, though, that the questions and answers can come from any publication; it's just that the time frame is bound by those two issues of Adventure Comics

 

2.  I’m definitely not infallible.  I might have missed something, somewhere, in twelve years of DC publication.  If you come up with an answer that meets the criteria of the question and can cite the Silver-Age reference, then I will gladly award you credit.  “But I always thought . . . “ explanations won’t cut it, though.

 

3.  I’ve got no problem with anybody using a search engine to look for answers.  I try to make my questions as immune to Googling as possible.  The right answers are difficult to find with a search engine, though I cannot say impossible.  At least once, I tripped myself up when an article I had written for another site contained the answer to a question from that year’s quiz, and one of the players found it.

 

4.  There are no prizes.  You’re playing for bragging rights.

Any time I post a Deck Log entry involving the Legion of Super-Heroes, I get a considerable amount of activity.  And, sometimes, controversy, too---but the sort that is well-mannered and respectful when men of good will disagree, and that sort is always welcome.  So, we'll probably see the same thing this time.  At least, I hope so, if I done my job as quizmaster well enough.

 

O.K., then, here we go!  As usual, I'll start off with a lob . . .

 

1.  Who was the first non-charter member of the Legion of Substitute Heroes?

 

2.  Who is the leader of the Legion Espionage Squad and which Legionnaires are permanently assigned to the squad?

 

3.  On what 20th-century television programme did the Legion make a guest appearance?

 

4.  On what world is Element Lad's super-power viewed as criminal and results in planetary banishment?

 

5.  Besides their super-son, which Legionnaires have Ma and Pa Kent knowingly met?

 

6.  Excluding the Adult Legion stories, name all of the Legionnaires who, at some point after joining the Legion, permanently replaced their super-hero names with new ones.

 

7.  Thanks to the machinations of Dream Girl, Lightning Lass was expelled from the Super-Hero Club for violating what provision of the Legion Constitution?

 

8.  Other than Luthor, what recurring 20th-century super-villain from Earth was mentioned by name in a Legion story appearing in Adventure Comics?

 

9.  According to the Legion Constitution, what is the maximum number of successive space missions a Legionnaire may undertake without a rest period?

 

10.  We all know that Cosmic Boy was the Legion's first leader, right?  But how do we know this?  Where---comic and issue number---was that first definitively established?

 

 

Good luck, gang!

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It was noted that it was Superman, not Superboy, who received the Elastic Lad statuette.

I never thought about Mon-El returning to 20th century Daxam on his own. It's possible, of course, that he did but may have felt that was tempting fate as the Phantom Zone Mon could be watching Daxam more than Earth.

An addendum to my answers from page 2, both from Adventure Comics #305 (in different stories).

5. Ma and Pa Kent met Chameleon Boy at least once while knowing full well that he was a Legion member.

6. Mon-El achieved full membership while using the rarely remembered alias "Marvel Lad", in a story that reminds me of Element Lad's debut.  In that very same issue he also applies for membership incognito as "Legionnaire Lemon" _and_ reveals his ruse and resumes calling himself Mon-El.  Who would think that Lar Gand of Daxam gives Hank Pym a run for his money in the alternate identities department?

He could take some lead with him and take over the planet!

Philip Portelli said:

I never thought about Mon-El returning to 20th century Daxam on his own. It's possible, of course, that he did but may have felt that was tempting fate as the Phantom Zone Mon could be watching Daxam more than Earth.

I believe that most of Mon-El's early years as a LSH member were during the time when Superman-related books tended to discourage time travel by declaring that going to a time period where one already existed was possible, but made one invisible and intangible (an effect remarkably similar to that of being inside the Phantom Zone).

I don't know if there was word one way or another on whether that would apply to Mon-El while he was inside the Phantom Zone.  Perhaps there was. 

Eric L. Sofer said:

Am I too late? TELL ME I'M NOT TOO LATE!!! Honest, I'm not looking at anyone's answers - honest! I just desperately need a challenge to stir my ol' brain cells!

Eric!  Nope, you weren't too late.  In fact, I held off posting the answer column for one week, hoping you'd chime in.  As for your answers, you did respectably, as you will see when I do post the answer part shortly.  But I always look forward to hearing from you.  I suspect you'll have some commentary to add to my answers and that's always a pleasure, my friend!

Luis Olavo de Moura Dantas said:

I believe that most of Mon-El's early years as a LSH member were during the time when Superman-related books tended to discourage time travel by declaring that going to a time period where one already existed was possible, but made one invisible and intangible (an effect remarkably similar to that of being inside the Phantom Zone).

I don't know if there was word one way or another on whether that would apply to Mon-El while he was inside the Phantom Zone.  Perhaps there was. 

It wasn't addressed specifically, but by implication.  In Adventure Comics # 369-70 (Jun. and Jul., 1968), when Mon-El arrives in Smallville of Superboy's time, along with the Boy of Steel, Duo Damsel, and Shadow Lass, he concurrently exists in the Phantom Zone.  As you correctly pointed out, Mort Weisinger's second rule of time travel insisted that a time-traveller arriving at a point in his own lifetime would be rendered invisible and intangible.

Since this did not happen to the Mon-El who arrived from the thirtieth century, the logical inference is that because the Mon-El of Superboy's time period was in the Phantom Zone and himself, invisible and immaterial, that allowed his time-travelling self to remain corporeal.

Commander, with regards to Luis's observation - the time travel "duplicate" rule seems to be distinct to each universe, or Kal-El couldn't have met Kal-L. I believe the rule applies to the Phantom Zone. If one is in the Zone, it's distinct enough that Earth-1 (or any other Earths) aren't influenced by it, or influence it. So Mon-El wouldn't "blank" himself if he time traveled to a past time after 1959.

The same type of thing applied in the Collector's Edition size tabloid Legion of Super-Heroes, Superboy and a team traveled back to 1979(?), but Superboy stayed whole and solid for that visit - but he never left the time bubble. I think it also had a "non-blank" effect (else, the Time Trapper could have trapped Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad, and Saturn Girl in a bubble and send them back to the point that they formed the Legion - whereupon the future Legionnaires would go phantom and be out of the way until enough time passed, and when the Trapper could send them back again.

Wow, that's confusing! But I hope I make my point about the Phantom Zone.

They always fudged with that rule when it served the story!

Also, that rule seems not to have made it to the 1970s.

The "turning into a phantom" time travel rule also only applied in Mort Weisinger's titles, as the Commander has discussed in one of his earlier Deck Logs.

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