Pause for a moment to pity poor, poor Polar Boy. Brek Bannin left his home planet of Tharr with dreams of joining the Legion of Superheroes only to be rejected by the snotty future teens. After decades of toiling in the Legion of Substitute Heroes, he finally got called up to the big team in 1985's Legion of Superheroes #17. He soon ran for and won leadership of the team in issue #36, a meteoric rise for this former joke of a character.
Little did Polar Boy know he was to preside over the END of the Legion of Superheroes. Well, one of many ends, anyway. In this case, longtime Legion scribe Paul Levitz was leaving the book, and the Legion series was winding down, ending with the Magic Wars, and beginning a grim deterioration of the team that preceded Keith Giffen's notorious "Five Years Later" Legion reboot.
So Brekk ended up leading a depleted Legion into unavoidable catastrophe with no hope of success. At least Giffen was there to draw the hell out of it. He was experimenting with his style at the time, and I was really digging the sleek, Kevin Maguire-inspired work. I especially liked the crazy new matching uniforms that everyone else, including the characters, seemed to hate. Well, I thought they were kind of cool, anyway.
The in-story reason for the costumes was great, too. Everyone was mad at Polar Boy about the uniforms, but they had been designed and produced by the weird little Validus-Computo homunculus that Braniac 5 had left running the lab at the time. Even when they "win", some guys just can't win.
Not-really-related, but hilarious: And what, you ask, was Bouncing Boy doing during all of this? Running the Legion Academy and Rocking a Paul Blart-esque mustache, of course!
Five For Friday #448 -- Animal Men (And Women)
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