On the heels of CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTH, and in the wake of WATCHMEN, DC Comics in late 1986 launched their next major event… LEGENDS.
LEGENDS – The Collection tpb (published 1993) collects the 6 part mini-series. The actual “event” actually had 22 tie-in issues, which mostly showed the dissolution of the current Justice League of America, among other things.
This collection just focuses on the core event issues only. I must say, I’ve put off reading this tpb for a LONG time. Also, I had a couple failed attempts to “starting” it. But I literally forced myself to read this, as this event forms the creation of the New Justice League, and I was eager to begin re-reading that series (as it’s now seeing a series of hardcover collections released).
So, it took almost 40 pages to start “getting into” this book, around about the time of the introduction of the Blue Beetle. From that moment on, the pages simply fly-by, and ultimately this becomes a very satisfying read.
In aspects somewhat similar to Watchmen, the LEGENDS event, plotted by John Ostrander, asks of our heroes (and of the readers) “do we really need heroes?”
Also, as a sign of those times, we have a very vocal protagonist of an evangelical-nature, that propels various events and conflict. Aside from the often colorful fashion, the cameo by president Ronald Reagan firmly places the story in a specific time.
For the most part, the event focus on the B-grade and lesser known heroes of the DC universe, though by the conclusion, the big name heroes and villains make their presence felt.
I love the art by John Byrne. I’m mostly familiar with his Marvel work, except for the famous Man Of Steel mini-series he wrote and draw at the same time. His art is unspectacular, but very solid. But when it comes to drawing women… he LOVES drawing women! Their are many strong females seen in this collection, and everyone of them looks hot!
Len Wein’s script is strong, funny and easily to follow. I was surprised by how enjoyable reading this was, especially given that I’d been putting off reading it for such a large amount of time. Issue 4 would rank as one of the greatest single issues I’ve EVER read.
Anyhoo, by the end of the story, everything gets resolved, and despite the JLA disbanding (as seen in their own series), the resolution of the story sees the formation of a NEW Justice League… buh wah wah!
7.5 out of 10.