Justice Society of America >> View Post
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Post By
TJ Burns

In Reply To
Ed Love

Subj: Re: ONLY that...
Posted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 at 10:42:35 pm EDT (Viewed 256 times)
Reply Subj: Re: ONLY that...
Posted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 at 09:49:33 am EDT (Viewed 13 times)

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I like the King too. Pity this guy already is just another in the line of legacy characters that don't really have much to do with the original.

While the Atom eventually did gain superstrength, what originally made him special was he had no powers other than what intense training and dedication could give you and he was underestimated just because of his height and he was the second most dedicated JSA-er in the GA. Yet, he has two legacies, both super-powered with anger issues. Wildcat has a feral cat-son. Judomaster is some Asian girl that cannot be touched. Ma Hunkel's girl has tornado powers. Stripesy is in a huge metal robotic armor and Stargirl nee Star-Spangled Kid has the cosmic staff. Sandman's Sandy has real sand powers, earth-quake powers and prophetic dreams. The Crimson Avenger has cursed guns. Black Lightning, a gifted athlete who can throw lightning bolts has the previously unknown daughter Thunder who is the embodiment of that lightning power (which is a bit problematic timewise, just how long has Black Lightning supposed to have been active as a hero that he has a teen-aged daughter with superpowers). Even the modern Mr. Terrific has gone beyond being just a man very good at a lot of things seeking to inspire others and made into a Reed Richards level genius with the T-Spheres that render him invisible to electronic devices. Liberty Belle II has super-speed. That was fine when she was supposed to be the legacy to Johnny Quick. Hawkman's son first had powered armor, became a ghost and then became freaking Dr. Fate. GL, a normal man with a magic ring has two super-powered offspring and now has internalized the power so that he's no longer really human.

Yes, a lot of these are the accumulation of detritus over the years such as the literalization of the GA Sandman to really having prophetic dreams instead of just being thematic to the character and stories, the original Star-Spangled Kid getting the cosmic rod and later belt when he joined the JSA in the 70s. And a few like Liberty Bell II makes character sense, but the overall total of it...at this point, it seems as if writers and creators are actually embarrassed by guys that don't have superpowers. Half the JSA originally was made of guys with low-level to no powers. Even Green Lantern was as apt to throw a fist as a blast with his ring. Hawkman could fly. He had no special healing powers, no enhanced strength, no memory of the ages. Instead of becoming more powerful, Dr. Fate became less so. Starman's rod allowed him to fly and do a few other things, but it was no Green Lantern ring.

The legacies and their powers are cliched. Every minor character seems to have one, it's no longer that special of an honor. And, when they have little to nothing really in common with the character they are supposed to be honoring other than a name or costume... you want a King legacy, then embrace what the character was: a pulp inspired detective and master of disguise hero who got by on his skills. Run with that. But, a spoiled brat kid with superpowers and a sense of entitlement?


One nice thing James Robinson did for us recently was to give us the anti-King Chimera in Von Hammer. He's the grandson of Stormy Foster, the Great Defender, and possesses only a fraction of his strength, and works as a noncostumed private detective. THAT'S a guy I'd like to see in the JSA.


TJB


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