After a month of spotlighting the strange (if endearingly strange) history of comic books (and especially the Silver Age), I think it is worthwhile to show the comic books of the Silver Age that are simply great stories period. Here is an archive of all the Silver Age comics features so far!
Today I’ll show an example of a great Silver Age story that DOES have some goofy aspects to it, but the story is still great despite the goofy stuff. The story in question is “The Super-Sacrifice of the Legionnaires!” from Adventure Comics #312, written by Edmond Hamilton and drawn by John Forte.
Lightning Lad, one of the founding members of the Legion, died in Adventure Comics #304, and that was a major moment in Legion history, and they would refer to it every once in awhile over the next year. They also had a recurring sub-plot where the Legion would search for ways to bring him back to life.
Ultimately, in Adventure Comics #312, a way might have been found, but is the cost too great?
The issue opens with the Legion waiting to hear back from Mon-El, who suggested a number of issues earlier that he might know of a way…
The rest of the issue shows the other team members looking for other ways while Saturn Girl schemes to get to the bottom of why Mon-El is lying…
Wow, Edmond Hamilton sure knew how to set up some dramatic scenarios. You can say the ending is a cop-out, and yeah, it is, but hey, it’s the set-up that is memorable and that’s the important part.
Also, I was willing to spoil the ending because the ending has become such a classic that it seems kind of silly to try to hide it.
John Forte does a great job on the artwork for this story – you can feel the pain in all of the Legionnaires’ faces.
A true Silver Age classic.
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