CCI: Geoff Johns Brings the Legion of Super-Heroes to "Smallville"

Geoff Johns is one heck of a party guest.

In celebration of their 50th anniversary, the superstar writer has already featured the Legion of Super-Heroes in a critically acclaimed arc in "Action Comics" and starting next month, the team from 1,000 years in the future will be front and center in his "Final Crisis" tie-in miniseries, "Legion of Three Worlds."

To top it all off, today, it was announced at Comic-Con International that Johns has scripted an episode of CW's "Smallville," which officially brings the Legion into the hit TV show's re-imagined Superman mythos.

Johns told CBR News that he has been friends with the producers of the show for years, and when he presented them with the idea to introduce the Legion to "Smallville, "it all came together fairly easily.

"I have known the 'Smallville' writers for a while because Jeph Loeb worked on the show and Jeph and I are really tight," explained Johns. "And because I have been friends with them for a while, Todd [Slavkin], Darren [Swimmer], Kelly [Souders], and Brian [Peterson], it just kind of came together."

The four-long-time executive producers have stepped in as the show's new four-headed showrunner as original creators Miles Millar and Alfred Gough left "Smallville" after the completion of Season 7.

In a Season 4 episode entitled "The Recruit," written by Slavkin and Swimmer, the villain of the week was named 'Geoff Johns' in his honor.

"I have been working on the Legion so much this year, between 'Action Comics' and 'Legion of Three Worlds,' and with it being their 50th anniversary, it was just kind of serendipitous that this is happening this year," said Johns.

"It's been a big year for the Legion and my mind has been entrenched in that Legion world."

Johns couldn't say what members of the team would be featured - over its history, the Legion has counted dozens in its membership - but teased, "If you are familiar with the origin story, it's not that hard to figure out."

In "Adventure Comics" #247, released in April 1958, Superboy was visited by three teenagers from the 30th century, Lightning Lad (then known as Lightning Boy), Saturn Girl, and Cosmic Boy, who were collectively known as the Legion of Super-Heroes. It is learned that Superboy serves as the team's inspiration, and the three have traveled back in time to recruit Superboy as a member.

"I think we're going to be able to stay pretty close to the origin of these characters," said Johns. "They are from 1,000 years in the future and they'll have flight rings and code names and everything else."

Johns, one of the biggest names working in comics today, said he is always looking for opportunities in other media.

"I am also working on a film with the 'Robot Chicken' crew that I am writing and directing," said Johns. "It all depends on the project. I love comic books and my dedication is to them but I am always working in other media, be it TV or film or video games. I have some things going in each one of those right now."

"But I don't talk about it much unless it's actually happening. And this is happening."

The air date for the episode has yet to be announced.

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