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Mild Mannered Reviews - Legion of Super Heroes in the 31st Century

Legion of Super Heroes in the 31st Century #16

Legion of Super Heroes in the 31st Century #16

Scheduled to arrive in stores: July 9, 2008

Cover date: September 2008

"The Untold Legend of Arm-Fall-Off-Boy"

Writer: Matthew K, Manning
Penciller: Shawn McManus
Inker: Shawn McManus
Cover: Alex Serra (based on designs by Curt Swan)

Reviewed by: Adam Dechanel

Click to enlarge

Many, many years ago, a child was born and minutes after his parents cuddled their bundle of joy his powers manifested... and Arm-Fall-Off-Boy was born!

Today AFOB in a supermarket accidentally causes havoc with his detachable arm disastrously ending with him leaving empty handed.

When he skulks back to his bedroom he looks longingly at the poster of the only person in the universe who'd understand him - Phantom Girl.

The least judgemental? Not exactly... during a fight with a gigantic Octobeast Tinya can't bring herself to touch the slimy creature and leaves Cosmic Boy and Brainiac 5 to fight alone. When Phantom Girl is close enough, Cosmic boy uses his power over magnetism to force Phantom Girl's flight ring to make her strike the monster putting it into a coma.

Meanwhile the fight has been watched over a news channel intently from the very same supermarket AFOB was just in... the viewer... Starfinger!

AFOB is quietly analysing his future and sneaking out he runs off to join the Legion. After a comedy moment leaving his arm behind he dashes to rendezvous with the trio of returning heroes.

As the trio arrive at the clubhouse in New Metropolis AFOB is there to greet them, but they are so wrapped up in a dented flight ring they don't even rate him acknowledgement... much like everyone in AFOB's life...

Tinya hears a whisper from AFOB and turns to question him. Before he can respond a missile explodes sending them all crashing to the floor and a dented flight ring right into the hands of Starfinger!

Surprising to all, before the Legion can retaliate the attack, AFOB steps in and throws his arm at Starfinger! Everyone stops in their tracks in shock at the bizarre limb. Starfinger utterly distracted receives a knockout punch from the arm when it comes to life!

AFOB reveals he is Floyd Belkin, Arm-Fall-Off-Boy! Newest Legionnaire!

Sadly Phantom Girl and Cosmic Boy break the news that the tryouts are a season away...

Floyd's head drops along with his heart but Tinya offers a hand of friendship... she offers AFOB a try of her flight ring, only to have the arm fly off with it!

As AFOB returns home for his 9pm curfew he finally feels good about himself!

Cue comedy moment when his arm lands on his head with a bonk!

2Story - 2: Ugh. Not quite bad enough that it was good.

Just when the book started to earn a reputation as a DCUA book with an edge, a not quite funny, funny story suddenly pops in like Ambush Bug. Sorry Matthew but I was really disappointed this time round. Perhaps because the past issues were in a completely different direction I was expecting something... more. Not to mention Starfinger is up there with Konvikt, Subjekt 13 and Khyrana as lame-o villain of the decade.

I'm not sure but Arm-Fall-Off-Boy seems familiar, is he a stalwart of Legionnaire history or was he created for this story?

3Art - 3: 12 pages of solid and slick artwork and the next half of the book seems overly rushed.

A shame as it seems like a wasted opportunity and the quality of the second half really hurts the first.

3Cover Art - 3: Alex Serra offers a twist on a classic cover. All very 'America's Got Talent.' Nice to see Curt Swan still has roots in Legion history and this incarnation thus far has had some really beautiful covers. Again not sure about the 'comedy' element. It just seems out of place in a book that has had to fight for integrity.

Mild Mannered Reviews


Note: Month dates are from the issue covers, not the actual date when the comic went on sale.

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