"The Powers That Were"
Writer: Scott Beatty
Artists: Sanford Greene(p), Nathan Massengill(i), Heroic Age(c)
Ever since I saw her in Superboy number two-o-one, I fell in love with Cary Bates' and Dave Cockrum's Infectious Lass. She looked exotically hot. She had the power to give you fever. Drura Sehpt alias Infectious Lass guest stars in Scott Beatty's brilliantly conceived issue of Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century.
Sanford Greene, Nathan Massengill and Heroic Age make Infectious Lass cute as a bunny, while adhering to Legion animated form, and they have a lot of fun imagining multiple switcharoos occurring as a result of Drura's guest appearance. Saturn Girl in particular looks fantastic. I furthermore learned something intriguing that further distinguishes this incarnation of the Legion from others. Saturn Girl's pinkish complexion isn't a variation of white. She really has pink skin.
It's Legionnaire try-out time, and among the participants--including several recognizable Substitute Legionnaires--Infectious Lass charms her male audience. Infectious Lass' sexiness has always made sense. Her beauty entices you, then you fall into her trap, probably willingly. Drura's alien beauty is part of the character.
Beatty's Infectious Lass is not just cute. She's also intelligent, and she reaches the formidable potential that I knew she had. I've always been interested in biology, and the moment I encountered her in the comic books, I suspected that Infectious Lass could have been one of the most powerful Legionnaires had she been chosen for membership. Recently a resistant form of tuberculosis has made the news, and it's a reminder that we humans only think we're the top predator. In fact, given the right conditions, every one of us can be felled by something infinitesimal. Beatty's story emphasizes the point.
Infectious Lass is the incubator of every bacteria and virus, in the known cosmos. In this issue, she finds something that can affect every Legionnaire. Beatty anticipates the reader's questions:
"How would you incapacitate an entire group of foes?"
"Hmm...That's a tough one. It would have to be a bug that isn't dependent on the individual susceptibilities of your various species."
That is smart writing. Using Infectious Lass' awesome abilities, Beatty freshens a classic super-hero trope. This affect proves timely as a special classic guest invader has decided to take advantage of the Legion when their guard is down.
Infectious Lass' miasma proves to be beneficial. Her presence and her effect on the story makes this issue not just the best of three but one of the best of the Legion, in all its incarnations.
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