Monday, November 22, 2010

Really nothing secret about Brainy's weakness, yeah.

Star Boy's wondering why he used his powers on the thrown ring...
Wait, I can see Brainiac 5 being the brightest Legionnaire, sure; but "move level-headed then worldly men twice his age"? What, 36? OK, I guess in 1974 men in their thirties were responsible and steadfast; but nowadays we can be aimless and immature and lazy. Ah, what an age we live in!

Anyway, in this issue, a burned out and exhausted Brainiac 5 quits the Legion of Super-Heroes, to run off with Supergirl. Although he had loved her for years, and although she had feelings for him; Kara had stopped her visits to the future years ago. So, it's kind of a surprise when she shows up on Brainy's vacation. Star Boy tries to talk him out of quitting the Legion, but that's a losing battle.

Perhaps not paying attention where he was going, Brainy and Kara fly straight into a "Zoltron belt" of radiation. The rays would vaporize Brainy...boy, if only he had a force-field belt or something...but Supergirl wraps him in her indestructible cape. Smothering him. No, not really. Kind of miss the old indestructible capes...

When the storm passes, Kara unwraps Brainy, having just arrived to save him: he had left with a Supergirl android, that he built. The android tried to save him, but her synthetic cape and circuits couldn't survive the radiation either. Brainy had been building her in his sleep, to fill the void in his life left by Supergirl.
There is nothing about this that's uncomfortable.  Except everything.
Supergirl, conveniently enough, had just returned to the 30th century, to explain herself. At the time, Kara wasn't even sure she wanted to be Supergirl; and couldn't handle being a part-time Legionnaire like her cousin. Still, she gives Brainiac 5 a pretty good kiss goodbye.

From Superboy (starring the Legion of Super-Heroes) #204, "Brainiac 5's Secret Weakness!" Story by Cary Bates, art by Mike Grell.

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