Thursday, July 07, 2016
Sometimes, a comic's cover makes you think an issue is going to be so good, a complete slam dunk...and then doesn't quite get there. From 2008, the Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century #15, "In a Flash" Written by Jake Black, pencils by Robert Atkins, inks by Rick Ketcham.
This was DC's kid book tie-in to the Legion cartoon of the time, but this issue also tied into regular DC continuity. (For that time, anyway.) Legionaires Bouncing Boy and Triplicate Girl are on a date at a virtual reality arcade, when they meet a young speedster living in VR: Bart. (He's Impulse, although not referred to as such here, which actually matches up: none other than Batman would give Bart the name, in the 20th century!) Having little to no control over his powers, Bart had been in VR most of his life.
Brainiac 5 is brought into the story shortly thereafter: in Impulse's original origin, Brainy was one of the few people from the outside world he had ever interacted with. But here, as the Fatal Five's Tharok plots to use VR to...somehow affect reality, somehow; we hit a snag. Here, Bart is worried about his virtual reality world, since while he's in it, it's real to him; in the comics a good portion of Bart's impulsive nature was due to the fact he had been raised in a simulation, and as such had no real stakes. It took him some time to realize the real world had consequences...and no save points or restarts. In this story, it serves to make Bart a little more involved (and less annoying) than he might have been. But that takes away from his charm; not a good trade.