March 20, 2007

The Legion of Super-Heroes #274 [1981]

Ditko returns to the LSH only two months after his previous issue with "The Exaggerated Death Of Ultra-Boy" another 25-page yarn of the 30th century's greatest super-team with Frank Chiaramonte on the inks again. This time we get space pirates!

LSH member Ultra-Boy is presumed dead at the hands of Pulsar Stargrave, even though there's no body, so you'd think they'd know better. The LSH mourn for him, including his girlfriend Phantom Girl, not knowing he's alive, floating in space, where he's rescued by space pirates, but lacking his memory. His powers attract the attention of the leader of the pirates, a sexy captain in a fairly ridiculous outfit even by 1981 LSH standards. Ultra-Boy helps the pirates out when the LSH try to stop them, but his faint recognition of Phantom Girl prevents him from doing anything too drastic.

Yeah, space pirates. It's sometimes amazing this book lasted through this period to get to the good stuff on the other side. Despite the story, there's actually some fun artwork by Ditko in this one, what with the goofy aliens and fight scenes. The opening scenes of Ultra-Boy floating through a variety of Ditko space backgrounds is pretty good, too, and Chiarmonte's inks are pretty effective in that part.

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