web space | free website | Business Hosting Services | Free Website Submission | shopping cart | php hosting
The Animated Legion

The Animated Legion

The Legion has been seen in "Animated" format (that is, in the style of the various Superman, Batman, Teen Titans, and Justice League cartoon series) twice so far, but there's more in the works - a dedicated series. Here's a look back and a look ahead to all the projects.

Updates in the last month:

Animated on TV

  • Superman: The Animated Series
  • Duck Dodgers in the 24th and a Half Century
  • Justice League Unlimited
  • Legion of Super-Heroes

    Animated in the comics

  • Adventures in the DC Universe
  • Justice League Adventures

    Superman: The Animated Series, 1998

    Superman: The Animated Series, episode 3.3 (#43), titled "New Kids in Town", original airdate 10/31/98. In a departure for the series, instead of featuring the adult Superman, three members of the "New Legion" travel back in time to visit Clark Kent before he became Superman. The episode guest-starred Saturn Girl, Cosmic Boy, and Chameleon Boy, and in a flash-forward Saturn Girl showed Clark the Legion in the 30th century. This episode is available on DVD: "Superman: The Animated Series - Volume 3".



    Duck Dodgers in the 24th and a Half Century, 2003

    Duck Dodgers, episode TBD, titled "Green Lantoon", original air date 10/16/03. In this episode, the creators pulled from their pile of unused material stuff that was done for a proposed Green Lantern series that never made it. The episode had Duck Dodgers accidentally getting his costume mixed up with Hal Jordan's, with Dodgers joining the Green Lantern Corps. One of the GLs looked somewhat Durlan, which (given the episode's appearance of dozens of GLs) would probably have made him Xenofobe, the GL of the 30th Century (to the right in the image below).

    ...These character designs originated as part of a failed attempt to sell a Green Lantern series to the network. ... It serves as a reminder that for every animated DC Universe series that makes it to the air, there are several that don’t make it past the drawing boards. Thus, the Green Lantern series proposal joins other proposed pilots for Robin, Catwoman, Shazam, Lobo, Impulse, Supergirl, and the Legion of Superheroes in the slush pile of television history. (Source: ToonZone)

    Justice League Unlimited, 2004-2006

    An episode of Cartoon Network's Justice League Unlimited, episode 3.08 titled "The Greatest Story Never Told", original air date 9/11/04, written by Andrew Kreisberg. The Justice League is in epic battle with Mordru in downtown Metropolis, but the real story is what happens to Booster Gold while he's supposed to be on "crowd control". This episode is available on DVD: Season 1, Vol. 2, "Joining Forces".

    Episode 5.11, titled "Far From Home" (aka "Supergirl and the Legion"), original air date 2/8/06 in UK and Canada, 3/18/06 in US. Written by Paul Dini from an outline by Dwayne McDuffie. The Justice League's Green Lantern, Green Arrow, and Supergirl are kidnapped to the 31st century by Brainiac 5 and Bouncing Boy, who are the last two Legionnaires left in a fight against the Fatal Five. A Time Bubble full of Leaguers is their last hope - but the history books say Supergirl never came back. Of course, the good guys win in the end, but Supergirl decides to stay behind where she feels more needed. Several other Legionnaires appear but most have non-speaking roles.



    For info on episode 3.08, see Mordru's entry in the WorldsFinestOnline bio database, the source of this picture:

    See the Legion Blog for a complete summary of episode 5.10 with screencaps. More widescreen pictures such as these can be found at the Legion Clubhouse.

    This Legion doesn't have the same costumes as the previously seen version of the Legion from the Superman series. These costumes tend to be closer to the 70s/80s versions, whereas the Superman series had them with their post-reboot 90s costumes (common scheme with black or white down the middle and a color on either side, big Legion "L" belt buckle). However, given that the "New Kids in Town" episode had the upside-down rocketship as the HQ, and this episode has something very close as their old, outdated HQ, it's reasonable to assume that "Far From Home" takes place a few years after "New Kids in Town".

    The JLU series has the traditional Animated Universe version of Supergirl. She is the only survivor from Krypton's sister planet Argos, and her secret identity is Kara Kent. As Superman's "cousin", she has similar powers but wore the white shirt costume we saw in the latter half of Peter David's Supergirl series. She recently changed her costume to that of the current comics version, out of respect and pride for her cousin.

    Legion of Super-Heroes, 2006

    The Powers That Be had been pushing for an animated Legion series for a long time, at least as early as 1998. The new Legion of Super-Heroes series was quietly but officially announced on March 1, 2006, and publicly announced on April 24. The working logo (strongly reminiscent of the 1973-79 Superboy and the Legion logo) was unveiled on March 9 on Comics Continuum, while the first team picture was shown on the SupermanHomePage on May 1.

    The roles of Brainiac 5, Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad, Superboy, Timber Wolf, Emerald Empress, and President Winema Wazzo (mother of the Legionnaire known as Phantom Girl) are known to have been cast.

    The first recording session for the series was on Feb. 10, 2006, when they had a big meet-and-greet with all of the voice talent and producers. One voice actor was told it takes about 6 months to complete an episode. There will be thirteen half-hour episodes in Season 1, already in production. The show will be part of the "Kids WB!" block on the new CW Network in the Fall of 2006, set to air at 11 a.m. Eastern time.

    The KidsWB! press release announcing the show gives the premise for the series:

    LEGION OF SUPER HEROES, 11:00-11:30 am: In the year of "Superman Returns" at Warner Bros., Kids' WB! is proud to present a new series developed especially for the "Too Big For Your TV" block by Warner Bros. Animation, inspired by the DC Comics legend. One thousand years from now, a group of teenage super heroes travel back in time to recruit the greatest hero of all, Superman, and enlist him their fight against evil in the 31st Century. While their intentions were good, their time travel skills were not, and Lightning Lad, Saturn Girl, Brainiac 5, Phantom Girl, Bouncing Boy and Timber Wolf end up going too far back into the past, accidentally retrieving the young Superboy instead. Together, this unlikely Legion of Super Heroes bands together to defend the rights of all free worlds and uphold the laws of the newly formed United Planets. That is, if they don't kill each other first. LEGION OF SUPER HEROES combines humor with high-stakes, grand-scale super heroics to create the ultimate sci-fi, super hero fantasy for kids of all ages. Each episode of this fast-paced, character-driven action comedy will pit Superboy and the Legion against otherworldly threats and adversaries who challenge the team on both super heroic and emotional levels. The series is executive produced by Sander Schwartz, and produced by Linda Steiner and James Tucker for Warner Bros. Animation.

    One unknown is how the recent legal case over the rights to the character of Superboy may or may not impact the series. Speculations about what might happen range from replacing Superboy with Supergirl (not likely since production has been ongoing for a while) to nothing to yanking the whole series from the schedule and waiting until there’s a settlement.

    People who are involved with the series:

    People who are NOT involved with the series:

    This probably incomplete list of characters is based on who has already been voice cast or has otherwise been confirmed, and who have only been seen in the concept drawings. Lightning Lad will be the Legion field leader. The fact that at least two Legionnaires will be recurring (and not regulars) suggested that the Legion show might be modeled after the JLU cartoon, with a core group and lots of others who appear from time to time. Writer Matt Wayne confirmed as much: "It will be a takeoff on the classic Legion, but like the JLU, we’ll pick and choose characters to use."



    Early concepts and model sheets were commssioned by at least two artists, including Ovi Nedelcu, and Ben Caldwell. These two drawings below are early concepts from series designer and head honcho James Tucker (the group shot was colored by a member of the LegionWorld message board). Compare the early concept with the first released picture.

    Comic book series in the "Animated" style, 1999-2004

    Adventures in the DC Universe, 1999

    Adventures in the DC Universe #10, cover date 1/1999. We see Brainiac 5, Spark, Gates, Invisible Kid, Apparition, Ultra Boy, Live Wire, Ferro, Cosmic Boy, Star Boy, Saturn Girl, Element Lad, XS, Triad, Chameleon, Andromeda, Inferno, Magno, M'Onel, Kinetix, and Sensor. However, as seen in the splash page below, the costumes are different from the TV episode (note the color and style differences between the two for Saturn Girl, Brainiac 5, Lightning Lass, and Andromeda). It has been suggested that since these costumes matched those seen in the then-current series, this might be an in-continuity story and not one from the "Animated Universe" despite the Animated-style artwork. That's as good an explanation as any so we'll treat it like that here.

    Justice League Adventures, 2002-2004

    Although not directly featuring the Legion, characters from Daxam appeared in Justice League Adventures issue 3 (3/2002) and from Tharr in issue 12 (12/2002).

    Justice League Adventures #28, cover date April 2004 (see CBR article). We see Legionnaires Apparition, Brainiac 5, Kid Quantum, and Andromeda in the fight with Kilg%re and C.O.M.P.U.T.O. The costumes are different from the earlier comics appearance but match those of the TV show, suggesting they are from the same Animated Universe continuity.