Day 25: Legionnaires At Ease!

A marvelous moment, calm and joyfilled, as the two Newsboy Legions, the old and new, greet one another with affection and delight. Even Flippa-Dippa’s father (this, as is obvious, is a meeting of fathers and sons) is there, who was not a member of the original Suicide Slum gang, but apparently pals around with the guys.

We soon learn that the fathers have been at work at The Project, on their own secret enterprise, one that involves an old ally of the grown-up Legion. We’re also informed about the adult occupations of the men in this issue:

Gabby, Sr., is now a teacher; “Big Words,” Sr. (still no first name given) is appropriately a geneticist; Scrapper, Sr., is now, natch, a social worker; and Tommy, Sr., is currently a medical doctor. Flippa’s dad? Not so sure…

Linking the Golden Age kid gang to the present was a splendid touch in not only adding some continuity and relevance to the concept, but it also gave readers a sense of Jack’s own history as a comic book creator through the decades. Always a forward-looking guy, it’s remarkable the artist/writer resurrected characters of a bygone era, so it reveals an affection he held for the boys and their erstwhile protector (whom we will soon learn much more about, Kirby fans!).

Enjoy the friendly moment, fathers and sons, ‘cuz things are about to heat up!

5 thoughts on “Day 25: Legionnaires At Ease!

  1. patrick ford

    Speaking of the special project the original Legion is involved in, there is another creepy “Project” moment in Jimmy Olsen #139, when Dr. “Words” twice mentions, “Strange unidentifiable activity in the brain area,” found in the Guardian and “common to all of the living products of our genetic labs.”

    Typical of Kirby, through expression and body language we can see there is a genuine level of concern, before “Dr. Words” catches himself, and smiles reassuringly (pg. 3).

    Kirby never had the opportunity to return to the unusual brain activity. His mentioning it twice in the space of three pages would seem to indicate he had something in his own unidentifiable brain activity we are left to guess at.

  2. JonBCooke Post author

    You’re getting ahead of us, Patrick! But, certainly, you’re right. What was that all about? Of course, you’re talking the good kind of creepy…

  3. JonBCooke Post author

    Mr. Patrick Ford just clued me onto a fine blog by Prankster of Toronto, “Fourth World Fridays,” which ran from 2006 to 2007, initiated with the release of the first volume of Jack Kirby’s Fourth World Omnibus. He covered an issue of the saga once a week and I just read his witty and erudite intro. Sounds like we’re on the same page. To quote: “Unlike the Marvel Masterworks,” Prankster blogs, “I can completely overlook all flaws in The Fourth World saga. Because when it’s on, man, there’s just something that leaps across 4 decades of radical shifts in comics storytelling and just downloads a pure jolt of Jungian madness into your forebrain.”

    And his description of the affection he holds for the series is a hoot: “Because, simply put, I love the Fourth World. I love it. I adore it. When I grow up, I want to marry it. I want to french kiss it and have its babies.”

    I’ll be reading his entries as we cover the respective issues… Great stuff…

    Thanks, Pat.

  4. bruce zick

    Hey, Jon

    Great blog idea. I think you’ll have way too much material from the entire Fourth World Saga to fit into a mere 365 days, unless you start doubling up or tripling up, or leaving out great concepts.

    Since I was brought up during the Marvel Explosion, I didn’t get as excited about the Fourth World series as you did, and I’m learning from your perspective just how amazing and jampacked the Kirby project really was.


    1. JonBCooke Post author

      Thanks, Bruce! We’ll convert you yet!

      Well, I can always add a “Year Two” after the blog’s name, so worry not, my friend. Thanks for the kind words.

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