A team of super-heroes published by DC Comics
. The Legion of Super-heroes
first appeared in Adventure Comics #247
When Superman was first introduced, his origin pointed to his heroic career beginning when he was an adult, but in 1945 in a move designed to make the Man of Steel more accessible to his main audience (grade school boys and teenagers), DC Comics began to tell of the stories of Superman's adventures as a youth in guise of Superboy.
So, in 1958, a story appeared telling of a group of teenage superheroes from the future who return to the past to meet their hero (and the inspiration for their club) Superboy. Though the story was nothing that special, the concept of this future team seemed to spark the imagination of the readers, who wrote to DC asking for further stories of this Legion of Super-heroes.
The origins of the Legion begin with a fateful space flight during the 30th Century that brought together four individuals. R.J. Brande, a wealthy industrialist, was aboard the space flight when as it prepared to disembark on Earth a group of criminals prepared to attempt to kill Brande. One of the other passangers, Irma Ardeen from Saturn, telepathically picked up on the thoughts of the criminals and alerted Brande to the attempt. Two other passangers, Garth Ranzz and Rokk Krinn, each used their special abilities (electrical blasts and magnetic control repectively) to disarm the criminals and protect the life of Brande. Seeing the group in action, Brande suggested that the three start a club of super-hero teens with his backing. And so, Saturn Girl, Lightning Lad, and Cosmic Boy began the Legion of Super-heroes.
In the years that followed, many other members joined the group. The group traveled back in time to meet their inspiration, Superboy, and later he joined as a part time member. Superboy's cousin Supergirl even became a member of the team. The group became wide in varied, with heroes from different planets and different cultures mixing to defend not only Earth, but all of the United Federation of Planets from the forces of Evil.
The Fearsome Five, Doctor Regulus, Universo, and Mordu became some of the villains that the Legion fought against. A Legion of Super-Villains was created to oppose the heroes and the group even thwarted the mechinations of the lord of Apokolips himself Darkseid.
In the past few years, the continuity changes at DC have created a number of continuity refits for the Legion, and the retelling of their stories. The Crisis on Infinite Earths particularly caused issues with the removal of Superboy from the continuity and brought about the death of that hero.
The Legion is still active in present comics, though many of the original characters have been redefined and new characters have been introduced.
The original members of the team, before continuity refits were:
After the DC universe went through the reality shifting
event called the Zero Hour, the Legion of Super-Heroes
underwent a storyline reboot, with new characters and
new identities. A list of the post-Zero Hour characters is
below, with their pre-Zero Hour identities if applicable.
A group of candidates who tried out for the Legion, but were passed over for admittance formed. This group was called the Legion of Substitute Heroes. Their members included:
Individuals whose powers are not particularly useful are given in membership in the Legion of Substitute Heroes Auxilliary. Their members include:
In appreciation for their help, the Legion created a group of super-powered pets calld the Legion of Super Pets. Their members included:
Other heroes that also operate in the 30th century include:
The Legion of Super-Heroes had a number of villains. They included: