Review: The Legion of Super-Heroes #303

The Legion of Super-Heroes (1980) #303 cover
Cover by Larry Mahlstedt

The Legion of Super-Heroes #303
Published and © by DC, September 1983

Title: “Those Emerald Eyes Are Shining …”
Synopsis: Legionnaires battle the Emerald Empress in an effort to thwart her plans for a hijacked Weber’s World. 

Writers (plot): Paul Levitz and Keith Giffen
Writer (script): Levitz
Penciler: Giffen
Inker: Larry Mahlstedt

Review: Paul Levitz, Keith Giffen and Larry Mahlstedt continue to deliver at a consistently high level. This solo showdown with the Emerald Empress serves as an impressive showcase for the Fatal Five villainess. The imperial slapdown of the Legionnaires elevates her arrogance, with her casual crushing of a helpless Sun Boy’s jaw being particularly horrific. As usual, Levitz juggles the main story and several subplots with aplomb; he’s one of the best longterm plotters of the Bronze Age. Meanwhile, the art continues to be the perfect fit for the LoSH’s futuristic setting. This is confident work from a top-shelf creative team.

Grade: A

Second opinion: Recommended by The Slings & Arrows Comic Guide (second edition), 2003.

Cool factor: The Emerald Empress levels up her wickedness.

Collector’s note: According to the Grand Comics Database, there is a 75¢ Canadian variant of this issue. … According to MyComicShop.com, there is also a Mark Jewelers variant.

Character quotable: “Mrph freshm glfmph!” – Sunboy, offering a few choice words with a broken jaw

Editor’s note: This review was written July 1, 2021.

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