Review: The Legion of Super-Heroes #313

The Legion of Super-Heroes (1980) #313 cover
Cover by Keith Giffen and Larry Mahlstedt

The Legion of Super-Heroes #313
Published and © by DC, July 1984

Title: “Death Threat”
Synopsis: The Legion of Super-Heroes races to discover the identity of a deadly extortioner who is targeting United Planets officials.

Writers (plot): Paul Levitz and Keith Giffen
Writer (script): Levitz
Artist (breakdowns): Giffen
Artist (finishes): Larry Mahlstedt

Review: The legendary Legion creative team of Paul Levitz, Keith Giffen and Larry Mahlstedt came in hot (see reviews of “The Great Darkness Saga”), but fizzled toward the end. Levitz’s story here is slight; there are some decent character moments but the mystery elements fall flat. The art continues to be a bigger letdown and this issue is arguably the worst of the run. While Giffen has grown more consistent with his new approach, Mahlstedt’s finishes here add yet another element to the inconsistent push and pull of styles. Not the strongest finish for one of the Legion’s best creative eras.

Grade: B-

Cool factor: Let’s give some respect to the end of an era. (Also, that’s a pretty awesome cover.)

Notable: The “Legion Outpost Extra” includes a map of 30th-century Metropolis.
Collector’s note: According to the Grand Comics Database, there is a 95¢ Canadian variant of this issue. … According to MyComicShop.com, there is also a Mark Jewelers variant.

Character quotable: “I may work with them for years, but I’ll never get used to them. Never.” – Science Police Chief Kimball Zendak, on his relationship with the Legion

Editor’s note: This review was written April 15, 2022.

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