Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

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Experience the Legionnaires'' far-flung adventures leading up to the great darkness saga!

Armed with extraordinary powers and unstoppable teen spirit, the Legion of Super-Heroes are the United Planets'' best line fo defense against terrors from across the cosmos. Here, 1,000 years in the future—before Darkseid turns their world upside-down—they undertake some of their most memorable missions ever!
 
A circus from the stars comes to town—and a rash of mysterious murders comes with it. Can the Legion uncover the killer''s identity before it''s too late? 
 
In deep space, the Legion encounters a spacecraft the size of a planet—with the destructive power to match. Can they shut down this menace to the galaxy? 
 
R.J. Brande is the Legion''s billionaire benefactor—and he''s at death''s door. In order to save his life, the Legion must reveal the deepest secrets of their origins. Can they find the knowledge that will save their mentor''s life in time? 
 
Discover the answers to these intriguing mysteries in Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the Darkness, an astonishing collection of action-packed episodes from acclaimed talents Gerry Conway, Paul Kupperberg, E. Nelson Bridwell, J.M. DeMatteis, Jim Janes, Steve Ditko, Jim Sherman, Frank Chiaramonte, Dave Hunt, and more! This first of two volumes collects Legion of Super-Heroes #260-271 and Secrets of the Legion of Super-Heroes #1-3 and features a new introduction from former DC presidnet and publisher (and renowned Legion scribe) Paul Levitz.

About the Author

Gerry Conway began his professional comic book career in 1969, when DC Comics published his first work in its anthology The House of Secrets. He went on to co-create the characters Firestorm the Nuclear Man, Vixen, and Killer Croc for DC. Conway also worked for Marvel Comics, where he notably wrote "The Night Gwen Stacy Died" in The Amazing Spider-Man #121, as well as serving briefly as that company''s editor-in-chief. His numerous writing credits include the first DC/Marvel crossover, Superman vs. Spider-Man.

In addition to comics, Conway has published the science fiction novels The Midnight Dancers and Mindship. He has also written for and/or produced such TV series as Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, Baywatch Nights, Silk Stalkings, Law & Order, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, The Huntress and Batman: The Animated Series.

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4.6 out of 54.6 out of 5
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Top reviews from the United States

Axel
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Bring on the next volume! And then a Levitz Omnibus!!
Reviewed in the United States on March 21, 2021
If you’re a lover of the “classic legion,” you might be surprised at how entertaining these stories are, some forty years after they were printed. Gerry Conway does most of the scripts here, and while there’s nothing mind-blowing or revolutionary in their pages, they’re... See more
If you’re a lover of the “classic legion,” you might be surprised at how entertaining these stories are, some forty years after they were printed. Gerry Conway does most of the scripts here, and while there’s nothing mind-blowing or revolutionary in their pages, they’re full of charm and energy that shines through.

I’m biased of course, because I love these characters, and love anything space and science fiction related, so this may not be for everyone. Admittedly, some of the stories are quaint. There are juvenile and fantastic plots, and characters spout melodramatic dialog that will make anyone who takes themselves and their comics too seriously, cringe with embarrassment. But for lovers of the Legion, these stories brim with an innocence and vitality that’s incredibly refreshing, many years on.

It also doesn’t hurt that the art on the book, mostly by Jimmy Janes and Dave Hunt, is solid, old fashioned style pencilling that’s hard to dislike. But there’s a lot going on visually in the book to enjoy. The majority of covers are by a very strong Dick Giordano. George Perez produces the cover used for the volume itself. There’s an issue drawn by Jim Sherman which is gorgeous, next level stuff, and all the guest artists produce competent, if not transformational work. Joe Staton and Steve Ditko produce some issues here, and by and large, all the artists deliver decent work that perfectly service the stories.

There’s a single issue by J.M. Dematties that perfectly showcases his particular style - zany plots steeped in faux-mysticism, with heavy exposition and dialog barely contained by the artist - but fun and entertaining, taken for what it is.

The volume itself is fantastic quality. Great, crisp, matte paper that perfectly reproduces the colors of the past. All the covers are included. There’s a contents page, and all the artists and creative people are properly attributed. And although I am not impressed by DC’s decision to re-use a cover from one of the books as opposed to producing a new image, it’s hard to deny that the dust jacket and wrap-around of the hardcover image underneath, are some of the best from the collection.

About the only somewhat annoying thing in the volume, is a slightly perplexing introduction by Paul Levitz, undoubtedly the best classic Legion writer and one of comics most underrated writers period. Levitz produces an introduction here, which, rather than celebrating the efforts of the artistes involved, offers an apology for the quality. This is a confounding pattern with Paul; who amusingly apologizes, after a fashion, to readers coming to a collection of the Great Darkness Saga, for the fact that they are robbed of the surprise of the main villain, by the very nature of coming to a collected edition, printed several years after the fact. In fact, he has “apologized” for other eras, and other stories, even including his own. And if I didn’t know the man better from his writings, his apology in this volume would smack of hubris - of a man returning to an era of comics which in his estimation, failed to achieve the creative genius of the days when he was in charge of writing it. Thankfully, I don’t think that’s what’s going on here.

Instead, I think it’s a misjudged attempt to explain away the lightness of the stories; the fantastical, frequently illogical aspects; the occasionally cringeworthy dialog; the slightly shifting and stilted characterization; and the sometimes silly plots; by trying to offer some historical context, of what was happening at DC Comics at the time, and how those events may have impacted the quality of the pages one is about to read.

There’s no need. No one coming to these volumes expects Shakespearean writing coupled with Michelangelo’s images. It also does the creators involved, a disservice. And really, it’s a message intended for the wrong audience. “New readers,” if such exist, are unlikely to have an interest in an obscure comic, about a group of teenage superheroes, set 1000 years into the future, inspired to do good, by Superman’s legacy. In fact, the only people likely to be buying these volumes, come for the nostalgia, and already know what to expect. They’re looking for a fix; a reminder of a time and place in their lives, when the “DC implosion” had no meaning, and all that mattered, were these brightly colored pages, about teenage superheroes, in far flung places, doing amazing things.

And a very good fix it is.
13 people found this helpful
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C. Zickrick
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Long Live the Legion!
Reviewed in the United States on February 3, 2021
Tempted to drop a star since while this volume is awesome it doesn’t have the holiday story where Superboy and the Legion hunt for the Christmas star. It does have the Legion miniseries though besides issues 260-271 of the regular series. We get to see the Legion’s... See more
Tempted to drop a star since while this volume is awesome it doesn’t have the holiday story where Superboy and the Legion hunt for the Christmas star. It does have the Legion miniseries though besides issues 260-271 of the regular series. We get to see the Legion’s parents. Tyroc gets an origon, Bouncing Boy & Duo Damsel return. The Fatal Five plus the Dark Man keep the Legion on their toes. Lot of good nostalgia for me in theses stories.
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Kid KyotoTop Contributor: DC Comics
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
You have to love a book that starts with an apology
Reviewed in the United States on May 3, 2021
The Legion of Superheroes has a long and varied history. Set 1000 years in the future, the Legion''s story has gone from the Buck Rogers-style rocket ships and jet packs of the 50s and 60s, to the sexy disco fashions of the 70s, to continuity-intensive stories of the 80s,... See more
The Legion of Superheroes has a long and varied history. Set 1000 years in the future, the Legion''s story has gone from the Buck Rogers-style rocket ships and jet packs of the 50s and 60s, to the sexy disco fashions of the 70s, to continuity-intensive stories of the 80s, dark and gritty in the 90s, to multiple back-to-basics reboots in modern times. Each run has reflected America''s hopes and fears for the future and every fan has their own favorite era.

But you would be very hard pressed to find anyone who names the early 80s as their favorite period, or considers them even... good.

And sure enough this reprint of LSH 260-271 from 1979 to 1981 opens with an apology of sorts from long-time Legion fan, author and former DC comics president and publisher Paul Levitz. He recounts how DC''s financial issues at the time left them scrambling to find work for writers and authors resulting in some people being put on books they were ill-suited for.

And the stories show it. Adventures seem sort of random, finishing in a bizarre plot twist in the Secrets of the Legion of Superheroes mini series. Artists change frequently and various art, dialogue, and coloring errors are all faithfully reproduced.

But all that being said, it is still the Legion and the insane adventures of teenagers from the future IN SPACE and even when it''s mediocre, it can be entertaining. I''d probably have passed on this book if it wasn''t for my kids who recently discovered my stash of Legion books and devoured them. Knowing that this book would offer stories in the vein of the classic silver age books I got it to read with them and even when we''re laughing at the stories it''s still fun.
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David SwanTop Contributor: Batman
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
The Conway Era
Reviewed in the United States on May 4, 2021
“Before the Darkness” volume one basically fills in part of the gap between “Superboy and the Legion of Superheroes Volume Two” (published in 2018) and “The Darkness Saga” (published in 2000). SatLoSH v2 ended with issue 259 while “The Great Darkness Saga” started with... See more
“Before the Darkness” volume one basically fills in part of the gap between “Superboy and the Legion of Superheroes Volume Two” (published in 2018) and “The Darkness Saga” (published in 2000). SatLoSH v2 ended with issue 259 while “The Great Darkness Saga” started with issue 284. BtD v1 covers issues 260 to 271, so I assume BtD v2 will cover 272 to 283. I got lucky in buying “The Great Darkness Saga” years ago because it has skyrockets in price. Unfortunately, the books don’t really fit together nicely on a shelf since “The Great Darkness Saga” and the follow up, “The Curse”, are both Deluxe editions and noticeably larger. Suffice to say, DC has reprinted every Legion story from the beginning to issue #313 (sometimes multiple time), but it takes some work to piece it all together.

There is a super interesting introduction written by Paul Levitz that mentions the dark period that DC comics was going through when these comics were published. This followed the DC implosion when a ton of titles were cancelled, and DC was struggling. I was aware that there were a handful of writers at DC that seemed to be writing an inordinate amount of titles and Gerry Conway was one of them. When you have so many projects at one time something has to give and as Levitz himself says, the stories have some “choppy moments.” The art was all over the place until it finally gained some consistency from Jim Janes. Janes had a clean style that reminds me of art from the Silver Age. He passed away in September 2020. We also get several stories penciled by the legendary Steve Ditko, so that’s pretty amazing. The art by Janes and Ditko definitely created a tone the seemed like the stories were from an older era.

One subject I want to mention is Tyroc. Tyroc was created by Cary Bates and Mike Grell in 1976 as the first black member of the LoSH and one of the first black costumed heroes at DC comics. I still remember Tyroc from when I was a preteen and the WTF feeling at seeing his costume. There was a pattern at DC comics in the 60’s and 70’s for writers to want to introduce diversity while older editors pushed back, and it seems the compromise was an absolute trash character. Artist Mike Grell despised the character because he felt that Tyroc was a racist segregationist’s dream and so he gave him a ridiculous costume to purposely sabotage the character. Jim Shooter hated the character and Paul Levitz never once used Tyroc during this era. It seemed like Conway was going down the same path until issue 265, which is devoted to Tyroc and his magical island of Marzal, but this story seemed like a way to remove Tyroc from the team. There is plenty of info online explaining why Tyroc was such a terrible character. I’m going to assume that all the creators had only good intentions even if they failed in execution. At least Bates had the decency not to name him Black Tyroc.

The biggest story arc in this volume Dark Man three parter. The Dark Man was introduced, although never seen, in the previous volume where he created the League of Super Assassins. This time around The Dark Man is controlling the incredibly powerful Fatal Five. I’d say this storyline is the highlight of the book and the reveal of The Dark Man is pretty good. Secrets of the Legion of Super-Heroes with a micro-series with just three issues that essentially reintroduced all the member of the LoSH and substitute heroes. This is not five star material, but it’s pretty good and fans of the Legion will likely enjoy it very much.
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Dan'l Danehy-Oakes
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Not the best Legion stories, but some are pretty good
Reviewed in the United States on April 23, 2021
Some people just don''t dig the Legion, and I understand that. You have to set aside a certain amount of rationality, logic, and even common sense to even accept the concept, and the execution is, at times, utterly whack. There are stories that are just downright... See more
Some people just don''t dig the Legion, and I understand that. You have to set aside a certain amount of rationality, logic, and even common sense to even accept the concept, and the execution is, at times, utterly whack. There are stories that are just downright embarrassing to Legion fans.

A couple of those are in this volume.But there are also a couple of pretty good ones, including the four-part "Dark Man" story, which I''ve heard of for years. The scripting, mostly by Gerry Conway or E. Nelson Bridwell is generally competent, though never superb. The art, by a number of artists, similarly varies: the best I can say is that the characters are always recognizable, even in closeups where you don''t see their distinctive uniforms.

The "Before the Darkness" concept makes me very happy. It implies that they are going to take this series of archival books up to _just_ before the "Great Darkness" storyline, which is where my collection of actual Legion comics begins. (I had a nice set of the early _Adventure Comics_ run when I was a kid, but, yes, my mother threw them out when we moved. Ah, well, I probably wouldn''t have taken good care of them anyway....)

So if they put out just two more volumes (by my rough calculation) my run will be complete, and I shall be a very happy camper and probably take a couple of "me" days to read through the whole thing sequentially at some point.
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Jackson Roykirk
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
4-stars for the stories & quality of the paper, but color seems off, so minus another star
Reviewed in the United States on May 19, 2021
I''ve been collecting all the Legion reprints from DC, including all the Legion Archives, and then the two volume Superboy and the Legion of Super-heroes hardcovers that precede this one chronologically, and while all these volumes have consistent good quality printing and... See more
I''ve been collecting all the Legion reprints from DC, including all the Legion Archives, and then the two volume Superboy and the Legion of Super-heroes hardcovers that precede this one chronologically, and while all these volumes have consistent good quality printing and paper, this one has something off with the color.

There is a distinct, yellow cast that permeates every page, reminding me of the that period where the publishers experimented with a new way of printing color, but these issues are well before that time (I think), so I''m at a loss as to why this looks so wrong. If you compare the color to that in the previous volumes I mentioned above, it''s very noticeable.

I have to agree with Paul''s assessment in his intro about the quality of these stories, and that might explain why I never picked up the original comics during this era, though I had the earlier ones and of course the ones when Levitz took over again (Great Darkness and well beyond). But as a collector of the Legion (always my favorite super-hero team), I appreciate being able to own these now in hardcover omnibuses. I look forward to the next volume and then other volumes to pick up between Great Darkness and 5 Years Later. More Legion hardcover reprints, please.
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Russell STop Contributor: Star Wars
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
I am happy about the Fatal Five
Reviewed in the United States on July 28, 2021
Most of the stories including the "dramatic" one that ending this volume and trying to find out who the son of Brande is which I thought was merely a time filler because any true fan of the legion knows all the origins and how they were inducted into the legion. The other... See more
Most of the stories including the "dramatic" one that ending this volume and trying to find out who the son of Brande is which I thought was merely a time filler because any true fan of the legion knows all the origins and how they were inducted into the legion. The other stores were also not too great. The better ones were the stories with the Fatal Five and that made up for it. I paid a lot of money for it and felt that I did not get my money''s worth even though I love the legion in all of its incarnations. I wasn''t too crazy about the art either. I got the apology but I am not sure is i will get the next part.
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Doug Giffin
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Nice Collection of Less Than Stellar Stories
Reviewed in the United States on March 29, 2021
If you''re considering buying this, you probably know what you''re in for. This is a nicely designed and executed collection of Legion tales that are pretty bad. Still, if you''re a fan like I am, it fills in that hole on the bookshelf.
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Top reviews from other countries

Runmentionable
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Treading water
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 13, 2021
DC''s attitude to reprints of the Legion''s long history is perplexing. The dated and naive but adorable Silver Age stories are, at time of writing this review, only available in hefty, pricey Omnibus editions. Much of the best of the later work (such as the Cockrum/Grell...See more
DC''s attitude to reprints of the Legion''s long history is perplexing. The dated and naive but adorable Silver Age stories are, at time of writing this review, only available in hefty, pricey Omnibus editions. Much of the best of the later work (such as the Cockrum/Grell stories from the early-mid seventies, and above all, the "Great Darkness Saga", and beyond, from the Paul Levitz era of 1982-1989) is resolutely out of print. And yet, this amiable but frankly mediocre era (1980-81) is collected between hard covers for our delectation and delight. Go figure. I confess to enjoying it. I''m a Legion fan but I don''t own copies of the original comic books for this period, and felt my money was better wasted plugging the gap with this than in hunting down the floppies. But it would be hard to recommend this book to anyone but hardcore Legion fans. It''s not that it''s particularly bad, it''s just terribly uninspired. Most of the stories are written by Gerry Conway, who didn''t particularly want the gig and had no real feel for it. He did his best but there''s no real sense of direction on display. The main artist is Jimmy Janes, who''s also doing his best but who never produces anything beyond generically competent superhero art of the style that prevailed in this period. I quite enjoyed the book overall, in a benignly nostalgic way, but I can barely remember a thing about it. There are some highlights. One story is illustrated by Jim Sherman, who''d worked on the series a year or two prior to this. He''s allowed to ink his own pencils and all the potential of his earlier work, which was sometimes marred by unsympathetic inkers, is revealed: sensational stuff. There''s also a story by J.M de Matteis and Steve Ditko which is as mad as a mahogany frying pan and hugely enjoyable. Ditko was largely off the boil by this time but inker Bob Wiacek works hard to downplay the infelicities of latterday Ditko pencils. That story was originally found behind an issue cover drawn by George Perez, which now forms the cover for the book as a whole, and all the original issue covers are included too. Most of them are by Dick Giordano and, as you''d expect from that, they''re very good. The Perez cover is symobolically significant, of course, because the arrival of Gorgeous George (and Marv Wolfman) at DC in mid-1980 really marks the point when DC, rather than Marvel, start to become the creative power in the mainstream comics world of the era. As well as issues 260-271 of the Legion''s own title, the book also includes the three-part miniseries "Secrets of the Legion of Super-Heroes". It''s indicative of the Legion''s popularity among hard-core comics readers that what was only the third-ever DC miniseries was devoted to them - and it predates Marvel''s first miniseries by almost two years. It''s kinda fun. The plot was the work of E. Nelson Bridwell, who in 1964 became the first ever person to emerge from comics fandom to work in the industry. A self-confessed oddball, if you''d pitched Bridwell as a character to the producers of "Big Bang Theory" they''d have rejected him as too far-fetched. His obessive logic and fannish devotion to trivia, though, were such that he could come up with the plot here, in which retelling the origin of every member of the Legion - almost 30 characters - is actually essential to the story. The tale also manages to add extra layers to the origin of the team as a whole. It''s a fun, if inessential, excursion. The book is rounded off with an overall introduction by Paul Levitz. Another reviewer finds it "hubristic", but that''s an odd interpretation. I found it refreshingly honest for a comic book collection in its admission that the material in question is not from the first rank, and it pays warm and genuine tribute to Conway, Bridwell and the other creators. As a package of not-especially-good material, it''s hard to see how DC could have done a better job with this. But, just to reiterate, anyone other than hardcore Legion fans or late Bronze Age obsessives need not apply.
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Carlos José Santos Dias
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
5 *****
Reviewed in Canada on April 10, 2021
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Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale

Legion of Super-Heroes: Before the high quality discount Darkness Vol. 1 outlet sale