“The Initiation of Proty II” or “The Super-Tests of the Super-Pets” (Adventure Comics #322, July, 1964)

How’s that for a cumbersome title? But it says what the story is, and, while it might feel like filler in the midst of a series of stories building towards a confrontation with the Time Trapper, it is firmly a part of that epic, built around the Legion’s plans to confront the villain.

Left with the Super-Pets to guard the clubhouse while the Legionnaires fly off to try and break the Iron Curtain of Time, Proty decides he wants to be a member of their group. (Does anyone else find it odd that the Legion brings in the animals to guard the clubhouse, when the Substitutes are available? Seems a little insulting.)

The Super-Pets come off as snobbish and judgmental as their human friends (they even have the “high tribunal” style table with name plates!) as Proty tries out for their team. It’s as if they want him to fail. I can’t help but wonder why he would be interested in joining. It’s like, are we all supposed to be friends after you’ve treated me like a dog for 18 pages? (Sorry, Krypto.) I’d say the same about the Legionnaires, but it doesn’t seem that they were ever that nasty to their successful applicants. To some of the rejects, though, they were pretty awful. Again, I wonder if Edmond Hamilton belonged to a frat during his college days.

On thing that tweaked at me was that both the pets and narration kept rubbing our noses in the fact that Proty “only” has the ability to mimic people and objects. The implication is that that’s not a super power. Um, is it not for Chameleon Boy either? Kind of a strange insinuation.

The great Sheldon Moldoff inked this issue, and it shows. His inks look very good on Forte’s pencils, and Superboy actually looks like Superboy in this one.

Overall a fun story, a typical Silver Age series of labors for the hero. And, again, the Legion stands out by being the first DC Comic to really start to build issue-to-issue continuity. (Although Batman was about to start doing it too, with stories like Alfred “dying” and becoming the Outsider.)

Firsts: Light Lass gets a new logo. You can’t see it, but she tells you so!

Roll Call: Mon-El, Superboy, Phantom Girl, Sun Boy, Lightning Lad, Polar Boy, Night Girl, Chlorophyll Kid, Fire Lad, Brainiac 5, Light Lass, Saturn Girl, Chameleon Boy, Ultra Boy, Proty II, Comet, Krypto, Beppo, Streaky




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1 thought on ““The Initiation of Proty II” or “The Super-Tests of the Super-Pets” (Adventure Comics #322, July, 1964)

  1. Pingback: Legion of Super-Heroes Re-Read – "The Legion of Super-Outlaws!" (Adventure Comics #324, September, 1964) - Steven H. WilsonSteven H. Wilson

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