Legion of Super-Villains

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The Villains confront Superboy, cover by Curt Swan

The Legion of Super-Villains

An organization of super-criminals from the 30th century A.D (earlier stated as 21st century). Its members include Lightning Lord (Lightning Lad's older brother, Mekt Rannz, who can hurl lightning bolts), Cosmic King from Venus who has the power of chemical transmutation, and Saturn Queen (no relation to Saturn Girl) who has power of telepathic thought casting and mind control.(S No. 147/3, Aug 1961: "The Legion of Super-Villains!"), all of whom are fully aware that Clark Kent is secretly Superman (Act No. 283/1, Dec 1961: "The Red Kryptonite Menace!"). The Super-Villains are implacable foes of the Legion of Super-Heroes (S No. 147/3, Aug 1961: "The Legion of Super-Villains!").

In August 1961, the Legion of Super-Villains help Lex Luthor break out of Metropolis Prison so that they can ally themselves with the notorious renegade scientist in an elaborate scheme to annihilate Superman by luring the Man of Steel to a distant planetoid "in another solar system" and imprisoning him inside a deadly "Kryptonite force-screen". For a time the plot proceeds as the villains have anticipated and it appears that Superman will succumb to Kryptonite poisoning, but the Man of Steel is ultimately freed from the deathtrap and Luthor and his super-villainous allies are apprehended, through the ingenuity of Superman and the heroic intervention of Cosmic Man, Lightning Man and Saturn Woman, three members of the Adult Legion of Super-Heroes (S No. 147/3: "The Legion of Super-Villains!").

In an ironic adventure, for a brief time the Super-Villains even become the only official members of the Legion of Super-Heroes after the evil intentions of Dynamo Boy result in the expulsion of all the previous heroes (Adv No. 331/1, Apr 1965: "The Triumph of the Legion of Super-Villains!").

The Legion of Super-Villains of these stories is an adult organization normally living in a time somewhat later than that of the teen Legion of Super-Heroes. But these three villains show a fondness for time-travel. They not only battle the adult Legion of their own time, but they also journey to the past to engage Superboy and the teen Legion in the 30th century as well as Superman in the 20th century.

In a later chronicle, it is revealed that originally Tarik the Mute (enraged at losing his voice at the hands of the Science Police) had instituted a School for Super-Villains at the same time as the teen Legion was operating. Aided for a period by a blackmailed Colossal Boy, Tarik recruits Legion rejects and super criminals from all over the galaxy to form the original Super-Villains organization—with additional original members including the traitorous Nemesis Kid, Spider Girl, Ronn Kar, and Radiation Roy (Adv No. 372, Sep 1968: "School for Super-Villains!").

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