Review of Braniac 5, By Johnathan

Not really. As with all of the core Legion members, Braniac 5 would be wicked hard to review, just because there have been so many versions of all of them. This is a review of a specific iteration of Braniac 5, circa 1982 (or 2982), Legion of Super-Heroes #284, just about when Paul Levitz started writing the series. It's a pretty good yarn, featuring plenty of fight scenes, more than a few meetings of the Legion council or whatever and a bit of plastic surgery. All of this is immaterial, however. The really important part of the issue happens about halfway through. Let's watch:
Hey, Dungeons and Dragons! The Legion is composed of nerds! Now I'm pretty sure that TSR was doing one of its rounds of advertising in DC comics at the time, so this might just be some blatant product placement. I'm also pretty sure that I don't care: there's only so much character development that can be done with troubled romances and familial turmoil - after a while it all just runs together in the memory. This, though, this did more to humanize these guys in one panel than, like, the previous twelve issues. Check it out, they're doing basically what my friends and I used to do! Plus, character classes have gotten cooler over the course of a thousand years - that Four-Armed Cyclopean Barbarian would kick the ass off of my Half-Elven Bard. Wonder who's playing the Wee-Legged Lizard Man?

The reason that this post is focusing on Braniac 5 is that he's clearly more into it that everyone else, which makes sense. He's right about them not finishing, too. They get called away to fight this guy:
Who doesn't look so much like a giant teddy bear in the rest of the comic, more's the pity. Then, after they're done:

Haw! That's all he wants to do! I love it so. Braniac 5 as the Legion Nerdboy is to me far preferable to all the times that he was a Spock- or Data-clone. Or that time that he went insane. Hell, I like it better than I do the version on the cartoon, and he's the best Brainy there's been in years. From now on my mental image of Braniac 5 in his off hours is going to be him in a wizard hat, rolling up NPCs.