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May 11, 2010

Touring the Cosmos: R.E.B.E.L.S. #15

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Written by: mike
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In this installment of Touring the Cosmos, we are going to be looking at a book that I have wanted to spotlight for a while. Lately in the DCU, there has been more important cosmic type stuff that needed to be looked at, but finally we will be able to look at R.E.B.E.L.S.!!! I know, I know, you’re all sitting there staring at this saying, “WHY?!?!” Let me tell you, this has been one of my favorite DC books coming out for a while.

The newest team of R.E.B.E.L.S

Let’s start with a quick look at the history of this title. The R.E.B.E.L.S. (Revolutionary Elite Brigade to Eradicate L.E.G.I.O.N. Supremacy) is a force created by Vril Dox in order to battle L.E.G.I.O.N. Vril is the son of Brainiac, the Superman enemy, and is a 10th level intellect. You see, Vril used to lead L.E.G.I.O.N. (Licensed Extra-Governmental Interstellar Operatives Network), but had recently lost control of it and created R.E.B.E.L.S. in order to take it back.

L.E.G.I.O.N. was created to protect planets and sectors of the universe, by way of force. But here is the catch: those planets under protection have to sign a huge contract and pay huge amounts of money to Vril and his L.E.G.I.O.N. in order to get this protection. No doubt, Vril Dox being immensely intelligent had his ways to “protect.” For a time he even had Lobo under his employ among many other powered humanoids, but most currently uses robots of his own design. Now that L.E.G.I.O.N. and his robots have been usurped, Vril has resorted to creating R.E.B.E.L.S., in order to battle and take back control of L.E.G.I.O.N.

Now I hope that wasn’t too confusing, because it can be. Don’t let L.E.G.I.O.N. confuse you with The Legion of Superheroes, because these are two different entities of two different time periods. R.E.B.E.L.S. and L.E.G.I.O.N. have both been made regular titles in the past, but have never really had too much success despite the alternative read to that OTHER intergalactic peacekeeping force (you know, the ones with the green rings and all).

R.E.B.E.L.S. #15

Publisher: DC Comics
Writer: Tony Bedard
Artist(s): Claude St. Aubin and Scott Hanna
Cover: Kalman Andrasofszky


Now let us look at the latest installment in the R.E.B.E.L.S. series.

Right now we are at the end of the war between Starro and his forces of mind-controlled slaves, and Vril and his R.E.B.E.L.S. Vril, with the help of characters like Adam Strange, Captain Comet, and Despero, had managed to defeat Starro and his forces, even though things looked very bleak throughout the war.

This issue picks up with two points of view throughout the comic. On one hand we have Vril and the R.E.B.E.L.S. They are all attending the beheading of Starro at the hands of the tyrant Despero. It is a huge celebration, because not only did Starro lose control of L.E.G.I.O.N., but he lost a lot of his followers, and his empire is in shambles. Now that Vril has regained control of L.E.G.I.O.N., he has two things to contend with. The first being rebuilding the L.E.G.I.O.N., and the second being regaining what little trust he had in the first place.

The other angle we see throughout the comic is through the eyes of Starfire. A Titan favorite, it looks as though R.E.B.E.L.S. fans are going to be treated to a new addition to the ranks. Starfire had currently realized that her relationships on Earth would never work, and needed to find a change of scenery. Having no actual planet to call her own, she went to visit the site of what used to be her planet, Tamaran. There she comes across an unexpected surprise….

Tony Bedard has been doing wonders with this title since the beginning. I had never been a R.E.B.E.L.S. fan in the past, but decided to give the title a try when it started, and have been loving it ever since. Vril Dox is one of the best characters out there, and Bedard has the perfect handle of the egomaniac. This issue itself was a bit boring, but necessary. It has been a long war, with new characters being created, and a whole sector of the universe being explored. From issue to issue Bedard has been fleshing out the characters more and more, and shows that he really knows how to handle a big cast.

The artist team has taken a slight change the last couple issues. Andy Clarke was sharing duties with Claude St. Aubin, but St. Aubin and Hanna have now taken over. What I really like about the art in this book is that each planet we visit, we are treated to a new environment and given the feeling that sometimes we are actually jumping from planet to planet. Some artists do not differentiate enough, but this team has done a good job. At times the art in this book can seem a bit less crisp than it should be, but this sometimes happens when such a big cast needs to be portrayed at all times. I would also be remiss to not mention that the cover of this issue is absolutely stunning.

Like I mentioned before, I really love this book. Vril Dox + Tony Bedard = tons of great dialogue. Being a fan of the cosmic genre, I love getting away to new planets, and St. Aubin and Hanna have really given me that new look of scenery. I think that this book will get a lot more people noticing it with the addition of Starfire, and it is duly earned. Even though this issue may have been a bit slow, it was a good topper to the last arc, and a good beginning to the next era in R.E.B.E.L.S. lore.

Rating: 3.5/5

Mike Parente



  1. Kristin

    Starfire can’t handle her human relationships? So…does that mean her boyfriends get angry that she’s running around town practically naked?

  2. Billy

    I’ve never read any LEGION but I did really enjoy the animated stuff they were in (STAS, JL).

  3. […] of my favorite DC titles has to be R.E.B.E.L.S. When I first picked it up, I wasn’t sure what I was in for. L.E.G.I.O.N. and R.E.B.E.L.S. […]

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