30th Century World Politics
by Todd Schoonover
I'm going to focus particularly on the world politics since 30th century politics (most notably the United Planets) have been taking an even more prominent role in the goings on of the Legion. Of course, politics have also played a significant role in the Legion stories in the past .
Some of the most compelling stories had to do with the Legion getting involved in politics. Who can forget the "Outlawed Legionnaires" in Adventure when they had to meet in Lex Luthor's secret headquarters in the sewers because they had been outlawed by Earthgov? There was the insightful "War Between the Days and the Nights" when Lu and Cham saved Pasnic from continuing its foolish war. And speaking of wars, Chemical King sacrificed his life to prevent one, while another brought Garth and Imra back to full membership, while a third showed how effective a force the Subs could be. And who can forget Gim's mom being elected President of Earth?
Almost every planet that we've seen has had its own politics that have influenced the Legion in one way or another, so let's take a moment to reflect on those that have had the most effect.
Bgtzl: Similar to Earth in most ways, Bgtzl has had to develop intense privacy laws due to the fact that natives can walk through walls. The laws for violating banned areas are incredibly strict, though some still choose to do so.
Bismoll: While a democracy in many ways, its political servants are chosen by draft instead of popular election. This resulted in Matter-Eater Lad's removal from the Legion in order to serve his world. It is unclear how long a term as a Senator is since Tenzil seemed to be in the position for life, until he was legally declared dead.
Because of their unique ability to eat anything, the populace is watched over by the Calorie Police. This "Big Brother" organization ensures that people aren't going to eat the planet out of existence.
Braal: A thriving planet until heavy speculation resulted in an economic crash that they have never recovered from. Because of the economic troubles, children are sent to work at age 14. The ongoing economic depression was only slightly helped by the tourism industry resulting from magna-ball.
Recently, the planetary leaders declared war on Imsk in order to attempt an economic recovery through war time revenues. This plan succeeded in a limited extent since the planet is now occupied by Imskian forces.
Cargg: This planet is a hot bed of political activity in recent years as the populace split between pro-United Planets supporters and Dark Circle sympathizers. It was through the assistance of Valor and Shadow Lass, that the Dark Circle cult was routed from the planet.
Colu: Once ruled by computers, the planet reveres the Dox line by granting them the title of Brainiac because of their super-intelligence. Lead by a technocracy, the populace is allowed to spend their time in research as long as they do no research forbidden subjects (like time travel). In fact, the population is prohibited from even thinking about the forbidden subjects in the ultimate form of repression and subjugation.
The Dark Circle: Five planets banded together form the Dark Circle. This organization seeks universal domination through trickery and treachery. Their clone technology helped them infiltrate their enemies, such as when Ontiir worked in the United Planets. The Dark Circle cult is currently pursuing Cargg, though the Legion has helped sway public opinion there.
The Dominion: Mostly uninhabitable, the planet is populated in city-states across its surface. It's people, known as Dominators, are broken into a very strict caste system, based upon the size of the disk on their forehead. Once you have been assigned to a caste, you cannot advance though some do override the wishes of the higher castes.
The Dominion recently invaded Earth and secretly took control of the government. Eventually, they were routed, but not before they had done critical harm to the Earth's populace and reputation.
Durla: Civil war centuries ago made the planet highly radioactive and unable to support life as it then existed. The radiation caused the surviving natives to adapt to their environment, taking on various shapes as they needed to survive.
Since then the Durlans have banded together in distinct tribes, which continue their wars against each other. These tribes are ruled by Elders who set the laws for their tribe. Disputes are settled through single combat to the death. Furthermore, to keep the tribe the strongest, when children reach the age of maturity, siblings are pitted against one another in deadly combat. The weakest is killed, ensuring that the tribe is as strong as it can be.
Durlans are extremely xenophobic and do not allow visitors to their planet. Likewise, Durlans are feared by most in the Universe because of their ability to disguise themselves as anyone or anything. These racial tensions often lead to conflicts. Chameleon Boy acts as an ambassador, showing that Durlans are not to be feared. On the other hand, Yera's replacement of Shrinking Violet helped to further fan the flames of fear.
Earth: Ruled by Earthgov, Earth still purports to be a democracy, though it is through computer selection that candidates for President are chosen. Once in office, the President works virtually autonomous from the populace, working with his or her advisors in planning the planetary welfare and defending against invaders. Because of this, it was easy for the Dominion to take control behind the scenes and manipulate the populace. The same holds true for Universo's takeovers.
Earthgov has always caused trouble for the Legion since they had based themselves on Earth. Earthgov was always the first to limit the Legion's powers and membership through tax laws and the like, but when the Legion was needed to protect it, they always came running.
One of the most interesting twists in Legion politics was when Marte Allon was elected President while her son was a Legionnaire. Because of her son's ties to the Legion, she chose to come down on the Legion aggressively in order to assuage any signs of favouritism. Her first such act was to arrest Brainiac 5.
Other important Earthgov stories included the World War VII storyline. Deregon, leader of the Australian continent, had ties to the Dark Circle and produced a bomb that would have killed billions. As such, the Legion went after him and prevented the war at the cost of Condo's life. Another story was when Marte resigned and the Legion had to protect the candidates for president, with Desai winning the election only to hire Universo as a consultant.
Earth had also been home base for the United Planets until they severed their ties with them during the Dominion takeover. After the conflict was resolved, it was the war heroes who were chosen to lead the world, Jacques Foccart and Troy Stewart, who proved themselves effective leaders of the rebel force moreso than they ever did as Legionnaires.
Femnaz: A matriarchal world, this planet had at one time been solely inhabited by women as all men were exiled. Later, the Queen allowed men back on the world after the female Legionnaires showed them the error of their ways.
Hykraius: The natives of this planet live in the Great Mother Ocean who they worship as their life giver. Because of the harsh conditions of their environment for humanoids, they have very little dealings with anyone but each other. There really isn't any existent government body, but the residents follow the tides of the Great Mother Ocean.
Imsk: Homeworld of Shrinking Violet, Imsk has been the most politically explored planet next to Earth. Back in the 70s, we learned that the Imskians hunt a race of space dragons who possess a certain energy and radiation that helps to facilitate their ability to shrink. Garth, Imra and Gim assisted Salu in collecting some of this energy only to react to it and be hunted by Bounty.
Imsk is rumoured to shrink periodically, which at least one former writer used as true. The Imskians have always been apprehensive of offworlders because of the vulnerability during this time. Violet has even at times shown distrust for her fellow Legionnaires when it comes to her homeworld.
A very political story about Imsk was the replacement of Vi by Yera. The Imsk Liberation Movement, headed by Micro Lad, wanted to end Imsk's membership in the United Planets and remove the Science Police from the planet. Essentially it was a separatist and isolationist movement that would have resulted in a planet ruled by ruthless authoritarianism. Through the efforts of the Legion Espionage Squad, the movement was defeated though the general public still is apprehensive of offworlder presence on Imsk.
When Braal attacked Imsk unprovoked, their fears were justified. The subsequent war was difficult on both planets, though Imsk triumphed through the use of a bomb that affected the Braalians native power of magnetism. Now, Imsk occupies Braal in order to keep them from attacking again.
Khundia: Home of the Khundish Empire, the Khunds as a race are very arrogant and warlike. They are lead by Warlords who espouse the belief that might is right. When there is a conflict, it is settled in "Challenge Courts" as Cham, Jo and Vi found out.
The Khundish Empire has forced its way across the universe, invading worlds who were weaker than them. With the fall of the Dominion, they have directed their energies to capturing the Dominion worlds and are currently leaving the United Planets alone. The Khunds also follow the will of Glorith, who they consider the Demon Mother.
Kol: Dawnstar and Brainiac 5 landed on this planet accidentally at one time. Their primitive culture is more of a cult lead by Reverend Mother Awian through whom Kol speaks. The Arms of Kol worship him as a deity and he supplies them with manna, or food. The planet is now quarantine, so the current society is unknown.
Lallor: After almost killing all life on their planet, the Lallorians have given up their warlike ways to become the ultimate pacifists. All weapons are prohibited on the planet, and they survive through trust, friendship and harmony.
Lythyl: Life here is brutal, as the populace is divided between masters and slaves. Three Judges of Lythyl determine whether a new arrival is a master or slave. The masters lives are just as difficult as the slaves though as they fight to maintain their power over the others. Their society was torn apart when Brin Londo planted a flower in their unyielding sacred stones, and took Myg from the planet. Myg later went on to become the second Karate Kid.
Marzal: Founded by the survivors of a group of Africans who had been captured for sale a slaves, its people were very racist against whites. Spending most of their time in an alternate dimension, the populace realized that they needed to work together in order to survive in a mainly socialistic culture.
Naltor: A matriarchal society lead by their High Seer, the Naltorians lives are strongly influenced by their precognitive powers. Their abilities help influence their science technology as well as their government. Because of their precognitive powers, the United Planets have prohibited them from participating in the speculation market. Even with their skill in science and technology, their society is based largely on mysticism. The High Seer is the symbol as well as the final word in all things that concern Naltor.
Orando: A medieval world based on mysticism and magic, the planet is ruled by a monarchy while its people live in a feudalistic society. Extremely xenophobic, the populace feared joining the United Planets though King Voxv and his daughter felt it was time to make the connection. Their fears have been backed up by the invasion of their planet by the Legion of Super-Villains. After that the planet was isolated in another dimension to prevent further invasions.
Recently though, Projectra returned her planet to its rightful place in the Universe after proving herself to her people and her advisors. She has taken former Earth President Marte Allon on as an advisor, and it was with the help of the United Planets that the world fended off the Khunds.
Pasnic: Forever separated by the difference between light and dark, this world had been suffering from an ongoing war until the Legion intervened. Arranging a cease-fire between the Kryofys and the Laptuirs. King Jonn has gone on to serve with the United Planets while King Lyrl continues to rule the planet along with the absentee Jonn.
Rimbor: More like a rough and tumble colony world, anything goes on Rimbor at least unofficially. The Black Market is the true ruling force of the planet with various gangs vying for power and control.
Sklar: A client world of the United Planets, it is ruled by an autocratic matriarchy. The Sklarians have been kept at arms length for some technology because of their tendency to be loose with their secrets.
Sorcerer's World: Zerox, before its destruction during the Magic Wars, was a planet of magic. There was no true government though the teachers were in control of the planet as well as their students. After its destruction, the survivors moved to Tharn, where Mordru took control. Mordru rules tyrannically, punishing his opponents and sometimes killing them.
Starhaven: Amerind emigrants from Earth settled this planet in an effort to find their own place in the universe away from the oppression they continued to receive on Earth. The government maintains an isolationist attitude in order to conserve their planet's peaceful environment. For the most part though, their society is not much different from their American Indian ancestors.
Talok VIII: A world torn apart by political unrest, the ruling class lives in highly technological cities while the "untouchables" are forced to live in the mountains and deserts. The cities are ruled by a mayor, who makes all decisions for the surrounding area.
The mountain men, or Yakka-Mahor, are a religious society lead by their religious leaders. Worshippers of Maakas, they fight a spiritual battle against the city dwellers, trying to achieve their equality on the planet. All natives of the planet place great stock in their ancestors, almost worshipping them, and remembering any slight for many generations.
Talok VIII first came into contact with the Legion when the Fatal Five had subjugated the wills of the leaders and taken control of the world. The city-states Shadow Champion, Tasmia Mallor, helped the Legion restore the rightful leaders.
Recently, a political marriage occurred in an attempt to join the warring forces. Grev Mallor, of the Shadow Champion line, married the Yakka-Mahor's Lady Memory who had years earlier almost succeeded in conquering the world when she made Mon-El insane.
Te'all: A community with one mind, the entities who reside there are linked together in a common mind and therefore no government exists as all are the government. When Quislet declared his independence and broke from the society he was spurned for both being an individual and for stealing the one bit of metal that could contain their energies.
Titan: One of the best run bureaucracies in the universe, corruption and inefficiency are weeded out through the native psychic powers. No crime exists due to the radiation of the asteroid belt. Strict laws exist about invasion of privacy, though most Titanese are skilled at shielding their thoughts. There is a ruling family, of which Eve Aries is a member, though their role is more that of a figurehead than ruler.
Trom: Now an isolated world with only one inhabitant, the planet is offlimits from all due to the murder of its inhabitants by Roxxas. Prior to that time though, Trom's society thrived while laws existed to ensure that their native transmutative abilities were not used to gain personal wealth or against other living beings.
Venegar: A lush resort world, their society and government is based on their tourist industry. At one point though, the planet was conquered by native Sarya after she had found the Emerald Eye of Ekron. She ruled as a dictator until the people were able to overthrow her.
Weber's World (and the United Planets): A "planet sized portable office building for the United Planets", this man-made satellite houses all the trappings of the United Planets from accountants to ambassadors.
The United Planets has served as both a peace keeper and an explorer during the years of the Legion. Many stories stem from the UP conflicts with the Dark Circle, the Dominion and the Khunds. In fact, Weber's World itself has been the victim of infiltration of the Dark Circle in the person of Ontiir.
The U.P. has provided its technology as well as the skills of the Science Police to those planets that select to join as full members in the U.P. In fact, recent history shows that not only do you get the protection of the United Planets but you are also offered the opportunity to select a resident of your planet to serve as a member of the Legion of Super-Heroes.
The U.P. also has its own military force which is one of the best forces in the universe, thanks to the abilities of Chuck Taine and Luornu Durgo Taine, the instructors of U.P. Militia Academy located on Xolnar.
In the post Zero Hour 30th Century, the United Planets has taken a more aggressive interest in the Legion, making them more a public relations group than an independent peace keeping unit. It will be interesting to see this new arrangement evolve as members are forced into the Legion by the U.P. We've seen the start of this, but it won't be long before others are added as well.
Winath: An agrarian society, Winath exists as a sovereign state of the United Planets. As such, it follows the will of the U.P. while supplying the majority of their food needs.
Xanthu: Ruled by the Tribune, the hereditary ruler of the planet, Xanthu is a mainly a space oriented planet. While most of the populace can run their own lives, the planetary heroes are little more than slaves to the government as illustrated when Thom Kallor was instructed to return home to guard the world in Atmos' place.
All characters are DC Comics
This piece is © 2001 by Todd Schoonover .
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