DC; September 1981
Cover by George Pérez
Title: “Castle Grimbor Must Fall!”
Synopsis: As solid-energy “space chains” choke off the Earth, the Legion launches a desperate attack against Grimbor the Chainsman.
Writer: Roy Thomas
Penciler: Jimmy Janes
Inker: Frank Chiaramonte
Review: A confession: As one of this reviewer’s childhood favorites, this issue is probably graded a little high. It’s still pretty good, though. Roy Thomas’ script holds up well, capturing the desperation of both the Legion and Earth’s population as they struggle against Grimbor’s chains. The villain is one of those should-have-been-even-cooler characters that seem abundant in the Legion’s time, though he’s actually pretty menacing this time out. On the art front, Jimmy Janes isn’t bad — you can almost see some Ditko in his figures — but he has a penchant for odd-shaped panels that distract from the storytelling.
Cool factor: Grimbor. This villain could’ve been a contender. Also, the George Pérez cover. Pérez was always a strong storyteller, but it’s in his early ’80s covers for DC where you first start seeing the fine renderer he would become.
Not-so-cool factor: Princess Projecta’s “augmatron,” a handy-but-all-too-convenient plot device.
Character quotable: “Then cram away, Lightning Lad — but I warn you, here and now — you will find me a bottomless maw!” — Grimbor the (kinda icky) Chainsman.
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