Thursday, March 18, 2010

War Rocket Ajax#22: Haters, Me, Four Bros

War Rocket Ajax#22: Haters, Me, Four Bros

Rusty Shackles for the WIN!As I mentioned before, I won an "Ups to All My Haters" contest to be on War Rocket Ajax with my Hater story about the time in Halifax when I almost killed a man. A story featuring Betty, Veronica, Wonder Woman and Thor!

Eugene and Chris decided to do a live-to-tape-digital Edit-Free-Ajax along with two guests:

1) Rusty Shackles, one of the artists Sims has somehow bullied into working for him for the pleasure of being yelled at for being late on work that he is not being paid for and called a Judas for even thinking of doing work for someone else. He wants to do an ISW cover. Here is his site.

PURE CONCENTRATED EVIL!2) Matt D. Wilson, of the International Society of Super-Villains and recent writer transcriber of HATE YOU FOREVER: How to Channel Your Rage Into Effective Supervillainy. Check out a sample chapter on The ISS here!

You can listen to the show here.

The show is in three parts. The first part is a round-table discussion by the Talkers Four sparked by listener questions. The second part, they invite me in and I SHILL like a madman, we discuss Player Uno's tights and I then tell my Hater story which leads to some hating on Giant Tiger by Chris Sims (with me pitching in)

Then we had an 8 person War Rocket Ajax tournament to crown the Saviour of the Universe during which I surprised the War Rocket Ajax by championing Abraham Lincoln.

Sims and I disagreed a bit about Abraham Lincoln and Xena, Warrior Princess. I was arguing that if you are picking Xena, you also get Dark Xena. Sims argued that the picture submitted for the tournament showed decaffeinated Xena and not Dark Xena. My argument than and now is that Xena and Dark Xena are the same person. You pick one and you get both.

I would also argue that if you pick Abraham Lincoln, you are by extension getting Robot Abraham Lincoln as well as Regular Abraham Lincoln, Rushmore Abraham Lincoln and Penny Golem Abraham Lincoln. (A giant Abraham Lincoln made out of Abraham Lincoln pennies.) In other words, Abraham Lincoln is a platonic ideal, you pick one you get the whole kit and caboodle.

Sims disagrees, proof that he is capable of being wrong.

Anyway, I had fun, told my story without making a complete idiot out of myself, got a few laughs from the War Rocket Ajax crew, so it's all good.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Wrestling Ritual of the Handshake

The Wrestling Ritual of the Handshake

A friend of mine Kevin Marshall just started a blog for the Albany Times Union newspaper called Kevin Marshall: In the Present Tense. And while I have some philosophical difficulties with old media trying to hitch a ride on the internet and doing so by convincing bloggers to write for them gratis, I do hope that the exposure helps Kevin succeed in other ways, if only by getting him more readers for his new Mixed Martial Arts blog: Mixed Marshall Arts.

Any and hoo, one of Kevin's first posts was a discussion an essay about hand-shaking: Give Us a Hand, Not an Injury.

I started to reply to Kevin's blog but within ten minutes I was up to a thousand words and it felt more like a blog post than a reply. Or at least I felt like it would be poor form to write a longer reply than the original post.

Two things occurred to me while reading Kevin's post.

First and very quickly, Bill Simmons, the Sports Guy of ESPN, has written about a baseball player. The name escapes me but he has a different hand-shake for every member of his team! The mind boggles...

Right found it, it's Nick Swisher (now of the Yankees) who has 24 different home-run hand-shakes - one for each player on his team. Keep in mind that if say 12 players on your team hit a home run in the year, you are having a very good year. Dude is ridiculously over-prepared.

I also wonder if he retires handshakes when a teammate gets traded. Or does the new replacement player inherit the handshake?

A more interesting and lengthy topic is handshakes in wrestling...

Handshakes in Wrestling

Just as background, because of my writing I have been made welcome in some wrestling backstage areas since 2001. From 2003 onwards, both as a wrestling publicist for the International Wrestling Syndicate and later as a colour commentator and ring announcer for IWS and Inter-Species Wrestling, I have been welcome in a lot more backstage areas.

There is no class for how you are supposed to handle the handshake ritual backstage. You are supposed to be smart enough to figure it out for yourself. But there are definitely rules and rituals.

First, and perhaps surprisingly, there are no handshake crushers backstage. (I am now guaranteeing that Kevin Steen will break two bones in my hand the next time that I see him.) Crushing handshakes are all about establishing dominance. There is no need of that in a wrestling dressing room. Dominance is established by the handshake but in a different way. The hierarchy of respect is built on who waits for their handshake.

The first rule is that you shake everyone's hand. The hierarchy is built on which guys you have to go up to and which guys you can wait to come to you.

The hierarchy can get quite complicated and there are a lot of inter-related and complicated relationships.

In a really rough order, here are some key factors:

1) Trainer or Gate-Keeper
No matter what other factors intrude, the guy who trained you or got you your first big break is always worthy of respect. No matter that his career completely eclipsed his mentor, Mick Foley always goes to see Dominic DeNucci. I don't wrestle so I don't have a trainer, but PCP Crazy F'N Manny is the guy who gave me my first job in wrestling as a publicist and writer for the IWS, so no matter what else happens, I am always going to find him and shake his hand.

2) Booker
Whoever holds the book, commands temporary respect, for as long as they are booker. This can be modified by the booker's ego. Some bookers welcome boot-lickers, while other bookers hold the book in secret - foregoing the respect due to them. One way to tell that a booker has lost control of the locker room is when the entire locker room starts paying respect to someone else that they would prefer was booker.

3) Age, Experience and Success
These matter in competing ways. A 25 year old who just started training is lower on the totem-pole than a 24 year old who has been wrestling since he was 15. The other key factor is how far up the wrestling ladder you have reached. If you wrestled for the WWE for five years and won some titles that is going to trump someone who has wrestled exclusively in church basements for twenty years.

All other things being equal, the more recently you were at the top of the mountain the more important it is.

4) Place on the Card
This is a variant of success, but more related to the local promotion and territory. All other things being equal, perennial champions rank higher than mid-carders who rank higher than jobbers.

5) Job as Status
Wrestlers are more important than referees who are more important than managers who are more important than ring announcers and commentators who are more important than wrestling valets who are more important than ring crew.

Female wrestlers who are not valets would rank equal to or just below referees, unless of course the promotion is all women like SHIMMER or NCW Femme Fatales.

Technicians like cameramen, photographers, DJs and lighting guys tend to be on par with ring announcers and commentators although if they are former or current wrestlers they get more respect then if they were just a technician or just a wrestler. Technicians who were never wrestlers sometimes get a free pass on handshakes, on the basis of them not knowing any better. This is not a compliment.

6) Skill as Status
If you are a hall-of-fame caliber talent it commands respect. Bakais is universally considered to be the best referee in Quebec over the last decade. He gets tons of respect. Jim Ross receives and Gordon Solie received more respect than Michael Cole ever will. (In case you were wondering. Michael Cole is waaaaaaaay better than me.)

7) When You Get to the Locker Room
The earlier that you get there, the more likely that people will come to you than you go to them.

8) Personal Relationships
This works both ways. Friends are more likely to greet each other as equals. Enemies are more likely to expect their rival to come to them and seethe when it doesn't happen. When someone owes you a favour they are more likely to come find you.

9) Guests
When someone is being brought in to a promotion for the first time and they are being advertised on the poster to sell more tickets, the guest has more status and even wrestlers who aren't in the match with him will come and thank the guest for coming.

10) Certainty or Doubt as Status
If you are not certain that you should go up to someone and shake their hands, than you should be doing it. When in doubt, it is your responsibility to go to them.

For me personally:

Given how low on the totem pole I am, when I get backstage, I generally go around and shake everyone's hands. I try to hit everyone, but most Quebec locker-rooms are pretty loose, so if I miss one or two people, it's not usually a big deal. I usually make one pass when I arrive and after that if I am going around for other reasons and I run into someone that I haven't greeted, I take care of it then. There are certain people that I would never miss though and I will make an effort to go out of my way to greet. Without naming names, the higher they are on the list above, the more likely I am to seek them out.

At the end of the show the ritual tends to be repeated. Usually in my case, accompanied by a quick word about the wrestler's match.

And yes, it does sometimes happen that I end up shaking the same wrestler's hand four or five times in one night. Usually at a certain point, we start giving each other quizzical looks - like haven't we done this already?

The other thing of interest is the hand-shake variants backstage.

Your regular handshake.

The handshake with the the third hand pat on top of the shake. (This isn't universal, but the guy doing the patting tends to be lower on the totem pole.) The variant to this is the handshake with a pat to the shoulder. The other variant is the handshake with a pat or squeeze of the upper arm.

The handshake with a bow. (For Japanese wrestlers.)

The handshake with the pull-in to a shoulder bump. (This tends to be restricted to wrestlers.)

The fist-bump. (Usually, when you have to reach to shake or there are people in the way.)

The shoulder pat when someone is too busy and you just want to acknowledge that you would have shaken hands if the other guy wasn't busy.

High-fives tend to be reserved for celebrations as opposed to greetings.

In Montreal, when greeting a female wrestler, valet or wrestler's girlfriend, the two cheek kiss is customary - as the saying goes, "As Montreal as a two cheek kiss!"

And the final and most important (and valued) handshake of them all is the one where you are slipping a wrestler his pay. This usually happens when you forgot to pick up envelopes before the show. It can also happen because you are giving the wrestler his merch money (especially in public) or for a variety of reasons you are giving the wrestler a bit more than he was expecting. (That last one is very rare though!)

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Fan Video of Praise the Violence

Fan Video of Praise the Violence 2010

We had someone taking photos, but I haven't seen them yet. I know that there were some people at the show taking photos, but I haven't seen any posted anywhere.

You can see me in all my geeky glory (and blues shades) in the last few seconds of the video announcing the Green Phantom as the new IWS Champion.

Llakor is "The Hated One" SOON on War Rocket Ajax

Llakor is "The Hated One" SOON on War Rocket Ajax

Rusty Shackles for the WIN!One of my favourite podcasts is War Rocket Ajax hosted by Chris Sims of The Invincible Super-Blog and Eugene Ahn aka Adam WarRock formerly of the People You Don't Know podcast.

One of the more popular segments is "Up to All My Haters" where they call out idiots hating on them. Recently, they had a contest for the best listener Hater story and I entered my story of the night in Halifax when I almost killed a man. Both Sims and Eugene independently picked it as their favourite and Sims dubbed me "The Hated One", so I will be on their next episode to tell the story live... and hopefully do some SHILL~!ing for YoungCuts and and IWS and ISW - especially the Connecticut show on April 3rd..

Here is the episode where they announced me as the WINNAR~!, along with a great interview with the writers of the Incredible Hercules namely, Greg Pak and Fred Van Lente. I actually get name-dropped twice because I twitter-asked a frivoulous question for Action Philosophers writer Fred Van Lente (What Action Philosopher is most like a Marvel Super-Hero?) that got a great answer including Van Lente revealing a new Spider-Man antagonist inspired by Steve Ditko and Ayn Rand.

I am excited and jazzed to be doing this. It's going to be live to tape so it will be an adventure in tight-rope walking!

Monday, March 8, 2010

IWS Praise the Violence 2010 - Results

March is the GREENEST Month
IWS Praise the Violence 2010
- Results

The International Wrestling Syndicate crowned new champions during an amazingly successful Praise the Violence show. The Green Phantom (in a surprise return) won a Triple Threat Triple Hell Death Match to earn a shot at Beef Wellington's IWS title and despite being thrown through a pane of plate glass by Beef, our Hardcore Hero was able to overcome and pin Beef to become the new IWS Champion.

IWS Praise the Violence 2010
Quick and Dirty Results
Saturday, March 6th, 2010
Le Skratch, Chomedey, Laval, Quebec

IWS Tag Team Titles match
IWS Champions The Untouchables 2.0 (Dan Paysan and Scott "Jagged" Parker)
vs. The Lean and Clean Machine The Rock 'N Roid Express (Franky the Mobster and Twiggy)

The Rock 'N Roid Express beat The Untouchables 2.0 in 8:45 to become new IWS Champions.

"Canada's Greatest Athlete" Shane Matthews accompanied by the Lovely Olivia vs. Sonny Dee

The Hot Property Shane Matthews beat Sonny Dee in 3:25.

IWS Canadian Title match
IWS Champions Shayne Hawke vs. Stinky the Homeless Guy

Shayne Hawke retained his title, beating Stinky in 5:52.

EXcesS vs. Heavy Maxxx Fury

EXesS beat Heavy Maxx Fury in 10:52.

Team Uno (Player Uno, Alex Silva and Mike Bailey) vs.
Équipe Merveille (Fred la Merveille, Mathieu St-Jacques and Pauly Platinum)

Team Uno beat
Équipe Merveille in 17:07 when Mike Bailey pinned Fred la Merveille.

Triple Threat Triple Hell Death Match (Glass, Thumbtacks and Barbed Wire)
PCP Crazy F'N Manny vs. The Triple X Sex XXXpress Sexxxy Eddy vs. The Green Phantom

The Green Phantom pinned both Eddy and Manny in 7:53 to earn a shot at Beef Wellington's IWS Title.

IWS Title Match IWS Champion Beef Wellington vs. The Green Phantom

The Green Phantom beat Beef Wellington in 4:53 to become the new IWS Champion.


IWS Praise the Violence 2010
Full Results

Let's be honest. 2009 was a bit of a disaster for the IWS. We had one great high point with X, our Tenth Anniversary, and then had a series of incredible bad luck with venues. We were discussing doing shows with no less than five different venues and for one reason or another we were never able to arrange anything. Partly, we were being stubborn because we wanted a venue where we could run a series of shows and build some momentum.
The last straw came when our favourite venue, the Medley shut down at the end of 2009, to be sold and torn down for condos.

So, even though Le Skratch didn't want to give us two dates in a row, we talked them into letting us have the venue on a basis where we could try dropping the price to see if that would increase attendance (and therefore increase beer sales). A lot of people, including people in our locker room, thought it would be our very last show. The documentary crew from Canal D thought they were documenting our death throes.

And then more than 200 people crammed into Le Skratch and we had our best non-Medley show since Breakout 2006.

On a personal note, if you were wondering: How long do you have to work behind-the-scenes at the IWS before you end up in the ring? In my case, I have been involved in the IWS in one form or another since 2001. As ring announcers, we have gone through Iron Mike Paterson (quit), Brian the Guppie (quit), Pat Laprade (busy working on his book), Nic Paterson (fired), Iron Mike Paterson again (quit when Nic was fired) and Giant Tiger (drunk and unconscious - face-down in his own drool) before Manny turned to me, gave me the mike and said, "There's no-one left to do this, don't screw up!"

... And I promptly almost broke my neck coming through the curtain. Fortunately, no one appeared to notice and I managed to get the crowd riled up for the first match... until I was interrupted by Beef Wellington who came to the ring to announce that Nic Paterson's last act as President before getting fired was to allow Beef to weasel out of defending his title in the Triple Threat Triple Hell Death Match.

In mid-explanation, Beef was cut off by the Green Phantom who came to the ring to announce that since the man who had fired him (Nic Paterson) had been fired, by the transitive laws of wrestling math, the Green Phantom had his job back and he wanted Beef's title. Beef suggested that if the Green Phantom wanted to earn a shot that he enter the Triple Threat Triple Hell Death Match and Beef would give the winner an immediate title shot. When the Green Phantom agreed, Beef gave him a low blow and scampered for the hills.

Originally, the Untouchables were scheduled to defend their IWS Tag Team Titles, but with Jimmy Stone off impersonating James Brown, Dan was forced to find a new tag team partner and he turned to a specialist, Professional Tag Team Partner, Scott "Jagged" Parker. By accepting the belt, Jagged became a 3-time IWS Tag Team Champion. Both teams started the match with some dissension - the Untouchables 2.0 had never tagged together and Jagged admitted to harboring a little bit of resentment that Dan had won a match forcing 2.0 to split up. Franky the Mobster and Twiggy, on the other hand, couldn't even agree if the name of their team was the Lean and Clean Machine (Franky's choice) or the Rock 'N Roid Express (Twiggy's preference).

Despite the pre-match dissension, both teams worked well together and had great chemistry with the Untouchables 2.0 having the advantage. Twiggy saved the day for his team by giving Franky an emergency injection. A juiced Franky destroyed Jagged and Dan, hitting Dan Paysan with the Credibility Statement sit-out choke slam allowing Twiggy to hit a top rope splash for the pin, the win and the tag belts for the new Champions, the Rock 'N Roid Express.

Shane Matthews, the Hot Property and self-proclaimed Canada's Greatest Athlete, disgraced the IWS at our last show by attacking Calgary Stampede veteran Kodiak Jack in the crowd and beating the pensioner with his own crutch. At Praise the Violence, Shane introduced his wife, the lovely Olivia. Unfortunately for Shane, his wife received so many compliments from the gallant hardcore soldiers of the IWS at ringside that Shane very nearly lost his match to IWS rookie Sonny Dee. (You may know Sonny better as "That Asian IWS Referee") Shane was able to regain his composure enough to hit Sonny with a huge power bomb before forcing the rook to tap to a Canuckstanian Crab.

Shayne Hawke celebrated his first anniversary as IWS Canadian Champ by beating Stinky the Homeless Guy with a Tomahawke. The scary thing for Shayne's future challengers is that he gets better with every single match, in this case beating a solid, smooth and powerful Stinky.

Sometimes to get the attention of "Le Saigneur de Stiff" EXesS, you have to punch him in the nose. In 2009, Heavy Maxx Fury earned EXesS' respect by beating him twice, once in an MMA match. For this match, EXesS put aside his bullying ways and proved just how dangerous he can be, using Maxx' momentum to turn pin-fall breaks into submissions and submission breaks into pin attempts and eventually into a pin.

We let Uno pick a team of two rookies and Fred la Merveille pick a team of two rookies for Praise the Violence. And then we let the six men beat the ever-loving crap out of each other. The match combined comedy, high-flying, stiff shots and four rookies desperately trying to prove to Fred, to Uno, to IWS management and to the IWS Hardcore Soldiers that they deserved to be there. In the end, Fred fell to a scintillating Shooting-Star Senton from Mike Bailey.

After the Triple Threat Triple Hell Death Match, Eddy was giving me shit for announcing him as "the only man stupid enough to wrestle death matches in a thong." Of course, Eddy could have been giving me shit as the (mind-boggingly) five-time IWS Champion. Unfortunately, and proving my point, Eddy killed his chance to win the match, when, to quote IWS Hardcore Solider Eric Ravenous, "
Eddy did a running over the top Plancha, taking out out his opponents, the ref, at least 3 rows of seats and landing on his head all in one fell swoop."

With Eddy dazed, the Green Phantom was able to use the Thonged One as a weapon against Manny, giving Eddy a Phantasm on to Manny and a pile of thumb-tacks, allowing the Hardcore Hero to pin both men.

Beef Wellington gave the Green Phantom no chance to recover, attacking while I was in the middle of announcing the winner of the match. Beef took quick advantage, throwing the Green Phantom through a pane of glass. Beef set up two chairs back to back in the hopes of crippling Phantom with the E. Coli pile-driver. In a desperate burst of strength, Phantom broke free, crotching Beef on the chairs. Before Beef could recover, Phantom blasted him through the chairs and finished him off with a Phantom Menace to claim the IWS title for the second time.

We are currently negotiating for more dates at Le Skratch and we hope to announce a series of dates soon.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Girls of the Legion of Super-Heroes Will Be BAD-ASS!

The Girls of the Legion of Super-Heroes Will Be BAD-ASS!

Chris Sims of the Invincible Super-Blog recently posted an article on Comics Alliance (as part of their Girl Week) called The Best and Worst Super-Heroines In Comics!

Now, there is only so much room in a column like that, but it seems like an egregious error to write an article about the best Super-Heroines in comics, and forget la creme de la creme, the best of the best, namely the women of the Legion of Super-Heroes.

Wearing my HATER-dom with pride I tasked... er tweeted... hrmm tweet-tasked? Mr. Sims with this and received the following reply:
theisb @Llakor HAAAAAAAAATER! I actually thought about 'em, but I couldn't pick one, and I would've had to do a bunch.
Since Mr. Chris Sims, alleged Super-Genius has chosen to ignore the astonishing ability of the Super-Heroines of the 31st Century. I might as well jump in and explain why they deserve our respect.

As Booster Gold has told us, and Chris Sims (again) recently reminded us, in the world of the future, the sexes are equal so anyone can punch anyone.

When I come from, a punch to the face is a show of respect!
The one criticism that could be levelled at the roster of the Legion of Super-Heroes is that the women seem to have a lot of passive powers: telepathy, shrinking, illusions, intangibility etc. This is true, in the entire cast there are only two girls that could be called powerhouses, but as written there are two key Legion elements that make these passive powers much more powerful.

First, most Legion powers are racial powers. They are powers that have evolved over the course of centuries and, for the Legionnaires, using those powers is as natural as breathing. This makes Saturn Girl's telepathy much more powerful than Professor Xavier's.

Secondly, most Legion villains concentrate on the powerhouses frequently leaving the Legionnaires with more passive powers to save the day usually through an imaginative use of their supposedly weaker abilities.

But that is all generalization, let's look at this cast of Bad-Ass Future Fems.

Go To Sleep!1. Saturn Girl
Real Name: Imra Ardeen
First appeared in Adventure Comics #247 (April 1958).
Legion Founder.
Super-Power: Telepathy

One of the three founders of the Legion and the smartest of the three. Lightning Lad was the power-house, Cosmic Boy was the tactician, but Saturn Girl was the strategist leading the Legion as elected leader for years and frequently using her telepathy to coordinate separated groups of Legionnaires. Imra may have been the first female character to lead a super-hero team (way back in 1963).

What makes Imra truly dangerous however is that when her back is against the wall, she can find new offensive ways of using her powers. Whether that is turning on the sleep centers of an opponent's brain or avoiding an opponent's attack because she knew what he was going to do before he did or "borrowing" a fighting technique from someone around her.

2. Triplicate Girl
Real Name: Luornu Durgo
First appeared in Action Comics #276 (May 1961)
Fourth member of the Legion.
Super-Power: Splits into three bodies.

Computo Kills Triplicate GirlBefore Karate Kid joined the Legion, Luornu was the resident martial artist, an expert in jiu-jitsu. Before joining the Legion, Luornu was the assistant (and it is strongly implied the bodyguard) to R.J. Brande the richest man of the 31st Century.

Braniac's creation Computo killed one of Triplicate Girl's bodies, but rather than quitting being a Super-Heroine, Luorno simply renamed herself Duo Damsel.

After marrying Bouncing Boy, they both retired from active duty and became reservist and trainers for the next generation of Legionnaires.

Luorno Dargo: Martial Artist, Bodyguard, Survivor, Drill Sergeant, BAD-ASS.

I hit you, you can't hit me. I hit you...3. Phantom Girl
Real Name: Tinya Wazzo
First appeared in Action Comics #276 (May 1961)
Fifth member of the Legion.
Super-Power: Intangibility.

Notice that by the time Tinya joins the Legion, the girls outnumber the boys, substantially so if you count Triplicate Girl as three Legionnaires instead of one.

Again like Luorno, Tinya is one of the best Legion martial artists before Karate Kid joins. The difference is that while Luorno throws people with jiu-jitsu, Tinya kicks people in the face. Her favorite tactic in fact is to run through an opponent and then kick him in the head from behind.

What makes Tinya a quintessential bad-ass is that she is a charter member of the Legion of Super-Heroes Espionage Squad. In other words, Tinya is a Super-Heroine who is also a SPY!

4. Supergirl
Real Name: Kara Zor-El
First Legion appearance in Action Comics #276 (May 1961)
Thirteenth member of the Legion
Super-Power: Being Supergirl

One of the two powerhouses that I mentioned above.

Here is the key to understanding Supergirl's place in the Legion. In the 20th Century, Supergirl is a neurotic wreck. Crippled by a lack of self-confidence, trying desperately to live up to the expectation of being Superman's cousin. The original died at the hands of the Anti-Monitor in a moment that was both her best moment in the 20th Century and summed up her weaknesses - beating the Anti-Monitor to the brink of defeat, but allowing a moment's distraction to give the Anti-Monitor time to recover and kill her.

The more recent version struggles to find the balance between being good and trying to do good. The balance that her cousin seems to find so easily.

In the 31st Century, those pressures aren't there. Supergirl can relax and be the best version of herself.

In the 20th (and 21st) Century, Supergirl is a mess. In the 31st Century, Supergirl is a bad-ass.

5. Shrinking Violet
Real Name: Salu Digby
First appeared in Action Comics #276 (May 1961)
Fifteenth member of the Legion.
Super-Power: Shrinking.

Another charter member of the Espionage Squad, Salu is probably the most scarily blood-thirsty Legionnaire. Leave aside the fact that Salu has a set of miniature blasters so that she can turn the insides of the Legion's enemies into a shooting gallery...

She once took out a bad guy by expanding to her full size while in the bad guy's lungs!

And as Polite Dissent reminds us:

DAMN! That is cold Violet!Shrinking Violet is the leading cause of strokes in 31st Century Super-Villains.

6. Light Lass
Real Name: Ayla Ranzz
First Appeared in Adventure Comics #308 (May 1963)
Twenty-First member of the Legion.
Super-Power: Electrical Powers; Gravity Negation

Ayla first joined the Legion by impersonating her (then-dead) brother Lightning Lad. While Ayla's cross-dressing didn't last long, she has always been the Legion's biggest tom-boy. When Proty sacrificed himself to resurrect Garth, Ayla was temporarily out of the Legion because she duplicated her brother's power-set, until Dream Girl used SCIENCE! to change Ayla's powers from lightning to anti-gravity.

Yeah. If you can turn off one of the fundamental forces of nature - gravity, you're a bad-ass.

Don't mind me, I am just turning off GRAVITY!
Also, I love Ayla's costume with the giant arrow on her chest, simultaneously drawing attention to her breasts and insisting that you look her in the eyes.

7. Dream Girl
Real Name: Nura Nal
First appeared and joined in Adventure Comics #317 (February 1964).
Twenty-Second member of the Legion.
Super-Power: Precognition.

Also, as noted above, the power to change her girlfriend's powers into even better and stronger powers with SCIENCE!

Layla Miller decades before Layla Miller. Nura could give the appearance of being a ditzy blonde and then in a heartbeat become a super-competent bad-ass because she knew exactly what was going to happen and what she needed to do and when.

I know how badly I am going to be kicking your ass in a minute.
Dream-Girl's most devastating trick is getting her way by describing the future she wants to happen. She once rigged her election as Legion leader by announcing that she knew that she was going to win and everyone voted for her because Dream-Girl is never wrong.

8. Princess Projectra
Real Name: Projectra Wind'zzor
First appeared and joined in Adventure Comics #346 (July 1966).
Twenty-Fifth member of the Legion.
Super-Power: Illusion

It is really easy to dismiss Projectra. The fact that she hooks up with Karate Kid within seconds of joining the Legion and basically lets him fight all of her battles for her doesn't help her cause much. It also didn't help that her powers seemed to be a sub-set of Saturn Girl's.

The difference as Projectra explained once was that Saturn Girl, when she used illusions, affected the intellect of those fooled. Projectra affected something much more primal.

The other huge difference was that Projectra was raised on a planet that chose to live in medieval feudalism. Projectra learned to fight with a sword at the same age that most future kids learned to operate a hover-bike. Barbarian princesses tend to be bad-asses.

Amongst the many who forgot or ignored that? Nemesis Kid who invaded Projectra's planet and killed Val Armorr, the Karate Kid, Projectra's husband.

Pissing off Projectra is a bad idea.
A really really really BAD IDEA!
Nemesis Kid's power was to be able to evolve a power to beat any opponent and any opponent's power. Except, apparently, Projectra's ability to be a cold, ruthless bad-ass when you pissed her off.

The Legion of Super-Heroes has a very firm no killing rule. Projectra isn't much of a rules person.

9. Shadow Lass
Real Name: Tasmia Mallor
First appeared in Adventure Comics #365 (February 1968).
Twenty-Sixth member of the Legion.
Super-power: Create darkness.

Shadow-Lass' powers seem like the weakest of the entire Legion. Casting shadows? Can she do rabbits?

The key is that Tasmia - like Projectra - is a barbarian princess. The difference is that Projectra has a civilized veneer, because Orando plays at being a feudal planet. Tasmia has no interest in being civilized and Talok VII is a fingernail away from tribes beating each other with clubs.

Tasmia is a devastating hand-to-hand fighter and she fights dirty. Being able to create darkness can be really effective when you can also see in that darkness, but your opponents can't.

Like Projectra, Tasmia dates one of the Legion's heavy-hitters: Mon-El. Unlike Projectra, Shady doesn't allow Mon-El to fight her battles for her.

Notice the slingThis is Shady at her best, taking out one of the Fatal Five with one punch while she has a broken arm!

10. The rest
Dawnstar: Can fly in space without gear. Can track across inter-stellar distances.

Night Girl: The other powerhouse. From the Legion of Substitute Super-Heroes. Super-strong when not in direct sunlight. Amazingly, was rejected from the Legion when a Shadow-Lass/Night-Girl team would be absolutely devastating. (As far as I know they have teamed up exactly once. Sometimes the future is stupid.)

Infectious Lass: Also from the Legion of Substitute Super-Heroes. Possibly the most dangerous woman on the entire list. "Would you rather surrender quietly or come down with something excruciatingly painful and possibly fatal? How do you feel about the Ebola Virus?"

White Witch: According to Wikipedia, "Currently the most powerful sorcerer of the 31st century."

XS: Grand-daughter of Barry Allen.


I really can't defend Spider Girl though. Super-strong prehensile hair? Unless you are married to Black Bolt, what's the point?