GASPAR SALADINO in OTHER LEGION TITLES

All images © DC Comics. From LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES #1, Feb 1973

Rather than trying to jam them into the other Legion articles, this one collects the remaining Legion books with Gaspar Saladino lettering, mostly on covers, and not much on each title. In 1973 DC Comics put out a four-issue series reprinting Legion stories from ADVENTURE COMICS, first issue above, which has new art. Gaspar did the dramatic balloon and the first of two captions, the other is typeset.

From LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES #2, March 1973

Saladino did the balloon on the second cover, also with new art. The other two issues had reprinted covers with Ira Schnapp lettering.

From LEGIONNAIRES 3 #1, Feb 1986

In 1986, this Legion spinoff appeared, a four issue miniseries. Gaspar did the large blurb at the bottom of the first cover, and it’s much more eye-catching and effective than the typeset used on the rest. Gaspar also did the unusual logo.

From LEGIONNAIRES 3 #4, May 1986

Gaspar did the balloons on the last cover, and they and the figure have equal importance. There would be almost no story to it without them.

From LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES #9, July 1990

In 1989, DC launched a revamp of the characters that began far from previous stories, but slowly headed back to familiar territory. After some shocked reactions, it became just as popular as past Legion books, and lasted 127 issues until 2000. Gaspar only lettered a few early covers, this is the first, and it uses charming script for LAUREL’S.

From LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES #12, Oct 1990

I think the open letter blurb at the bottom of this cover is by Saladino. It’s not by me, and I was the other main cover letterer at the time. It has an odd style point. Gaspar usually lined up the notch on this kind of R with the bottom of the center horizontal stroke. Here it’s well below that, which looks wrong. Otherwise the letters look like his work, so perhaps this was an experiment, or perhaps the notch got moved somehow.

From LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES #13, Nov 1990

The central circular blurb on this cover is by Saladino, and it’s cleverly done. Notice how only a tiny bit of the bottom horizontal stroke of the final E is visible, but it still reads fine partly due to context. The U at the front of that word is similarly off-model, being much closer to a V, but again context makes it work. I also love the shape of the first S.

From LEGIONNAIRES #51, Aug 1997

This Legion spinoff ran 83 issues from 1993 to 2000. Gaspar’s only work for it was lettering the inside pages of this one issue. As usual, his story title and credit box are creative.

To sum up, I found Saladino lettering on these covers:

LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES (1973): 1-2

LEGIONNAIRES 3: 1-2, 4

LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES (1989): 9, 12-13

That’s eight in all. The story from LEGIONNAIRES #51 has 22 pages.

Other articles in this series and more you might like are on the COMICS CREATION page of my blog.

5 thoughts on “GASPAR SALADINO in OTHER LEGION TITLES

  1. David Goldfarb

    I know you’ve said you didn’t like Saladino’s early-’70s Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes logo, but I think you have to admit that it’s head and shoulders above the logo on that first reprint series above (I think it was by Schnapp?), which just clunks.

    Curious thing I never noticed about the cover to #2 before: whoever drew the new cover seems to have given Lightning Lad two robot arms. Certainly the asymmetry of having just one was a very unusual point back then.

  2. David Goldfarb

    All right, tastes vary. And as I’ve noted before, that slanted logo was the one the book had when I first discovered it, so childhood imprinting comes into play. I hope no offense was given, and if any was then I apologize.

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