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Off My Mind: Defeating Teen Heroes Through Their Hormones

Why isn't this 'weakness' exploited more often?

There has always been many teenage heroes in comic books. When it comes to the teenage years, there are many struggles to deal with. The average teenager has to deal with issues of who they are and who they will become. They have to decide what actions they should take and whether or not they're making the right decisions. Of course there's the strong need of being accepted by others. On top of all these matters, there's also those funny feelings that start developing inside.

Being a teenager and being a superhero would be incredibly difficult. Not only do they need to deal with their normal issues and concerns but they also need to find the concentration and focus to being a hero and stopping the evil forces from winning the battle.

It goes without saying that most teenagers have love on the brain. Their hormones often play a big factor in the decisions they make. This played a big part in 1964's Adventure Comics #326, featuring the Legion of Super-Heroes and the "Revolt of the Girl Legionnaires." Using their hormones against them, the girls utterly defeated the (often seen as) more powerful boy Legionnaires.

== TEASER ==

Having taught high school for many years, seeing the distractions for students in the classroom was a common thing. A student had told a fellow teacher, "No offense Mr. L., Hilary is better looking than you and I can't help but stare at her during class." Now imagine the distractions for a teenage superhero. We all know the typical superhero costume often leaves little to the imagination. It would have to take an incredible amount of training and focus to get these young heroes to keep their head in the game when engaged in a fight.

With the Legion of Super-Heroes story, the girl Legionnaires gathered together to begin "Operation Betrayal." The boys were first sent off on a phoney mission to give the girls time to fully prepare. Their plan basically consisted of each girl choosing a boy member, getting him alone and turning the tables on him before he could realize what was going on. It was a simple plan and the boys, even with their 30th Century hormones, made it easy for the girls.

Light Lass took Element Lad to a romantic place where they could be alone. This was strange behavior for Light Lass and Element Lad didn't even question where this was coming from. He noted to himself that he was cute and seemed to be thrilled that she was into him.

Deciding to take a chance, he made his move to kiss her. Light Lass could barely contain her laughter over how easily her part of the plan was coming together.

With Element Lad's guard down, she used her powers on him and made him lightweight. She would make him float to a remote mountain peak where he would be stranded and starve to death.

Triplicate Girl decided to take on three of the boy Legionnaires: Invisible Kid, Brainiac 5 and Cosmic Boy. Using a ring from Shrinking Violet, she was ready to take out the three boys separately at the same time.

We basically see the same thing happen again. Triplicate Girl gets her target alone, they begin to make out and then she makes them a proposal.

"Please accept this ring with my love Invisible Kid."

"People will know we're engage when you wear my ring, Brainiac 5!"

"I give my heart to you with this ring, Cosmic Boy!"

Let's pause here. Could it really be that easy? We're talking about a team that had been around for a while. When this issue came out, the Legion stories had been around for about six years. These boys and girls had fought and worked along each other but none of them questioned when suddenly one of the opposite sex started making advances on them. Rather than really think or question it, they allowed their hormones to act and tried to take advantage of the situaiton.

This wasn't even the end of it. Supergirl set up Chameleon Boy to pass a test using his powers in order to get a kiss. When he turned into a phantom, she sprayed him with a cancelite spray she invented that make his stay in that form permanently.

Phantom Girl took Star Boy to a remote asteroid to get some quiet time. She was making out with him until the next phase of her plan would begin. Knowing a dangerous balloon-like plant beast was nearby and full of deadly pollen. The plant was about to burst so she told Star Boy to save himself and make himself super-heavy in order to sink into the ground. She would transform into phantom form and be safe. Once the pollen was gone, she gloated to Star Boy that she tricked him and he would "die in the pit of [his] own making."

You would think Superboy wouldn't be so easily defeated, right? Think again. Saturn Girl confesses that she's secretly longed for his kiss for years (seen above). Of course Superboy felt it would be rude not to give her what she wished for. Before he could deliver the kiss, a danger suddenly erupted close by.

There was a dangerous creature in a cave attacking scientists. The creature turned out to be a giant lead robot full of Kryptonite. Saturn Girl was overjoyed to leave Superboy dying and not knowing why he was betrayed.

You can all rest assured. The boys of the Legion of Super-Heroes did not die despite their celebration afterwards.


The point is, the boys were easily duped and defeated. Yes this issue is from the 60s but it also took place in the future. We've seen other teams tricked easily. Remember Terra turned out to be a spy for Deathstroke? Beast Boy was the one that fell for her and brought her into Teen Titans. We've seen other members struggle with their hormones as well. Robin and Wonder Girl had to deal with their feelings despite mourning the death of Cassie's boyfriend and Tim's best friend, Superboy.

It's surprising that Deathstroke or enemies of other teenage teams haven't tried exploiting their hormones more often. The Teen Titans clearly show they don't do a lot of background check on their members. Were they even aware that Wendy and Marvin were actually the Calculator's kids?

You would think a villain would absolutely hate to be defeated by a bunch of teenage superheroes. All they have to do is use the team's greatest weakness against them. Even after the boy Legionnaires were almost killed, the only thing Element Lad could think of was how disappointing it was that the girls weren't "on the level" about the romances. If villains targeted the kid heroes through their hormones, they would clearly win the day.

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Posted by Mbecks14
Seeing this inspired me to create this. I do not mean to offend! Only entertain
Posted by BiteMe-Fanboy

I'd die quickly.
In a fight and Powergirl is next to me. I'd be staring at you know where and BAMMM, I'm shot with some kind of blast from the person we fighting.

Posted by Agent9149
@NightFang said:
@agent9149: Lol, talk about some major c**k-blocking.
yeaa damn right >={ and its actually literal double c**K-blocking
Posted by Coolii

This like jerey shore only better.

Posted by sa5m

I like Dick and Kory =)

Posted by goldenkey

now I know I'll never ever ever ever ever read this book.
Posted by Shadow_Thief

Using their relative inexperience works just as well. Just look at Stamford and how that led to the whole Registration/Civil War business. Granted, it had been building up for awhile, but I doubt that an older, experienced player like Spidey or Cap would have let that happen.

Posted by KDarkholme

Who is that kissing in the picture? The one labeled "Teen Heroes & their Hormones".
Posted by davelecave
@KDarkholme said:
Who is that kissing in the picture? The one labeled "Teen Heroes & their Hormones".
Posted by SirSparkington

I really don't want to read about teen angst. Literally been and done that.


 Kind of. But most super hero characters seem to be emotional stirred in one way or another, despite their age, which one would think is essential to even have
the drive to be one, as well as a weakness, so I can't say it's solely a teenage thing in comics, just a general one.

Posted by Dominic_Del_Toro

Them kids need redline

Posted by LP
@cmaprice said:

Even villains don't want to seem like pedophiles. 

Posted by djotaku

Between my own thoughts and those of the page one commentors, I think the reason we don't see it more often is that it's perhaps hard to find the right balance.  In other words, you don't want it to become the enemy's favorite strategy because then the stories get stale.  Also, HOPEFULLY, the super heroes would catch wise.  But to completely ignore it is folly as well.  However, it has been used both for adult and teens.  I think one area where it hasn't been explored as much as it could be is the inadvertent enemies dating idea.  The best example I can think of is Batman/Catwoman.  While I'm not sure what the current canon is concerning those two, in quite a few versions of the story, their non-super identities have fallen for each other - so it wasn't tactical.  But it became so once one or both of them realized the Super identity.  In fact, this is an early plot point in Gotham City Sirens, coming up in issue #2.  So imagine a young X-Men falling for a young person from Magneto's group.  It could even lead to a super hero Romeo/Juliet - which could either be horrible or pretty neat depending on the writer.

Edited by BlackArmor

how many times over would conner kent have died if they did this every other issue.
Posted by Mildor

I dont know, doesnt suppose that heroes even young ones need to be more clever, cautious or at least deal against decent threats and not pathetic ones I mean it could be justified that deal with such situations sporadically but not often c mon you need that heroes been a role model not that someone with whom you identify that makes the same mistakes that you although this could be a strong argument and also could be attractive to audience mainly young ones in is easy material to write to create a story. I have in higher esteem those like the likes of Batman, Black Panther, Cable, Punisher, Magneto, Wolverine, Daredevil even Superman that sacrifice their lives for a cause that deal with man paradigms than those who deal with punny problems of adolescense of course there´s always the possibility that some writers could create stories or saga of the previous men i mentioned and degrade them by confronting such problems with a diminished mentality in their adolescense but again their original oficial backgrounds staid that those heroes-antiheroes became man before facing puberty well thats why there are Batman and the likes of spiderman to satisfy the audience.