[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Legion_of_Super_Heroes2-s.jpg]]

The AnimatedAdaptation of the '''''{{ComicBook/Legion Of Super-Heroes}}''''' comic book series. Ran for two seasons, 2006-2008, abruptly ending with a [[SequelHook hook]] for the third season [[TheResolutionWillNotBeTelevised that never came.]]

When the series opens, the 31st-century Legion is hopelessly outclassed by the famed Fatal Five. They resolve to recruit [[FutureImperfect the near-mythical Superman]] from the past, but for undisclosed reasons, Brainiac 5 brings them to Smallville, not Metropolis. There they invite 18-year-old Clark Kent to help them in TheFuture, promising that with TimeTravel, he can return the minute he left.

At Brainy's insistence, everyone studiously avoids telling Clark who he's supposed to become in the future. Regardless, Clark finds the Superman Museum, connects the dots, and takes the costume from the display case, and the name of Superman, for his own. Together they defeat the Five, and then Adventures Happen.

The show had a very [[UsefulNotes/TheSilverAgeOfComicBooks Silver Age]] tone to it, but the most noticeable and [[TheyChangedItNowItSucks controversial]] change from the source material was turning team genius Brainiac 5 from a HumanAlien into an [[MechanicalLifeforms android]]. WordOfGod is that this was supposed to tie him more closely to his ancestor the original Brainiac, as well as avoiding having to explain how an organic can be the 'descendant' of a robot, clearing away a fifty-year-old example of WritingAroundTrademarks.

Season Two saw everyone age about two years, even Brainy, and the show went DarkerAndEdgier after the very light and bouncy first season. The premiere visited a BadFuture where Superman's [[SendInTheClones clone]] was bred to fight GalacticConqueror Imperiex, who when cornered escapes back to the 31st century and proceeds to wreak havoc as the season's BigBad.

The series had [[RecursiveAdaptation its own comic series]], ''Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century'', which ran for 20 issues, some of them taking place after the end of the show.

The character sheet can be found [[Characters/LegionOfSuperHeroes here]].
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!!''Legion of Super Heroes'' provides examples of:

* AbortedArc: Both Drax and Alexis are forgotten about after their debut episodes, though the latter makes a brief cameo on Takron Galtos in "Sundown".
* {{Acrofatic}}: Bouncing Boy is pretty fast for someone of his girth.
* AdaptationalBadass: Brainiac 5 of the comics was merely a TeenGenius. Here, he's a robot with {{Technopathy}} who can transform into just about anything and extend any limb, and even has a OneWingedAngel form.
* AdaptationalVillainy: Brin Londo's father Mar Londo was responsible for giving his son his powers in the original comics, at least in the Pre-Zero Hour continuity, but he only appeared briefly in flashbacks and wasn't in any way suggested to be as abusive and manipulative as his animated counterpart.
* AdaptationalWimp: Karate Kid only got on because the MonsterOfTheWeek [[ThisLooksLikeAJobForAquaman was nullifying powers.]] Comic Karate Kid is on the team because he's strong enough to fistfight Kryptonians with nothing but sheer unrealistic training skill.
* AdvertisedExtra:
** The Fatal Five were only the main villains of two episodes.
** The opening credits of season 2 were full of this. A notable example would be Sun Boy, who has an entire scene shown in the opening of every episode that season even though what was shown in the credits in pretty much all he ever did. There are also characters from season one who keep their spot in the opening despite their roles being significantly decreased that season to only appearing in a few episodes, like Saturn Girl.
* {{Amazingly Embarrassing Parent|s}}: Phantom Girl sees her mother, [[ReasonableAuthorityFigure President Winema Wazzo]] of the [[TheFederation United Planets]], as this. She knows her mother means well and the two get along better after "Champions" (although that's not to say their relationship was sour beforehand), but she can't help but feel exasperated when her mother becomes overly {{doting|Parent}} and protective or makes false assumptions about her daughter's dating habits.
* AmbiguouslyGay:
** [[WhatKindOfLamePowerIsHeartAnyway Color Kid]], appropriately enough. His rainbow ChestInsignia was even changed into a ''fabulous'' rainbow ''triangle'' for the series, [[{{Anvilicious}} just in case you weren't paying attention]].
** Not to mention Brainy and his obsession with Superman... which, thanks to the opening of Season 2's first episode may be a whoooole lot [[StraightGay less ambiguous]] (later ShipTease with Shrinking Violet [[BiTheWay notwithstanding]]).
** And '''''[[LargeHam STARFINGER!!!!]]''''' The guy has a pink and lime green sign with his name on it!
* AmnesiacDissonance: Ron-Karr [[spoiler:impersonates Superman with his memories altered to make his imitation more believable]] in "Who Am I?" He remembers his alignment when [[spoiler:Computo's scanning of his memories reveals a memory of the Legion of Super Villains.]]
* AndIMustScream:
** One interpretation of [[spoiler:Ayla Ranzz]] before she regains her physical form in "Chained Lightning."
** Wizards on Zarok who fail [[GotTheCallOnSpeedDial the trial]] are doomed to spend eternity encased in a block of ice, it would seem. They look terrified, but no one can hear them scream.
* AnimalEyes: Ironically Timber Wolf's are of the slit, cat-like variety.
* AntiHeroSubstitute: Superman X is not quite as nice as the original Superman.
* ArbitrarySkepticism: Brainiac 5 refuses to believe in magic even though pretty much everyone in the Legion has extraordinary powers.
* TheAtoner: Dream Girl in her {{backstory}}, who wants to make amends for using her precognitive dreams to con people. [[ReformedButRejected Lightning Lad doesn't buy it initially.]]
* BaldOfEvil: RichBitch Alexis loses her hair shortly after going off the deep end for Superman, and [[NeverMyFault blames]] ''[[NeverMyFault him]]'' [[NeverMyFault for it, just like her presumed Silver Age ancestor]]--naturally her prison uniform reads, in [[CypherLanguage Interlac]], "LUTHOR." Unlike her ancestor, her hair grows back, though it's now much shorter.
* BatmanCanBreatheInSpace: Justified; like the comics versions they probably use invisible "transuits" -- [[InSpaceEveryoneCanSeeYourFace in space, everyone can see all of you.]]
* BattleInTheCenterOfTheMind: Happens in "Dark Victory" when Superman and Kell-El try to help Brainiac 5 defeat Brainiac 1.0.
* BetrayalInsurance: It's Brainiac 5, otherwise portrayed as Superman's ''[[HoYay very loyal]]'' RobotBuddy, who keeps Kryptonite for emergencies.
* BigBad: Imperiex is the main antagonist in Season 2.
* BigEater: Bouncing Boy eats every bit of food he can reach.[[note]]In the comics, he's fat only as a side-effect of his powers, and doesn't have any more of an appetite than any other person.[[/note]]
** Admittedly, this may hark back to his always-chubby comic original, who gained his powers when he accidentally drank the experimental serum he was supposed to be delivering. (In his defense, the container was exactly the same size and shape as his soda bottle...)
* BookEnds: The first season begins with the Legion recruiting a young Clark Kent and ends with him being returned to his own time. The same applies with Superman X in the second season.
* BroughtDownToNormal:
** Superman in "Brain Drain" when under the rays of the planet's red sun. He [[PoweredArmor finds a way to compensate.]]
** Also briefly in "Message in a Bottle," where he's zapped into the bottled city of Kandor without bringing his power suit to nullify the effects of the red sun (which, due to time travel, he didn't know he had at the time). Luckily, one of his robot duplicates gives the suit to Brainy. [[spoiler:Later, after the suit is damaged and Supes loses his powers again, Brainiac 5 uses data given to him from Brainiac 1.0 to turn Kandor's sun into a yellow sun, thus reversing this ''and'' turning Kandor into [[BadassArmy an entire city of superpowered Kryptonians]].]]
** [[spoiler:Brainy in the finale. He's still smart but he's lost his ability to transform into his giant robot form or stretch his limbs. He essentially becomes a really smart, green human.]]
* CainAndAbel: Lightning Lad and [[strike:Lightning Lord]] Mekt are brothers who are initially not on good terms. By "Chained Lightning", however, their hostility towards each other ends.
* CallingYourAttacks: In the episode "Champions," Jo Nah (a.k.a. Ultra Boy, who has all of Superman's powers but only one at a time) calls out his powers as he activates them [[RuleOfPerception so viewers can know what the hell he's doing]], straddling the line between this trope and ByThePowerOfGreyskull.
* CanonForeigner: Superman X; several homage characters like [[XtremeKoolLetterz Alexis, Zyx, and Drax]]; and Breath Boy, with the power to [[WhatKindOfLamePowerIsHeartAnyway hold his breath for long periods of time.]]
* CanonImmigrant: Alexis Luthor was officially introduced into the DCUniverse in Creator/GrantMorrison's ''ComicBook/TheMultiversity'' series.
* CaptainObvious: Saturn Girl can give [[Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration Deanna "I sense he's hiding something!" Troi]] a run for her money.
* CardCarryingVillain:
** A bit of a ''plot point'' in the episode "Phantoms". Phantom Zone escapee Drax hears the voices of his still-imprisoned parents in his head, constantly reminding him that he's ''evil'' and always will be. Supervillains really do make AbusiveParents.
** In the GrandFinale, despite never having self-identified as evil before (quite the opposite, in fact), the still-alive villain says to... no one in particular, "Evil does not die. It evolves," in an ill-fated SequelHook.
* CatapultNightmare: Showcasing that Lightning Lad is [[ShirtlessScene surprisingly buff]] [[SheIsAllGrownUp in Season Two]].
* ChekhovsSkill: Superman X's Kryptonite immunity. It was mentioned only once, when introducing himself and how his LegoGenetics make him stronger, however, it never saw any use in the series proper until the finale, [[spoiler:where it saves the Original Superman's life.]]
* ChessMotifs: In "Dark Victory", Brainiac 5's mental battle against Brainiac 1.0 is first represented as the two playing chess with pieces bearing the likenesses of the Legion.
* CivvieSpandex: A bizarre variation. The costumes the superheroes themselves wear are perfectly in keeping with superhero tradition, but the dress of the non-super characters and background characters suggest that this trope may somewhat be the case.
* ClearMyName: "Cry Wolf" has Timber Wolf try to prove that he didn't murder his father. It turns out that [[spoiler:he ''did'' kill him, but it was a clone and he was mind-controlled into doing the deed by the real Dr. Londo.]]
* CombiningMecha: Hoo boy. In the Season Two finale: [[spoiler:the towering fusion of every Coluan ever, with Brainiac's Skull Ship ''as the head''.]]
* CompositeCharacter:
** In "Phantoms," Drax is based on a hodgepodge of Phantom Zone criminals, is implied to be the son of General Zod and Faora/Ursa, and has many design elements of the non-Kryptonian Zod from ''Superman: Birthright''.
** Superman X is one of Conner Kent (clone of Superman), Lar Gand/Mon-El (Superman's powers with an immunity to Kryptonite), and the Superman of the 853rd century (successor of Superman from even further in the future).
* ContinuityCameo
** Wait, is that ''ComicBook/BoosterGold'' cleaning that museum? With Skeets taking tickets at the door?
** ... Did Alexis just steal ''Lobo's'' bike?
** [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultra_Boy "Jo Nah of Rimbor"?]]
** And all the voiceless group-shot cameos by Legion members (e.g. Element Lad) and numerous HopelessAuditionees (Night Girl, Double Header).
** Can you spot how many ''Franchise/GreenLantern [[TheChosenMany Corps]]'' species are background characters?
** Among the items a bored Zyx conjures up in the background while Superboy... er... man is expositioning are a Green Lantern power battery and Dr. Fate's helmet.
** A dog and a cat resembling Krypto and Streaky respectively can be seen in Kandor in the episode "Message in a Bottle".
** In "Trials," White Witch (a Legionnaire in the mainstream comics) shows up, but as a hologram/illusion contained with an enchanted bracelet tasked with guiding Zyx through his trials to regain his magical powers.
* ConquerorFromTheFuture: Imperiex is from the 41st century and tries to conquer the universe.
* ConvenientComa: Saturn Girl's in a "healing trance" for most of Season 2, while Matter-Eater Lad is similarly indisposed from taking a bite from the Emerald Eye of Ekron.
* CowboyEpisode: "Unnatural Alliances" has the Legion battle Terra-Man and his gang, who are modeled after Wild West outlaws.
* CustomUniform: Most of the characters' uniforms follow the pattern of a three-part division with a center band of contrast running down the middle, and all of them have the Legion emblem somewhere on their waist.
* CynicismCatalyst: The death of Lightning Lad and Mekt's sister Ayla. One became TheLancer, the other became the [[WhiteHairBlackHeart white-haired]] AloofBigBrother on the path to villainy. Then [[spoiler:Ayla turned up NotQuiteDead, which brought up all sorts of mutual guilt issues]].
* DarkerAndEdgier: The second season considerably tones down the comedy and has the team face Imperiex, who is out to conquer the universe and destroy everyone who opposes him.
* DarkHorseVictory: Possibly the ''quickest'' example ever. The new-leader-election is proposed and concluded in about 30 seconds.
* ADayInTheLimelight: "The Substitutes." Then Arm-Fall-Off Boy gets [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/LoSH31stC_16_Oroboros_DCP_001.jpg an entire spin-off comic issue.]]
%%* DeadpanSnarker: Phantom Girl.
* DesperatelyLookingForAPurposeInLife: Alexis. But thanks to Superman rejecting her and stopping her from killing the Legion, she found one.
* DieHardOnAnX: In [[RecursiveAdaptation the spin-off comics]], Saturn Girl and Lightning Lad fight off the Fatal Five ''and'' their UnresolvedSexualTension.
* DisneyDeath:
** Happens in "Fear Factory" when Brainiac 5 sacrifices himself to shut down Quavermass-12, but comes back thanks to giving Superman a backup copy of himself prior to entering the space station's mainframe.
** Superman gets his own in the first part of "Dark Victory" when he appears to die from prolonged exposure to a Kryptonite crown. The second part has him recover with the revelation that he merely went into a temporary death-like state to fight off the Kryptonite poisoning.
* DoAnythingRobot: Brainiac 5 can change his arms into any tool or weapon needed.
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything: The Sun-Eaters are ''nothing'' like stockpiled atom bombs, no sir.
* TheDragon: Validus serves as the muscle to Imperiex.
* EarlyBirdCameo:
** Matter-Eater Lad as Kem the [[PunnyName Bismollian]] contestant in the Space Olympics.
** [[ChekhovsGun The Legion HQ's computer system is called "COMPUTO."]]
** A wizard on the Zarok council is obviously intended to resemble Mordru. But when there ''is'' a Mordru episode, it's a different guy...
* EmotionEater: Quavermass-12 feeds on its captives' fear.
* EnemyMine: The first SeasonFinale "Sundown" has the Legion team up with the Fatal Five, while the second season episode "Unnatural Alliances" has Superman X team up with Imperiex to defeat Terra-Man.
* EnemyWithin: The finale of the second season has Brainiac 5 taken over by [[spoiler:Brainiac 1.0.]]
%%* EnforcedPlug: Parodied.
* EvilBrit: Drax. Appropriate, if it's true that he is [[Film/SupermanII General Zod's]] son.
* EvilCounterpart:
** Drax is an Evil Counterpart to Superman. They have the same powers and both are Kryptonians since it is implied that his father is General Zod.
** Prior to his HeelFaceTurn in "Chained Lightning", Mekt Ranzz served as a villainous equivalent of his brother Garth due to having the same lightning-based powers and being more selfish and dishonest.
* EvilutionaryBiologist: Dr. Londo, Timber Wolf's father. He's the ''reason'' why his son looks the way he is and it's strongly implied that he wasn't the only victim of his genetic experiments.
* FerrisWheelOfDoom: Saturn Girl, Bouncing Boy, and Brainiac 5 stop an out-of-control ferris wheel when they recruit Clark Kent in the first episode.
* {{Fiction 500}}:
** Alexis is said to have her own ''planet'', or so Saturn Girl claims.
** R.J. Brande probably counts as well, since he is stated to be one of the richest people in the galaxy.
* FindTheCure: "Brain Drain" has the Legion try to cure Brainiac 5 of his malfunctions by exposing him to radiation from a distant planet.
* FlashbackNightmare: [[SuperheroOrigin The trip to Korbal]]--for Lightning Lad ''and'' [[CainAndAbel Mekt.]]
* {{Foreshadowing}}: Superman X's cryptic message to Brainiac 5 at the Season 2 premiere. This will be followed by Brainiac's last words from the end of "Who Am I?": [[spoiler:"But that would mean the potential for evil is also within... all of us."]] Of course, finally there's "Message in a Bottle."
* FunWithAcronyms: Although it doesn't spell out a word, and it's more like a MythologyGag: the so-called "Heroes for Hire" '''L'''ight '''S'''peed '''V'''anguard, which will later be known as the '''L'''egion of '''S'''uper '''V'''illains.
* FusionDance: The final battle against Brainiac 1.0 in Brainiac 5's mind has Superman merge with Superman X.
* FutureImperfect: A lot of details were apparently lost in [[MythologyGag "the great Crisis."]] Meaning, among other things, no one remembers the Phantom Zone's name or that it even exists.
* GoodScarsEvilScars: Lightning Lad has a scar shaped like a lightning bolt over his eye.
* GreatGazoo: Zyx, a SpoiledBrat Mxyzptlk homage who enjoys using his powers to mess with people.
* GrievousHarmWithABody: Because Stone Boy's stone form is immobile, he can pretty much only be used as a blunt weapon by the other Substitute Heroes.
* HeelFaceTurn: Although they weren't seen after their "turns", [[spoiler:Lightning Lord and Ron-Karr]].
* [[SheIsAllGrownUp He Is All Grown Up]]: Clark in Season Two. ''"Wow."''
-->'''Timber Wolf'' (''to Phantom Girl''): "Please stop saying that."
* HeroicSacrifice: [[spoiler:Ferro Lad]] gives his life to end the crisis in the 1st season finale, as a nod to the comics.
* HowDoIShotWeb: Superman in the first episode has trouble learning to fly.
* IDidWhatIHadToDo:
** Brainy, often. Especially when it comes to making sure Superman doesn't learn too much about his future. Turned up to eleven when he [[spoiler:becomes possessed by the original Brainiac, who intentionally uses this tendency to worm his way into Brainy's mind.]]
** Cosmic Boy also lives by this sort of code, which leads to him taking actions [[WhatTheHellHero that the others may perceive as harsh.]]
%%* IfYouKillHimYouWillBeJustLikeHim: Lightning Lad comes this close to fatally violating WouldntHitAGirl...
* InTheBack: [[spoiler:Brainiac]] quite literally stabs Imperiex in the back in the first part of the Season 2 finale.
* TheJeeves: Alexis' robot BattleButler, awesomely named ''[[Creator/PGWodehouse Wodehouse]]''.
* JerkJock: Mekt Ranzz initially picks on his brother Lightning Lad.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Lightning Lad is very arrogant, but still fights for what is right. In Season 2, Superman X [[DependingOnTheWriter falls in and out of this every episode]].
* JumpingOffTheSlipperySlope:
** The Light Speed Vanguard, who at first seem Cooler And More Effective Heroes, then Kinda Selfish Mercenary Heroes, then Ruthless Protection Racket.
** Alexis quickly goes from a [[MadScientist brilliant]] but lonely SpoiledBrat with a wild streak to obsessing over her only friend to attempting to kill him for not wanting to be with her... [[ArsonMurderandJaywalking and causing her hair to fall out.]] Realize who she's a DistaffCounterpart to yet?
*** Forget DistaffCounterpart, try "descendant."
* KidAppealCharacter: As a contrast with the other, much darker elements that accompanied the new season, a young Chameleon Boy joins the Legion during the TimeSkip.
* LaserGuidedAmnesia: The reason ''every'' adaptation brings Saturn Girl to Smallville. But by Season Two, in a creepy ShootTheDog moment to protect the timestream, Brainiac 5 uses a memory-flasher on Superman. Which, in light of the rest of the episode and combined with the self-satisfied look in his eyes is another nail in the {{foreshadowing}} coffin that [[spoiler:the more ruthless Brainiac 1.0 had infected his mind and]] would turn up later.
* LaserGuidedTykebomb: Superman X, a heroic version raised only to defeat Imperiex.
* LaughablyEvil: Starfinger. Sweet fancy Moses, ''Starfinger''. He's more dangerous [[spoiler:indirectly]] than you'd expect for a man of such foppish whimsy who is deemed a "third-rate nuisance" by Brainiac, but the slapstick provided by his battles with [[ButtMonkey the Legion of Substitute Heroes]] is good for at least a couple dozen laughs or so.
* LaymansTerms: "Think of it like sunscreen... but with [[FrickinLaserBeams laser cannons]]."
* LeftTheBackgroundMusicOn: The [[HoYay Season Two opening scene]].
* LegacyCharacter:
** Brainiac 5 is descended from the original Brainiac.
** Gee, I wonder if A-LEX-is, from the episode "Legacy," is a Legacy Character of [[ComicBook/LexLuthor someone we know?]]
* LegoGenetics: With Kryptonite, no less! Superman X has immunity to Kryptonite because it was combined with his Kryptonian DNA.
* LittleMissSnarker: Phantom Girl.
* LonelyRichKid: Alexis. Whom Superman befriends. And she [[BaldOfEvil loses her hair]]. [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything Does She Remind You of Anyone?]] The episode she's in is called "Legacy," for added unsubtlety.
* LosingYourHead: Brainiac 5's head is separated from his body for most of "Brain Drain".
* MagicSkirt: Triplicate Girl's skirt somehow stays in place in spite of its short length and her frequent movements.
* MasterOfIllusion: Saturn Girl can use her telepathy to make her opponents see things that aren't really there.
* MechaMooks: Imperiex's army, which he somehow still has after arriving in the past, are unfortunately named "Destructo-bots" at one point. Before that, Brainiac 5 all but served as a renewable RedShirt, since robot injuries get a free pass from the MediaWatchdog, especially one who can [[HealingFactor self-repair]].
* MechanicalLifeforms: In this version, Brainiac 5's species (Coluans) is a cold HiveMind of androids.
* MemoryGambit: "Who Am I?" involves Chameleon Boy impersonating Persuader to spy on Imperiex with his memories altered to make him believe he actually ''is'' Persuader so that his performance is more believable. It also turns out that Imperiex has infiltrated the Legion with the same method by [[spoiler:having Ron-Karr impersonate Superman.]]
* MerchandiseDriven: Probably why the Legion ship got unceremoniously blown to smithereens in the second season premiere, only for a replacement to arrive within seconds.
* MessianicArchetype: Superman becomes this in "Dark Victory" when he seemingly dies from wearing a Kryptonite crown only to miraculously return alive and well.
* MiniMecha: Alexis built her own mecha-suit.
* MissionControl: Most episodes have someone filling this role. Usually, it is either Brainiac 5 or Bouncing Boy, but occasionally Cosmic Boy fills this role instead.
* MoralityPet: [[spoiler:For Mekt Ranzz in "Chained Lightning." Many years ago, dead little sister. Then, NotQuiteDead (which puts EvenEvilHasLovedOnes back into play), followed by UnexplainedRecovery. As he directly contributes to Ayla's restoration, he surrenders to prison without a fight.]]
* MusicalNod: A lot of the music is reminiscent of DCAU's themes, ''especially'' themes related to Superman -- which are very similar to the main {{Leitmotif}} in ''WesternAnimation/SupermanTheAnimatedSeries''. Makes sense, as this show was originally intended to be ''in'' the DCAU.
* MythologyGag: Waaay too many to list. So it has its own [[MythologyGag/LegionOfSuperHeroes page]].
* NeverMyFault: Alexis, the exact same mindset as... well, [[ComicBook/LexLuthor you know]].
* NeverSayDie: Even when they managed to get a HeroicSacrifice and a murder conspiracy onto kids' TV, they still couldn't call it death.
* NoMatterHowMuchIBeg: Brainiac 5 at the beginning of "Brain Drain", where he's unsure of the aftereffects of the Coluan's alignment process on his brain patterns while detached from their collective (and the balance their HiveMind setup provides). He locks himself into a containment chamber and makes the others promise to not free him until the ten hours are up.
* NoodleIncident: Alexis' ''experiment''. "The top ten floors look as good as new, don't they?"
* TheNoseKnows: Timber Wolf has heightened senses thanks to being a humanoid wolf and is able to tell what happened during the [[spoiler:faked]] murder of his father just by scent.
* ObstructiveBureaucrat: The [[PlanetOfHats hat]] for ''[[WritingAroundTrademarks Zarok]]'', the sorcerers' world. According to the head sorcerer it's all necessary to keep its incredibly powerful citizenry from misusing their powers. However, to an outsider the red tape is strange enough to go from obstructive to totally absurd.
* OhCrap: Imperiex in "Message in a Bottle" [[spoiler:when he realizes that he's now squaring off against millions of aliens that have the powers of ''Superman''.]]
* TheOnlyOneAllowedToDefeatYou: Superman X for Imperiex.
* OnlyTheWorthyMayPass: "Trials" involves Zyx losing his powers and having to regain them by completing trials that prove he is worthy of them.
* OrificeInvasion: Dr. Londo's nanites infected Timber Wolf's brain by [[ParanoiaFuel flying through his ear canal while he was asleep]].
* OurWerewolvesAreDifferent: Timber Wolf, natch.
* OutOfOrder
* PeekABangs: Triplicate Girl's hair covers one of her eyes.
* PetTheDog: "Unnatural Alliances" for ''both'' Superman X and Imperiex. Although, the latter had no choice, seeing as [[spoiler:his existence actually ''depended on it'']]. Followed by a KickTheDog immediately afterwards.
* PhantomZone: The Phantom Zone makes an appearance in an episode where a much younger Superman releases a Kryptonian boy born/created by some of his old enemies to, naturally, kill Superman. He should really stop messing with the Phantom Zone projector.
* PickYourHumanHalf: Brainy gets a weird version of this in that his more human emotions and twelfth-level intellect are usually at odds, causing conflict within the team and Brainiac 5 himself (particularly in Season 2).
%%* PinocchioSyndrome: Brainiac 5.
* PointyEars: Timber Wolf of the BeastMan variety
* PowerGlows: Lightning Lad's eye scar [[TronLines lights up]] when he powers up.
* PowerNullifier: This series' version of Nemesis Kid can nullify others' powers, in contrast to his comics counterpart, who temporarily gains new powers needed to stop his enemies.
* PreemptiveApology: Brainiac 5 [[spoiler:wipes Superman's memory because he had learnt too much about his future]].
* PrimalStance: Timber Wolf uses this frequently.
* ProphecyTwist: "In Your Dreams" involves the Legion using Dream Girl's dreams to predict the strategies of Dark Circle and have an advantage over them. Ultimately, Dark Circle capture Dream Girl and attempt to use her to get an advantage over the Legion, but they fail when it turns out that what they thought was a vision of the Legion getting killed was actually a vision of the Legion's holograms.
* PstandardPsychicPstance: Saturn Girl in the Season 1 opening credits.
* PurpleEyes: Brainiac 5 has purple eyes.
* TheQuietOne: [[TakenForGranite Stone Boy]]. Talk about PersonalityPowers...
* RagtagBunchOfMisfits: The Legion of Substitute Heroes consists of several rejected Legionnaire wannabes with powers that were deemed too useless.
* RealLifeWritesThePlot: Clark was supposed to be called ComicBook/{{Superboy}}, but a copyright lawsuit between DC and the estates of Superman's creators at the time got in the way.
* RedOniBlueOni: Most notably seen in their [[spoiler:FusionDance during the Season 2 finale]], Superman (blue) and his clone Superman X (red).
* TheResolutionWillNotBeTelevised: While the show was cancelled after the second season, the ComicBookAdaptation had stories taking place after the show until it was cancelled itself after the 20th issue.
* RobotNames: Superman X's bi-parental unit, [=K3NT=] (which tends to make a LateToThePunchline moment once you write it down like that).
* RoleReprisal: Creator/CoreyBurton reprises his Franchise/{{DCAU}} role as [[spoiler:ComicBook/{{Brainiac}}]].
* RunningOnAllFours: Timber Wolf can be seen doing this in the series.
* SealedEvilInACan: "Phantoms": Due to TimeTravel, Franchise/{{Superman}} accidentally unseals an evil that, it's implied, his future self [[TimeTravelTenseTrouble sealed/will seal]] a thousand years beforehand.
* SequelHook: Season 2 ends with [[spoiler:a new Brainiac born from Brainiac 5's "husk."]]
-->'''[[spoiler:Brainiac 6]]:''' "[[CardCarryingVillain Evil]] does not die. [[EvilEvolves It evolves.]]"
* ShooOutTheClowns: Losing one-third of yourself to anti-matter bubbles = [[DarkerAndEdgier This Season Is Serious]].
* ShootTheDog: What Super[[strike:boy]]man ''thinks'' he's doing in "Fear Factory" by letting [[spoiler:Brainiac 5]] sacrifice himself to shut down Quavermass-12. Fortunately [[spoiler:Brainiac 5]] always [[BrainUploading carries a spare copy]].
* ShoutOut:
** "In the Beginning": To both the original ''Film/TotalRecall1990''[='=]s LatexPerfection and the ''Franchise/ScoobyDoo'' YouMeddlingKids line.
** And another in "Trials": [[WesternAnimation/JackieChanAdventures "Only magic can defeat magic. Duh!"]]
** When Brainiac 5 goes loopy while sealed within his containment chamber at the beginning of "Brain Drain," he's seen [[Music/MichaelJackson moonwalking]].
* TheSmurfettePrinciple: The show started with female Legionnaires Saturn Girl, Phantom Girl, and Triplicate Girl. And then, in Season 2, [[ExecutiveMeddling the powers that be]] decided that male viewership would be put off by so many girls, so the girls were incapacitated and/or inexplicably sidelined for many episodes. Particularly irritating, as the Legion has LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters with a fairly even gender --and species-- balance, and the comics have always averted this trope even all the way back to UsefulNotes/{{the Silver Age|OfComicBooks}}! The addition of Shrinking Violet in the same season was a [[{{Pun}} very small]] counterbalance.
* SpiritualSuccessor: To ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans'', at the least {{demographics}}-wise. Still a team of super-teenagers, still Franchise/TheDCU, and it started the same year ''Titans'' ended.
* SpockSpeak: Brainiac 5, who also [[LuckilyMyPowersWillProtectMe keeps name-dropping]] his [[InformedAbility twelfth-level intelligence]]. Toned down a lot for Season 2.
* SpoiledSweet: Phantom Girl's mother always shows her affection towards her and she's a kindhearted person.
* StableTimeLoop: Superman only becomes Superman because he finds out he's ''going'' to be Superman, and learns heroism from a team that was inspired by his own future heroism, so...
%%* StakingTheLovedOne
* StatusQuoIsGod:
** At the very end of the penultimate episode of Season 1, Bouncing Boy is elected the leader of the Legion. After the time skip between Season 1 and 2 it seems that Cosmic Boy has been made the leader again. So from the audience's perspective Bouncing Boy was only the leader for 2 episodes before they changed it back.
** For most of the second season, Triplicate Girl [[spoiler:loses her third self and goes by Duo Damsel.]] By the end of the series, [[spoiler:her third self returns and is reunited with the rest of her.]]
* SuperZeroes: As always, the Legion of Substitute Heroes, who, also as always, prove to be much more heroic and capable than you'd think.
* TailorMadePrison: At the end of "Trials", Mordru is defeated by being sealed in metal, with Star Boy using his weight manipulation powers to sink him to the center of Zerok to ensure he can't return.
* TalkativeLoon: Brainiac 5 during "Brain Drain." In spite of this, he actually gives a few crucial warnings to the team (such as "Red ants! Red ants! Superman shouldn't play with red ants" [[note]]Zuun has a red sun; under its light, Superman loses his powers[[/note]] and "Superman, [[KryptoniteFactor green rocks kill the last son]]").
* TeamTitle: The Legion of Super Heroes share their name with the show's title.
* TelescopingRobot: Brainiac 5's neck and limbs can extend.
* TheOnlyOneAllowedToDefeatYou: Superman X feels this way about Imperiex. [[spoiler:He doesn't take it well when Brainiac 5 beats him to the punch.]]
* ThisIsGonnaSuck: Brainiac 5 is the master of {{understatement}}.
* ThisLooksLikeAJobForAquaman: "Karate Kid" involves the recruiting of a Legionnaire named Karate Kid, who has no real powers, but his strong determination helps him defeat Grimbor after he neutralizes the powers of the other Legionnaires.
* TimeSkip: Season 2 takes place two years after the end of Season 1, at least from the Legionnaire's point of view. Superman also returns from the 21st century to aid the Legion, but he's physically grown much older and it is even stated by Brainiac 5 that they need the help of a more experienced Superman.
* ThreePointLanding: In the first season opening credits Timber Wolf performs this near the end.
* ToBeLawfulOrGood: Any time someone butts heads with the unshakably by-the-book Cosmic Boy. Lightning Lad is especially prone to this.
* TookALevelInBadass: Season 2: the intro theme and the main characters' appearances (possibly justified by them aging along with the audience). Lightning Lad now has a soul patch, for example.
* TransformationTrauma: "Trials" has Mordru inflict painful transformations on the Legionnaires when trying to stop Zyx and Superman X from defeating him.
* TwoGuysAndAGirl: As per the comics, the Legion's founding trio, Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad, and Saturn Girl. They're close enough to consider each other family, which tends to lead to a perpetual cycle of striking each other's nerves, arguing, and then making amends.
%%* UnspokenPlanGuarantee
* UnwinnableTrainingSimulation:
** Bouncing Boy fails a training simulation in "Chain of Command", which causes him to doubt whether he's suitable for being leader of the Legion.
** "The Man from the Edge of Tomorrow" begins its first part with Brainiac 5 running a simulation that ends with him sacrificing himself to end the threat.
* VillainousBreakdown: [[spoiler:When Brainiac 1.0 starts needing to exert effort to fight Brainiac 5 in their BattleInTheCenterOfTheMind, it becomes obvious that Brainiac 1.0 didn't plan on this nor is he taking it well. When defeated, he gives off an almost uncharacteristically ''agonized'' scream.]]
* VillainTeamUp: The brief alliance between the Fatal Four (Validus was absent because he became Imperiex's minion, which is an example itself) and the Legion of Super Villains in Part 2 of the second season premiere.
* WellIntentionedExtremist:
-->'''[[spoiler:Brainiac 5]]:''' "Do not worry. Soon this agony shall pass, as it will pass from this entire universe. Once my work is complete, there will be no more pain, no more chaos. Only [[UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans a perfect order imposed by me]]."
* WhamEpisode: "Dark Victory." [[spoiler:Brainiac 5 ends up being controlled by Brainiac 1.0, Superman is defeated and [[OurHeroIsDead apparently killed]], and ''Imperiex'' is KilledOffForReal]].
* WhatTheHellHero: At least twice, between Brainiac and Superman, with the latter calling Brainy out for [[CannotSpitItOut hiding]] both [[spoiler:Supes's weakness to a red sun]] in "Brain Drain" and [[spoiler:the original Brainiac's involvement in the shrinking of Kandor]] in "Message in a Bottle." And also when [[spoiler:Brainiac suggested risking the Kandorians lives with Imperiex]].
** With the former, Brainiac 5 told Superman [[spoiler:he apparently failed to un-shrink Kandor]].
* WholeEpisodeFlashback: Most of "In the Beginning" consists of flashbacks explaining how Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad, and Saturn Girl first met and how the Legion was founded.
* WithACapitalT: "Unnatural Alliances" has a variation on this.
-->'''Duo Damsel:''' "Terra-Man, word is you've been terrorizing this entire prairie in search of someone."\\
'''Star Boy:''' "The only thing you're gonna find here is trouble."\\
'''Bouncing Boy:''' "With a capital 'L'!"
* WritingAroundTrademarks: The "young Superman" was clearly supposed to be Super''boy'', and close look at the lipsic in early episodes seems to support this. DC comics didn't have access to the name at the time.
* XtremeKoolLetterz: Lot of X's in the names.
* {{Yandere}}: Alexis Luthor. She had no friends until Superman... and [[StalkerWithACrush she REALLY wanted to keep him]].
* YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness: With the reversal that the ''boss'' has outlived the ''minion's'' purposes when [[spoiler:Imperiex is killed by Brainiac 1.0.]]
* YourWorstNightmare: "Fear Factory," with endless {{horror}} movie homages.
* ZettaiRyouiki: Triplicate Girl, at a ratio somewhere around [[http://www.latourdesheros.com/news/2006_09_septembre/News261_Triplicate_Girl.jpg 10:1:12,]] no less.
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