Well color me surprised. I was sure that this new incarnation of the Legion would confuse the hell out of me, but Geoff Johns has done a wonderful job getting me up to speed. I started reading the Legion with Giffen's 5-year later series (one of the only eras being totally forgotten these days) and I kept up during the Zero Hour years. I was crushed when DnA's take finally ended, so it is not an easy thing to get me back into the Legion. But you know what? I'm back.
Johns wisely keeps the focus on a good core of characters. Everyone knows Brainiac, he's a natural central character. I have never really liked Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad, or Saturn Girl much, but while they are still central to this story, Blok, the White Witch, Rond Vidar, Wildstar, and Dawnstar have almost equal panel time. Johns spends a ton of time with Superboy Prime, and he's such a compelling villain that he really drives the entire story. Mixing in such a simple villain with all these weird concepts like Takron Galtos and dozens of villains I've never heard of was a really effective way to tackle the story.
It is a thrill seeing the Zero Hour Legion back, even if it was just a short time. I love that Johns leaves them out there as the "New Wanderers" searching the multiverse for other characters marooned after their Earths are destroyed. There's a chance to see them again. Gates and XS actually stick around in the "real" Legion; I'm happy to see it, they were two of the better creations during Zero Hour. Johns shows once again how he's so good at drilling down a core concept and then putting the toys back in the box. (He brings back some pretty big characters in this one too. He loves setting stuff up.) This is a Legion I want to read more about! I can't believe it, but I think I'm in for the upcoming trades on the new series.
Superboy gets a nice (if short-lived) new status quo. Lurking in the "real" world and hanging in the DCU message boards? That's just perfect.
George Perez is the master of crowded fight scenes. There is always another Easter egg, hidden character, or tiny detail to pore over. There was one panel where three fists are punching a villain out, and I grinned at the tiny cameo for Triplicate Girl. Night Girl's revealing costume aside, I loved his take on the older Legion. I do have to admit I'm about ready for something new for Superboy Prime in the costume department.