SUPER DC CON: LEGION LEADER BALLOT PAPERS

 

 

IN 1976, DC Comics held its inaugural (and so far only) Super DC Convention, originally scheduled for the Hotel Commodore, NYC (taken over by the Trump Organization that year itself and duly converted into the Grand Hyatt), but hastily moved to the Americana (now Sheraton NY Times  Square), after a strike by employees at the Commodore. The events happened at such late notice that the convention booklet could not be changed, so the program had to erroneously bear the name of the Commodore as the venue.
    Despite a well-documented comedy of errors which plagued the three-day con, it proved a spectacular success, with a huge amount of vintage comics for sale, DC memoribilia displays, panel discussions, workshops and film festivals, ending with a celebration of Superman's birthday and a suitably-decorated cake. Indeed, it was the last time DC's golden age creators got to share the stage with their silver age counterparts.
    In many ways, this was a precursor of the big comic cons we have today. It also attracted many Legion of Super-Heroes fans, giving DC the opportunity to ask them to elect a new leader for the Legion.

 

 

Ballot papers featuring all the Legionnaires were made available to attendees, who were asked to circle their preferred leader on the form as well as writing down the character's name in the space provided, and placing them in various Legion ballot boxes placed around the venue.
    Random forms were drawn at regular intervals throughout the sessions and door prizes awarded, with the fans' choice announced on the last day. Superboy was the clear winner, with Wildfire coming in second.
    But because Superboy was only a part-time member, Wildfire was named leader, and duly sworn in in SUPERBOY 225, Paul Levitz' first Legion story. Element Lad came in third, and interestingly, Tyroc placed fifth.

 

 

    The double-sided ballot papers measured 8.5 x 11 inches, and were accompanied by a survey form compiled by "the DC staff", asking fans a series of questions about what they liked and disliked about DC Comics, with three lucky participants winning pieces of original art.
    While many fans filled the ballot papers in, those with more collectors' instincts kept a few for themselves.
    There are probably only a handful of these unmarked papers left today.