Tellus

Created by Paul Levitz and Steve Lightle

NAME + ALIASES: Ganglios of Hykraius

KNOWN RELATIVES:
None

GROUP AFFILIATIONS:
Legion Academy, Legion of Super-Heroes

FIRST APPEARANCE:
Legion of Super-Heroes v.3 #9 (April 1985)

History

Most of the planets with which humans have made contact have oxygen atmospheres, in which humans can live comfortably as well. Similarly, the methane-breathing Gil'Dishpan have explored many methane-atmosphered worlds. It was they who discovered Hykraius, a world populated by yellow beings somewhat resembling fish, and introduced its natives to space travel.

During his (successful) Legion tryout.
From Legion v.3 #14 (1985). Art by Steve Lightle.

Methane atmospheres are rare, so most Hykraians don't travel off-world much. But through telecommunications, they did get news from the United Planets. One young Hykraian, Ganglios, heard about the Legion Academy, and decided that he might be able to help people through his common Hykraian telepathic and telekinetic abilities, if the academy could teach him how to function in hostile atmospheric conditions. The Academy agreed to accept him, first building a tank in which he could stay, and later getting Brainiac 5 to create a life-support helmet for him so that he'd be mobile. Despite his alien appearance, he made good friends with his fellow Legion Academy students. (Legion v.3 #9)

As an applicant for Legion membership, Ganglios' timing couldn't have been better. The team's resident telepath, Saturn Girl had recently retired. Ganglios impressed the Legionnaires with his mental abilities, beating out another strong candidate from Titan, Mentalla. Ganglios chose the code name Tellus (the Hykraian equivalent of "person"). (#14)

Like other non human Legionnaires Blok and Quislet, Tellus has found many challenges in his new life on Earth. At first he was awkward with using his flight ring. But he has already had the opportunity to return to his home planet as a Legionnaire, when he and others were sent to investigate the disappearance of another hero. (#30)

After the death of the Legion's benefactor, R. J. Brande, Tellus joined a new assembly of the Espionage Squad and traveled back to the 21st century in order to shepherd the hero Mon-El on to his destiny. It’s unclear whether it was intentional or not, but he became the captive of the Cadmus Project, (Adventure Comics Special #1) where he was instrumental in guiding the Guardian to his destiny as head of Metropolis’ Science Police. (Superman #685, 687) The Guardian returned to free Tellus from Cadmus (#688-689), and Tellus continued on his mysteriouis mission, appearing to several other 21st century people… he bade the Green Lantern Sodam Yat not to seek out Mon-El, telling Yat that doing so would negatively impact the future. Instead, Yat entrusted special crystals to Tellus which contained the secret history of Mon-El’s home world, Daxam. (#690)

After that, Tellus saved Jimmy Olsen from certain death at the hands of an assassin. (Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen Special #2, Superman #694) When he connected with his fellow Legionnaire Starman, Tellus found that his powers were insufficient to heal Thom’s chaotic mind. Tellus also became a legend in Smallville, Kansas, as the “monster of Bruin Lake.” There he came across young Simon Valentine, who was destined to become Superboy’s “greatest friend and enemy.” (Adventure v.2 #1)

Nothing is known about Ganglios' life on Hykraius or his family.

Notes

Paul Levitz on Tellus: Writer Paul Levitz credits the creation of Tellus to artist Steve Lightle. In essence, Levitz asked him "what kind of character would you like to draw?" Legion of Substitute Podcasters (episode #70)

+ Powers

Tellus is a telepath of considerable strength. His mental powers also include telekinesis.

Appearances + References

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