Archive for Runaways

The Runaways Train

Snagged the first two issues of the new “Runaways” series last week, so let’s give ’em a quick read-through.


Runaways #1

The first issue of this latest volume of Marvel’s teen hero series starts out with the team returning to Earth, pursued by a band of vengeful aliens. The kids hole up in one of their families’ old safehouses, where they get attacked by a bunch of genetically-engineered guard-monsters. After that, they all go to the mall (Klara, a time-displaced plant controller from 1907, has some funny reactions to mass consumerism culture), and Chase tries to get a job at a radio station employing an evil super-powered shock-jock.


Runaways #2

Those vengeful aliens come a-callin’. Nico teleports them around the planet, and they capture and interrogate one of them, who reveals that they blame Karolina for the destruction of their — and her own — homeworld. The relationship between Karolina and Xavin, her Skrull girlfriend, is left strained by their revelations.

Verdict: I think I’m gonna have to give these thumbs down. I don’t mind the characters at all, and the story seems okay, but with a first issue, they need to make this as accessible as they can to new readers, and they didn’t do that at all. I couldn’t figure out who most of the characters were, what their powers were, what their backstories were. I’ve tried to get on-board this comic before, but it seems like the kind of book that, if you aren’t reading from the very beginning, you’ll never understand what the heck is going on. Maybe a few hours of digging around on Wikipedia can help me figure out what’s supposed to be happening here.

Having said all that, Molly Hayes, the superstrong 12-year-old with the bizarre hats, is awesome and funny and cool. I’d gladly read an all-Molly series, or even one co-starring the team’s dinosaur pet, Old Lace.

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Three Fast Reviews

I’ve snagged a pretty good crop of new comics this week — just in time to get hit by a sudden busy spree, both at the office and at home. So let’s see if we can get some reviews done very quickly for some of the new books.

Shadowpact #15

The plot is fairly straightforward. Dr. Gotham is an insanely powerful sorceror who wants to kill the magic-based superheroes in the Shadowpact on behalf of his evil, interdimensional god. He eats a sandwich and holds a busload of kids hostage in Chicago ’til the team shows up, then he kills Chicago.

Verdict: Thumbs up. The entire story is all about establishing Dr. Gotham as an unusual and very dangerous villain, and it does an incredible job. You really wouldn’t expect the two highlights of a story to be (1) Dr. Gotham eating a sandwich and (2) killing every living thing in Chicago, but it works amazingly well. Of course, I’m sure they’ll undo the “killing Chicago” thing next month, but still, this issue is a great ride.

Runaways #27

There are really two reasons I picked this one up. First, the cover here is just awesome. Second, I was told that the Yellow Kid (the star of the very first comic strip, “Hogan’s Alley,” back in the late 1890s) had an appearance, and I’ve long been a fan of old comic strips.

Well, the problem is that the Yellow Kid appears in just one panel. And beyond that, I know almost nothing about the main characters in the comic, so most of the stuff that went on here was completely lost on me. I will say, however, that I guffawed at the bit where the little pre-teen character (Molly Hayes, Wikipedia tells me) warns everyone that girls are on this side of the room, boys on that side, and no kissing or yucky stuff is allowed. I also like the fact that they hang out with a dinosaur. Don’t remember whether anyone ate sandwiches, although one character threatens to eat someone else.

Verdict: Can’t really give one. I’m just not familiar enough with what’s going on.

Justice Society of America #7

First of all, let me direct your attention to this cover by Alex Ross of the JSA’s newest member, Citizen Steel. This was not the same cover that was previewed — the preview got a lot of attention when it was released because Citizen Steel was, um, well, shall we say, in a state of, umm… Well, hang on just a second. (gets out thesaurus, looks up various interesting words, giggles in an immature manner) Tumescence. Turgidity. Perpendicularity. Upstandingness. (giggles some more)

Anyway, this caused a lot of hollering and weeping amongst the fanboys — you see, while they consider it a constitutional right to leer and drool over upskirt pictures of Mary Marvel and “Turkey’s Done” pictures of Psylocke, fanboys apparently run the risk of actually dying if they see a picture of a dude sportin’ lumber.

Anyway, it seems that DC decided that, if they were willing to reduce the size of Power Girl’s breasts on the last “Justice League” cover, maybe they should reduce the number of socks stuffed down Citizen Steel’s shiny shorts.

Oh, the story? The story’s fine. Citizen Steel makes his grand debut by helping beat the heck out of a bunch of neo-Nazi thugs. All that, plus Starman and Superman eating sloppy joes.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Who doesn’t love sloppy joes?

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