In our final podcast from New York Comic Con, we focus strictly on comics artists from across the spectrum in interviews with Humberto Ramos, Nick Abadzis, Joe Staton, Jake Parker & Brian Level. Click below for the audio and more on the interviews Continue reading NYCC Podcast Special Episode Six
LOOKING FOR BOOKS TO BUY THIS WEEK?
LOOK NO FURTHER.
HERE ARE SOME ISSUES THAT WILL NOT DISAPPOINT.Tyler’s Recommendation … Motor Girl #1
“Terry Moore has a new series, so if you know what’s good you’ll check this out. I’m a big fan Mr. Moore, so my excitement is high for this. The series is on the sci-fi spectrum, with aliens, a talking gorilla, and some G-men trying to ruin everything. Guaranteed to have gorgeous art and engaging characters, you should all give this one a chance!”
Want to know what covers caught our attention this week?
Curious what our eyes fell in love with at first sight?
Well, here they are, the most memorable images on the stands this Wednesday . . .
Cosmo enrolls once more with . . .
Mark Waid of All New All Different Avengers, Daredevil, The Flash & Kingdom Come will team with artist Humberto Ramos of Extraordinary X-Men, Wolverine & The Amazing Spider-man for a new series titled Champions. More details at Entertainment Weekly
By Mark Waid, Humberto Ramos, Victor Olazaba & Edgar Delgado
Mark Waid and Humberto Ramos debut the new Marvel series Champions. Sporting a fun looking team on the cover the question became can Waid make this team work any better than his time on the Avengers? Champions comes out of the backlash of Civil War II. After a few young heroes witness the recklessness and negligence of their adult teammates they are faced with two choices. Hang up the costume because it no longer stands for something you believe in, or step up and make it stand for something you believe in. Ms. Marvel is at the centre of this first issue and she decides it is up to the young generation to put the hero back in superhero.
The story opens on Kamala. While she is eating lunch we are shown what happened 5 days earlier. The Avengers were locked into a destructive brawl with The Wrecking Crew. Although the Avengers prevailed and ended up saving lives it was at the destructive cost of the surrounding area including a small business. Post battle, Kamala throws out the idea to clean up the mess they made to which Sam quickly snaps back that there are unions for that kind of work, it isn’t their problem. Seeing the effect The Avengers are having on the locals, Kamala storms off effectively quitting The Avengers. This would be an ideal time for a “I didn’t sign of for this shit” cliche but thankfully, Waid goes with a much more personal “I can’t do this anymore”. Now 5 days later Kamala decides that she is going to take action. She begins rounding up a young team in hopes that each of them can be the heroes they grew up idolizing.
Since this is the first assembly of the team Ms. Marvel, Spider-man, Nova, Hulk and Viv this issue could have served as simply a gathering of the team. However, Waid uses both the acquisition of Hulk and Viv to highlight two different scenarios where this team can be effective. The acquisition of Hulk leads the group into a collapsing mine where they must carefully plan the extraction of three mine workers. Later, when testing how Viv can be the teams constant search engine they immediately find a human trafficking situation that requires their attention. A collapsed mine and a shipping container filled with young girls in their underwear couldn’t be further from each other, but Waid does a great job of highlighting how being a hero has to do with saving the people not just violence. In fact, the message this book sends at the end is a very positive one. The team stands firm that violence is not the way they are going to solve problems. If you come at them well you better have a good plan cause they will beat you into the ground, but there will be no kicking you while you are down.
Humberto Ramos does a solid job with the issue. His cartoony style works very well in the action scenes. It aids in the message of the book and breathes life into the youthful characters. There are serious moments in the issue that are not supposed to carry that fun feel and the team of Ramos, Olazaba and Delgado are able to play with the colours and line work to slightly change the feel of these panels. The art team does a really solid job keeping me interested throughout.
Champions is off to a great start. There was more to this book than just a team building debut. It is nice to see a team of youngsters voice their displeasure with the older generation and step up to make a difference. I have recently started to watch the new Survivor series which is Gen X vs Millennial. The very first episode some Gen X ego type makes a comment about the Millennials not standing a chance. How is a group of kids who have never worked at a real job going to beat the fantastic work ethic and decision making of the Gen Xers. Well, the Millennials wiped the floor with the Gen Xers in the first challenge thanks to their superior decision making. The youth are too often underestimated and Champions is out to adjust that opinion.
Jeff Lemire draws from a familiar well, but that is just what the doctor ordered for Extraordinary X-Men #1. As many of the All-New All-Different Marvel books have done, Extraordinary X-Men serves as a character introduction, while also laying the groundwork for an interesting story. This issue will seem familiar in style and content but as far as a #1 team building issue goes, Lemire and Ramos execute at a very high level.
There are a lot of nice looking panels in this issue, but none as important as the first. I am a big fan of Storm and when faced with the spotlight she can shine. Storm is a great character to lead this team. You can tell early on she will make the tough decisions. The simplicity of the opening panel is what makes it so powerful. Ramos pencils Storm, sitting, hands folded over her mouth with the type of piercing gaze that makes you want to confess your darkest secret. She stares with those big blue eyes and I’m instantly hooked.
Storm begins the issue looking to Professor X for guidance, when Bobby comes in we realize Professor X isn’t actually there. While this is happening Illyana is saving a scared mutant from a riotous mob. She flexes her muscle and proves she is not to be messed with, which is yet again another impressive two page spread from Ramos. Mutants, as usual, are hated by humans. However, it appears to be at it’s worse, as mutants are being attacked all over the world. Maybe worse than that, no new mutants are popping up. Terrigen mist has been released into the atmosphere and it is killing the mutants. The time is now for mutants to take action, so the first order of business for Storm is to go find Jean Grey and bring her back. Yay! Predictable… but still… yay!
Illyana travels to Russia to collect her brother Piotr from the farm life. This is where Lemire shines and where you can see the magic this book could potentially bring. Lemire deals so well with relationships. He slows down what has been a fast paced issue and creates a heartfelt emotional family moment between two very different siblings.
Well, enough of the mushy stuff, Lemire heads back to the action and lets Ramos talk the lead with a Nightcrawler scene. He attempts an escape from his demonic captors, but unfortunately comes up short. Setting the stage for a rescue mission in the near future.
Extraordinary X-Men #1 lays the groundwork for what is sure to be the X-team you don’t want to miss. The issue is a little predictable, drawing from a few classic X-wells, but the story does not suffer for it. Lemire uses the classic X-plots to make us feel at home with this book. This is the X-book you deserve.