Writer: Mark Waid
Artist: Humberto Ramos and Victor Olazaba
Colorist: Edgar Delgado
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
Cover: Humberto Ramos and Edgar Delgado
The Secret Empire “event” has been hard on just about everyone. I haven’t followed the main story, because I honestly don’t care about it, but I’ve seen a lot of the edges of it as it spills into the various titles that I regularly get. And things get ugly for the young heroes of the Champions this month.
It’s not the regular team, which makes sense. There’s so much going on and changing, the ones left on the good side are scrambling to keep up with the chaos. One of the big events has been the destruction of the city of Las Vegas, as some kind of show of strength by Captain Hydra and the forces of evil. I grant that sounds melodramatic, but it’s about the size of things at this pont.
Picking through the ruins, looking for survivors, are a group of young heroes, only some of whom have been on the Champions until now. Champions Spider-Man (Morales), Hulk (Cho) and Viv Vision are joined by the new Falcon, Patriot, Wasp, and Ironheart. This is a very grim story, which I think overall is done too much in comics these days. But they did this very well.
It’s not really about action or superheroics. This is a story about the nature of acceptance and recognizing that, no matter how powerful you are, you can’t fix everything. It’s a really hard lesson for any young person to learn, and harder still if you can lift a tank or fly or build amazingly advanced armor. This really stood out for me as my best read of the week. Mark Waid is a very accomplished writer.
Plot: I’m giving this one a 4.5 out of 5 for the story. The let themselves write about character and interactions, and didn’t try to squeeze in action or fights that just wouldn’t have fit. It was a brutally hard issue on the characters, but not for the sake of being harsh. I also like that they let the membership change to tell the story.
Art: The art was good, but not great. The artist seems to like drawing everyone thin and elongated. It’s a stylistic choice that didn’t really work for me personally. I’ll give the art a 3 out of 5.
Positives: Just about everything. It’s a great story with some characters learning some very hard facts of life. This was really well written.
Negatives: It’s part of the Secret Empire nonsense, which I’m really not enjoying. And, as I said, the art wasn’t really to my taste.
But overall, this was a great issue.