Writer: Allan Heinberg
Artists: Andrea DiVito (p), Drew Hennessey (i)
Publisher: Marvel Comics
I didnít love the idea of the Young Avengers when I first came across it. Indeed, I have actively avoided writing reviews of anything Avenger related of late as I donít think the series need the attention, and Iíve not been blown away by the stories on offer. However, this was a bloody dry week for comics that interest me so I ended up picking up 4 different issues, 3 of which were Avengers or Avengers related [shudder], so I shall start with the best of them in Young Avengers.
We see the kids have taken to Caps' instructions like a Duck to motorbike riding. They switched costumes and went out to pound on the Shocker. As villains go, heís hardly a heavy hitter but not a bad catch for a newly assembled group with no real backing. Captain America is less than enthused about this, and isnít afraid to say so. He makes good on his threat about going to the kids' parents and this behaviour is something weíll come to later. Meanwhile, in an attempt to head off this attack by Mr. Red, White and Blue, the kids brace themselves for revealing their dual identities to their folks. Before they get a chance to get it done, however, something very large and very Avengers-dangerous comes up to distract them.
Lets start with the bad, seeing as there is less of it and I do so enjoy tearing things down. Captain America's behaviour regarding the kids is uncharacteristic at best and plagiaristic at worst. For a man who has seemed painfully out of sorts and soft in the Avengers title, he is taking a pretty serious stand over some meta kids fighting the good fight. I understand it is some sort of play on the whole Bucky dying 50+ years ago, but itís tired. The very same thing happened to Young Justice at the hands of the Justice League and to be honest Iím not liking it. Itís downright bad.
So, on to the good then and plenty more to be said here. First and foremost, I want to voice my congratulations and support for the relationship between Teddy and Billy. Not only is this long overdue, it is handled in such a way that their sexuality doesnít make them any less attractive as characters. I like the fact that it is never actually said but implied heavily enough to be apparent. Another point to Marvel for not overplaying the choice, it is simply who they are. Well done. Second is the comics' stance on drugs. Very interesting twist at the end of the issue makes me want more (and possibly some drugs, let me digest it some more before commenting further), and I have the utmost respect for them tackling issues like this without fear of condemnation. It is good to know that at least one series with the name "Avengers" in the title is connecting with an audience SOMEWHERE.
So, for some great character work while managing to make it look decidedly casual. Interesting stories that donít simply examine one member of the team at a time but the entire group tackling issues of real importance. The Vision is also an interesting idea, and Iím anxious to see how it plays out, though the similarities to Red Tornado are worrying. The only thing spoiling it is the inclusion of Captain America (A chameleon of epic proportions given his changing behaviour from one title to the next) and his bizarre and hackneyed behaviour. Go on Marvel!
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