Monday, January 9, 2017

Champions #4 Review and *SPOILERS* - Marvel Monday

Making a Pit Stop on the Way Home

Written By: Mark Waid
Art By: Humberto Ramos, Victor Olazaba, Edgar Delgado
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: January 4, 2016
Publisher: Marvel

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

The Champions made a comeback in the previous issue when they traveled to the Middle East to help the women of the area. The way that it was written showed that the creative team really understood the situation that they were writing about. So at this point we’ve had two really good issues of Champions and one subpar issue. The question is what we will get as we continue this series. Will we continue with a high quality of storytelling that the last issue showed? Or will we see the camping issue revisited? Let’s stop talking about it and just jump right in.

We begin with our team flying back from the Middle East in their jet when they are shot down in the middle of the ocean. The team immediately goes into action in order to save themselves. Viv and Miles begin repairing the hole while Nova flies outside in order to serve as another engine. Cyclops takes over the controls as he has had a lot of experience with flying one. However, despite everything they are able to accomplish, the jet crashing into the ocean. Luckily everyone seems to be alright. The team has to send Viv and Miles into the ocean to recover Nova but he is alright, aside from his helmet being damaged. Viv immediately goes into fixing Nova’s helmet as the team goes to investigating the attack.

The team has Viv fly out to find land and she locates something near them. Spider-Man uses his web to connect to Hulk and Hulk begins swimming while pulling the jet white him. Cyclops uses his beam at the back of the ship to provide added momentum to their movement. While he does so Ms. Marvel talks with him about the current conflicts between their people. Despite the issues the two are on good terms and Cyclops tells her as long as they are friends, they won’t fight each other. Nova puts some pressure on Viv as she attempts to fix his helmet and during this exchange, Viv tells him about how she lost her brother and mother and Nova expresses his condolences.

The team moves along when suddenly the waters begin to get choppy and out arises an Atlantean vessel who claims that they are invader of their airspace and are now under arrest and are prisoners of war. The two group immediately engage and after only about 20 minutes, the team has been captured and begin thinking of ways to escape. An Atlantean comes to them warning of their escape attempts failure. If they try to escape the pods will fill with water and everyone will be unable to breathe. This is where we learn that Hulk had refitted an old American spy plane into their jet and that is why the Atlantean’s saw them as a threat. The Atlantean leaves and talks with his people which Viv is able to understand. She finds out that they are still near the surface and springs into action to free the team.
Nova breaks out and one by one the Champions join in the fight once again but this time a switch must be flipped or the team will drown in a matter of minutes. While the team seems to have an upper hand, they are dangerously close to losing air when Viv is finally able to reach the switch, allowing her teammates to breathe. Hulk breaks them out of the ship and then Viv and Nova fly everyone out. As the issue ends we see a character sewing together a cape with the Champions logo on it and putting it on and it turns out that the character is none other than Gwenpool who seems intent on joining the new team. This is where the issue leaves us.

This issue of Champions has a similar feel to the previous one with lots of action and teamwork which makes me have a lot of faith in this team and how they work together. That said, it lacks the significant impact of the previous issue. The last issue dealt with a huge issue in our world today and this one doesn’t. Granted, I don’t want it to always be dealing with heavy real issues but I’m saying in this situation, it just didn’t have the same kind of weight that the last issue had. In addition, some things about the issue seem shoehorned in for the story. At the end of the issue when the team is fighting Atlanteans underwater, they are able to make quick work of them, despite being at a disadvantage. Due to this, I find it very hard to believe that they were able to be captured in the first place. There’s only one more thing about this story that I want to point out. So far, these issues have been very episodic. Granted, I’ve liked most of the issues so far but I’m looking forward to a point when we have an ongoing story with these character. Right now, it kind of just feels like the best Saturday morning cartoon ever.

Bits and Pieces

While it doesn’t have the same weight that the previous issue brought, Champions is able to provide some awesome action and team building in this issue and it really is a joy to read. I like seeing how these characters interact with each other and seeing them take on the Atlanteans was really awesome. That said, we seem to be getting more of the same from this book right now. I’m looking forward to a point when we get something different from this book but I’m still enjoying myself right now.


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