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Community Forums › Comic books › Marvel › Young Avengers Vol. 1: Style > Substance
Young Avengers Vol. 1: Style > Substance

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Joined: Dec 31, 1969
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 6:53 pm    Post subject: Young Avengers Vol. 1: Style > Substance

Style > Substance is the title of the first collection from the Marvel NOW! relaunch of Young Avengers and I think putting the style of this comic front and center, right in the title, is spot-on. Writer Kieron Gillen and artist Jamie McKelvie, who worked together on the critically-acclaimed Image comic Phonogram, have reunited on a title that exudes youth not just in its title, but as a core part of its content and its presentation.

This new volume of Young Avengers draws its members from a variety of great comics, those both popular and widely overlooked from the last decade. For fans of the previous incarnation of Young Avengers, the team deftly created and scribed by Allan Heinberg, come several characters, including Wiccan, Hulkling, and Kate Bishop, the young Hawkeye. From the criminally-ignored mini-series Vengeance by Joe Casey comes America Chavez, a new version of Miss America. Grant Morrison's Marvel Boy, Noh-Varr, threatens to steal every scene in which he appears, and he'd likely succeed if it weren't for the inclusion of Kid Loki, the mischievous young incarnation of Thor's half-brother. Gillen himself wrote this version of young Loki through 25 issues of Journey Into Mystery.

America Chavez, as drawn by Nick Dragotta in the Vengeance mini-series.

Kid Loki during his run as a mischievous protagonist in Journey Into Mystery, which continues in Young Avengers.

The impressive pedigree of the cast of Young Avengers is handled brilliantly as each character echoes their best appearances from their previous comics, with Miss America's attitude radiating with a nearly-corporeal presence, Marvel Boy's moves owing more to Grant Morrison than to Brian Bendis, and Kate Bishop referring to her recent adventures in the current Hawkeye title.

Style abounds in precision-charted combat maneuvers, nightclubs, conversations in diners, teen romance (of course!), and pop-culture references ranging from music, both old and new, to analogies involving Game of Thrones characters. But don't let the title fool you. Style might be front and center in dialogue and motivation for these teen heroes, and perhaps it is greater than the substance here, but substance is here all the same. The Young Avengers are brought together by a creature that comes to be known as Mother, who manipulates voracious and possessive doppelgangers of parental figures of the teen heroes. Unlikely loyalties grow naturally, relationships change, and the hearts of heroes aren't hard for the reader to find, even if they're occasionally under a thin disguise.

"Legacy isn't a dirty word, but it's an irrelevant one. It's not important what our parents did. It matters what we do. Someone has to save the world. You're someone. Do the math."

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