Champions #6 never misses a beat from the previous issues even with a new creative team, who bring their own energy and sensibilities as they perfectly capture teenage voices and the issues that face many of us in the world today. Bright and colorful superheroic colors mesh with the colorful and bright aspects of corporations creating a delightful visual buffet within the issue.
In the comic book world, it used to be quite common for a new creative team to come on board long-running ongoing titles, picking up where the last team left off and running their own stories from that point. Over time that has faded some as more often than not, a new creative team means that a book starts over with a shiny new number one. Marvel’s Champions has for the second time foregone that usual step as a new creative team has taken over with issue number six, and things are definitely still not alright for the heroic kids.
While the last issue saw the controversial Kamala’s Law bill, which targeted and outlawed youthful heroes without an adult mentor and put kids in brutal reeducation camps, put on pause once corporate backing was revealed to the public. The law still actually remains. What has changed though is that corporate bad guys Roxxon have decided to put on a face of change with their new youthful publicity and marketing director.
Danny Lore captures the awkwardness, anger, and other emotional ticks of teenagers and their speech patterns wonderfully in this first chapter. They also have masterfully brought in very topical things that are major battles and concerns for our society right now. These include government bureaucracy and passing of harmful laws, the proliferation of weaponized social media, and corporations trying to put on new faces to trick the populace from seeing their shady behaviors.
While the Champions are heroes and there are battles to be fought, what makes the book stand out is that these young heroes are fighting battles that cannot just be punched away. They are trying to actually change the world.
Just like Eve Ewing did previously in the series, Lore loads the issue up with a lot of stuff within the 20 pages and it never feels like too much and none of it feels crowded. In fact, it feels very true to life as most of us know it, things rapidly being thrown out there and coming at you with very little time to fully respond to them all.
There is this charming, adventurous, and joyful quality that radiates off of Luciano Vecchio’s artwork and being paired with Federico Blee just brings that out even more. Everything is bright and loud in the best way possible, as things tend to be not only in superhero comics, but as a reflection of our own world. Roxxon popups that are flashing and catering to the youths fit and that energy is infused through the entire issue, both in the better and the not-so-good times that the characters face.
Clayton Cowles keeps that energy and feeling going as he brings in some really great lettering work that is reigned in for the dialogue, but then cuts loose when it comes to the flashier and bigger aspects. Even the letters within the location caption boxes have their own little flare to make them stand out just a little more against some of the more vibrant pages.
Publishers often speak about how teenage focused comics are a hard sell, but it’s comics like this and the recently ended Power Pack series that truly showcase that teenage-focused titles can not only thrive but have a well-deserved place within the publishing realm.
Champions #6 is now on sale from Marvel Comics in print and digitally.