WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Champion #19, by Jim Zub, Sean Izaakse and Marcio Menyz, on sale now.
It’s a new age for Marvel’s team of teenage Champions.
The young heroes are now in the hands of Jim Zub and Sean Izaakse, and the new creative team’s inaugural issue puts the team in a new place, with new additions. Last month, the team was made up of Miles Morales’ Spider-Man, Ms. Marvel, Sam Alexander’s Nova, the teen Cyclops, Viv Vision, Totally Awesome Hulk Amadeus Cho, Unstoppable Wasp Nadia Pym, Red Locust, Riri “Ironheart” Williams, Patriot and new Falcon Joaquin Torres. Viv had just gotten her synthetic body back, and at the end of the issue, the young Cyclops left to help his X-Men Blue team with a big mission that would send them off into space.
When Champions #19 opens, it’s been three weeks since Scott Summers departed. A pair of children in Nunavut, Canada have snuck into a heavily guarded facility and found a person, trapped in an orb and glowing with a variety of bright colors. Our Champions team this time is Miles, Kamala, Sam, Viv and Amadeus like before, with Nadia and Riri rounding out the crew. (Locust, Falcon and Patriot are just “a call away,” according to Zub.)
The core seven convene together to see their first big step in changing the world: the Champions Mobile Bunker, a “transport/clubhouse/vehicle” that’ll take the team wherever they need to go to save the world. Riri, Amadeus, Nadia and Viv (plus Viv’s father) have all contributed to building the mobile base, complete with a command center able to monitor the world and prioritize where to be, and when. They’ve always had dreams of going global, and the Bunker is just what they need to do that.
With the help of Nadia’s G.I.R.L. gang of scientists she made in her solo book, Nadia’s been studying ice levels in the arctic and seeing how climate change is affecting the extreme weather patterns. One of the beacons in the arctic made to record data has gone offline near a glacier, and she wants the team to go check it out in case it’s bigger than a simple malfunction. Everyone’s game for it, and despite the fact that Miles and Sam have to share a room so there can be a bathroom, everyone is getting along…mostly. Everyone is worried about Riri, who has been physically present, but distracted tinkering with her armor rather than participating in any of their conversations, and Viv opts to check on her one on one to make sure everything is fine en route to their mission.
As Riri explains it, she’s just worried about not fitting in with the rest of the Champions. This is her first time being a part of a team — Ms. Marvel, Spidey and Nova were all previously Avengers and founding members of the Champions, Viv is also a founding Champion and had her family of androids, Hulk fought aliens alongside Ms. Marvel and several Asian American heroes in the past, and Nadia is both an Avenger and has her G.I.R.L. scientists. Compared to her fellow heroes, she can’t help but feel like the odd one out, even as she’s glad that they brought her on in the first place. But as Viv helpfully reminds her, everyone on the Champions is weird in their own way, so she’s not as alone as she thinks. Right now, all the seven of them has is each other.
And it’s a good thing that they’re all together, too. En route to the beacon, the CMB is attacked by a fleet of drones repairing the ice. During the attack, Sam unleashes a powerful Nova blast to wipe most of them out, but one manages to shoot him in the chest, and that’s where the issue ends. Sam will be fine, sure, but so far the Champions’ first effort at going global isn’t off to a great start.
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