For many heroes in the Marvel Universe, the prospect of hurting a loved one is more frightening than a confrontation with any supervillain. This is especially true for former Young Avenger and current Initiative member Cassie Lang, aka Stature. In this week's "Young Avengers Presents" #5, writer Kevin Grevioux and artist Mitch Breitweiser tell a story in which Cassie's family and costumed life collide with heartbreaking results, and CBR News spoke with Grevioux about the issue.
When series editor Tom Brevoort approached Grevioux about penning an issue of "Young Avengers Presents," the writer eagerly accepted the gig. "[Creator] Alan Heinberg came up with a great concept and executed it to perfection," Grevioux told CBR News. "I wanted to be a part of this interim revival."
Grevioux finds Stature's desire to live up to the legacy of her deceased father Scott Lang, the second Ant-Man, to be the character's most compelling trait. The writer sees that desire as the foundation of the character's best personal quality, her sheer determination to be the best that she can be. "I know it sounds like a U.S. Army slogan, but if it fits, it fits," Grevioux said. "She's always striving and that trait can make her a great teammate."
Stature may have many admirable qualities, but like all Marvel heroes she's far from perfect. "I think she has a bit of an attitude," Grevioux stated. "This can be an asset in battle I think, but not so much when you're in a constant state of static with your parents. This causes her to always be waiting for the other shoe to drop, so to speak, and oft times that can be a problem in relationships."
"Young Avengers Presents" #5 specifically looks at Stature's complicated relationships with her mother and her stepfather, Blake. "They don't want her to be a hero. Her step-father definitely doesn't, not to mention the fact that he still doesn't like her natural father Scott Lang," Grevioux explained. "But in a colossal fight with the Growing Man, something tragic happens that makes Cassie feel as if maybe her parents are right. That maybe she's not good enough to be a hero. And the emotional repercussions that ensue are potentially devastating for her."
Cassie's most difficult problem in Grevioux's story is her relationship with her parents, but she won't find the Growing Man to be a push over. "As far as the Growing Man is concerned, she's never faced him before. At least not like this," Grevioux remarked. "She expects him to be the Stimuloid that splits into several smaller versions. But when she hits him and he grows larger than her, this presents a unique challenge that she's never seen. One that unfortunately results in tragedy."
Stature may have left the Young Avengers for the Initiative, but her former teammates aren't about to let her face the catastrophe that befalls her alone. "Kate Bishop, Wiccan and Patriot play important roles in the story," Grevioux said. "They provide the emotional support that Cassie needs in order to strengthen the shattered mental state we find her in."
In "Young Avengers Presents" #4, writer Paul Cornell showed how Cassie and her former teammate The Vision were growing closer but, Grevioux wasn't able to follow up on that particular plot thread in his issue. "There were some areas that were going to carry over in a few of the initial drafts, but as some adjustments were made both to Paul Cornell's script and to mine, it changed," Grevioux explained.
Since "Young Avengers Presents" #5 deals with a tragedy befalling someone close to Stature, the tone of the issue is very dark. "I think it's a very somber issue and extremely sobering for Cassie," Grevioux remarked. "The sad thing is that her friends have no idea how to help her. So that casts a very dark tone over the story."
Grevioux has been amazed by the way Mitch Breitweiser has brought his tragic tale to life. "I think this is some of the best work Mitch has done to date," the writer said. "And that's really saying something given the fact that he's always done tremendous work."
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