Writer: Jim Zub
Artist: Max Dunbar
Previously in Champions, Nova and the Wasp were sucked into the Nexus of All Realities. The Champions have been seeking advice from the magical members of the Marvel universe in order to find their friends. The Champions have no success in finding a way to get to Nova and Wasp, however. Snowguard contacts the Inuktitut spirit that provides her power to seek advice. Sila, the spirit, provides a device to Snowguard known as the Siege Parallel that will take the Champions to Weirdworld.
The Champions title has been doing a good job of creating adventures similar to the Avengers with character interactions similar to the Teen Titans. This issue is no exception to that. The prospect of the Champions entering Weirdworld is exciting. Zub writes the characters dialog in this issue well.
It’s really fun to see the members of the Champions reinvented in a fantasy setting. The story also sets up a very engaging world in this first chapter. A device known as the Siege Parallel is introduced to the Marvel Universe in this issue. The Siege Parallel seems very similar to the Siege Perilous which was used famously in the pages of Uncanny X-Men. The Siege Parallel, much like the Perilous, examines your heart and soul to reinvent you. Unlike the Perilous, the Parallel seems to take you to a certain destination and reinvents you to fit that setting.
The Siege Parallel, again like the Perilous, affects your memory. Riri (Ironheart) seems to have made it to Weirdworld with her memory intact. Ironheart then becomes our doorway into Weirdworld. Riri is aware that she has traveled to Weirdworld and things have changed. She is also aware of why she is there in the first place. This introduction to the story was one thing that really worked for me.
There are a few problems with the issue though that held me back from fully enjoying it. The choice of narrator for this issue did not work for me. I think the uncertain narrator was meant to act as a big reveal or twist. The anonymity was more confusing I thought. It was more of a distraction to the flow of the story. The included cameos are great, but the text did little to inform you who they were if you are not familiar. An editor’s note explaining the characters would have helped out. I still really enjoyed the issue even with the small flaws.
The art by Izaakse and Dunbar looked so good. The character designs for the fantasy versions of the Champions are really cool. Many of the citizens of Weirdworld are part animal and all look great as well. What really caught my eye with the art was the excellent use of character expression. The characters state of rest during slower moments looks very natural. The artist show expression through body language just as much as the dialog. Seeing the members in action was really cool.
This chapter is a fun start to the run even with a few flaws in the text. This issue is a start to a new run which makes it a good place to start if you are a new reader to Champions. This is also the only place you can currently read the adventures of most of the team members. So many members of the Champions feel underrated in the Marvel universe. In order to give the Champions a bit more credit, I would say this is a must read.
The Champions take on a whole new persona when they enter into Weirdworld in search of Nova and Wasp. The adventure is fun and adds a few surprise cameos. This issue is the first issue to a new arc and works as a great starting point. I highly recommend it.