Review: Champions #1

Champions #1

The Champions have gone global! The team has seen explosive growth under Ms. Marvel’s leadership, with super-powered members ready to answer the call in a dozen different countries. They’re saving people and improving lives across the planet while they inspire the next generation… but something sinister lurks beneath the surface of their expanded mission. It’s a dark secret that could destroy the team and everything they stand for!

Champions has always been an interesting series for Marvel. When it launched, it had a mission to focus more on average people and help those that the Avengers (and the like) overlook. To some extent the characters and series did that but at times things missed the mark. This first issue refocuses the series by expanding the cast and making it clear they have a global mission. This first issue continues the previous series splitting the group into three teams with three missions. Two of those three are exactly that mission focusing on every day disasters and events that impact the average person. The third is the villain fight. That last one gets the short end as the other are more of the focus. It emphasizes the focus of the comic.

But, it’s not just the mission, it’s also the team members and writer Jim Zub puts that front and center. With an expanded cast including some obscure characters, this take on the Champions feels more like the interesting aspects of the Avengers: Initiative than the previous series. There’s a lot about the personalities and interactions and that’s key with so many characters. It grounds the series but sets up easy internal conflict and clashes and here that’s important and plenty.

The art by Steven Cummings is decent. It feels like the characters and style becomes more familiar as the series moves on as the first few pages don’t quite have the quality of later ones. Cummings is helped with color by Marcio Menyz and Erick Arciniega with lettering provided by Clayton Cowles. The mix of characters is good and together they still feel cohesive in a way despite the variation in costumes. There is some great pages and panels but at the same time, there’s some misses here and there when it comes to art. But, overall, it’s really good work where the style matches the attitude of the series.

Folks who haven’t read the series before, this is an opportunity to hop on and check it out. There’s a great mix of characters, some will be the future of Marvel, and Zub and team set up a series which will be as much action as it will be interpersonal conflict. Plus there’s that ending…

Champions #1 is a solid starting point and perfect chance to check out the series in 2019.

Story: Jim Zub Art: Steven Cummings
Color: Marcio Menyz, Erick Arciniega Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Story: 7.85 Art: 7.55 Overall: 7.75 Recommendation: Buy

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review