Full disclosure: Actually. Let's take a minute after that statement. Every time I blog lately I feel like I'm revealing some sort of seedy insight into my comic buying habits. You guys might soon know me better than I know myself...
The only thing I was going to admit, re: above "full disclosure" is that I'm not a regular reader of Avengers Academy. I've heard good things about it, but with Young Avengers and every other attempt to modernize the Avengers team and turn it into a franchise? No thanks. I know Marvel has a big movie planned, and yes... Joss Whedon is writing it so I'm super excited. But the idea of creating a bunch of kiddie Avengers has been done several times in the past few years with generally disasterous results. And by that I mean boring! I'd rather have a comic that takes place in an alternate reality where all the Avengers are kids again ala that one rad Star Trek: TNG episode. Oh wait noIwouldn't because honestly I hatestorieslikethatsomuch!
Anyhoo, it's gotten a few good reviews on Comic Book Resources (I recommend their reviews section if you are mulling over buying a title, as I often do. Again with the buying habits!). I know that it's gotten a little bit of press for having gay characters in it, but again... if they're characters I don't really know or care about, there's not much sense in reading the stories. I picked up this issue as probably most people did, because a lil' old team called The Runaways happen to be guest starring. Recently, they popped up in the Daken comic. I think that they are now reduced to being guest stars in books that need them to boost sales. Despite this being a very clear sales gimmick, I'm game. I love them, and I'll read whatever they are in. Well played, Marvel.
So let's not even really talk about the kids from Avengers. Except maybe Julie Power, who is Lightspeed, who is also noticeable for being in an early arc of The Runaways when pretty much every editor in Marvel forgot about her. There's also an updated Power Pack comic I think, so I'm not sure why Julie is old if the Power Pack is still around. Anyway, she's clearly my favorite out of that group, and is pretty well featured in this particular issue. So there's that. Julie wants to help this kid who just came out as gay, but he holds a press conference to announce it to the world for publicity. Julie tries to tell him that this is a bad idea, that he can't discover who he really is in the spotlight, but the kid is kind of a jerk and shrugs her off as being lame. I'm more on Julie's side for this argument, but only just barely.
Nico is casting a spell among the press conference attendees to cloak her team. We discover that this is because Chase's mental link with Old Lace has returned, despite the dinosaur dying at the end of the last (and horrible!) Runaways arc. Also, the fact that Chase is alive and not in a coma or anything is weird, but in the Daken issues they make a reference to him getting hit by a car and then he "got better." I guess it's as good a reason as any to undo a crappy plot move. The Runaways being the Runaways, they of course somehow end up in a fight that they pretty much start winning. Bonus points to Victor who manages to control a Sentinel that's after him, 'cause yeah! he can do that! Sentinels on campus must have already been explained.
Henry Pym and Tigra are there, I guess as like den mothers? And they are together? Whatever. As the teams sort of socialize and get to know each other (with generally cute results. Who doesn't want Karolina to start dating again!?), the adults note that Molly and Klara are like, really young. They decide they are going to take them away. Which, um... didn't the Avengers also already try that? For one of the smartest guys in the universe, Pym is pretty dense here. The kids will probably run away, and Molly has kind of proven to be better off with the other kids than without them. And Klara? Is from like 100 years ago. They should focus more on getting back to her proper time, not to new foster parents. Her last parental situation turned out to be an indentured marriage, which... ew. I'm sure she's not in a rush to repeat that.
Despite the convoluted nature of the storyline, I like that this story gets Old Lace back on the team. It keeps the story of her death, but Nico sends her to a place where she's restored miraculously. Yeah, I guess that could happen. Magic and all. As the Daken story undid Chase's apparent demise, it's nice that the editors are undoing everything that was just a horrible decision by the writers-who-didn't-know-what-they-were-doing in the final arc. It hardly feels like The Runaways without Old Lace, and using the Avengers member with a connection to prehistoric things was a nice way to tie them into the book. I'll obviously pick up the book next month to see how this mini-arc plays out, but it's hardly worth shelling out money every month for a title with characters who don't seem too interesting.