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Champions #27: Review

Dec 2018
Jim Zubkavich, Max Dunbar

Story Name:

Warriors of the weird: Conclusion

Review & Comments

Rating:
4 stars

Champions #27 Review by (December 22, 2018)
It turns out that this issue's cover connects to the joined covers of the previous 2 issues to form a triptych.

As I mentioned in #25 Weirdworld is not a world but is part of the Bermuda Triangle in the post-Secret Wars III Earth. (Though I presume it's size means it's actually elsewhere but accessed via the Triangle.)
Originally it *was* a world in a separate reality wherein we followed the adventures of Tyndall of Klarn and Velanna. Then when the multiverse was destroyed part of Weirdworld survived as part of Dr Doom's Battleworld in the SWII Event. Tyndall and Velanna lived through that and into it's new existence in the Triangle (as revealed in the 2016 Squadron Supreme mini-series).
Arkon and the Swamp Queen (Jennifer Kale) featured in the Battleworld Weirdworld and carried forward into the 2016 Weirdworld mini-series, and Arkon into the Squadron mini-series while the Queen met Deadpool when he visited in his 2018 series.
Becca Rodriguez somehow got to Weirdworld via the Bermuda Triangle even when it was part of Battleworld. But she lived on to star in the post-SWIII WW series where she teamed up with Goleta the Wizardslayer.
Thundra entered Weirdworld in the Squadron mini-series.
Black Knight founded New Avalon there in his 2016 mini-series. But strictly-speaking he's been seen out in the main Marvel world since then.

Marvel Wiki claims that Captain Kalibar and Koth can be seen amongst the Crystal Warriors. If so then they along with Crystar, Warbow and Stalax are all holdovers from the original Saga of Crystar, Crystal Warrior series. Crystar and Warbow were in the SWIII Weirdworld series and the Squadron series.
Warbow lost an eye in the original Saga. Crystar was recreated without an arm in the SWIII Weirdworld series after the previous time he was broken into bits.

Sam's father used to be a member of the Nova Corps. For a long time he's been a prisoner of the Chitauri. He appeared to come home at the end of the 2013 Nova series. But in the 2016 series he was revealed to be a clone sent by the Chitauri.

This issue marks the end of the series but it will continue straight on with a new #1 with an expanded roster and a new penciller. But before then there's Champions Annual #1.




 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Champions #27 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The team are in magical medieval Weirdworld with new identities and most of them have lost their memories of being Champions.

Sam Alexander is now the Nova Knight, champion of Eshu and his memories remind us how he got to this position. Those memories only start with him and his 'sister' Wasp being found by Eshu. The winged elfin Wasp could already shrink and fly but Sam then found that he could channel power from a crystal that Eshu carried. The trio bonded as a 'family' as they explored the land and Eshu built a kingdom where Modred the Mighty joined them as court wizard.

What ex-member of the Nova Corps Sam has forgotten apart from being a Champion is that Eshu is the team's enemy the self-styled Master Of The World. And that Sam and Nadia Pym fell into this world with Man-Thing in #23.

Nova Knight is currently leading Eshu's Serpent-Men army against New Crystalium, home of the Crystal Warriors and source of many of the crystals which give Eshu his power base. The foe is led by Prince Crystar (who has lost his left arm) and his right-hand man one-eyed archer Warbow.

The battle is going badly for the Crystal Warriors when a loud screech announces the arrival of the other Champions with Man-Thing riding on the back of Amka Aliyak in the form of a giant white eagle. The reinforcements launch into an attack on the Fangs Of The Serpent, and Crystar leaps to fight Nova Knight. But in a brief skirmish he loses his sword-arm and then his head to Sam's crystal-empowered sword.

Ms. Marvel (here known as the Mystic Marvel) is still on the back of Snowguard (Snowgore) when spy Wicked Wasp unshrinks from hiding in the bird's feathers and zaps her. Snowgore shakes them both off but then rescues Marvel with her talons and buffets Wasp with a wing.

(Lady) Ironheart, the only 1 to remember them being the Champions, sees Nova Knight fighting more Crystal Warriors and calls out to him "Sam". He gets a memory flash of telling her (and the others) his secret identity (#22) after losing his Nova power (Infinity Countdown: Champions #2). But this just reignites his joy in his current power and determination not to lose it. So he attacks her with his sword and she is only saved by a force shield conjured by Mystic Marvel.

Meanwhile Brawn(hammer) tackles Eshu riding atop a giant crocodile. His warmaul  smashes Eshu's palanquin, crumples the crocodile and sends Eshu tumbling down. Riri Williams is shocked to hear Sam call Eshu 'father' and his anger ignites his crystal sword, drawing more raw power from the crystals in New Crystalium.

The explosion of energy is felt by those nearby (including Spider-Man (Shadow-Spider) who haven't found cause to mention before), and by the Swamp Queen who the team left fighting Modred last issue. And also by other denizens of the realm. We see Arkon, Thundra, Black Knight, Goleta the Wizardslayer, Becca the Earthgirl plus Tyndall and Velanna.

The mystic shield between Ironheart and Nova Knight crumbles. But Viv Vision (Vivid Vessel) merges herself with the armoured warrior, and light pours from Lady Ironheart's Mace Of Light And Truth. Immediately the Champions are transformed back to their real forms and costumes with their memories restored. Only Sam resists. He remembers Scott Adsit of the Nova Corps taking back the Nova helmet which gave him his powers (InfCount:Champs#2 again), and fears that without any powers he is nothing. Riri remembers Thanos saying *she* was nothing as he destroyed her previous armour (IC:C#2 yet again). She says that it's not the powers or the armour which makes a hero. He remembers Ms Marvel telling him she's so glad they're friends (#22 again). And he breaks the sword which dissolves his armour. And the Champions are back.

The Serpent army is defeated and New Crystalium is saved. Sam apologises for killing 2 Crystal Warriors (Crystar this issue and Stalax in #25). Warbow says they can revive them by fusing their crystals back together. Wasp also apologises for fighting against her team. Viv separates from Ironheart. Snowguard talks Man-Thing into sending them all home ...

... and they appear on the lawn where Sam Alexander's mother Eva and sister Kaelynn are wondering if they'll ever see Sam (or his missing father) again.

Later in the Champions Mobile Bunker Riri is worried about what Miles Morales said when he was Shadow-Spider, how he preferred to work alone. But Spider-Man assures her he's not going to quit the team. Then she chats to Viv Vision who asks Ironheart if she *liked* being merged with her. And then kisses surprised Riri who pushes her away. The abashed synthezoid hurriedly leaves through a wall ...

... and reappears in a room with Amadeus Cho (Brawn), Amka Aliyak, Nadia Pym and Sparky their synthezoid dog. They discuss their recent adventure (and Wasp throws in her journey to the Microverse to rescue Ant-Man in the recent Ant-Man & Wasp mini-series). Ms Marvel (the only team member not to have revealed her secret id) enters the room and says their adventure in the medieval Weirdworld has inspired her to get them to try the Mansions & Manticores (obviously Dungeons & Dragons) role-playing game, which the video-gamers among them have never heard of.

Sparky wanders off through the walls. He picks up the abandoned Siege Parallel jewel (which helped them get to Weirdworld in #25). But he is attacked by the Ultron spider-bug (which followed them home from the IC:C mini-series and hasn't been seen since #22) and it takes him over.


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Max Dunbar
Max Dunbar
Nolan Woodard
Sean Izaakse (Cover Penciler)
Sean Izaakse (Cover Inker)
Marcio Menyz (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Clayton Cowles.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: C. B. Cebulski.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Kamala Khan)
Spider-Man
Spider-Man

(Miles Morales)
Wasp
Wasp

(Nadia Pym)

Plus: Brawn (Amadeus Cho), Champions, Ironheart, Man-Thing, Master of the World, Sam Alexander, Snowguard (Amka Aliyak).