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Champions #1: Review

Jan 2019
Jim Zubkavich, Steven Cummings

Story Name:

Beat the Devil: Part 1

Review & Comments

4 stars

Champions #1 Review by (January 12, 2019)
Erick Arciniega helps with the colouring.

Who are the new members:-
Falcon/Joaquin Torres (still keeping the name despite Sam Wilson reclaiming it), Locust/Fernanda Rodriguez (previously as Red Locust) and Patriot/Rayshaun Lucas joined the team during the membership drive in #16-18, but haven't been around since.
Power Man/Victor Alvarez has been active since just after Dark Reign, lastly part of Roberto da Costa's AIM in New Avengers (2015).
Bombshell/Lana Baumgartner came from Ultimate Universe with Spider-Man. She met the Champs in his #239-240 as a reformed teen villain who'd been led astray by her mother.
Pinpoint/Qureshi Gupta is totally new.

Viv Vision says they've also also got some backup members recruited via The Forums online chat group. She mentions:-
Cloud 9/Abigail Boylen débuted in the Avengers: Initiative, lastly seen as a member of Leonardo da Vinci's SHIELD replacement in Iron Man #600 (whatever happened to that?).
Honey Badger/Gabrielle Kinney is X-23's younger clone sister and they're currently co-featuring in the 2018 X-23 series as well as popping up in lots of other X-titles.
Moon Girl/Lunella Lafayette still has her own series with Devil Dinosaur. She turned the Champs down during their membership drive in #16 even though she'd been a part of Ms Marvel's Secret Warriors
Prodigy/David Alleyne is 1 of the New Mutants (despite losing his mutant power) and has also been a Young Avenger. Unless Viv means some other Prodigy like Ritchie Gilmore, who recently resurfaced with the rest of the Slingers team in Ben Reilly: Scarlet Spider.
Red Dagger/Kareem is a friend of Ms Marvel.
Silk/Cindy Moon was bitten by the same spider as Peter Parker, but he didn't find out about her until Original Sins. In the post-Secret Wars III universe she's been working for SHIELD, but that is no more. And she met Miles-Spidey in Amazing SM #799-800, and worked with Brawn (when he was Hulk) and Ms Marvel in Totally Awesome Hulk #15-18.
Viv also starts to say another name beginning with S but she's cut off. Judging by the list of The Forums members Moon Girl gave in Secret Warriors (2017) #8 this might be Sister Grimm/Nico Minoru of the Runaways.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Champions #1 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
In between last series and this the Champions have expanded their roster, and at this moment they are split into 3 teams to handle 3 widespread trouble-spots. Snowguard is shepherding Bombshell, Falcon, Locust and Pinpoint in Mexico. Ironheart and Wasp are with Patriot and Power Man in Japan. And the rest of the main team (Brawn, Ms. Marvel, Spider-Man and Viv Vision) are in the Champions Mobile Bunker piloted by the depowered Sam Alexander over Dubai.

Locust leads the charge through a hole blasted by Bombshell into a dilapidated remote building where young girls are being held before being sold on. Falcon and Snowguard fly in behind them. While Pinpoint opens a portal to let the girls escape, the others take down the sex traffickers.

The 2nd team are in Japan to rescue victims of a storm. Patriot and Power Man are riding in a flying platform built by Riri Williams. Ironheart detects 9 life-signs to be rescued, but there isn't enough room in the platform. Wasp has an idea about that. Power Man uses the chi he siphons from ambient cultural energy to help IH shift very large chunks of broken building. Nadia Van Dyne shrinks to get to 6 trapped people. Then she uses a Pym Pod to shrink *them* (and contain them?). When she gets them back to the platform Ironheart and Power Man have retrieved the other 3 full-size people. Patriot has been keeping the platform steady.

Meanwhile the 4 still-powered original members of the Champions leap out of the Bunker in midair to tackle the electrical being Zzzax who is destroying a power plant. But after they land something bad seems to happen to them ...

... but we skip to the end where defeated Zzzax is (presumably) trapped in Amadeus Cho's Battery Containment Field device. Viv says her father Vision will know how to imprison it more permanently.

Back in the Bunker Pinpoint brings back the successful Mexico team, and then heads off and retrieves the other team from Japan.

Sam Alexander tries to congratulate Miles Morales on good work in Dubai but Spidey snubs him and even locks him out of their shared bunk room. Amadeus tells Sam that Miles needs some alone time but won't say why. And Brawn gets angry when Sam won't let it go. (Is this something to do with what happened in Dubai?)

Ms Marvel calls everybody together for a celebratory party. But before it starts she gives a morale-boosting congratulatory speech. She doesn't seem to notice that everybody is chatting rather than listening. Especially synthezoid Viv who wants to talk with Riri about when she kissed her (in the last issue of the previous series). Viv stopped when Riri asked her to and can't understand why Ironheart is now uncomfortable around her. Riri says Viv can't just kiss people without asking. So Viv now asks if she *can* kiss her, and angry Riri walks away.

Meanwhile Kamala Khan has continued her speech and now calls her old friends (dating back to their Avengers days) Spider-Man and Nova to take a bow. But leaves in hurried confusion when she realises they aren't there to support her. She finds Sam still locked out of his room. When Miles doesn't answer her loud knock she uses her elastic power to shrink under the door. But Spidey refuses to tell her what's wrong and insists that she leave him alone. She leaves convinced that her leadership is at fault.

But we see Miles visited by Mephisto who asks hasn't he got what he wanted?

Steven Cummings
Steven Cummings
Marcio Menyz
Kim Jacinto (Cover Penciler)
Kim Jacinto (Cover Inker)
Rain Beredo (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Clayton Cowles.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: C. B. Cebulski.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Joaquin Torres)
Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Kamala Khan)

(Miles Morales)

(Nadia Pym)

Plus: Bombshell, Brawn (Amadeus Cho), Champions, Ironheart (Riri Williams), Locust (Fernanda Rodriguez), Patriot (Shaun Lucas), Pinpoint, Power Man (Victor Alvarez), Sam Alexander, Snowguard (Amka Aliyak).

> Champions: Book info and issue index

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