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Champions #5: Review

May 2019
Jim Zubkavich, Juanan Ramirez

Story Name:

Old friends and new

Review & Comments

Rating:
4 stars

Champions #5 Review by (May 12, 2019)
This is a War Of The Realms tie-in.

After leaving Dubai for New York Spider-Man (Miles Morales) will wind up in the WOTR: Journey Into Mystery mini-series.

Previously it was assumed that the current X-Men's history wasn't affected when the 5 young X-Men were brought forward in time because that act created an alternate timeline with them not in it. Technically they were from that timeline not the main 1.
However the events of Extermination mean that the young team went back in time to pick up their lives where they left off, inserting an extra chunk of time and memories into their adult counterparts lives. So young Cyclops *wasn't* from an alternate timeline after all. (But it does mean the 5 original X-Men are a bit older than they thought. However that's a minor wrinkle in Marvel's elastic timescale.)
(I'm not going to talk about how this does or doesn't fit with Marvel's usual take on alternate timelines, so ignore this sentence.)

Dust débuted in New X-Men (2001) #133 but didn't join the Xavier school until #138. However not much was done with her until she transfered to the 2004 New X-Men title. She was 1 of the 'survivors' of 2006's Decimation, and joined the 2008 Young X-Men after Messiah Complex. Then she became part of the general X-Men family. After 2011's Schism she joined Cyclops' side until Avengers Vs X-Men. After that she bopped around various X-titles until she didn't join them for Extermination.




 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Champions #5 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Spider-Man (Miles Morales) quit the team last issue because of guilt over what he did in #1 in Dubai. 4 of the team were there fighting a villain when Ms. Marvel and Viv Vision were killed. Miles and Brawn made a deal with Mephisto to rerun time so they could save their friends. But as a side-effect Spidey didn't save a local girl Faridah Kassem who he *did* save in the original timeline.

Now he's back in Dubai changing a light bulb for her mother. But he can't tell her why he's so concerned with her daughter's death, because he can't explain about alternate timelines and deals with the devil. So he just asks about her life. Then they see news about the invasion of New York by Frost Giants, and we're into the War Of The Realms. Mrs Kassem bids the 'Second Spider' go save more lives.

But the War is worldwide, and some other Champions are in action near Melbourne in Australia. Ms Marvel and Viv are with recent recruits Bombshell and Patriot plus Dust of the X-Men who is a guest from last issue. They are fighting Rock Trolls to keep them out of the city. The Australian Defence Force are busy defending Sydney where the invasion started. Patriot tells a local cop they need to evacuate the city while the Champions hold the baddies off.

Viv asks Ms M what her plan is. But Kamala Khan has been shattered by recent team member events and can't think straight. The Mephisto stuff not only made Miles quit but it's also soured her relationship with Brawn, and they had an argument in WOTR: New Agents Of Atlas #1 which resulted in Amadeus Cho going with *that* team. Meanwhile Ironheart walked out after an argument with Viv in #1, and Wasp (Nadia Pym) hasn't been around since then either. We learn now that's because of a mental breakdown in Unstoppable Wasp (2018) #4-5 (seemingly due to Nadia emulating Reed Richards in trying to Fix Everything). And last issue Sam Alexander went into space to try and get his Nova helmet and powers back. Viv is the only other 1 of the original team left, and Kamala especially misses Miles and Sam who were before that in the Avengers with her.

To temporise Ms M checks in with other Champions. Pinpoint makes a portal to Tallahassee to pick up Power Man with some medical supplies to transport to Queens, NY where they're needed. And after that she wants him to go to Sao Paulo to see if Snowguard's team is OK (but that's for next issue).

In Queens they find 3 X-Men (Cyclops, Havok and Multiple Man) who definitely aren't expecting them (although the supplies are actually needed). Cyclops in particular is surprised to learn that they are the Champions. These X-Men are guarding a stadium against Frost Giants to provide people a place of refuge. Just then Ms Marvel rings Pinpoint asking him to come to Melbourne. And Cyclops recognises her voice.

In Melbourne Kamala is wishing she could talk to Sam, Miles, Amadeus or Scott (the time-lost young version of Cyclops was an original Champions member too). She doesn't realise she's about to be beheaded by a Troll ...

... when he's blasted away by Cyclops' eye-beam. He and Power Man have just arrived with Pinpoint. As Cyke drives the Trolls back, Kamala remembers how the grown-up Scott Summers changed from the good leader of the X-Men into a mutant terrorist who would stop at nothing. And her friend the young Scott was afraid that was what he would grow into. But now Cyclops the man inspires her and the others to fight the Trolls with renewed determination until they flee away from the city. And Ms Marvel takes control of team tactics (which she admits she learned playing (a slightly renamed) World Of Warcraft).

When they can catch their breath Ms M approaches Cyclops and says she knew a young alternate version of him. Scott surprises her by revealing that he knows all the things she and young Scott did. He tells her that young Scott and the other original X-Men found a way back to their own time (Extermination #5) and took up their lives where they left off. And the current versions immediately found new memories in their heads! Kamala hugs him with tears in her eyes, glad to have *one* of her old friends back.

Cyclops and Dust talk about being 2 of the few X-Men left after most 'died' fighting X-Man in the Extermination limited series. Sooraya Qadir says she didn't answer the call to arms then because she's trying to live non-violently as her faith demands. Scott understands and says the Champions would be a better place than the X-Men for her. Ms M takes the hint and welcomes her to the team.

Then the Trolls attack again, and it's all fists to the fight. Having Cyclops around enables Ms Marvel to overcome her doubts and fears to be the hero she wants to be. As she has been doing, Dust uses her sandstorm power to only knock enemies down, but she still prays afterwards that her use of violence was justified to protect the Melbourne citizens. (Although the real estate took a lot of damage.)

In the next lull Cyclops tells Ms M she's doing fine. Despite all the setbacks she must keep fighting to protect people. They hug again and then Pinpoint takes him back to Queens.

Havok and Multiple Man are angry that Cyclops left them. They say he's lucky the Frost Giants didn't attack while he was gone. Scott says his team needed him.


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Juanan Ramirez
Juanan Ramirez
Marcio Menyz
Kim Jacinto (Cover Penciler)
Kim Jacinto (Cover Inker)
Rain Beredo (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Clayton Cowles.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: Bruce Timm.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Kamala Khan)
Spider-Man
Spider-Man

(Miles Morales)

Plus: Bombshell, Champions, Dust (Sooriya Qadir), Havok, Jamie Madrox (Multiple Man), Patriot (Shaun Lucas), Pinpoint, Power Man (Victor Alvarez).