Overview

Runaways Vol. 2 #5

Review

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Runaways Vol. 2 #5

Credits

  • Words: Brian K. Vaughan
  • Art: Adrian Alphona
  • Inks: Craig Yeung
  • Colors: Christine Strain
  • Story Title: True Believers: Part 5 (of 6)
  • Publisher: Marvel Comics
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Jun 29, 2005

Victor’s father finally and truly reveals himself, and Excelsior’s mysterious benefactor exhibits further generosity.

This is good stuff. There have been twists and turns and hints and guest appearances galore since the relaunch of Runaways. The previous volume dealt primarily with these new characters that occasionally mingled with Marvel Universe characters like Captain America, and castaways like Cloak and Dagger. This volume digs right in, giving them at least one viable threat and establishes the Runaways cast as potential mainstays, pitting them directly against Excelsior (a corps of Marvel second-stringers like Darkhawk, Chamber and Ricochet) and big time villains like Doctor Doom and, well, "the greatest evil" Marvel knows as Victor’s (the new kid--not von Doom) daddy.

At least that’s what Vaughan termed Victor’s father through the future Gert Yorkes back in issue number one, and I can completely buy it considering past appearances and the fact that this individual has no morally redeeming qualities. Vaughan throws us a little red herring, one I am admittedly happy to see, and even manages to use it in the context of current continuity without bogging it down therein as well. We also get a little insight into the identity of the Excelsior benefactor, whose intentions are still questionable. His ability to weave all of this into a book with great, witty dialogue and pacing--not to mention great cliffhangers--is what makes BKV one of the best writers currently in comics.

The other great thing about this book is that the art team is seemingly perfect for creating the varying cast of characters Vaughan scripts for them, particularly the villains. Alphona’s pencils are clean and crisp and Yeung does well to let the pencils shine through his inks. UDON Studios’ Christine Strain has a great eye for conveying the vibrant and explosive scenery when necessary. All this, and there are always interesting and/or funny Easter eggs hiding within the scenes.

It’s all been building up to this since the beginning, and now that it’s here, it seems to be just getting started. Runaways is certainly one of the most consistently satisfying comics Marvel publishes. The characters are always interesting, the dialogue always fresh and often informing, and the plot does not get stale. Vaughan and company may tease with the conclusion of each issue, but the readers very rarely have to wait longer than the requisite month for resolution. This book gets my highest recommendation.

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