Tagged: Avengers Academy

Faster Avengers, Kill, Kill: Avengers Arena volume 1 review

Avengers Arena vol 1: Kill or Die

Written by Dennis Hopeless

Art by Kev Walker & Alessandro Vitti

Marvel, collecting issues 1-6, $15.99

It’s pretty much a given that no one stays dead in mainstream comics. Hell, I’m sure there’s a gambling pool out there wagering on when both Charless Xavier and Peter Parker are coming back (my money says 2014, when First Class: Days of Future Past and the Amazing Spider-Man 2 are scheduled to drop in theaters). After all , the lot of them are hugely lucrative IPs, why would they kill them off when there’s money to be made?

That being said, there’s also money to be made in death. The first Hunger Game film proved that, and I’m sure the sequel will do the same. Also see the Japanese Classic “Battle Royale” which spawn 2 movies, a long-running manga adaption, and a ton of imitators. Hell, even highly-publicized and eventually retconned comic book deaths do well for the big 2. So leave it to Marvel NOW to capitalized on this craze, with a book where Avengers are forced to kill Avengers in canon. But not with their A-listers like Iron Man and the Hulk, but with their underaged counterparts instead!

“Avengers Arena: Murder World” takes 16  teenaged ( well 15, and Darkhawk, who’s well into 20s) Marvel heroes and pits them against former D-list villain Arcade. Writer Dennis Hopeless (the most ironic thing about this title for sure) has no problem admitting that books like the Hunger Games and Battle Royale influenced this title, going as far as having Arcade admit that those books inspired him to step up his game. No more pinball machine deathtraps for him, Arcade’s turn Murder World into an ever changing island, where resources are scarce, and no one leaves until all but one are dead.

Hopeless, having to follow up to such writers as Christos Gage and Brian K. Vaughn, does an excellent job of capturing the voices of teenagers, which comes as no surprise to anyone’s who read his excellent X-Men: Season One graphic novel from last year. Each character sounds unique, but faithful to their established history as well, and his new characters are interesting too! Well those who make it past issue 6 that is. Expect a large body count by the time you wrap up the first trade, as both several old and new characters meet their end in this volume. The impact of their deaths only hits harder thank to the wonderful work of Kev Walker. Walker, a vet of both Marvel’s Thunderbolts and 2000 AD’s Judge Dredd, style is ugly as hell, and I mean that in the best way. These kids look like teenagers, so when they bite the bucket, it hurts. He’s assisted by Alessandro Vitti, a talented artist in their own right, and Frank Martin helps both artists keep a similar style going throughout the title.

When this book was first announced, there was a ton of hate on the internet, mostly because it was new and different, and there’s a small vocal community for most of these characters. Understandable to an extent, because no one wants to see one of their favorite characters die for sales/ try to appeal to an audience who’s not reading comics to begin with by ripping off a book/movie big in pop-culture. But the title has seemed to find an audience, which is great,  because. Hopeless and Co. present a cool mystery (“How did Arcade become a legit threat?” “Will these deaths permanent”) and a great title. Much like Hawkeye last month, it wouldn’t kill you (JOKES!) to read Avengers Arena.

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New Arrivals: Rather be playing Zelda edition.

by Chris Troy

THE BEAST IS DEAD! CHRISTMAS IS OVER, AND NOW YOU HAVE CASH AND/OR  GIFT CARDS TO USE ON CRAP THAT YOU REALLY DON’T NEED, BUT YOU WILL ANYWAY, DESPITE YOUR WIFE YELLING AT YOU FOR THE AMOUNT OF TOYS & STATUES CURRENTLY IN THE LIVING ROOM…whoops, projecting in my articles again. Anywho, hope you had a happy whatever holiday you celebrate(d), as mine was pretty rad and full of new video games.

First and foremost: SH Figuarts update. If you recall last week’s article, I mentioned that Figuarts MechaGodzilla was a thing that we would soon have in. Change “soon” to “Currently in stock.” Much like his organic counterpart, Mecha-G is made up of 2 different materials; die-cast and zinc alloy. I really like that Bandai is going this route for these “MonsterArt” figures. He also comes with some variant pieces, nuclear breathe, and a stand for said breathe. In non-Kauji Figuarts news, we also have the Super Sayian Vegeta (Dragonball Z) Figuarts in stock. I have a nature bias towards Dragonball figures, as I was working at a Toys R Us at the height of DBZ’s popularity, so occasionally I have flashbacks to being swarmed by small children and neckbeards rushing me to get to the shelves, only to find out that the only figures we had in stock were some canon fodder villains.

That being said, the Figuarts are arguable the best DBZ figured made to date (which says a lot, as there’s been a ton of them over the years, crapped out by a varieties of companies in both the East and the West). The Prince of all Sayians is well-sculpted like most Figuarts, and comes with a variety of variants hands and faces. We have limited quantities of all these figures in stock, so get ‘em while we still have em. Ebay prices are scary yo.

I’d also like to point out that we have a ton of newish Heroclix figures instock as well!  For Marvel and DC-related things, we have both the Incredible Hulk and the Superman series in stock, as well as some non-comic book based properties in, like Gears of War and the Lord of the Rings. If you play, you’re gonna to want to pick up those LOTR Clix up ASAP, as the Hobbit trailer dropped last week, so there’s been a huge surge in anything Tolkien related as of late. Continue reading

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