If you know me, you know I am a ride or die for D.C and Image Comics.
NERDS THROW YOUR SYMBOLS UP!!!
I love D.C comicd because I am a Batman, new-age Aqualad, Cyborg, Red Hood, and Doctor Fate fan-girl. (Batman is my first husband in this super-polygamist relationship.) And I love Image because they have given me: Y: the Last Man, all of the Luna Brothers work, The Walking Dead (which most people would say is one of the more important things on the list), and finally my new fav! Saga.
(No. Seriously. Everyone. Read Saga. It’s pretty great. I mean just look at these covers. The art and colors just make me so happy. Also this interracial-interhumanoid-inter-whatever-this-is relationship makes me the happiest nerd girl evah!)
This, however, is not a Saga post because I could go on and on about it. (Just ask my friends. I’m either raving about this or the Luna Brothers. FAN GIRL STATUS: confirmed and approved.) This is a post about something I was quite surprised about.
I read, enjoyed, and FINISHED a Marvel series.
I KNOW! I’m just as shocked as you.
To be honest, I have enjoyed a few things (almost all of them involving Storm, Blade, or Black Panther), but all-in-all, Marvel doesn’t make me go “I MUST READ THAT! GIVE ME!”. My mother believes that you can like both equally. I believe she is a traitor to the household and am writing her out of my will.
Anyway, there was a chunk of time between Saga’s and Bedlam’s (also an Image Comic) new release and I was hankering for a comic to read. I had downloaded a few of the free 1st issues but none of them captured me. And then I saw the cover for Issue #1 of Avengers Arena.
So I previewed the first couple of panels and was instantly hooked. And why shouldn’t I be. It has that whole Hunger Games/Battle Royale/Lord of the Flies thing that is really popular right now. Hell, the second cover looks like this:
I mean, could they be anymore obvious!
(Thank you, Chandler Bing.)
Truly, I shouldn’t have been surprised. I like stories that force characters to show their true nature in really bad situations. It’s why I enjoy zombie or Dystopian narratives. It’s not about the amount of carnage that zombies bring (especially if they are fast zombies, because in that scenario, no one lives. NO ONE!) but about how people — who, when asked, would say that they were either neutrally-good or lawful good– react to situations that will actually force their hand into joining the Light or the Dark side. Are they a Jedi or Sith?
(Because if this post wasn’t nerdy enough, Star Wars references for everyone!)
All in all, the plot is well done. Arcade, a dick-ish villain, kidnaps sixteen superheros from all over and places them in the aptly name arena called Murder World, to well…….murder each other. From there, you get alliances, betrayals, intrigue, all that good stuff that makes this genre worth reading. I also think I had it much easier than readers who came into it thinking that their favorites would be saved, because chances were high that that character would be gone within the first page of the next issue.
I will say that I was surprised by the ending. But, in the end, it wasn’t an actual true ending. The aftermath of the Avengers Arena will be explored in Avengers Undercover. I might be enticed to read it this summer…..maybe. I can only say that with definite yes, if the end of the issue letters are as great as the ones for Avengers Arena. Many a fan-person was upset and frothing at the mouth as their beloved characters were killed off with the quickness. I will not say that reading their sad and angry letters gave me joy, but…… (It did.) .
I hope that I haven’t lost any friends from this post, since it seems that everyone around me prefers Marvel over DC, but GUYS! I understand now. I see why you enjoy Marvel so much. It only took 24 years, many (delicious) fan tears, and a story line that did not involve Wakanda for me to see what draws people in. And while, I may not be the first in line at the theaters to see the next big Marvel Summer Blockbuster – unless Hollywood finally decides to stop playing around and make Black Panther into a film, since his story line can involve Captain America and, if done correctly, Storm from X-men- I will actively stop giving my mother grief when she tries to be a peace keeper over the DC/Marvel debate.
But probably not.